1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
  • Harry Thomas Sr. Recreation Center Improvements - Washington DC
    In 1942, the Washington Post reported the allocation of $21,390 to the Federal Works Agency (FWA) for new construction and/or improvements to what was then the Eckington Recreation Center, now known as the Harry Thomas Sr. Recreation Center, in the Eckington neighborhood of NE Washington. As part of the District's new PlayDC initiative, the site was renovated in 2013. It is unclear what FWA work may still be visible at the site.
  • Harvey Park - Whitestone NY
    Today's NYC Parks website explains that the village of Whitestone (now the neighborhood of Whitestone in Queens) acquired this land in 1892.  Parks took over the 21 acre site in 1936 in conjunction with the construction of the Whitestone Parkway.  This site says that a children's playground opened on the site in 1939. However, the official opening of the playground was announced by the Parks Department on April 25, 1940: "Here recreation facilities nave been provided for all age groups. There are three separate children's completely equipped playgrounds, handball, horseshoe pitching, shuffleboard and basketball courts, a full-sized hard ball and a...
  • Hearst Recreation Center Improvements - Washington DC
    In 1942, the Washington Post reported the approval of $17,586 in funding for the Federal Works Agency (FWA) to build and/or make improvements to the Phoebe Hearst Playground, now the Hearst Recreation Center.   It is not certain if any of the current play fields, tennis courts or playground at the Elementary School are products of this New Deal work.
  • Heckscher Playground - Brooklyn NY
    The NYC Parks website explains that, "This playground received its name after the city purchased the land from the Heckscher Foundation for Children in 1935.  The property had served as a public playground since 1934.  When Parks took over, the property included a recreation building with a dental facility and an indoor play area.  The park was home to summer activities such as puppet shows, storytelling, and arts and crafts.  Originally, the playground was a little under one acre in size." The Department of Parks further improved the playground and officially opened it to the public in December 1935. As researcher...
  • Highbridge Park: Sunken Playground - New York NY
    In December 1936, the Department of Parks announced the completion of a new playground in Highbridge Park "equipped with wading pool, swings, see-saws, slides and jungle gym for younger children and a large play area with horizontal bars and ladders, basket ball, hand ball, paddle tennis and horseshoe courts for older Children and adults." Although the press release does not mention the WPA or other New Deal agencies, researcher Frank da Cruz explains here that almost all New York City Parks Department projects between 1934 and 1943 were carried out with New Deal funds and/or labor, and that after April 1935,...
  • Highland Park Improvements - Queens NY
    Highland Park on the border of Queens and Brooklyn received new playground equipment for small children from the Department of Parks in August 1935. As explained here, all Parks projects at the time were carried out with New Deal labor and/or funding. Given the date of this project, it was most likely supported by the WPA.
  • Highland Park Playground Improvements - Seattle WA
    In 1925, the Seattle Park Department purchased the site for Highland Park Playground at Thistle Street and 10th Avenue SW. The playground site saw few improvements during the late 1920s and early 1930s. A series of WPA projects between 1935 and 1940, however, transformed the site for use as a neighborhood playground. The first project, begun in 1935, involved the extension of water mains into the site. That same year, WPA workers began regrading the site and completed some initial planting and landscaping tasks. Additional grading work on the playing field was completed in 1936, along with the installation of several...
  • Hillcrest Park - Clovis NM
    "In Clovis, the Curry County Court House is listed as one of the buildings built in 1936. Twila Ky Rutter, Grant Facilitator and Procurement Clerk, unable to locate a photograph of the building as it was originally, referred me to Don McAlavy, a local historian. He didn't have the photo I was chasing but he gave me other valuable information: i.e., the sunken garden and the arch over Hillcrest Park as WPA projects. The City provided materials, much of which were found in the area, and WPA provided manpower. There are other evidences of WPA work in Clovis but remodeling...
