Strippoli Square

Strippoli Square

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

What was here before?

The neighborhood of Woodside is in northwestern Queens. In the late 17th century, judge Joseph Sackett (1680-1755) settled in Newtown, which became the town of Woodside. During the Revolutionary War, troops and couriers traveled along a route through this area, and the British established a camp near the present-day site of P.S. 11.

The name ‘Woodside’ derives from a series of articles entitled “Letters from Woodside,” which newspaper columnist John Andrew Kelly wrote from his father’s bucolic estate nearby. By the middle of the 19th century, the area encompassed several large estates. After the Civil War, the local population grew as a result of both residential development and the extension of mass transit service. Railroads arrived here in 1861, trolleys in 1895, and an elevated rapid-transit line in 1917. The area became more urban after World War II, with the construction of new apartment buildings.

This land was formerly owned by the Dick-Myer Corporation, which developed the Boulevard Gardens apartment complex in Woodside and donated the property in two parcels to the City in 1948 and 1950.

How did this site become parkland?

The land was assigned to NYC Parks in 1953 and was designed as a sitting area. In 1969, the city named was named Strippoli Square. In 1996, a capital project expanded and relandscaped the triangle, creating a central seating oval and placing a stone sculpture of an eagle at the northern end. Two decades later the sidewalks were extended to provide a calming buffer against traffic.

Who is this parkland named for?

This park honors Private First Class Joseph Patrick Strippoli, who perished while serving in the Vietnam War. Strippoli was born in Manhattan in 1946. He attended Our Lady of Good Counsel Parochial School in Yorkville until the age of ten, when his family moved to Woodside, Queens where he attended P.S. 151 and William Cullen Bryant High School. An able and talented young man, Strippoli earned an academic scholarship and won several awards for his sculpture. In 1968, at the age of 21, Strippoli was tragically killed by a landmine near the Cambodian border during his service in Vietnam.

Park Information

Directions to Strippoli Square

Highlights

  • Strippoli Square

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