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  • 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."
  • Langston Playground Improvements - Washington DC
    In 1942, the Washington Post reported the approval of $16,500 in funding for the Federal Works Agency (FWA) to build and/or make improvements to the Langston Recreation Center (now the Langston Playground) in Anacostia Park, next to the Langston Golf Course. It is known if the present football field, basketball courts and other improvements at the site are left from the New Deal era.
  • Laurelhurst Playfield Improvements - Seattle WA
    The Seattle Park Department acquired the site for Laurelhurst Playfield along NE 41st Street between 45th Avenue NE and 48th Avenue NE in 1927. Although a few improvements to the site were completed between 1929 and 1932, a series of New Deal projects between 1933 and 1941 allowed the Park Department to move forward with additional upgrades despite the hardships of the Great Depression. Laurelhurst Playfield was one of a limited number of Seattle park facilities to receive funding under the New Deal's Civil Works Administration program. During the winter of 1933-1934, CWA laborers began construction on a brick field house...
  • Laurelton Playground - Queens NY
    The NYC Parks website explains that: "In May 1934, after closing P.S. 38, the Board of Education transferred the property to Parks. Parks opened Laurelton Playground on August 23, 1935 in service of the local community. Parks acquired two small parcels that were added to this playground during 1936." A Parks press release announcing the opening explained that it was then "developed as a small children's play area." As researcher Frank da Cruz explains here, almost all New York City Parks Department projects between 1934 and 1943 were accomplished with New Deal funds and/or labor. Given the date of this project,...
  • Lawrence Virgilio Playground - Woodside NY
    On July 28, 1937, the Department of Parks announced the opening of "five playgrounds, constructed by the Department of Parks with relief labor and funds," noting that "These playgrounds are five of the twenty-four sites in neglected areas selected by the Commissioner of Parks and acquired by condemnation after authorization by the Board of Estimate and Apportionment on July 15, 1936." One of these five playgrounds was what is now known as the Lawrence Virgilio Playground in Windmuller Park. Today's NYC Parks website confirms that "The land comprising Windmuller Park was acquired from the Windmuller family in 1936 and the park...
  • Legion Park Development - Auburn NE
    Auburn, Nebraska's Legion Park was dramatically improved as a result of Work Projects Administration (WPA) efforts. In addition to the park's bandshell, "uring the late 1930’s, the City received WPA funding to build the ... playground, picnic shelter, and the arched entrance."
  • Leif Ericson Park - Brooklyn NY
    Leif Ericson Park is a long, narrow park in the Bay Ridge neighborhood of Brooklyn, which "features a Norse theme in honor of Leif Ericson and the local Scandinavian-American community" (NYC Parks). By the turn of the 20th century, the neighborhood had a large Norwegian population, and in 1925 community leaders convinced City Hall to turn the five blocks from 4th Ave. to Fort Hamilton Parkway between 66th St. and 67th St. into a park. In the 1930s, the park was extensively developed by the New Deal. In October 1934, the Department of Parks announced the addition of two play areas...
  • Leon High School Stadium and Playground - Tallahassee FL
    "A new concrete stadium and playground at Leon High School in Tallahassee was completed through the combined efforts of the WPA, the City of Tallahassee, Leon County, and the local Junior Chamber of Commerce."
  • Levy Playground - Staten Island NY
    Levy Playground is a small plot in the Richmond district of Staten Island. It 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. The August 1934 press release announcing the opening of this and 13 other playgrounds – constructed with Work Relief funds probably coming from the Civil Works Administration (CWA) – described this playground as containing: "Recreation building and the usual playground apparatus. There is an octagonal wading pool. The smaller children will be separated from...
  • Lewis Lake Park Development - Winthrop MA
    W.P.A. Bulletin, 1937: "At the southern end of the marsh that was in the center of Winthrop, WPA has created a skating area and rendezvous for aquatic sports out of the formerly ugly Lewis Lake. A dump on one side of the lake was removed. Jagged banks have been changed to gentle grassy slopes, topped by walks. The pond has been changed to two small ponds connected by points of land which will be joined by a rustic bridge. A perfect spot for model yacht races, swimming races, a stroll in the sunlight or under a starry, moonlit sky."
  • Lincoln 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 Lincoln School the Civil Works Administration (C.W.A.) painted classrooms and repaired ceilings in 1933. Heating facilities and floors were improved in 1934. Federal Emergency Relief Administration (F.E.R.A.) funds also allowed for a new playground for the school that year. In 1936 the Works Progress Administration (W.P.A.)  conducted numerous repairs, including varnishing interior woodwork; painting, both inside and out; patching ceilings; and re-pointing bricks. New concrete walkways were installed by the W.P.A. in 1937. A school addition project was completed by the...