  • Hines Park - Bronx NY
    A New York City Park's Department press release from December 4, 1939 announces the opening of three new WPA playgrounds, including Hines Park: "Hine's Park at Fulton Avenue and East 167 Street is a triangular-shaped area containing a small children's playground, providing a sandpit, see-saws, slides, kindergarten swings and a jungle gym... The opening of these four areas designed by the Park Department and built by the Work Projects Administration makes a total of 306 new or reconstructed playgrounds completed by the Park Department since 1934." (https://kermitproject.org)
  • Homecrest Playground - Brooklyn NY
    The New York Times reported that WPA laborers had begun work in late 1941 on a playground consisting of "two and one-third acres ... The facilities will include a brick comfort station, concrete wading pool, irrigated sandpit and mothers' sitting area, swings, slides, handball court, pipe-frame exercising unit, and areas for skating, basketball and softball." The completion of the project was announced in June 1942.
  • Hoover Playground Improvements - Washington DC
    The Federal Emergency Relief Administration, the Works Progress Administration, and the Civil Works Administration (WPA) funded improvements at the Hoover Playground in Washington DC. The work consisted of the following improvements: CWA and FERA, “Graded, fenced, 3 gates.” (Report of the Government of the District of Columbia 1935) FERA, 1934-1935, “Constructed new shelter 12 by 28 feet with toilet facilities; removed old shelter.” (Report of the Government of the District of Columbia 1936) WPA, 1935-1936, “grading 4,000 cubic yards.” (Report of the Government of the District of Columbia 1936) WPA, 1936-1937, “Completed grading, fencing 1,400 linear feet; three gates.” (Report of the Government of the District of Columbia 1937)
  • Howard Playground Improvements - Washington DC
    The Works Progress Administration (WPA) funded improvements at Howard Playground in Washington DC between 1936-1937. The work included the following improvements: "Demolished pool, filled and graded in preparation for installing wading pool.”
  • Howard Von Dohlen Playground - Jamaica NY
    From NYC Parks: "Howard Von Dohlen Playground opened on July 15, 1934, and is one of nine playgrounds built by Parks through the War Memorial Fund. The fund was established in 1921 with $250,000 collected by the New York City Police Department. Until 1934, the money had remained untouched, during which time it had grown in value to $350,000. Seeking additional open spaces for children, Parks Commissioner Robert Moses obtained a legal ruling that permitted the Fund to be spent on several playground developments. The properties were intended to honor the memories of individual soldiers who had given their lives in...
  • Hunts Point Playground - Bronx NY
    In October 1935, the New York City Department of Parks announced the opening of twelve new playgrounds, including this one at Hunts Point. Although the release does not specify federal involvement, researcher Frank da Cruz explains here that “it is safe to say that every single project completed by the NYC Park Department during the 1930s was federally funded to some degree.” After April 1935, the WPA was especially involved in the development of the New York park system.
  • Indian Road Playground - New York NY
    The Indian Road Playground lies along West 214th Street on the east side of Inwood Hill Park. The playground was constructed during the 1930s by the WPA. New York City's Parks Department site writes that during "the 1930s when Parks Commissioner Robert Moses (1888-1981), using Works Progress Administration (WPA) money and workers, initiated a massive reconstruction of the park. Parks created this playground bordering the 35-acre lawn that dominates the southeast portion of the park, which provides recreational facilities such as baseball fields with bleachers, walking paths, and picnic areas."
  • Inwood Hill Park Improvements - New York NY
    During the Great Depression, the WPA radically transformed this large park at the Northwest tip of Manhattan, making accessible what is now the only largely non-landscaped park in all of Manhattan. WPA workers built roads, trails and overlooks throughout the hilly park. A Department of Parks press release from January 26, 1939 summed up the ongoing work: "The fine native woodland will be made thoroughly accessible by means of a network of footpaths with many benches for strollers... The Authority provided a further sponsors' contribution to the WPA for toilet facilities, benches, drinking fountains and overlooks along the high...
