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Today, Snug Harbor in Staten Island is a busy cultural center and gorgeous botanic garden. But when Sailors' Snug Harbor initially opened in 1833, it was the country's first home for retired merchant seamen. It consisted of three beautiful Greek Revival- style buildings on a 130-acre plot on the north shore of Staten Island, overlooking the Kill Van Kull. This self- sustaining community grew their own food and produced their own power, and provided the retired sailors with health care, housing, spiritual edification, and amusement. Like any historic site, it has plenty of juicy stories (both good and bad) and Kate and Kathleen tell you about them all. And the site should not be missed today! 


Don't miss our Facebook page for astonishing images of the Wandering-in-Bamboo Courtyard, Moon Embracing Pool, Gurgling Rock Bridge, and other amazing things you can visit. 


Ready to go right now? Here's how to get there: Take the Staten Island Ferry, follow the signs to the S44 bus, take the “SI Mall Yukon Ave”- bound bus for 6 minutes (10 stops) to Lafayette and Fillmore St, and then follow the signs for an 8 min- walk to Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden.


We see a lot of similarities between Snug Harbor and Governors Island, especially with the city's effort to preserve historically significant buildings and keep out condos.

 

Planning a wedding?  Consider Snug Harbor.  Gorgeous photos: guaranteed!


Here's the New York Times article about the murder- suicide.  It's also a vivid example of the differences between journalistic standards then and now.


Travel Channel's "Ghost Adventurers" team went to investigate the site of the murder- suicide for themselves. You can watch a clip which is sort of hilarious because host Zak Bagans (left) has no idea what to do with his hands throughout this excerpt. Kathleen thinks the actor playing Reverend Robert A. Quinn in the re-enactment is clearly Edward James Olmos’ younger brother. (Warning: Unnecessarily grisly image at 1:19.)


Steve Warran has a great article archive about Sailors Snug Harbor, including beautiful newspaper illustrations of daily life when the sailors lived there.


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