  • Lincoln Terrace Park - Brooklyn NY
    This large, tiered park in Brooklyn was acquired by the City in stages between 1916 and 1935. In 1939-1940, the WPA constructed a brand new playground on the lower level of the park and then completely redesigned the upper levels as well. The August 1939 press release announcing the opening of the lower section described this work in detail: "The Brooklyn playground, in Lincoln Terrace Park, is one of the most intensively developed recreational areas that has been constructed by the Park Department. It is thirteen acres in size and contains a large open play area for group games for older...
  • Lion's Pride Playground - Brooklyn NY
    The Department of Parks announced the opening of this playground on August 30, 1935 and noted that it contained a wading pool and playground apparatus. Although federal involvement is not explicitly mentioned, federal funding for laborers, materials, architects, landscapers and engineers employed on Parks projects is acknowledged in about 350 press releases from 1934 to 1943. As researcher Frank da Cruz explains here, from these and other sources, it can be confidently stated that all New York City parks projects from 1934 to 1938 and almost all from 1939-1943 were completed in whole or in part with New Deal funding...
  • Little Flower Playground - New York NY
    "This playground, formerly La Guardia Houses Park, refers to the popular nickname of New York City mayor Fiorello H. La Guardia (1882-1947), Little Flower. The nickname is a literal translation of the Italian mayor’s first name and an allusion to his small physical stature of 5 feet 2 inches." It was completed by the Works Progress Administration (WPA)." It is also the site of Jo Davidson's bust of LaGuardia.  
  • Logan Playground Improvements - Washington DC
    The Works Progress Administration, and the Civil Works Administration (WPA) funded improvements at the Logan Playground in Washington DC. The work consisted of the following improvements: WPA, 1935-1936, “grading 1,000 cubic yards.” (Report of the Government of the District of Columbia 1936) WPA, 1936-1937, “Completed grading, fencing 400 linear feet; one gate.” (Report of the Government of the District of Columbia 1937) WPA, 1937-1938, “Installation of equipment.” (Report of the Government of the District of Columbia 1938)
  • London Planetree Playground - Woodhaven NY
    The Department of Parks announced the opening of this WPA playground in Queens on August 9, 1939: “The land was acquired at the time the Board of Estimate approved the modified plan for the Atlantic Avenue Improvement, the playground was designed by the Department of Parks, and built for the Park Department by the Works Progress Administration. The small children's area in the southerly part of the playground contains various types of play equipment, a wading pool, and a sand pit. The balance of the area is taken up with basketball, volleyball, and handball courts, a softball diamond and a roller skating...
  • Longfellow School (former) Playground - Millville MA
    1939: "An area of 1 1/2 acres which moved into Millville ownership through tax title foreclosure, adjacent to the Longfellow School property, is in the process of development as a playground and recreational center. The work is being carried out as a W.P.A. project employing 25 men. This parcel presented an exceedingly rough and unsightly appearance, with outcropping ledge and cellar holes being the predominant features discernible. Plans call for the grading, filling, drainage, ledge removal, retaining walls and landscaping which will ultimately transform the plot into a beauty spot, with facilities for playground and recreational activities." The playground is still...
  • Lozada Playground - Bronx NY
    On January 15, 1940, the New York City Department of Parks announced the completion of this "new facility" at Alexander Ave. and 136th St.: "It contains four handball courts, a large, open, biuminous-surfaced play area for group games, small and large swings, see-saws, slides, a jungle gym, a completely equipped playground with sand pit and wading pool for smaller children, and a comfort station. A planting area with shade trees borders the playground. Numerous concrete benches have been provided. ... designed by the Park Department and built by the Work Projects Administration..."   (https://kermitproject.org) The park was renamed for Private Carlos J. Lozada in...
  • Lt. Joseph Petrosino Park - Brooklyn NY
    An August 1935 Parks Department press release lists what is now the Lt. Joseph Petrosino Park as one of seventy-three play areas developed in the preceding year with "city, state and federal relief funds." The release describes this park as having play areas designed for mothers and infants, older children, adolescents and adults. The playground opened on May 24, 1935. NYC Parks website further explains that "Distributed around its perimeter were handball courts, slides, swings, a wading pool, jungle gym, and recreation building." The park was renovated in 1993. Although neither source identifies which federal agencies were involved, researcher Frank da Cruz explains...
  • MacNeil Park Playground - College Point NY
    Located in College Point, this green space on the East River is built on the grounds of an old mansion. It was originally known as Chisolm Park: "In 1930 the City of New York acquired the mansion and its grounds for a public park. The Parks Department improved the property with a new playground, football field, roller skating rink, baseball diamond, and picnic grounds. Popular with picnickers, the waterfront property was known alternatively as Chisholm Park (a variant spelling of the Chisolm family’s name) and College Point Shore Front Park. Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia made the Chisolm mansion his summer City Hall...