  • Inwood Hill Park: Payson Playground - New York NY
    Payson Playground, in the Southeast corner of Inwood Hill Park, is one of three playgrounds in the park. The current Department of Parks website says the playground was built by Robert Moses in 1939, but Parks Department press releases from the New Deal period show that the park was originally built in 1934 and completed in 1941. A 1934 press release announced the opening of the playground in August of that year. The release describes the new playground as containing a "Field house, comfort station, play area, basketball courts and the usual playground equipment for children." The labor and materials...
  • J. Hood Wright Park - New York NY
    This sizable park on Manhattan's west side includes vistas of the Hudson River and of the George Washington Bridge. It was acquired by the city in 1925, and opened by the Department of Parks in 1935. The press release announcing the opening listed the park's facilities as including "slides, swings, jungle gym, see-saws, horizontal ladders and bars, soft ball diamond, wading pool and two handball courts. The recreation building will include a playroom and two loggias. Floodlights will be installed for night use. Ten playground directors will supervise this three-acre playground." The recreation building referred to was completed in 1937,...
  • J. J. Byrne Playground - Brooklyn NY
    Now known as the J. J. Byrne Playground, this was one of five "model playgrounds" designed as templates for further playground development by Robert Moses and his team after Moses assumed control of the New York City Parks Department in 1934. J. J. Byrne Playground is located within Washington Park in Brooklyn. When it opened in August 1934, the playground contained handball courts, two "bo-uijo courts," and a wading pool and play area for small children. It also contained a unique recreation building now known as the the Old Stone House of Gowanus. The NYC Parks website describes the structure as...
  • Jackie Robinson Park - New York NY
    The spacious Jackie Robinson Park in Harlem, originally called Colonial Park and known for many years as Bradhurst Park, first opened in 1911, but was only fully developed under the New Deal. When the Department of Parks announced the planned reconstruction in August 1935, they gave an unusual level of detail about this important project: "The Department of Parks has determined the location and completed the development plan of a major recreational center in Harlem. For over a year the Department has been searching this section of the city for an area large enough to provide space for the active play...
  • Jackie Robinson Park Playground (W 153rd St.) - New York NY
    The playground inside Jackie Robinson Park (originally Colonial Park), located at Bradhurst Ave. and W 153rd St., was one of 11 Works Progress Administration (WPA) parks that opened April 4, 1936. Excerpt from Frank da Cruz, Kermit Project, Jackie Robinson Park and Pool: "Even though this park was designed, paid for, and built by Federal New Deal agencies of the Franklin D. Roosevelt administration, there is no plaque, cornerstone, or other marker anywhere in or around the park crediting the New Deal in any way for this magnificent community resource. It is not unique in this respect; most New Deal creations in New...
  • Jamaica Playground - Jamaica NY
    In early 1942, the WPA began work on a new park and playground to be operated jointly by the adjacent P.S. 40 (Samuel Huntington School) and the Department of Parks. A press release announcing the start of construction described the work to be accomplished: "Twenty-three one to two and a half story frame buildings are being demolished in preparation for the new development which will provide the following facilities: eight concrete surfaced handball courts, wading pool, brick comfort station, irrigated sand Pit and sitting area, seesaws, slides and swings for pre-school and older children, a pipe frame exercise unit, two large open...
  • James J. Walker Park Improvements - New York NY
    James J. Walker Park was improved and extended circa 1935 with the help of the New Deal. The agency involved in funding and completing the work is unknown to the Living New Deal. During the 1930s Robert Moses used New Deal funding and labor, yet he  rarely credited New Deal agencies. New Deal plaques in New York parks are rare. For a detailed discussion see, Kermit Project, New Deal Assistance in NYC Parks Department Projects, 1934-43. The NYC Parks site describes the origins of the park: "Bordered by Hudson Street, Clarkson Street, St. Luke’s Place, and the Carmine Street Recreation Center,...
