A few interesting facts picked up on various tours and museums…
Wall Street is actually named so because of a wall that used to exist there. It was built by the Dutch to protect themselves from the native tribes.
The water towers you see above the buildings are mostly still operational. To help keep water pressure in the top floors.
Artists were invited to live for free in SoHo to try and improve the areas reputation as a slum, previously known as the cast iron district for the iron facades put against the old warehouses to improve the look of the area. You can see an example in this photo on the building on the right.
The One World Trade Centre has two significant heights. The building is slightly shorter than the original north tower and the spire placed on top reaches 1776 feet, the year of independence from the British. This number is also written on the book carried by Lady Liberty.
Manhattan translates as island of many hills. The hills were levelled out to make way for the grid system and the refuse was used to fill in the swamps that now make lower Manhattan.
The mafia imported cheese to Little Italy but apparently it wasn’t very good. To ensure their cheese was bought they threatened anyone selling single slice pizza that they had to use their cheese. So more upmarket pizzerias sold ‘whole pies’only to let punters know that they served higher quality cheese. Lombardos still serves whole pies today.
Brooklyn means by the river.