  • Macomb Playground Improvements - Washington DC
    The Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA) funded improvements at the Macomb Playground in Washington DC between 1935 and 1936. The crews graded 1,500 cubic yards.  
  • Macombs Dam Park Playground (demolished) - Bronx NY
    The New York City Parks Department Press Release for October 14, 1935 announces the opening of a new playground at the site of what was later called Macombs Dam Park, with some or all of the following amenities: wading pools, handball courts, basketball courts, jungle gyms, swings, slides, seesaws, and other outdoor gymnasium equipment. Macombs Dam Park was not a New Deal creation; it was first opened in 1899 and was famous for its athletic fields (see history). But the press release confirms that at least one playground was added to it by the Parks Department during the New Deal. Later...
  • Madrona Playground Improvements - Seattle WA
    In 1927, the Seattle Park Department acquired the site for Madrona Playground at East Spring Street and 34th Avenue. The playground site received a few improvements during the late 1920s and early 1930s, including the grading of the playfield and the construction of a pair of concrete tennis courts, but otherwise remained mostly undeveloped until the late 1930s, when increased Works Progress Administration funding allowed the completion of several improvement projects. These improvement projects included the construction of a new brick shelter house near the north end of the playground. Begun in 1938 and completed in 1939, the shelter house...
  • Mahoney Playground - Staten Island NY
    The land for Mahoney Playground was acquired in two parts in 1933 and in 1961. Parks announced the opening of a new playground on the first half in 1937, with "a fully equipped small children's section besides facilities for handball, basketball, horseshoe pitching, paddle tennis, shuffle board and Softball for older children and adults. Here, too, benches and shade trees are also provided." Although the 1937 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...
  • Marconi Park - Jamaica NY
    Parks acquired what is now Marconi Park "on February 15, 1938, for the benefit of the adjacent P.S. 40 (William Wordsworth School) and the South Jamaica community. The playground opened on June 26, 1939, under the administration of Mayor Fiorello H. La Guardia" (NYC Parks). On June 30, 1939, the Department of Parks held official opening ceremonies for the park, attended by Mayor LaGuardia and Robert Moses among others. The press release announcing the opening described the work done on the site: "South of the school, the one block square area developed to care for older children and adults has been provided...
  • Marcus Garvey Park Improvements - New York NY
    "Marcus Garvey Park is one of the oldest public squares in Manhattan. Central to the life of Harlem for more than 150 years, it has served as a meeting place for neighbors, a front yard and play area for schoolchildren, and a holy place for members of local churches. Known as Mount Morris Park for more than a hundred years… Parks Commissioner Robert Moses, with the help of the Federal Works Progress Administration, installed playgrounds and a system of stone walls, terraces and stairs that remains in place today. In the mid-1960s the park again underwent dramatic changes. The City constructed a...
  • Maria Hernandez Park - Brooklyn NY
    Originally known as Bushwick Park, this land was first developed as a park in the 1890s. During the New Deal, the WPA and the Department of Parks did a major renovation and reconstruction of the park. A press release announcing the park's reopening on August 13, 1941, described what had been accomplished: "The first steps in the modernization of the park to serve the needs of all age groups were taken in 1936 when a one-half acre playground was built in conformity with a development plan for the entire park… The renovation and reconstruction of the remaining six and one-half acres, provide...
  • Marine Park - Brooklyn NY
    Marine Park is the largest public park in Brooklyn. It surrounds the westernmost inlet of Jamaica Bay. The City acquired the first parcels of land in Marine Park in the 1920s and expanded the area in the 1930s. This park was extensively developed by New Deal labor and funding. A July 30, 1936 Department of Parks press release announced the opening of new facilities at the Marine Park, including immediately "three baseball diamonds, two football and soccer fields and one-half of the oval-shaped bicycle and roller skating track." To be constructed in total were "ten baseball diamonds, four football and soccer...
  • Mariners Harbor Playground - Staten Island NY
    An August 1935 Parks Department press release lists Mariners Harbor Playground as one of seventy-three play areas developed in the preceding year with "city, state and federal relief funds." The release describes this park as having play areas designed for mothers and infants and older children. NYC Parks reports that the playground opened on "December 10, 1934 with a basketball/volleyball court, a playground, and a spray shower. The site name was changed several times over the years, to Mariner’s Playground in 1996 and to Harbor Playground in 1997, before its original name was recently reinstated." Although neither source identifies which federal agencies...
  • Marshall Park - Lunenburg MA
    WPA Bulletin, 1937: "Picnic Cave Unusual Feature of Playground Lunenburg — An underground cave equipped with a fireplace and picnic facilities for 40 persons is the outstanding feature of Lunenburg's WPA-built recreation centre at Marshall Field. The grounds also boasts a cinder track, a baseball diamond, and two half-completed tennis courts. But the cave is most popular— especially with the Boy Scouts and other young people's organizations who have held many meetings and hot-dog roasts there. As it was not scheduled as part of the project, many of the townspeople and NYA workers pitched in and did the extra work. The cave is about...
