Some call it East Harlem, others call it El Barrio. East Harlem is a neighborhood of Upper Manhattan in New York City. It encompasses the area that lies north of the Upper East Side, and East 96th Street, and east of the Fifth Avenue towards the East and Harlem Rivers. Although East Harlem has Harlem in its name, it is commonly not considered to be a part of Harlem. Continue reading for more information, provided by our East Harlem personal injury law firm.
The early days of East Harlem saw the area occupied by poor German, Irish, Scandinavian and Eastern European Jewish immigrants, and later Italian immigrants. The Italian immigrants soon took over the area with a mix of Northern Italians, Sicilians, and Southern Italians. East Harlem was the first place to be called "Little Italy" with the early settlers settling in 115th Street section. By the 1930s over 100,000 Italian-Americans lived in East Harlem's crowded and run-down apartment buildings.
Post World War I Puerto Rican and Latin American immigrants started to make their way into this area- once dominated by Italian immigrants. The new wave of immigrants inhabited the western part of East Harlem, near 110th Street and Lexington Avenue, which started being called Spanish Harlem. This area soon expanded and took over the section the Italians lived, causing them to transition out to the Bronx, upstate New York, Brooklyn, and New Jersey. More Hispanics moved in the 1940s and 1950s.
The new Spanish Harlem had a Puerto Rican population of 63,000 people in 1950. Since the 1950s Spanish Harlem started to be used to describe the whole of the East Harlem neighborhood, later evolving to El Barrio, meaning "The Neighborhood".
Early 21st century saw a racially diverse East Harlem, with almost a third of the population, noted as Puerto Rican. East Harlem is covered by Manhattan Community District 11. This district is mainly a low and moderate income area, made up of first and second generation Puerto Ricans, African Americans, West Indians, and now an increasing number of Mexicans, Dominicans, and other Central American immigrants.
El Barrio has the biggest concentration of Puerto Ricans, however, the number of Asians in East Harlem has almost tripled from 2000 to 2010, possibly signifying a new wave of immigrants and maybe a name change, but at only 3% of the population, a Chinese Harlem may not be much of a threat to the 52.1% Spanish Harlem residents.
With so many different cultures that have passed through East Harlem, the area is bound to have a diverse array of food places that echo El Barrio's history. Some highlights and must try out places are:
These are just some of the places you can eat at in El Barrio, but for more information about where you can get your East Harlem food fix go here.
East Harlem has had its issues, but it has produced many notable public figures such as:
Public transportation is available via MTA, New York City Subway, the IRT Lexington Avenue Line using the 4 5 and 6 trains.
For bus services there is the MTA Regional Bus Operations and some local Bronx routes also serve the Manhattan area.
If there is any sort of emergency while you are in the East Harlem, Upper Manhattan area, the following hospital and police information may be of use:
506 Lenox Avenue
New York, NY 10037
Phone: (212) 939-1000
Metropolitan Hospital Center
1901 First Avenue (at 97th Street)
New York, NY 10029
Phone: (212) 423-6262
NYPD 23rd Precinct
162 East 102 Street, New York, NY, 10029-5721