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{{Other uses|Harlem (disambiguation)}}{{Use mdy dates|date=May 2019}}

| map_alt = | map_caption = Location in New York CityList of sovereign states>CountryUnited States}}U.S. state>StateNew York}}| subdivision_type2 = CityFlag of New York City.svg}} New York CityBorough (New York City)>BoroughFlag of Manhattan.png}} ManhattanCommunity boards of Manhattan>Community DistrictManhattan Community Board 10>Manhattan 10NYC PLANNING {{!, Community Profiles>url= York City Department of City Planning|accessdate=March 18, 2019}}| established_title = Founded| established_date = 1660| established_title1 =| established_date1 =| founder = Peter Stuyvesant| named_for = Haarlem, Netherlands| area_total_sq_mi = 1.400| area_footnotes = 2}}| population_total = 116,345| population_as_of = 2016| population_density_km2 = | population_density_sq_mi= auto| population_demonym = | population_note =| demographics_type1 = | demographics1_footnotes = | demographics1_title1 = | demographics1_info1 = | demographics1_title2 = | demographics1_info2 = | demographics1_title3 =| demographics1_info3 = | demographics1_title4 = | demographics1_info4 = | demographics1_title5 = | demographics1_info5 =| demographics_type2 = Economics| demographics2_footnotes = Median household income>Median income| demographics2_info1 = $49,059Eastern Time Zone>Eastern| utc_offset1 = −5Eastern Time Zone>EDT| utc_offset1_DST = −4| postal_code_type = ZIP codes| postal_code = 10026, 10027, 10030, 10037, 10039Telephone numbering plan>Area codeArea codes 212, 646, and 332>212, 332, 646, and 917| website = }}Harlem is a neighborhood in the northern section of the New York City borough of Manhattan. It is bounded roughly by Frederick Douglass Boulevard, St. Nicholas Avenue, and Morningside Park on the west; the Harlem River and 155th Street on the north; Fifth Avenue on the east; and Central Park North on the south. The greater Harlem area encompasses several other neighborhoods and extends west to the Hudson River, north to 155th Street, east to the East River, and south to 96th Street.Originally a Dutch village, formally organized in 1658,Pierce, Carl Horton, et al. New Harlem Past and Present: the Story of an Amazing Civic Wrong, Now at Last to be Righted. New York: New Harlem Pub. Co., 1903. it is named after the city of Haarlem in the Netherlands. Harlem's history has been defined by a series of economic boom-and-bust cycles, with significant population shifts accompanying each cycle.WEB,weblink Harlem History |,, January 26, 1934, February 2, 2013, dead,weblink" title="">weblink December 13, 2012, Harlem was predominantly occupied by Jewish and Italian Americans in the 19th century, but African-American residents began to arrive in large numbers during the Great Migration in the 20th century. In the 1920s and 1930s, Central and West Harlem were the focus of the "Harlem Renaissance", an outpouring of artistic work without precedent in the American-black community. However, with job losses during the Great Depression of 1929–1933 and the deindustrialization of New York City after World War II, rates of crime and poverty increased significantly, and from the second half of the 20th century to the early 2000s, most of greater Harlem's residents were black.NEWS, Sam, Roberts, January 5, 2010,weblink No Longer Majority Black, Harlem Is in Transition, The New York Times, October 2, 2016, Since New York City's revival in the late 20th century, Harlem has been experiencing the effects of gentrification and new wealth.Harlem is part of Manhattan Community District 10 and its primary ZIP Codes are 10026, 10027, 10030, 10037, and 10039. It is patrolled by the 28th and 32nd Precincts of the New York City Police Department. The greater Harlem area also includes Manhattan Community Districts 9 and 11, several additional ZIP codes, and several police precincts. Fire services are provided by four New York City Fire Department companies. Politically, Harlem is represented by the New York City Council's 7th, 8th, and 9th districts. The area is served by the New York City Subway and local bus routes. It contains several public elementary, middle, and high schools, and is close to several colleges including Columbia University and the City College of New York.

Geography{{Anchor|Location and boundaries}}

(File:Harlem map2.svg|thumb|left|upright=1.1|Map of Upper Manhattan, with Greater Harlem highlighted. Harlem proper is the neighborhood in the center.)Harlem is located in Upper Manhattan, often referred to as Uptown by locals. The three neighborhoods that comprise greater Harlem (composed of Community Districts 9, 10, and 11) stretch from the Harlem River and East River in the east, to the Hudson River to the west; and between 155th Street in the north, where it meets Washington Heights, and an uneven boundary along the south that runs along 96th Street east of Fifth Avenue, 110th Street between Fifth Avenue to Morningside Park, and 125th Street west of Morningside Park to the Hudson River. These boundaries are also cited by Encyclopædia Britannica,WEB, Harlem - Location, History, & Facts, Encyclopedia Britannica, April 25, 2019,weblink June 7, 2019, though the Encyclopedia of New York City takes a much more conservative view of Harlem's boundaries, only regarding central Harlem as part of Harlem proper.ENC-NYC2, {{rp|573}}Central Harlem is the name of Harlem proper. This section is bounded by Fifth Avenue on the east; Central Park on the south; Morningside Park, St. Nicholas Avenue and Edgecombe Avenue on the west; and the Harlem River on the north.WEB,weblink Manhattan CD 10 Profile, PDF, May 28, 2014, dead,weblink" title="">weblink August 25, 2014, A chain of three large linear parks—Morningside Park, St. Nicholas Park and Jackie Robinson Park—are situated on steeply rising banks and form most of the district's western boundary. On the east, Fifth Avenue and Marcus Garvey Park, also known as Mount Morris Park, separate this area from East Harlem. This area falls under Manhattan Community District 10. In the late 2000s, South Harlem, emerged from area redevelopment, running along Frederick Douglass Boulevard from West 110th to West 138th Streets.NEWS, South Harlem: An old city neighborhood developing a new style,weblink Lisa, Fraser, amNY, March 13, 2013, dead,weblink" title="">weblink January 4, 2014, NEWS, Momentum in South Harlem,weblink Irwin, Arieff, The New York Times, December 24, 2009, Central Harlem includes the Mount Morris Park Historic District.West Harlem is composed of Manhattanville and Hamilton Heights, which collectively comprise Manhattan Community District 9 and are not part of Harlem proper. The two neighborhoods' area is bounded by Cathedral Parkway/110th Street on the south; 155th Street on the north; Manhattan/Morningside Ave/St. Nicholas/Bradhurst/Edgecombe Avenues on the east; and Riverside Park/the Hudson River on the west. Manhattanville begins at roughly 123rd Street and extends northward to 135th Street. The northernmost section of West Harlem is Hamilton Heights.WEB,weblink Manhattan CD 9 Profile, PDF, May 28, 2014, dead,weblink" title="">weblink September 28, 2013, East Harlem, also called Spanish Harlem or El Barrio, within Manhattan Community District 11, is bounded by East 96th Street on the south, East 138th Street on the north, Fifth Avenue on the west, and the Harlem River on the east. It is not part of Harlem proper.WEB,weblink Manhattan CD 11 Profile, PDF, May 28, 2014, dead,weblink" title="">weblink September 28, 2013,