  • Mathews-Palmer Playground - New York NY
    NYC Parks states that this small park was acquired by the City in 1936-1938. It opened to the public on April 16, 1937. The press release announcing the opening explained: "the new playground has see-saws, swings, jungle gym, garden swings, slides, sand tables, play houses and game tables for chess, checkers and backgammon, and also benches and shade trees." The site was eventually renamed Mathews-Palmer Playground "after park and community advocates May Mathews and Alexandra Palmer." Although these sources do not mention the WPA or other New Deal agencies, researcher Frank da Cruz explains here that almost all New York City Parks...
  • Maurice Park - Maspeth NY
    Maurice Park, also known as the Frank Principe Park, was constructed by the Department of Parks and the WPA in 1940. The November 1940 press release announcing the opening of the new Park described the WPA's work in detail: "Every square foot has been well utilized in this intensively developed tract which was formerly the property of a privately owned Water Company. Acquired by the City in 1937 for unpaid taxes and assessments totaling $358,817.00, the property was placed under the jurisdiction of the Department of Water Supply. Because the pumping station was inactive the Park Department, in February 1939, succeeded...
  • McCarren Park Improvements - Brooklyn NY
    The sizeable McCarren Park in Brooklyn (Williamsburg) dates to the early 20th century, but received several additions in the 1930s with New Deal support. The best known of these is the WPA pool that opened in 1936.  But the Department of Parks also announced the reconstruction of the park's play facilities in August 1935 and the addition of sixteen handball courts and a roller skating rink in December 1936. As researcher Frank da Cruz explains here, almost all New York City Parks Department projects between 1934 and 1943 were accomplished with New Deal support. From April 1935 on, the WPA quickly...
  • McLaughlin Park - Brooklyn NY
    A June 1936 press release from the Department of Parks announced the opening of a newly reconstructed playground at the site of what is now McLaughlin Park. It contained a girl's playground "fully equipped with play apparatus, basketball, volley ball and paddle tennis courts." In October 1936, the Department announced the completion of the "reconstruction of the entire park. The area to be opened includes a wading pool and a large boys' playground with a soft ball diamond." Although the announcement does not mention the WPA or other New Deal agencies, researcher Frank da Cruz explains here that almost all New...
  • McMechan Park Improvements - Oklahoma City OK
    The Works Progress Administration (WPA) contributed to the improvement of Oklahoma City’s McMechan Park in 1940. “McMechan Park at Oklahoma City, Okla., will be expanded to a 17-acre development,” a reporter noted in January 1940, “according to plans disclosed by Donald Gordon, superintendent of parks. A $12,000 WPA project which will include landscaping, tree planting, grading, and establishment of play areas on the site will be submitted.” According to the Parks and Recreation Department, the WPA expanded the park to include land on both sides of McMechan Parkway. The park still serves as a recreation site for Oklahoma City residents today.
  • McMillan Playground Improvements - Washington DC
    The Federal Emergency Relief Administration and the Works Progress Administration (WPA) funded improvements at the McMillan Playground in Washington DC. Completed between 1935 and 1938, the work consisted of “Fencing (2,400 feet, 8-foot); completed installation of drainage system.” The WPA completed the following work: 1935-1936, “new recreation building, begun under Civil Works Administration, carried forward to 70% completion; 4 tennis courts subgraded; grading 500 cubic yards.” (Report of the Government of the District of Columbia  1936) Federal Art Project, 1935-1936, “A fine set of murals depicting games of the eighteenth century has been carved in wood and painted for the McMillan playground house…” . (Report of...
  • Memorial Field of Flushing - Flushing NY
    The Memorial Field of Flushing opened in November, 1934 in a ceremony attended by Mayor LaGuardia. The press release announcing the event described the extensive work carried out with New Deal support: "The land for the Flushing Memorial Playfield was given to the City by the Memorial Field of Flushing, Inc., for the development of a playground. Labor and material were supplied from Work Relief funds. A one-story field house of Colonial design is located in a corner of the playground. Eight tennis courts, eight handball courts and two basketball courts are provided in addition to swings, seesaws, sand tables and other...
  • Mercer Playground (demolished) Improvements - Seattle WA
    The former Mercer Playground at 2nd Avenue North and Harrison Street in Seattle's Queen Anne neighborhood was the site of several small WPA maintenance and improvement projects. In 1938, WPA workers painted the playground shelter house, as part of a city-wide initiative to repaint various park structures that had not received any paint maintenance since the start of the Depression due to budget cuts. The following year, workers regraded the playground's ballfield, installed a water and drainage system, and built a new handball court. A lighting system was also installed. Twenty years later, Mercer Playground, along with much of the surrounding...
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