The Dyckman Farmhouse, built in the early 1780s, was once the center of a thriving farm, with fields and orchards of cherry, pear, and apple trees. The Dyckman family, for whom the house was named, lived in the house until the 1850s.
The first Dyckman to arrive in America, Jan, emigrated from Holland in the mid-1600s. Jan Dyckman, a shoemaker, and another Dutch settler, Jan Nagel, together purchased much of the land between present-day 155th Street and the northern end of the island. Members of the Dyckman and Nagel families lived on this land for three generations, until the Revolutionary War broke out.