Dutch Kills Playground shares its name with the adjacent school and the neighborhood in northwestern Queens. "Kill" is a Dutch word which means "little stream," and the area takes its name from the 1643 Dutch settlement near the "kill" that flowed south to Newtown Creek. A small village surrounded by outlying farms developed here during the 17th and 18th centuries. Urban development and industrialization caught up with the rural hamlet in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The Long Island Rail Road arrived in 1861, and several factories began business in the area. Dutch Kills joined Astoria Village, Hunter’s Point, Ravenswood, Middletown, and Blissville (now Sunnyside) to form Long Island City in 1870. The Queensboro Bridge, opened in 1909, directly linked the community to Manhattan.
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