Dongan Hills, Staten Island, New York City
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Dongan Hills is a neighborhood located within New York City, USA's borough of Staten Island. It is on the Island's East Shore.
The neighborhood was originally known by two separate names, the western half being called Hillside Park and the eastern half Linden Park. Both were later renamed for Thomas Dongan, the Irish-born governor of the Province of New York after Great Britain acquired it from the Netherlands in 1682. The "hills" alluded to in the name are actually the eastern ridge of Todt Hill, and much of what is colloquially referred to as "Todt Hill" by most island residents is actually reckoned as belonging to Dongan Hills by more authoritative sources such as the Staten Island Advance.
In the late 1920s, a telephone exchange was connected bearing the neighborhood's name, but served many other East Shore communities besides Dongan Hills itself, and the territory this exchange covered has since become virtually coterminous with what is popularly called the East Shore by many if not all island geographers. In December of 1930 the numeral "6" was added to the exchange name, making it Dongan Hills 6, and in 1954 a second exchange - Dongan Hills 1 - was added; however the following year both exchanges were abolished, pursuant to the Bell System's newly-adopted policy of discouraging the use of exchange names consisting of two words, mainly because it was believed that the first letters in each word of such names were often being dialed instead of the first two letters in the first word, leading to wrong numbers being reached.
Dongan Hills was one of the first Staten Island neighborhoods to witness an upsurge in home construction after World War II, as many small, one-family homes were built there during the 1950s, and the city also built a public housing project in the community; known as the General Berry Houses, it is the southernmost public housing project on Staten Island. Population growth accelerated in the area when the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge linking Staten Island with Brooklyn was opened in November of 1964. Indeed, recent arrivals from Brooklyn have overwhelmed the descendants of the original residents, and now form a majority of the neighborhood's population.
The neighborhood is also home to FDNY Engine Company 159, and quartered with it, Satellite 5.
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