The Jamaica Estates community evolved with the advent of the 20th century. The verdant hills north of the colonial village of Jamaica were blanketed with forests of deciduous trees and dotted with crystal clear glacial lakes. The area's country beauty and tranquility offered people an escape from the congestion of the crowded city. As the Queensborough Bridge neared completion in 1907, two wealthy real estate speculators, Ernestus Gulick and Felix Isman, envisioned a unique community. Together they imagined a residential park offering people the ability to have homes in an area of breathtaking country beauty while working in the city.
Author Bio: Jamaica Estates is an astounding visual journey documenting the unique history of this distinctive community from its picturesque rural beginnings to the vibrant multicultural neighborhood of today. The Aquinas Honor Society of the Immaculate Conception School, a group of young students under the direction of award-winning teacher, author, and local historian Carl Ballenas, has worked to capture the lost history of the community. Places, events, and noteworthy people are brought to life once more through more than 200 vintage photographs. Ballenas is the coauthor of Richmond Hill and Maple Grove Cemetery.
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