Before Astoria became the ethnic Pollock painting it is today, the Dutch owned were the ones running Astoria and they allowed the English to settle there. The English rushed in for the farmland in the 1640’s and soon formed a village. Since William Hallet was the first to acquire a land grant in 1659, the neighborhood titled itself: Hallet’s Cove. Fur merchant, Stephen Halsey wanted the cove to be as booming as the any other place in New York City; he helped make the 92nd Ferry to Manhattan and thus began marking the end of the cove’s agrarian focus. The Dutch reign was over too.
Manhattan’s prosperous were fond of relaxing Hallett’s cove, it became the hot spot for vacation and recreational activities. Since farming an out dated in and the town needed money. As self-proclaimed financial entrepreneur of Hallett’s Cove, Halsey begged the New York state legislature to name the place, where he had helped develop prime real estate, after John Jacob Astor. Halsey hoped naming an entire village after Mr. Astor, a member of the wealthy Astors, would result in a two thousand dollar investment from to help the town. Astor wasn’t impressed enough gave and only gave five hundred dollars and didn’t bother to even visit the village. Unfortunately, the name change was legitimatized and Halsey couldn’t find another investor’s name to use.
By mid-nineteenth century, the Germans came along and brought their furniture making tools. Other groups followed. After easy transportation to Astoria was established, the English were no longer the primary race.
Today, there might not be many English descendants left in Astoria, but without them Astoria wouldn’t have any of its street patterns, street lamp flags, and the other attractions that lured everyone that followed. Without them the Germans wouldn’t have had many people to make furniture for. Astoria wouldn’t have the it’s agricultural and village legacy that still resounds today.