SoHa controversy

{{further|Morningside Heights, Manhattan#SoHa controversy}}In the 2010s, some real estate professionals started rebranding south Harlem and Morningside Heights as "SoHa" in an attempt to gentrify the neighborhood.NEWS,weblink The New York Times, SoHa in Harlem? The Misguided Madness of Neighborhood Rebranding, July 6, 2017, NEWS, 'SoHa' Is a Renaissance Few in Harlem Want, The Wall Street Journal, July 1, 2017,weblink NEWS, 'SoHa' Rebranding Effort In South Harlem Stirs Outrage, CBS New York,weblink June 26, 2017, NEWS, Attempt to Rebrand Harlem as 'SoHa' Leaves Residents Fuming, US News Company, AP,weblink May 25, 2017, New York, WEB,,weblink July 10, 2017, From NoLiTa to SoHa: The practice and controversy of rebranding NYC neighborhoods, Etherington, Cait, New York City politicians have initiated legislative efforts to curtail this practice of neighborhood rebranding.

Political representation

Politically, central Harlem is in New York's 13th congressional district.Congressional District 13, New York State Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment. Accessed May 5, 2017.New York City Congressional Districts, New York State Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment. Accessed May 5, 2017. It is in the New York State Senate's 30th district,Senate District 30, New York State Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment. Accessed May 5, 2017.2012 Senate District Maps: New York City, New York State Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment. Accessed November 17, 2018. the New York State Assembly's 68th and 70th districts,Assembly District 68, New York State Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment. Accessed May 5, 2017.


(File:Harlem, from the old fort in the Central Park (NYPL b13512822-424264).jpg|thumb|left|upright=1.1|Harlem, from the old fort in the Central Park, New York Public Library)Before the arrival of European settlers, the area that would become Harlem (originally Haarlem) was inhabited by the Manhattans, a native tribe, who along with other Native Americans, most likely Lenape,BOOK, The Epic of New York City, Ellis, Edward Robb, Old Town Books, 1966, 52, occupied the area on a semi-nomadic basis. As many as several hundred farmed the Harlem flatlands.Gill, 2011, p. 6 Between 1637 and 1639, a few settlements were established.{{citation |last=Riker |first=James |title=Harlem: Its Origins and Early Annals |place=Elizabeth, New Jersey |publisher=New Harlem Publishing Company |year=1904 |url= |isbn= |quote= }}NEWS, Harlem in the Old Times, The New York Times, January 11, 1880,weblink December 30, 2012, The settlement of Harlem was formally incorporated in 1660Gill, 2011, p. 33 under the leadership of Peter Stuyvesant."To Live In Harlem", Frank Hercules, National Geographic, February 1977, p. 178- During the American Revolution, the British burned Harlem to the ground.Gill, 2011, p. 61. It took a long time to rebuild, as Harlem grew more slowly than the rest of Manhattan during the late 18th century."Harlem, the Village That Became a Ghetto", Martin Duberman, in New York, N.Y.: An American Heritage History of the Nation's Greatest City, 1968 After the American Civil War, Harlem experienced an economic boom starting in 1868. The neighborhood continued to serve as a refuge for New Yorkers, but increasingly those coming north were poor and Jewish or Italian.Gill, 2011, pp. 100, 109. The New York and Harlem Railroad,Gill, 2011, p. 86. as well as the Interborough Rapid Transit and elevated railway lines,"The Growth and Decline of Harlem's Housing", Thorin Tritter, Afro-Americans in New York Life and History, January 31, 1998 helped Harlem's economic growth, as they connected Harlem to lower and midtown Manhattan.(File:Harlem 135 street buildings.jpg|thumb|right|upright=1.1|Rowhouse built for the African-American population of Harlem in the 1930s)(File:Harlem condemned building.jpg|thumb|right|upright=1.1|A condemned building in Harlem after the 1970s)The Jewish and Italian demographic decreased, while the black and Puerto Rican population increased in this time.Gill, 2011, pp. 175, 210. The early-20th century Great Migration of blacks to northern industrial cities was fueled by their desire to leave behind the Jim Crow South, seek better jobs and education for their children, and escape a culture of lynching violence; during World War I, expanding industries recruited black laborers to fill new jobs, thinly staffed after the draft began to take young men."The Making of Harlem" {{webarchive |url= |date=June 15, 2006}}, James Weldon Johnson, The Survey Graphic, March 1925 In 1910, Central Harlem was about 10% black. By 1930, it had reached 70%.Gotham Gazette, 2008 {{webarchive |url= |date=January 17, 2012}} Starting around the time of the end of World War I, Harlem became associated with the New Negro movement, and then the artistic outpouring known as the Harlem Renaissance, which extended to poetry, novels, theater, and the visual arts. So many blacks came that it "threaten[ed] the very existence of some of the leading industries of Georgia, Florida, Tennessee and Alabama.""118,000 Negroes Move From The South", The New York World, November 5, 1917 Many settled in Harlem. By 1920, central Harlem was 32.43% black. The 1930 census revealed that 70.18% of central Harlem's residents were black and lived as far south as Central Park, at 110th Street.WEB,weblink20080827/255/2635, Harlem's Shifting Population, August 27, 2008, Gotham Gazette, The Citizens Union Foundation, June 9, 2011, dead, February 12, 2010, However, by the 1930s, the neighborhood was hit hard by job losses in the Great Depression. In the early 1930s, 25% of Harlemites were out of work, and employment prospects for Harlemites stayed bad for decades. Employment among black New Yorkers fell as some traditionally black businesses, including domestic service and some types of manual labor, were taken over by other ethnic groups. Major industries left New York City altogether, especially after 1950. Several riots happened in this period, including in 1935 and 1943.There were major changes following World War II. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, Harlem was the scene of a series of rent strikes by neighborhood tenants, led by local activist Jesse Gray, together with the Congress of Racial Equality, Harlem Youth Opportunities Unlimited (HARYOU), and other groups. These groups wanted the city to force landlords to improve the quality of housing by bringing them up to code, to take action against rats and roaches, to provide heat during the winter, and to keep prices in line with existing rent control regulations."Harlem Stirs", 1966, p. 27. The largest public works projects in Harlem in these years were public housing, with the largest concentration built in East Harlem."A Landmark Struggle", Lisa Davis, Preservation Online, November 21, 2003 {{webarchive |url= |date=February 4, 2008}} Typically, existing structures were torn down and replaced with city-designed and managed properties that would, in theory, present a safer and more pleasant environment than those available from private landlords. Ultimately, community objections halted the construction of new projects.East Harlem's History, New Directions: A 197-A Plan for Manhattan Community district 11 (Revised 1999) From the mid-20th century, the low quality of education in Harlem has been a source of distress. In the 1960s, about 75% of Harlem students tested under grade levels in reading skills, and 80% tested under grade level in math.Pinkney & Woock, Poverty and Politics in Harlem (1970), p. 33. In 1964, residents of Harlem staged two school boycotts to call attention to the problem. In central Harlem, 92% of students stayed home."Harlem Stirs", 1966, p. 104. In the post-World War II era, Harlem ceased to be home to a majority of the city's blacks,"Harlem Losing Ground as Negro Area", New York Herald Tribune, April 6, 1952 but it remained the cultural and political capital of black New York, and possibly black America.Powell, Michael. "Harlem's New Rush: Booming Real Estate" {{webarchive |url= |date=April 10, 2005}}, The Washington Post, March 13, 2005. Accessed May 18, 2007. "The transformation of this historic capital of Black America has taken an amphetamined step or three beyond a Starbucks, a Body Shop and former president Bill Clinton taking an office on 125th Street."Brooks, Charles. weblink" title="">"Harlemworld: Doing Race and Class in Contemporary Black America – nonfiction reviews – book review", Black Issues Book Review, March–April 2002. Accessed May 18, 2007. "There's a mystique that surrounds Harlem --with its rich historical tradition, literature, music, dance, politics and social activism. Consequently, Harlem is referred to as the "Black Mecca" the capital of black America, and arguably the most recognized black community in the country."By the 1970s, many of those Harlemites who were able to escape from poverty left the neighborhood in search of better schools and homes, and safer streets. Those who remained were the poorest and least skilled, with the fewest opportunities for success. Though the federal government's Model Cities Program spent $100 million on job training, health care, education, public safety, sanitation, housing, and other projects over a ten-year period, Harlem showed no improvement."Harlem's Dreams Have Died in Last Decade, Leaders Say", The New York Times, March 1, 1978, p. A1. The city began auctioning its enormous portfolio of Harlem properties to the public in 1985. This was intended to improve the community by placing property in the hands of people who would live in them and maintain them. In many cases, the city would even pay to completely renovate a property before selling it (by lottery) below market value.Stern, Fishman & Tilove, New York 2000 (2006), p. 1016After the 1990s, Harlem began to grow again. Between 1990 and 2006 the neighborhood's population grew by 16.9%, with the percentage of blacks decreasing from 87.6% to 69.3%, then dropping to 54.4% by 2010,"Census trends: Young, white Harlem newcomers aren't always welcomed", New York Daily News, December 26, 2010 and the percentage of whites increasing from 1.5% to 6.6% by 2006, and to "almost 10%" by 2010. A renovation of 125th Street and new properties along the thoroughfareStern, Fishman & Tilove, New York 2000 (2006), p. 1013."New boy in the 'hood'{{-"}}, The Observer, August 5, 2001 {{webarchive |url= |date=February 27, 2007}} also helped to revitalize Harlem.weblink" title="">The Economic Redevelopment of Harlem, PhD Thesis of Eldad Gothelf, submitted to Columbia University in May 2004


