Exploring Roosevelt Island, From Abandoned Laboratories to Landmarked Ruins

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You’ve probably seen the red tram shuttling back and forth to Roosevelt Island, but how much do you really know about this two-mile-long piece of land wedged between Manhattan and Queens?

Join New York Adventure Club as we explore Roosevelt Island, which has been home to Dutch farms, rehabilitation institutions, asylums, hospitals, scientific laboratories, and more.

Led by historian Kevin Draper, our unique experience will include:


  • An overview of Roosevelt Island and why it was once called Minnehanonck by the Native Americans, Hog Island by the Dutch, Blackwell Island by the English, and Welfare Island by the city
  • A visit to several historic sites including the Chapel of the Good Shepherd (1888) and the Blackwell House, a 1796 dutch farmhouse that is NYC’s 6th oldest landmark
  • A look at the FDR Four Freedoms Park, Smallpox Hospital (NYC’s only landmarked ruin), and abandoned Strecker Laboratory (the first institution in the nation for pathological and bacteriological research)
  • A discussion around the newly built Cornell University campus and future redevelopment plans for the island


See you there!


*Please bring a water bottle and comfortable pair of shoes as we’ll be doing a lot of walking!

**Since our tour starts in Manhattan, a MetroCard swipe will be needed to ride the tram.



About Kevin

“I am a New York City Historian, experienced licensed guide, and co-founder and director of New York Historical Tours on a mission to provide exceptional and unforgettable experiences with the highest level of service. I will give you a front row seat and exciting insight into the city’s dynamic history, rich culture, diverse architecture, show you unique treasures and share the fascinating secrets hidden between the city streets.

“You’ll discover how New York evolved from humble beginnings to attract the millions who came for generations in search of their dreams, to become a city most often referred to today as the “Capital of the World”. You can be assured you have a professional guide able to answer your questions, engage with your group, enlighten and inspire you as you discover the best the city has to offer.”




By attending a New York Adventure Club experience, you accept our terms of service.



Date: Sat, June 3
Time: 12:30 pm - 2:30 pm
Cost: $29.00 - $35.00
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Tramway Plaza (Beside Statue)

2nd Avenue
New York, NY 10022 United States

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