  • Jane Addams High School - Bronx NY
    Jane Addams High School, located in the southern Bronx, was constructed during the 1930s with federal Public Works Administration funds. It opened in 1937. The project was PWA Docket No. NY 1178. The school closed in 2012, and the building now houses two smaller charter schools. In 1935, the Department of Parks had also opened a new playground on the site with federal funds, most likely FERA and possibly CWA funds. It is unclear whether that playground became part of the school's recreational facilities, or whether it was demolished in order to build the school.  
  • Janney Playground Improvements - Washington DC
    The Civil Works Administration and the Federal Emergency Relief Administration funded improvements at the Janney Playground in Washington DC. The work consisted of building one or more new shelters.
  • John Allen Payne Park - Brooklyn NY
    The land for what is now the John Allen Payne Park was acquired in 1940. "It is one of more than a dozen parks and playgrounds that line the highway now known as the Gowanus Expressway" (NYC Parks). The WPA and the Department of Parks announced the beginning of work on a playground at the site in October 1941. The press release explained that, when completed, the playground would contain: Irrigated sand pit Seesaws Slides 1 pipe frame exercise unit 4 shuffleboard courts Brick comfort station Concrete wading pool 1 combination volleyball and basketball court 3 paddle tennis courts with removable posts and nets Roller skating area 6 concrete surfaced handball courts The...
  • John Jay Park Improvements - New York NY
    The New York Times reported in Sept. 1941 that the WPA worked on the "reconstruction of John Jay Park along the East River Drive, between Seventy-sixth and Seventy-eighth Streets." Specific improvements included the installation of a new diving pool with concrete bleachers; the remodeling of an "old bath building" to "include a recreation room, gymnasium and auditorium"; and a new "completely equipped playground." A May 1942 Department of Parks press release further reported that the WPA had relocated the concession building, paved areas of the park, installed benches and planted trees.
  • Jonathon Maynard School (former) Improvements - Framingham MA
    All 17 schoolhouses in Framingham, Massachusetts were painted, remodeled, and/or repaired with federally funded labor during the Great Depression. At the former Jonathon Maynard School the Civil Works Administration (C.W.A.) graded the land behind the school and built a new playground (1933-4). The W.P.A. conducted work at the site as well, including the installation of new bathroom facilities in 1937.
  • Joseph C. Sauer Park - New York NY
    From NYC Parks: "Sauer Park is one of nine playgrounds that were built by the Parks Department through the War Memorial Fund, and were opened simultaneously on July 15, 1934. The War Memorial Fund was established in 1921 with $250,000 collected by the Police Department, and by 1934 the fund—never spent—had grown in value to $350,000. Seeking additional open spaces for children, Parks Commissioner Robert Moses obtained a legal ruling which permitted use of the fund for playground development. The properties were intended to honor the memories of individual soldiers who gave their lives in combat. The Fund was transferred to...
  • Joseph F. DiNapoli Playground - Brooklyn NY
    A June 1936 press release announced the opening of a new playground in Canarsie Park "fully equipped with play apparatus for young and older children." The NYC Parks site confirms this date and explains the history of this site: "Located at East 93rd Street and Seaview Avenue, this playground is situated in the northeastern part of Canarsie Park, which takes its name from the Canarsie Indians who once lived there. It stands on the oldest parcel of land, acquired in 1895 by the City of Brooklyn and transferred to Parks in 1898, in the 132 acre park which is bounded by Paedergat...
  • Josephine Caminiti Playground - Flushing NY
    The sign on this park says Josephine Caminiti Playground. The NYC Parks website also refers to it as Alstyne Playground and notes that it was formerly known as Corona Playground. The land for this park was purchased by the City in 1930. The press release announcing its opening in October 1934 described the new facilities: "A new playground for small children will be opened at Corona Avenue and 102nd Street in the Borough of Queens. The area includes a recreational building outdoor play apparatus. A unique feature of this playground is its oval, concrete surfaced roller skating rink around the...