{{See also|Harlem Renaissance}}(File:Welcome -2 - Harlem (2115131054).jpg|thumb|Welcome to Harlem sign above the now defunct Victoria 5 cinema theater on 125th st)In the 1920s and 1930s, Central and West Harlem was the focus of the "Harlem Renaissance", an outpouring of artistic work without precedent in the American Black community. Though Harlem musicians and writers are particularly well remembered, the community has also hosted numerous actors and theater companies, including the New Heritage Repertory Theater, National Black Theater, Lafayette Players, Harlem Suitcase Theater, The Negro Playwrights, American Negro Theater, and the Rose McClendon Players.Jim Williams, "Need for Harlem Theater", in Harlem: A Community in Transition, 1964. p.158File:Apollo Theater, Harlem (November 2006).jpg|thumb|left|upright|The Apollo Theater on 125th Street in November 2006]]The Apollo Theater opened on 125th Street on January 26, 1934, in a former burlesque house. The Savoy Ballroom, on Lenox Avenue, was a renowned venue for swing dancing, and was immortalized in a popular song of the era, "Stompin' At The Savoy". In the 1920s and 1930s, between Lenox and Seventh Avenues in central Harlem, over 125 entertainment venues were in operation, including speakeasies, cellars, lounges, cafes, taverns, supper clubs, rib joints, theaters, dance halls, and bars and grills.WEB, Murray L., Pfeffer, My Harlem Reverie,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink March 31, 2010, The Big Bands Database, October 2, 2016, 133rd Street, known as "Swing Street", became known for its cabarets, speakeasies and jazz scene during the Prohibition era, and was dubbed "Jungle Alley" because of "inter-racial mingling" on the street.BOOK, Freeland, David, Automats, Taxi Dances, and Vaudeville: Excavating Manhattan's Lost Places of Leisure,weblink 2009, NYU Press, 978-0-8147-2763-8, 155, WEB,weblink Saxman Finds Place For Jazz History, December 18, 2008, New York City News Service, Video, December 6, 2013, Some jazz venues, including the Cotton Club, where Duke Ellington played, and Connie's Inn, were restricted to whites only. Others were integrated, including the Renaissance Ballroom and the Savoy Ballroom.In 1936, Orson Welles produced his black Macbeth at the Lafayette Theater in Harlem."Jam Streets as 'Macbeth' Opens", The New York Times, April 15, 1936 Grand theaters from the late 19th and early 20th centuries were torn down or converted to churches. Harlem lacked any permanent performance space until the creation of the Gatehouse Theater in an old Croton aqueduct building on 135th Street in 2006."Gatehouse Ushers in a Second Act as a Theater", The New York Times, October 17, 2006(File:Spritual African Drummer .jpg|thumb|upright|Spiritual African Drummer on 135th Street between Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard and Frederick Douglass Boulevard)From 1965 until 2007, the community was home to the Harlem Boys Choir, a touring choir and education program for young boys, most of whom are black.NEWS, Otterman, Sharon, A Quiet End for Boys Choir of Harlem,weblink February 18, 2015, The New York Times, December 22, 2009, The Girls Choir of Harlem was founded in 1989, and closed with the Boys Choir.NEWS, Kennedy, Randy, A Girls' Choir Finally Sings In Spotlight,weblink February 18, 2015, The New York Times, November 24, 1997, Harlem is also home to the largest African American Day Parade, which celebrates the culture of African diaspora in America. The parade was started up in the spring of 1969 with Congressman Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. as the Grand Marshal of the first celebration.WEB, HISTORY OF AFRICAN AMERICAN DAY PARADE, INC.,weblink African American Day Parade, February 18, 2015, dead,weblink" title="">weblink February 18, 2015, Arthur Mitchell, a former dancer with the New York City Ballet, established Dance Theatre of Harlem as a school and company of classical ballet and theater training in the late 1960s. The company has toured nationally and internationally. Generations of theater artists have gotten a start at the school.Manhattan's contributions to hip-hop stems largely from artists with Harlem roots such as Big L, Kurtis Blow, The Diplomats, Mase or Immortal Technique. Harlem is also the birthplace of popular hip-hop dances such as the Harlem shake, toe wop, and Chicken Noodle Soup.Harlem is currently experiencing a gourmet renaissance, with new dining hotspots popping up uptown around Frederick Douglass Boulevard.WEB,weblink Drone Footage Shows Hurricane Lane Flooding in Hawaii, NBC New York, At the same time, some residents are fighting back against the powerful waves of gentrification the neighborhood is experiencing. On October 17, 2013, residents staged a sidewalk sit-in to protest a five-days-a-week farmers market that would shut down Macombs Place at 150th Street.NEWS,weblink Harlem Residents Hold Sit-In to Protest Farmers Market Takeover of Plaza, Mays, Jeff, October 18, 2013,, dead,weblink" title="">weblink November 23, 2013, In the 1920s, African American pianists who lived in Harlem invented their own style of jazz piano, called stride, which was heavily influenced by ragtime. This style played a very important role in early jazz pianoWEB,weblink New York Modern: The Arts and the City, William B., Scott, Peter M., Rutkoff, August 14, 2001, JHU Press, Google Books, WEB,weblink How to Play Solo Jazz Piano, John, Valerio, August 1, 2016, Hal Leonard Corporation, Google Books,

