Manahatta to Manhattan

Here’s a great reading booklet from the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian about the first New Yorkers

The Lenape, Manhattan’s original inhabitants,  called the island Manahatta, which means “hilly island.”

Rich with natural resources, Manahatta had an abundance of fruits, nuts, birds, and animals. Fish and shellfish were plentiful and the ocean was full of seals, whales, and dolphins. Migrant birds flew to local marshes based on the available food supply or weather conditions.

The body of water off the coast of Lower Manhattan is an estuary, a place where saltwater from the Atlantic Ocean mixes with freshwater from the Hudson River. Estuaries are particularly good places for wildlife to live.

The Lenape called the Hudson River Shatemuc, meaning “the river that flows both ways,” because the river alternates its flow from north to south along with the Atlantic tides. Shatemuc was an important water route for the Lenape who traded with other Native people living in villages along its banks.

To read more, click here.

Our Program in the News

In a recent Politico article about state adult education funding, our program’s director, Michael Hunter, is quoted:

The current state budget includes $7.3 million for the Adult Literacy Education program, which serves approximately 5,700 participants statewide, said Michael Hunter, adult literacy program director for the University Settlement Society of New York, a nonprofit providing services for immigrant and low-income families.

Statewide, more than 3.5 million individuals do not have a high school diploma, English-language proficiency or both, Hunter said. The ALE program provides funding to help increase literacy skills, particularly for immigrants and native-born New Yorkers with interrupted education.

Click here to read more!

It’s That Time of Year Again…

The 2018 New York City Taxi Drivers Calendar, a comedic take on the traditional pin-up, features 12 of the city’s most scintillating and good-humored yellow cab drivers.

A portion of each calendar sale will go to University Settlement, America’s oldest settlement house (1886), based in New York City and serving over 30,000 immigrant and working individuals and families every year with basic services like quality education, housing, recreation and wellness opportunities, and literacy programs.

FREE SHIPPING on all orders of 6 or more!

Click here to order now!

What Street Compares with Mott Street in July?

Here’s another classic song about summertime in New York. Click on the place names in the lyrics to learn more:

Manhattan
Written by Rodgers and Hart
Performed by Ella Fitzgerald

Summer journeys to Niagara
And to other places aggra-
Vate all our cares.
We’ll save our fares.
I’ve a cozy little flat in
What is known as old Manhattan.
We’ll settle down
Right here in town.

We’ll have Manhattan,
The Bronx and Staten
Island too.
It’s lovely going through
The zoo.

It’s very fancy
On old Delancey
Street, you know.
The subway charms us so
When balmy breezes blow
To and fro.

And tell me what street
Compares with Mott Street
In July?
Sweet pushcarts gently gli-
Ding by.

The great big city’s a wondrous toy
Just made for a girl and boy.
We’ll turn Manhattan
Into an isle of joy.

We’ll go to Yonkers
Where true love conquers
In the whiles
And starve together, dear,
In Chiles.

We’ll go to Coney
And eat baloney
On a roll.
In Central Park we’ll stroll,
Where our first kiss we stole,
Soul to soul.

And My Fair Lady is a terrific show, they say.
We both may see it close
Someday.

The city’s glamour can never spoil
The dreams of a boy and goil.
We’ll turn Manhattan
Into an isle of joy.