Bedford-Stuyvesant History & Culture
Now, how did this neighborhood get its hyphen? Quite simply, by combining the names of two early settlements: Bedford and Stuyvesant Heights. Bedford was located near the present-day intersection of Bedford Avenue and Fulton Street. At the same time, Stuyvesant Heights was more south-centrally located and currently remains home to hundreds of historic rowhouses. Herbert Von King Park—named for a leader active in the community for 50 years—offers a de facto town square complete with a recreation and cultural center and an amphitheater. Across Lafayette from the park is a southern magnolia tree, an official city landmark. Planted in the 1880s, it remains thriving far north of its typical southeastern U.S. habitat. Today, Bed-Stuy is undoubtedly one of the most culturally rich neighborhoods in all of NYC, if not beyond. It’s home to many iconic figures, particularly from the arts, and has a certain name-brand cachet.