Religious life

File:Andrew Episcopal Harlem jeh.JPG|thumb|left|St. Andrew's Episcopal Church ]]{{commons category|Churches in Harlem}}Religious life has historically had a strong presence in Black Harlem. The area is home to over 400 churches."The New Heyday of Harlem", Tessa Souter, The Independent, Sunday, June 8, 1997 Major Christian denominations include Baptists, Pentecostals, Methodists (generally African Methodist Episcopalian, or "AME"), Episcopalians, and Roman Catholic. The Abyssinian Baptist Church has long been influential because of its large congregation, and recently wealthy on account of its extensive real estate holdings. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints built a chapel on 128th Street in 2005. Previously, the Church had had a branch meeting around the corner in a former Jehovah's Witnesses Kingdom Hall. As of 2015, there are three LDS wards meeting at the Harlem Chapel.Many of the area's churches are "storefront churches", which operate in an empty store, or a basement, or a converted brownstone townhouse. These congregations may have fewer than 30–50 members each, but there are hundreds of them.Fact Not Fiction in Harlem, John H. Johnson, St. Martin's Church, 1980. p. 69+ Others are old, large, and designated landmarks. Especially in the years before World War II, Harlem produced popular Christian charismatic "cult" leaders, including George Wilson Becton and Father Divine.Harlem U.S.A., ed. John Henrik Clarke, introduction to 1971 edition Mosques in Harlem include the Malcolm Shabazz Mosque No. 7 (formerly Mosque No. 7 Nation of Islam, and the location of the 1972 Harlem Mosque incident), the Mosque of Islamic Brotherhood and Masjid Aqsa. Judaism, too, maintains a presence in Harlem through the Old Broadway Synagogue. A non-mainstream synagogue of Black Hebrews, known as Commandment Keepers, was based in a synagogue at 1 West 123rd Street until 2008.{{clear}}

{{Anchor|Harlem landmarks}}Landmarks

File:St. Martin's Episcopal Church, Harlem, looking northeast across Malcom X Blvd, 2008 jeh.jpg|thumb|right|St Martin's Episcopal Church, at Lenox AvenueLenox AvenueFile:Hotel theresa.jpg|thumb|right|Hotel Theresa building at the corner of Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard and 125th Street ]]File:Adam Clayton Powell Jr. State Office Building from east.jpg|thumb|right|Adam Clayton Powell Jr. State Office BuildingAdam Clayton Powell Jr. State Office BuildingMany places in Harlem are New York City Landmarks, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, or are otherwise prominent:{{div col|colwidth=22em}} {{div col end}}


Like most neighborhoods in New York, the demographics of Harlem's communities have changed rapidly throughout the history of New York. In 1910, 10% of Harlem's population was black but by 1930, they had become a 70% majority. The period between 1910 and 1930 marks a huge point in the great migration of African Americans from the South to New York. This point also marks an influx from downtown Manhattan neighborhoods where blacks were feeling less welcome, to the Harlem area. The black population in Harlem peaked in 1950, with a 98% share of the population (population 233,000). As of 2000, central Harlem's black population comprised 77% of the total population of that area; however, the black population is declining as many African Americans move out and more immigrants move {{webarchive |url= |date=March 17, 2013}}Harlem suffers from unemployment rates generally more than twice the citywide average, as well as high poverty rates.BOOK, Pinkney, Alphonso, Woock, Roger R., Poverty and Politics in Harlem, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Incorporated, 1970, 978-0-8084-0249-7,weblink March 21, 2019, 31, and the numbers for men have been consistently worse than the numbers for women. Private and governmental initiatives to ameliorate unemployment and poverty have not been successful. During the Great Depression, unemployment in Harlem went past 20% and people were being evicted from their homes.WEB, Taylor, Nick, Great Depression (1930’s) News, The New York Times,weblink March 21, 2019, In the 1960s, uneducated blacks could find jobs more easily than educated ones could, confounding efforts to improve the lives of people who lived in the neighborhood through education.BOOK, Vietorisz, Thomas, Harrison, Bennett, The economic development of Harlem, Praeger, Praeger special studies in U.S. economic and social development, 1970,weblink March 21, 2019, 19, Land owners took advantage of the neighborhood and offered apartments to the lower-class families for cheaper rent but in lower-class conditions.BOOK, Shumsky, N.L., Encyclopedia of urban America: the cities and suburbs. A - L, ABC-ClIO, v. 1, 1999, 978-0-87436-846-8,weblink March 21, 2019, Harlem, By 1999 there were 179,000 housing units available in Harlem.BOOK, Hyra, Derek S., The New Urban Renewal: The Economic Transformation of Harlem and Bronzeville, University of Chicago Press, 2008, 978-0-226-36604-3,weblink March 21, 2019, 103, Housing activists in Harlem state that, even after residents were given vouchers for the Section 8 housing that was being placed, many were not able to live there and had to find homes elsewhere or become homeless.