  • Junction Playground - Jackson Heights NY
    On January 4, 1938, the Department of Parks announced the opening of a new playground: "In Queens, at 34th Avenue between 96th Street and Junction Boulevard, the new playground has slides, swings, see-saws, sand table, shuffleboard and handball courts. A rectangular wading pool which can be used for basketball and volleyball in spring and fall is also provided. Shade trees and permanent concrete benches are included in the landscape treatment. In this playground there is also a new building of brick construction, with comfort facilities for boys and girls." There is still a playground located at this site today. Although the 1938 press...
  • Juniper Valley Park - Middle Village NY
    This large park in the Middle Village neighborhood of Queens provides a wealth of leisure and recreational attractions to local residents. Before it became a park, "it was used variously as a farm, a cemetery, a source for peat moss, the property of a racketeer, and a garbage dump...In the early 1930s the City of New York acquired the bog to settle a $225,000 claim in back taxes against the estate of the infamous Arnold Rothstein (1882-1928), who had been accused of fixing the 1919 World Series" (nycgovparks). The WPA greatly transformed the park, first in 1936 and again in...
  • Kaiser Park - Brooklyn NY
    NYC Parks describes the history of this park: "The property on which the park is located was acquired by Parks from the Sinking Fund in two parcels. The first parcel was assigned on July 11, 1934, the second on June 23, 1937. Kaiser Park was formerly known as the Coney Island Lots because the northwestern corner of the park is situated on Coney Island." A Department of Parks press release from November 1936 announced the completion of new facilities at the site, including "a wading pool 54' x 96', two hard ball diamonds for older boys and see-saws, swings, jungle gym,...
  • Kelly Park and Playground - Brooklyn NY
    This park area consists of Kelly Park to the West of the BMT Brighton Beach transit line and the smaller Kelly Playground to the East of the line. Both were developed by the WPA in 1940. Kelly Park was first acquired by Parks in 1924, but expanded and improved by the WPA in 1940 to include "new baseball diamonds and tennis courts (adaptable for ice-skating after flooding and freezing), shuffleboard and volleyball courts, game tables, horseshoe pits, and children’s play structures" (NYC Parks). Kelly Playground, just east of the tracks was first acquired in 1937 and developed as part of...
  • Kern Park Improvements - Milwaukee WI
    "Repairing and painting of buildings, including band shells, bathhouses, pavilions, bridges, residences, service buildings and playground buildings in the following parks...Kern Park."
  • Kimball Playground Fort Dupont Park - Washington DC
    In 1942, the Washington Post reported four acres allocated by the Federal Works Agency (FWA) for a play field at Fort Dupont Park (now Fort Circle Park). This is likely the present site of Kimball Playground baseball fields. It is unknown if any work remains from the New Deal era.
  • Kimmell Park - Vincennes IN
    Constructed by the Public Works Administration (PWA) in 1938. Four large stone rings and elaborate stone entrance for walk in entry only; picnic area, playground and boat ramp. Memorial to Civil War Veterans. Concrete wall high on east side of Levee that becomes and 8' wall at entrance (all of concrete). Each stone circle has 2 built in fireplace/grills, built in bench a concrete table, a shield with a name and "1938." Each could accommodate about 100 people. The entry gates (pedestrian) open into a round plaza with a flag pole and have 2 relief panels each. The bath house...
  • Kolbert Park - Brooklyn NY
    NYC Parks describes the origins of this small park: "In August 1936, the City of New York acquired this property by condemnation for the sum of $87,938.40. That year, Parks assumed jurisdiction over the property, removing sections of both Ocean and Locust Avenues that traversed the property in order to create a full park area. In June 1937, the playground officially opened to the public." The press release announcing the opening stated that "the new playground has swings, see-saws, slides, sand tables, playhouses, handball, horseshoe pitching and shuffleboard courts. There is also a wading pool, a softball diamond and an oval...
  • Lake Park Improvements - Milwaukee WI
    "Repairing and painting of park board buildings, including band shells, bath houses, pavilions, bridges, residences, service buildings and play ground buildings in the following parks...Lake Park."
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8