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Mathews - Palmer Playground

W. 45 St. bet. 9 Ave. and 10 Ave.


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

Social worker May Mathews (1887-1974) labored tirelessly for many years on behalf of the residents of the Clinton neighborhood of Manhattan.  Born in Paterson, New Jersey, she was graduated from Wellesley College in 1902.  Mathews moved to New York City and divided her time between work at the Friendly House settlement in Brooklyn and studies at the New York School of Philanthropy (now Columbia School of Social Work), where she earned a certificate in 1904.  She came to live at Hartley House, a settlement house on West 46th Street between Ninth and Tenth Avenues, in 1903.  Hartley House celebrated its 100th year of social service in 1997.

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