In 2010, according to a regional census, the population of central Harlem was at 115,000. Central Harlem is the most famous section of greater Harlem, and thus is commonly referred to simply as Harlem.WEB,weblink Manhattan Community District 10 - New York City Department of City Planning,, May 28, 2014, For census purposes, the New York City government classifies central Harlem into two neighborhood tabulation areas: Central Harlem North and Central Harlem South.New York City Neighborhood Tabulation Areas*, 2010, Population Division - New York City Department of City Planning, February 2012. Accessed June 16, 2016. Based on data from the 2010 United States Census, the population of Central Harlem was 118,665, a change of 9,574 (8.1%) from the 109,091 counted in 2000. Covering an area of {{convert|926.05|acres}}, the neighborhood had a population density of {{convert|128.1|PD/acre|PD/sqmi PD/sqkm}}.Table PL-P5 NTA: Total Population and Persons Per Acre - New York City Neighborhood Tabulation Areas*, 2010, Population Division - New York City Department of City Planning, February 2012. Accessed June 16, 2016. The racial makeup of the neighborhood was 9.5% (11,322) White, 63% (74,735) African American, 0.3% (367) Native American, 2.4% (2,839) Asian, 0% (46) Pacific Islander, 0.3% (372) from other races, and 2.2% (2,651) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 22.2% (26,333) of the population.Table PL-P3A NTA: Total Population by Mutually Exclusive Race and Hispanic Origin - New York City Neighborhood Tabulation Areas*, 2010, Population Division - New York City Department of City Planning, March 29, 2011. Accessed June 14, 2016.The entirety of Community District 10, which comprises Central Harlem, had 116,345 inhabitants as of NYC Health's 2018 Community Health Profile, with an average life expectancy of 76.2 years.WEB,weblink Central Harlem, 2018,, NYC Health, March 2, 2019, {{Rp|2, 20}} This is lower than the median life expectancy of 81.2 for all New York City neighborhoods.WEB,weblink 2016-2018 Community Health Assessment and Community Health Improvement Plan: Take Care New York 2020, 2016, government of New York City,, New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, September 8, 2017, {{Rp|53 (PDF p. 84)}}WEB, New Yorkers are living longer, happier and healthier lives, New York Post, June 4, 2017,weblink March 1, 2019, Most inhabitants are children and middle-aged adults: 21% are between the ages of 0–17, while 35% are between 25–44, and 24% between 45–64. The ratio of college-aged and elderly residents was lower, at 10% and 11% respectively.{{Rp|2}}As of 2017, the median household income in Community District 10 was $49,059.WEB,weblink NYC-Manhattan Community District 10--Central Harlem PUMA, NY, July 17, 2018, In 2018, an estimated 21% of Central Harlem residents lived in poverty, compared to 14% in all of Manhattan and 20% in all of New York City. One in eight residents (12%) were unemployed, compared to 7% in Manhattan and 9% in New York City. Rent burden, or the percentage of residents who have difficulty paying their rent, is 48% in Central Harlem, compared to the boroughwide and citywide rates of 45% and 51% respectively. Based on this calculation, {{as of|2018|lc=y}}, Central Harlem is gentrifying.{{Rp|7}}

Other subsections

In 2010, the population of West Harlem was at 110,193.WEB,weblink West Harlem Community District Profil., West Harlem, consisting of Manhattanville and Hamilton Heights, is predominately Hispanic, while African Americans make up about a quarter of the West Harlem population.In 2010, the population of East Harlem was at 120,000.WEB,weblink Harlem Manhattan Community District Profile, East Harlem originally formed as a predominantly Italian American {{webarchive |url= |date=August 24, 2014}} The area began its transition from Italian Harlem to Spanish Harlem when Puerto Rican migration began after World War II,WEB,weblink El Barrio (Spanish Harlem) New York Visitor Guide: Editorial Review,, February 2, 2013, though in recent decades, many Dominican, Mexican and Salvadorean immigrants have also settled in East Harlem.WEB,weblink East Harlem,, February 2, 2013, dead,weblink" title="">weblink August 17, 2012, East Harlem is also known as is today predominantly Hispanic with a significant black presence. The area suffers from the highest violent crime rate in Manhattan.WEB,weblink What a Safer City Really Looks Like, PDF, September 19, 2012,

Police and crime

(File:Police Area 6 148 St jeh.JPG|thumb|upright=1.2|NYPD Police Service Area 6, which serves NYCHA developments in greater Harlem)Central Harlem is patrolled by two precincts of the New York City Police Department (NYPD).WEB, Find Your Precinct and Sector - NYPD,,weblink March 3, 2019, Central Harlem North is covered by the 28th Precinct, located at 250 West 135th Street,WEB,weblink NYPD – 28th Precinct,, New York City Police Department, October 3, 2016, while Central Harlem South is patrolled by the 32nd Precinct, located at 2271–2289 8th Avenue.WEB,weblink NYPD – 32nd Precinct,, New York City Police Department, October 3, 2016, The 28th and 32nd Precincts ranked 54th safest out of 69 patrol areas for per-capita crime in 2010.WEB,weblink Central Harlem– Crime and Safety Report,, October 6, 2016, With a non-fatal assault rate of 116 per 100,000 people, Central Harlem's rate of violent crimes per capita is more than that of the city as a whole. The incarceration rate of 1,347 per 100,000 people is higher than that of the city as a whole.{{Rp|8}}The 28th Precinct has a lower crime rate than in the 1990s, with crimes across all categories having decreased by 74.1% between 1990 and 2018. The precinct saw 0 murders, 18 rapes, 156 robberies, 204 felony assaults, 102 burglaries, 445 grand larcenies, and 22 grand larcenies auto in 2018.WEB,weblink 28th Precinct CompStat Report, PDF,, New York City Police Department, July 22, 2018, The 32nd Precinct also has a lower crime rate than in the 1990s, with crimes across all categories having decreased by 77% between 1990 and 2018. The precinct saw 5 murders, 20 rapes, 193 robberies, 314 felony assaults, 124 burglaries, 329 grand larcenies, and 41 grand larcenies auto in 2018.WEB,weblink 32nd Precinct CompStat Report, PDF,, New York City Police Department, July 22, 2018,


