Queens History Timeline

1636-39

Dutch authorities begin awarding grants of land in Queens, the first settlers residing in the Dutch Kills area of Long Island City.

1657

The people of Flushing issue the Flushing Remonstrance to protest Governor Stuyvesant’s persecution of the Quakers; one of the first public statements on freedom of religion issued in the North American colonies, it argues that Stuyvesant violated rights granted to the colonists in their town charter.

1664

The Dutch surrender New Netherland to the English.

1683

The British colony of New York is divided into ten counties, one of which is Queens which included all of current Nassau County.

1790

First U.S. Census taken: Queens County has 5,393 total population, including 1,095 slaves,

1827

Slavery becomes illegal in New York State on July 4th, although most slaves have been manumitted by this time.

1854

Conrad Poppenhusen opens a hard-rubber factory in College Point, one of the first large-scale manufacturing plants in Queens, employing hundreds of workers.

1861

The first hospital in Queens is opened in Long Island City by a group of Catholic nuns.

1862

Construction of Fort Totten in Bayside begun by the U.S. government and throughout the Civil War many local volunteers are trained on the grounds.

1865

Frederick Douglass delivers a speech at the Flushing Town Hall on the role of African Americans in antebellum America; Manhattanites begin the trend of day trips to Rockaway Beach.

1870

A free kindergarten for the children of College Point opened at the Poppenhusen Institute, the first of its kind in America.

1870-72

The Steinway Company builds a piano factory and factory village in northern Long Island City.

1874

Queens County Courthouse holds its first session in Long Island City.

1875

Flushing High School opens as the first state-chartered public school in New York.

1887

Reporter Jacob Riis moves to Richmond Hill, where he writes How the Other Half Lives.

1888

Flushing Hospital opens and the Long Island Rail Roads builds a station in a Jamaica Bay island fishing community.

1889

The Long Island Rail Road opens up Murray Street Station in Flushing that is about a mile east of Main Street

1890

Jamaica Hospital opens and the Long Island Improvement Company begins developing Rockaway Park

1891

St. John’s Hospital opens in Long Island City.

1893

PS 1 opens in Long Island City

1894

Jamaica Racetrack opens and an advisory vote is held on if Western Queens should be a part of New York City or not.

1896

The Federal Government changes the name of Newtown to Elmhurst.

1899

The state creates “Nassau County” that now includes Eastern Queens. These areas include: Hempstead, North Hempstead and Oyster Bay.

1900

The United States Census puts Queens at a population of 152,999.

1909

Queensboro Bridge is now open to the public.

1910

The last remaining one-room schoolhouse is officially closed by the Board of Education.

1912

Kew Gardens is in the beginning of being developed and the FDNY takes over the responsibilities of Newtown Fire Department

1916

New York City declares that Jamaica Bay is too polluted for people to do any fishing 

1920

A large number of African-Americans are now moving from the South, Harlem and the West Indies to the South of Jamaica (Jamaica Ave.) 

1928

RKO Keith movie palace opens on what used to be Flushing Hotel. Louis Latimer, a scientist who worked with Thomas Edison passes away in Flushing

1930

The U.S. Census reports that the population in Queens has now surpassed 1 Million people 

1932

Riker’s Island now houses a prison in order to replace the one on Roosevelt Island (Blackwell Island)

1935

Queens General Hospital is now open to the public. It is located in Jamaica 

1938

Chester Carlson invents what now known as the Xerox Machine.

1942

Louis Armstrong moves to Corona. He lived in what is now known as the Louis Armstrong House Museum until he passed in 1971.

1945

Bowne House becomes the Bowne House Historical Society and it later becomes a museum.

1955

St. Johns University opens in Queens on the old Hillcrest Golf Course.

1959

The New York Racing Association reopens Aqueduct Racetrack

1961

The Throgs Neck Bridge is officially open

1964

The 1964 World’s Fair in Flushing is now open

1966

The Queens Borough Public Library opens in Jamaica

1967

Robert Moses, the president of the World’s Fair Corporation hands over the Flushing Meadows-Corona park to the Park Association

1968

The Queens Zoo opens in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. Queens Historical Socioty is also established

1969

The New York Mets win the World Series. The New York Jets also win Super Bowl III

1973

The Queens Museum of Art opens in a old New York City building located on the old, World’s Fair property

1976

P.S. 1 in Long Island City opens to the public as a Contemporary Art Museum

1978

The US Open Tennis Championship gets relocated from Forest Hills to the Louis Armstrong Stadium at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park

1983

Queens County Farm Museums opens to the public

1985

The Isamu Noguchi Museum opens in the artist’s former Long Island City studio

1988

The Museum of Moving Image is established in Astoria

1992

The U.S Department of Census declares Queens as the ethically diverse county in the United States of America

1999

New York City Mayor, Mayor Rudolph Giuliani informs New York City of the West Nile Virus. College Point is the first area that was sprayed with the insectcide

2000

The U.S. Census updates the count to more than 2 million residents currently living in Queens

2001

John Liu of Flushing, is the first Asian American elected to the New York City Council and Helen Marshall is the first African American elected Queens Borough President

2006

A ceremony is held for the new stadium to be built in place of Shea Stadium. The new stadium would be called “CitiField,” in honor of the sponsor, CitiCorp