Historic Structures Surrounding FDR Four Freedoms Park

Ever wonder which historic structures make up the skyline that surrounds FDR Four Freedoms Park? Here's our selection of five surrounding structures that stand out. Check back for our next batch of five! We'll post them in the next few days. Which New York City structures would you like to see on this list?

Library of Congress, HABS NY, 31-NEYO, 151--1

Library of Congress, HABS NY, 31-NEYO, 151--1

The United Nations Headquarters

The United Nations and Four Freedoms Park are historically tied, facing eachother across the East River. The United Nations has been instrumental in implementing Roosevelt's vision of a world founded upon Four Freedoms. President Roosevelt is generally regarded as the founding father of the United Nations. After President Roosevelt's death, Eleanor Roosevelt worked to ensure the Four Freedoms were incorporated into the preamble to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Library of Congress, HAER NY,31-NEYO,160--12 (1991)

Library of Congress, HAER NY,31-NEYO,160--12 (1991)

Queensboro Bridge

This photograph was taken pre-construction of FDR Four Freedoms Park. The Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge, designed by Gustav Lindenthal, was completed in 1909. It connects Queens to Manhattan.

Roosevelt Island Tramway Station

The Roosevelt Island Tramway Station was designed by Prentice & Chan, Ohlhausen in 1976. The Tram connects Manhattan and Roosevelt Island. The Roosevelt Island Tram is the only commuter cable car in North America. The Tram can hold 125 people, it travels 3,100 feet at an average speed of 16 mph in 4 1/2 minutes and rises to a maximum height of 250 feet.

Smallpox Hospital

The Smallpox Hospital is a landmarked gothic structure that marks the entrance to Four Freedoms Park. It was designed by James Renwick, Jr. (and is commonly known today as the Renwick Ruin). The Smallpox Hospital opened in 1856 and was abandoned in the 1950s. Architect James Renwick, Jr. also designed Grace Church and St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhattan and the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

Photo © 2012, Paul Warchol, U Thant Island in the East River, south of Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park "Room."

Photo © 2012, Paul Warchol, U Thant Island in the East River, south of Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park "Room."

Library of Congress,   2007618519, U Thant Island, 1906.

Library of Congress, 2007618519, U Thant Island, 1906.

Belmont Island (U Thant Island)

U Thant Island is named after the 3rd Secretary General of the United Nations, U Thant. It is the smallest island in Manhattan, managed by the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation to protect it as a sanctuary for migrating birds. This is also where we spotted our seal, Lou, in March 2011 as he was relaxing on this tiny spot of land.