File:Harlem riots - 1964.jpg|thumb|left|Harlem Riot of 1964Harlem Riot of 1964In the early 20th century, Harlem was a stronghold of the Italian Mafia. As the ethnic composition of the neighborhood changed, black criminals began to organize themselves similarly. However, rather than compete with the established mobs, gangs concentrated on the "policy racket", also called the numbers game, or bolita in East Harlem. This was a gambling scheme similar to a lottery that could be played, illegally, from countless locations around Harlem. According to Francis Ianni, "By 1925 there were thirty black policy banks in Harlem, several of them large enough to collect bets in an area of twenty city blocks and across three or four avenues."Francis A.J. Ianni, Black Mafia, 1974By the early 1950s, the total money at play amounted to billions of dollars, and the police force had been thoroughly corrupted by bribes from numbers bosses."Inside Story of Numbers Racket", Amsterdam News, August 21, 1954 These bosses became financial powerhouses, providing capital for loans for those who could not qualify for them from traditional financial institutions, and investing in legitimate businesses and real estate. One of the powerful early numbers bosses was a woman, Madame Stephanie St. Clair, who fought gun battles with mobster Dutch Schultz over control of the lucrative trade.Cook, Fred J. "The Black Mafia Moves Into the Numbers Racket", The New York Times, April 4, 1971. Accessed December 28, 2016. "In those days, Madame Stephanie St. Clair became known as the “Policy Queen” of Harlem.... Once Dutch Schultz discovered this potential gold mine, he moved in, gang guns blazing. Madame St. Claire, who survived to become a big property owner and business woman in Harlem, fought Schultz from 1931 to 1935."The popularity of playing the numbers waned with the introduction of the state lottery, which is legal but has lower payouts and has taxes collected on winnings.Wilson, Michael. "Relics of the Bygone (and the Illegal)", The New York Times, March 22, 2013. Accessed December 28, 2016. "Several years later, with the state lottery offering a similar game, runners and numbers bankers openly protested in Manhattan. They feared the legal game would wipe out the rackets and their jobs. They were, for the most part, right.... The few numbers joints that survive do so in part because the payouts are often better than the lottery, the police said." The practice continues on a smaller scale among those who prefer the numbers tradition or who prefer to trust their local numbers bank to the state.Statistics from 1940 show about 100 murders per year in Harlem, "but rape is very rare"."244,000 Native Sons", Look Magazine, May 21, 1940, p.8+ By 1950, essentially all of the whites had left Harlem and by 1960, much of the black middle class had departed. At the same time, control of organized crime shifted from Italian syndicates to local black, Puerto Rican, and Cuban groups that were somewhat less formally organized. At the time of the 1964 riots, the drug addiction rate in Harlem was ten times higher than the New York City average, and twelve times higher than the United States as a whole. Of the 30,000 drug addicts then estimated to live in New York City, 15,000 to 20,000 lived in Harlem. Property crime was pervasive, and the murder rate was six times higher than New York's average. Half of the children in Harlem grew up with one parent, or none, and lack of supervision contributed to juvenile delinquency; between 1953 and 1962, the crime rate among young people increased throughout New York City, but was consistently 50% higher in Harlem than in New York City as a whole.Poverty and Politics in Harlem, Alphonso Pinkney & Roger Woock, College & University Press Services, Inc., 1970, p.33Injecting heroin grew in popularity in Harlem through the 1950s and 1960s, though the use of this drug then leveled off. In the 1980s, use of crack cocaine became widespread, which produced collateral crime as addicts stole to finance their purchasing of additional drugs, and as dealers fought for the right to sell in particular regions, or over deals gone bad."Harlem Speaks: A Living History of the Harlem Renaissance." Wintz, Cary.With the end of the "crack wars" in the mid-1990s, and with the initiation of aggressive policing under mayors David Dinkins and his successor Rudy Giuliani, crime in Harlem plummeted. Compared to in 1981, when 6,500 robberies were reported in Harlem, reports of robberies dropped to 4,800 in 1990; to 1,700 in 2000; and to 1,100 in 2010."How New York Cut Crime", Reform Magazine, Autumn 2002 p.11 {{webarchive |url= |date=March 8, 2008}} Within the 28th and 32nd precincts, there have been similar changes in all categories of crimes tracked by the NYPD.


There are many gangs in Harlem, often based in housing projects; when one gang member is killed by another gang, revenge violence erupts which can last for years.NEWS, Buettner, Russ, 63 Gang Members Indicted in East Harlem Shootings,weblink June 15, 2013, The New York Times, April 4, 2013, In addition, the East Harlem Purple Gang of the 1970s, which operated in East Harlem and surroundings, was an Italian American group of hitmen and heroin dealers.BOOK, New York Magazine,weblink 12, No. 19, May 7, 1979, New York Media, LLC, 44–, 0028-7369, Harlem and its gangsters have a strong link to hip hop, rap and R&B culture in the United States, and many successful rappers in the music industry came from gangs in Harlem.BOOK, Adjaye, Joseph K., Andrews, Adrianne R., Language, Rhythm and Sound: Black Popular Cultures Into the Twenty-First Century,weblink June 14, 2013, 1997, University of Pittsburgh Pre, 978-0-8229-7177-1, 135, Gangster rap, which has its origins in the late 1980s, often has lyrics that are "misogynistic or that glamorize violence", glamorizing guns, drugs and easy women in Harlem and New York City.BOOK, Ray, Michael, Alternative, Country, Hip-Hop, Rap, and More: Music from the 1980s to Today,weblink June 14, 2013, 2013, The Rosen Publishing Group, 978-1-61530-910-8, 78,

Fire safety

(File:Engine 59 Ladder 30 house 111 W133 St jeh.jpg|thumb|Engine Co. 59/Ladder Co. 30)Central Harlem is served by four New York City Fire Department (FDNY) fire stations:FDNY LOCATIONS,
  • Engine Co. 37/Ladder Co. 40 – 415 West 125th StreetWEB, Engine Company 37/Ladder Company 40,,weblink March 14, 2019,
  • Engine Co. 58/Ladder Co. 26 – 1367 5th AvenueWEB, Engine Company 58/Ladder Company 26,,weblink March 14, 2019,
  • Engine Co. 59/Ladder Co. 30 – 111 West 133rd StreetWEB, Engine Company 59/Ladder Company 30,,weblink March 14, 2019,
  • Engine Co. 69/Ladder Co. 28/Battalion 16 – 248 West 143rd StreetWEB, Engine Company 69/Ladder Company 28/Battalion 16,,weblink March 14, 2019,
Five additional firehouses are located in West and East Harlem. West Harlem contains Engine Co. 47 and Engine Co. 80/Ladder Co. 23, while East Harlem contains Engine Co. 35/Ladder Co. 14/Battalion 12, Engine Co. 53/Ladder Co. 43, and Engine Co. 91.


Preterm and teenage births are more common in Central Harlem than in other places citywide. In Central Harlem, there were 103 preterm births per 1,000 live births (compared to 87 per 1,000 citywide), and 23 teenage births per 1,000 live births (compared to 19.3 per 1,000 citywide), though the teenage birth rate is based on a small sample size.{{Rp|11}} Central Harlem has a low population of residents who are uninsured. In 2018, this population of uninsured residents was estimated to be 8%, less than the citywide rate of 12%.{{Rp|14}}The concentration of fine particulate matter, the deadliest type of air pollutant, in Central Harlem is {{convert|0.0079|mg/m3|oz/ft3}}, slightly more than the city average.{{Rp|9}} Ten percent of Central Harlem residents are smokers, which is less than the city average of 14% of residents being smokers.{{Rp|13}} In Central Harlem, 34% of residents are obese, 12% are diabetic, and 35% have high blood pressure, the highest rates in the city—compared to the citywide averages of 24%, 11%, and 28% respectively.{{Rp|16}} In addition, 21% of children are obese, compared to the citywide average of 20%.{{Rp|12}}Eighty-four percent of residents eat some fruits and vegetables every day, which is less than the city's average of 87%. In 2018, 79% of residents described their health as "good," "very good," or "excellent," more than the city's average of 78%.{{Rp|13}} For every supermarket in Central Harlem, there are 11 bodegas.{{Rp|10}}The nearest major hospital is NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem in north-central Harlem.WEB, Manhattan Hospital Listings, New York Hospitals,weblink March 20, 2019, WEB, Best Hospitals in New York, N.Y., US News & World Report, July 26, 2011,weblink March 20, 2019,

