Neighborhood Highlights

Must-See Bushwick

by Jessica Allen, 09/05/2012 [Updated 10/20/2015]

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  • Bushwick has become synonymous with new music and trendy eateries, cutting-edge artists and skinny jeans. But long before Bushwick was Bushwick, it was Boswijck; colonial Dutch for "town in the woods," the name given the area by Peter Stuyvesant in 1661. Before that, it was home to the Lenape people, who sold the land to the Dutch West India Company for eight axes, 12 kettles and some wampum, among other goods. The Native Americans and Dutch were followed by French, Scandinavian and English settlers, then Germans, Austrians, Italians, African Americans and Latinos. Heavy industry arrived, too, transforming farmland and residential blocks into chemical plants and warehouses, and by the late 20th century, Bushwick was the epitome of urban blight and poverty.

    In recent years, decrepit buildings have been remade into galleries and performance spaces, sometimes serving as legal canvases for street artists, and restaurants have begun drawing crowds from all over. These days, Bushwick is New Yorkese for "hippest neighborhood in town." Read on to discover more.

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