7 Historic New York Figures Who Left Their Mark

New York has more than its fair share of famous people who have left their mark. In this article, we will talk about the 7 historic New York figures to remember.

In 1790, New York City was home to a little over 33,000 people. Recent projections expect that by 2040, about 9 million people will call New York City home.

But some of New York City’s inhabitants are more famous than others. And New York City has had its fair share of notable figures who’ve left their mark.

Here are seven historic New York residents to remember (in no particular order).

1. Jackie Kennedy

Jackie Kennedy, born Bouvier, was the first lady to the popular President John F. Kennedy. Only a few days after her husband’s tragic assassination, she coined the idea of Camelot for her husband’s presidency.

Jackie Kennedy was a photographer and reporter who was born in Southampton, New York. After her husband’s death, she moved to Manhattan and continued her career in publishing.

2. Billie Holiday

Although not born in New York, Billie Holiday left her mark on the famous city. She moved to Harlem with her mother in 1929.

After her first recording in 1933, her star rose and she was a major influence on many other singers. She had an unforgettable voice and was one of the greatest blues singers of her time.

3. Fiorello LaGuardia

Fiorello LaGuardia was a diminutive, colorful character who was mayor of New York City from 1934 to 1945.

Born in New York City in 1882, he became a lawyer in 1910. He was elected to the House of Representatives in 1916. He was the first Italian-American in that position.

Mayor LaGuardia served as NYC mayor for three consecutive terms, a first. He was a brave man who made a stir when he publicly denounced Hitler.

4. Herman Melville

If you’ve read Moby Dick, then you know who Herman Melville was. Born in 1819 in Lower Manhattan, Melville later sailed on a whaler and harpooner.

His famous books came from his early adventures, including capture and mutiny. His most famous novel, Moby Dick, was unsuccessful during Melville’s life. Altogether, he wrote 10 novels.

5. Theodore Roosevelt

Theodore (Teddy) Roosevelt was born in 1858 in Manhattan. He was a sickly child who later became a great outdoorsman.

He led the Rough Riders of the 1st U.S. Volunteer Cavalry in the Spanish-American War of 1898.

He became the vice-president of the United States in 1901. Later, after President McKinley’s assassination, he became the 26th president.

6. Shirley Chisholm 

Ms. Chisholm was born in 1924 in Brooklyn. In 1968, she was the first African-American woman elected to Congress.

She was a tireless champion for low-income students and minorities. She died in January of 2005.

7. Jonas Salk

You may not know who he was, but it’s possible you owe your life to him! Jonas Salk was born in New York City in 1914.

Salk created the polio vaccine.

Two years before the vaccine was widely used, there were over 45,000 cases of polio in the United States. After the vaccine, that number was about 900.

Historic New York Residents

These are only seven of the plethora of historic New York residents. But these seven made a lasting impression on the Big Apple and the rest of the world.

From politicians to singers to presidents, these residents loved New York City, and the city loved them.

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