Health problems

File:Drew Hamilton NYCHA jeh.jpg|thumb|right|Drew Hamilton Houses, a large low-income NYCHA housing projecthousing projectHealth outcomes for men have generally been worse for those for women. Infant mortality was 124 per thousand in 1928, meaning that 12.4% of infants would die.WEB, SEEK WAYS TO CUT HARLEM DEATH RATE; Six City Health Groups Meet to Discuss Program for New Centre There. BAD HOUSING IS STRESSED Congestion Causes Mortality Toll 40 Per Cent Higher Than City as a Whole, Experts Assert., The New York Times, October 24, 1929,weblink March 21, 2019, By 1940, infant mortality in Harlem was 5%, and the death rate from disease generally was twice that of the rest of New York. Tuberculosis was the main killer, and four times as prevalent among Harlem citizens than among the rest of New York's population.A 1990 study of life expectancy of teenagers in Harlem reported that 15-year-old girls in Harlem had a 65% chance of surviving to the age of 65, about the same as women in Pakistan. Fifteen-year-old men in Harlem, on the other hand, had a 37% chance of surviving to 65, about the same as men in Angola; for men, the survival rate beyond the age of 40 was lower in Harlem than Bangladesh.JOURNAL, McCord, C., H. P., Freeman, Excess Mortality in Harlem, New England Journal of Medicine, 322, 1990, 3, 173–177, 10.1056/NEJM199001183220306, Infectious diseases and diseases of the circulatory system were to blame, with a variety of contributing factors, including consumption of the deep-fried foods traditional to the South, which may contribute to heart disease.

Post offices and ZIP codes

(File:Icahn Medical Institute Mt. Sinai School of Medicine.jpg|thumb|Icahn Medical Institute of the Mt. Sinai School of Medicine)Harlem is located within five primary ZIP Codes. From north to south, they are 10026 (from 110th to 120th Streets), 10027 (from 120th to 133rd Streets), 10037 (east of Lenox Avenue and north of 130th Street), 10030 (west of Lenox Avenue from 133rd to 145th Streets) and 10039 (from 145th to 155th Streets). Harlem also includes parts of ZIP Codes 10031, 10032, and 10035.WEB, Harlem, New York City-Manhattan, New York Zip Code Boundary Map (NY),,weblink March 21, 2019, The United States Postal Service operates five post offices in Harlem:
  • Morningside Station – 232 West 116th StreetWEB, Location Details: Morningside,,weblink March 7, 2019,
  • Manhattanville Station and Morningside Annex – 365 West 125th StreetWEB, Location Details: Manhattanville,,weblink March 7, 2019,
  • College Station – 217 West 140th StreetWEB, Location Details: College,,weblink March 7, 2019,
  • Colonial Park Station – 99 Macombs PlaceWEB, Location Details: Colonial Park,,weblink March 7, 2019,
  • Lincoln Station – 2266 5th AvenueWEB, Location Details: Lincoln,,weblink March 7, 2019,


Central Harlem generally has a similar rate of college-educated residents to the rest of the city. While 42% of residents age 25 and older have a college education or higher, 19% have less than a high school education and 39% are high school graduates or have some college education. By contrast, 64% of Manhattan residents and 43% of city residents have a college education or higher.{{Rp|6}} The percentage of Central Harlem students excelling in math rose from 21% in 2000 to 48% in 2011, and reading achievement increased from 29% to 37% during the same time period.WEB,weblink Central Harlem – MN 11, 2011, Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy, October 5, 2016, Central Harlem's rate of elementary school student absenteeism is higher than the rest of New York City. In Central Harlem, 25% of elementary school students missed twenty or more days per school year, more than the citywide average of 20%.{{Rp|24 (PDF p. 55)}}{{Rp|6}} Additionally, 64% of high school students in Central Harlem graduate on time, less than the citywide average of 75%.{{Rp|6}}


{{div col|colwidth=20em}}The New York City Department of Education operates the following public elementary schools in Central Harlem:WEB, Harlem New York School Ratings and Reviews, Zillow,weblink March 17, 2019,
  • PS 76 A Phillip Randolph (grades PK-8)WEB, P.S. 076 A. Philip Randolph, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • PS 92 Mary Mcleod Bethune (grades PK-5)WEB, P.S. 092 Mary McLeod Bethune, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • PS 123 Mahalia Jackson (grades PK-8)WEB, P.S. 123 Mahalia Jackson, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • PS 149 Sojourner Truth (grades PK-8)WEB, P.S. 149 Sojourner Truth, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • PS 154 Harriet Tubman (grades PK-5)WEB, P.S. 154 Harriet Tubman, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • PS 175 Henry H Garnet (grades PK-5)WEB, P.S. 175 Henry H Garnet, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • PS 185 the Early Childhood Discovery and Design Magnet School (grades PK-2)WEB, The Locke School of Arts and Engineering, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • PS 194 Countee Cullen (grades PK-5)WEB, P.S. 194 Countee Cullen, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • PS 197 John B Russwurm (grades PK-5)WEB, P.S. 197 John B. Russwurm, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • PS 200 The James Mccune Smith School (grades PK-5)WEB, P.S. 200- The James McCune Smith School, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • PS 242 The Young Diplomats Magnet School (grades PK-5)WEB, P.S. 242 - The Young Diplomats Magnet Academy, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • Stem Institute of Manhattan (grades K-5)WEB, STEM Institute of Manhattan, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • Thurgood Marshall Academy Lower School (grades K-5)WEB, Thurgood Marshall Academy Lower School, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
{{div col end}}The following middle and high schools are located in Central Harlem:
  • Frederick Douglass Academy (grades 6-12)WEB, Frederick Douglass Academy, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • Frederick Douglass Academy II Secondary School (grades 6-12)WEB, Frederick Douglass Academy II Secondary School, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • Mott Hall High School (grades 9-12)WEB, Mott Hall High School, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • Thurgood Marshall Academy For Learning And Social Change (grades 6-12)WEB, Thurgood Marshall Academy for Learning and Social Change, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
  • Wadleigh Secondary School for the Performing and Visual Arts (grades 6-12)WEB, Wadleigh Secondary School for the Performing & Visual Arts, New York City Department of Education, December 19, 2018,weblink March 21, 2019,
{{as of|2006|5}}, Harlem was the heart of the charter schools movement in Manhattan; of the 25 charter schools operating in Manhattan, 18 were in Harlem.WEB,weblink New York Charter Schools Association, May 14, 2006,weblink" title="">weblink May 5, 2006, dead, In 2010, approximately one age-eligible Harlem child in five was enrolled in charter schools.The Teachers' Unions' Last Stand, by Steven Brill (Single Page online URL), in The New York Times, in the Magazine, Sunday, May 23, 2010, p. MM32 (print version may differ), as accessed June 10, 2010.

Higher education

The CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy, New York College of Podiatric Medicine, City College of New York, and Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine, in addition to a branch of College of New Rochelle, are all located in Harlem. The Morningside Heights and Manhattanville campuses of Columbia University are located just west of Harlem.


