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Sailors’ Delight

By Linda Tancs

In 1801 Captain Robert Richard Randall died, his will decreeing that his New York City estate become a haven for retired seamen.  Following a protracted will contest, his desire was fulfilled through the purchase of land in 1831 along the harbor in Staten Island instead.  Located on the north shore,  that enclave is known as Snug Harbor.  Thanks to its popularity among retired sailors, the property grew to include a chapel, more dormitories, and a Beaux-Arts-style music hall.  Boasting over 250,000 annual visitors, the Snug Harbor Cultural Center offers a glimpse into the life of a mariner.   For art aficionados, there’s the John A. Noble maritime art collection.  A year-round venue for performance art, the park is also notable for its botanical garden, one of the largest in the New York area.

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