This playground on the grounds of P.S. 188 at Houston Street and Baruch Drive honors the humanitarian, public health pioneer, social reformer, and leader of the recreation movement Lillian D. Wald (1867-1940).
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio on March 10, 1867, Wald grew up in Rochester, New York. She received a degree in nursing from New York Hospital in March 1891, and after further studies at the Women's Medical College, Wald and her friend Mary Brewster opened an out-patient nursing service on the Lower East Side. It expanded into the Henry Street Settlement House in 1893, and moved to 265 Henry Street in buildings donated by Jacob Schiff. The settlement then adopted a mission to improve the quality of life for area residents, which it continues to follow today.