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A former city and county seat of Kings county, N. Y., at the west end of Long Island; since Jan. 1, 1898, one of the five boroughs of the city of New York. Under the census of 1890 it was the fourth city in population in the United States-806,343; under that of 1900 the borough had a population of 1,166,582. In 1900 the area was 66.39 square miles; assessed valuation of taxable property, $695,335,940; and net debt, $70,005,384. The borough derived its name from Breuckelen ( “marshy land” ), a place in the province of Utrecht, Holland. The

The Brooklyn Bridge.

first movement towards settlement there was the purchase of land from the Indians, in 1636, lying at Gowanus, and of land at Wallabout Bay, in 1637. A ferry between it and New Amsterdam was established in 1642. It held a leading position among the towns for wealth and population at the time of the surrender to the English. At or near Brooklyn occurred the battle of Long Island (see long Island, battle of), in 1776. The government established a navy-yard in Brooklyn in 1801. During the War of 1812-15 (August, 1814), there were stirring scenes at Brooklyn, when hosts of citizens went over from New York to assist in strengthening the old fortifications there, in expectation of an attack by the British. In the Civil War the citizens of Brooklyn contributed largely to the support of the Union cause in every way. The fair held here for the benefit of the United States Sanitary Commission yielded the sum of $402,943. Brooklyn was incorporated a village in April, 1816, and became a chartered city in 1834. Williamsburg and (Greenpoint were annexed to it in 1855; the towns of Flatbush, New Utrecht, and Gravesend, in 1894; and the town of Flatlands became a ward of the city in 1896.

The bridge across the East River, connecting New York and Brooklyn, was designed by John A. Roebling (q. v.). It was begun in 1870 and finished in 1883. The steel cables by which it is suspended were made at Wilmington, Del.. and are supported on stone piers, 272 feet above high tide. The total length of the bridge is 5,989 feet. and the carriage-way is 135 feet above the water. The cost was $15,000,000, of which the city of Brooklyn paid $10,000,000 and New York City $5,000,000. The bridge now accommodates pedestrians,, carriages and wagons, bridge cable-cars, [408] and electric cars. The bridge soon proved inadequate for the enormous traffic between New York and Brooklyn, and a second and larger bridge on steel piers was built about a mile above, and a third bridge ordered to parallel the original, and a fourth bridge across Blackwell's Island. In addition a tunnel has been authorized under the East River from the Battery in New York to the Brooklyn City Hall.

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