File:NYPL Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.jpg|thumb|New York Public Library, Schomburg Center for Research in Black CultureSchomburg Center for Research in Black CultureThe New York Public Library (NYPL) operates four circulating branches and one research branch in Harlem, as well as several others in adjacent neighborhoods.
  • The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, a research branch, is located at 515 Malcolm X Boulevard. It is housed in a Carnegie library structure that opened in 1905, though the branch itself was established in 1925 based on a collection from its namesake, Arturo Alfonso Schomburg. The Schomburg Center is a National Historic Landmark, as well as a city designated landmark and a National Register of Historic Places (NRHP)-listed site.WEB, About the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, The New York Public Library,weblink March 14, 2019,
  • The Countee Cullen branch is located at 104 West 136th Street. It was originally housed in the building now occupied by the Schomburg Center. The current structure, in 1941, is an annex of the Schomburg building.WEB, About the Countee Cullen Library, The New York Public Library,weblink March 14, 2019,
  • The Harry Belafonte 115th Street branch is located at 203 West 115th Street. The three-story Carnegie library, built in 1908, is both a city designated landmark and an NRHP-listed site. It was renamed for the entertainer and Harlem resident Harry Belafonte in 2017.WEB, About the Harry Belafonte 115th Street Library, The New York Public Library,weblink March 14, 2019,
  • The Harlem branch is located at 9 West 124th Street. It is one of the oldest libraries in the NYPL system, having operated in Harlem since 1826. The current three-story Carnegie library building was built in 1909 and renovated in 2004.WEB, About the Harlem Library, The New York Public Library,weblink March 14, 2019,
  • The Macomb's Bridge branch is located at 2650 Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. Boulevard, inside the Harlem River Houses. The branch opened in 1955 and is the smallest NYPL branch.WEB, About the Macomb's Bridge Library, The New York Public Library,weblink March 14, 2019,
Other nearby branches include the 125th Street and Aguilar branches in East Harlem; the Morningside Heights branch in Morningside Heights; and the George Bruce and Hamilton Grange branches in western Harlem.WEB, NYPL Locations, The New York Public Library,weblink March 21, 2019,



{{multiple image|total_width=450|image1=HARLEM RIVER-HARLEM ON LEFT. BRONX ON RIGHT - NARA - 548427.jpg|caption1=Bridges spanning the Harlem River between Harlem to the left and the Bronx to the right|image2=MNRR NH-Line-Train 125th-St.jpg|caption2=Harlem–125th Street station on the Metro-North Railroad}}The Harlem River separates the Bronx and Manhattan, necessitating several spans between the two New York City boroughs. Five free bridges connect Harlem and the Bronx: the Willis Avenue Bridge (for northbound traffic only), Third Avenue Bridge (for southbound traffic only), Madison Avenue Bridge, 145th Street Bridge, and Macombs Dam Bridge. In East Harlem, the Wards Island Bridge, also known as the 103rd Street Footbridge, connects Manhattan with Wards Island. The Triborough Bridge is a complex of three separate bridges that offers connections between Queens, East Harlem, and the Bronx.WEB,weblink Robert F. Kennedy Bridge, December 30, 2010,, February 2, 2013,

Public transportation

Public transportation service is provided by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. This includes the New York City Subway and MTA Regional Bus Operations. Some Bronx local routes also serve Manhattan, providing customers with access between both boroughs.NYC BUS MAP, Bx, Metro-North Railroad has a commuter rail station at Harlem–125th Street, serving trains to the Lower Hudson Valley and Connecticut.WEB,weblink Metro-North Railroad Map, 2017, Metropolitan Transportation Authority, May 14, 2017,


Harlem is served by the following subway lines: In addition, several other lines stop nearby: Phase 2 of the Second Avenue Subway is also planned to serve East Harlem, with stops at 106th Street, 116th Street, and Harlem–125th Street.NEWS,weblink MTA chairman outlines future plans for Phase 2 of Second Ave. subway construction, expansion projects, Donohue, Pete, August 7, 2014, New York Daily News, December 14, 2016, NEWS,weblink Anger in East Harlem Over New Delays in 2nd Ave. Subway Plans, Fitzsimmons, Emma G., October 29, 2015, November 3, 2015, The New York Times,


Harlem is served by numerous local bus routes operated by MTA Regional Bus Operations:NYC BUS MAP, M,
  • {{NYC bus link|Bx6|Bx6 SBS|prose=y}} along 155th Street
  • {{NYC bus link|Bx19}} along 145th Street
  • {{NYC bus link|Bx33}} along 135th Street
  • {{NYC bus link|M1}} along Fifth/Madison Avenues
  • {{NYC bus link|M2}} along Seventh Avenue, Central Park North, and Fifth/Madison Avenues
  • {{NYC bus link|M3}} along Manhattan Avenue, Central Park North, and Fifth/Madison Avenues
  • {{NYC bus link|M4}} along Broadway, Central Park North, and Fifth/Madison Avenues
  • {{NYC bus link|M60 SBS|M100|M101|Bx15|prose=y}} along 125th Street
  • {{NYC bus link|M7|M102|prose=y}} along Lenox Avenue and 116th Street
  • {{NYC bus link|M10}} along Frederick Douglass Boulevard
  • {{NYC bus link|M116|prose=y}} along 116th Street
Routes that run near Harlem, but do not stop in the neighborhood, include:
  • {{NYC bus link|M5}} along Riverside Drive
  • {{NYC bus link|M11}} along Amsterdam Avenue
  • {{NYC bus link|M35}} via Triborough Bridge
  • {{NYC bus link|M98|M103|prose=y}} along Third/Lexington Avenues
  • {{NYC bus link|M104}} along Broadway

See also



Further reading

  • Gill, Jonathan, Harlem: The Four Hundred Year History from Dutch Village to Capital of Black America, Grove Press, 2011.
  • Ianni, Francis A. J. Black Mafia: Ethnic Succession in Organized Crime, 1974.
  • King, Shannon. Whose Harlem Is This? Community Politics and Grassroots Activism During the New Negro Era. New York: New York University Press, 2015.
  • Osofsky, Gilbert. Harlem: The Making of a Ghetto: Negro New York, 1890–1930, 1971.
  • WPA Guide to New York City, 1939
  • TIME, vol. 84, No. 5, July 31, 1964. "Harlem: No Place Like Home".
  • Newsweek, August 3, 1964. "Harlem: Hatred in the Streets".
  • Harlem Stirs, John O. Killens, Fred Halstead, 1966.
  • "Crack's Decline: Some Surprises from U.S. Cities", National Institute of Justice Research in Brief, July 1997.
  • Bourgois, Philippe. In search of respect: Selling crack in El Barrio. Vol. 10. Cambridge University Press, 2003.

External links

{{wikivoyage|Manhattan/Harlem and Upper Manhattan|Harlem and Upper Manhattan}} {{commons category|Harlem, Manhattan}} {{Manhattan}}{{Harlem}}{{Ethnicity in New York City}}{{Former towns of New York City}}

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