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Daniel Boone Playground

Daniel Boone Playground

This text is part of Parks’ Historical Signs Project and can be found posted within the park.

American Frontiersman Daniel Boone (1734-1820) pioneered the exploration of and settlement in Kentucky in the 18th century. Boone was born in Pennsylvania, and later settled with his Quaker parents in North Carolina. Possessing a keen hunting ability, curiosity and an affinity for nature, he ventured to the Kentucky region, (discovered in 1673 by French missionary Jacques Marquette and Canadian explorer Louis Joliet) on two expeditions in 1767-68 and 1769-71. Boone founded the settlement of Boonesborough on the Kentucky River where he hunted and fought against the Native Americans who had inhabited the region for centuries. In 1778 he was captured by the Shawnees, but he escaped and later traveled to the East to bring in more settlers.

Boone’s exploits achieved national exposure through John Filson’s Discovery, Settlement and the Present State of Kentucky (1784) as well as mythical stature in Lord Byron’s poem Don Juan. At the time that Kentucky entered the Union as the 15th State in 1792, Boone’s land titles were deemed invalid. He then moved to Missouri in 1795 where his initial grant of 8000 acres from the Spanish forces was reduced to 850 acres once the state was acquired by the United States. Boone died there on September 26, 1820.

Daniel’s Playground was acquired as part of the construction of the Bronx River Expressway by the State-Federal Arterial Program in 1948 and opened to the public on May 23, 1963. Commissioner Stern named the playground after Daniel Boone in 1987 because of its proximity to Boone Avenue. The avenue was likely named for a prominent nineteenth century landowner named John H. Bones. A $180,000 capital project was completed in spring 1997 upgrading the park with new asphalt, fencing, safety surfacing, play equipment, and animal art.

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