Dead Horse Bay

This part of Brooklyn totally defies the iconic urbanity that is generally associated with the borough.  Near Floyd Bennett Field (the City’s first airport), lies a shallow bay, that during the 19th century, was surrounded by five  glue rendering plants.  Glue-spent discards of the used horses would be tossed in the water.

Dead Horse Bay, Brooklyn, NYC

When the plants shut down about a century ago, the City of New York found the bay a suitable place to dump some of its garbage.  Today, in a random and enticing collection, refuse spanning the decades is regularly regurgitated from the shallows-  pieces of dishes, glass bottles of all types, logos of extinct companies, irons, toilets, etc, etc, etc, etc.

Gazing around at the landscape, one sees nothing at all that resembles a city.  But in a weird way, the bay is very much connected to the City.  The discards of everyday life are tiny intimate fragmented memoirs of those who once called this  giant metropolis home.

City Club Beverages

“It’s fantastic to think that most New Yorkers rarely remember that they live on a few islands, by the ocean, by rivers and bays, whose outskirts have served from the beginning as dumping grounds out-of-sight of the millions and millions who’ve crowded around this small, salt-water estuary in the last few centuries. And that hundreds of years of building, refuse, graves and foundations lie beneath their feet. The imprint of Mankind on this city is so deep that nearly all forget the land around them that was there before and will remain when this little town is no more. “ – Tristan Lowery


About ventilateblog MUSIC Classically trained cellist. Attended Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University - degree in Music Composition, and three years of recording arts and audio electrical engineering. Multiple works for chamber groups and orchestra have been produced and performed. Singer-songwriter with rock and folk roots.. Electronica. Today, it's about mashing together all these things into improbable hybrids. Also, a longtime educator of music. PHOTOGRAPHY Unpredictable and in the moment is what I love. Streets, architecture, and people. Ruined places. History. Frozen moments. Great love for imagines wrought by beautiful mystery of film and vintage cheapy cameras. WRITING The vague, ephemeral. The historical - the ghosts behind the veil of time. Delving deeply into the intricacies of our physical and cultural world. Relaying memory and longing. And sometimes the absurd. Life runs deep. Life

Posted on October 20, 2011, in abandoned, NYC past, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Ashley Chaney Ortiz

    Thanks for the post. I think I found my next adventure… do you know anything about getting to North and South Brother Islands?

  1. Pingback: Hiding in the Shadows – Finding New Amsterdam « ventilateblog

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