The One and Only: Polish Greenpoint

Jun 05, 2022

Well, as promised, the best for last. Though, seeing as I am Polish, there is a good chance I am biased.

Polish immigration to Greenpoint occurred in three phases.

First, some Polish immigrants arrived in the 1910’s, fleeing poor economic conditions.

Second, some Polish immigrants arrived in the 1950’s, fleeing communism.

Third, a few Polish immigrants arrived in the 1990’s, fleeing the fall of communism. (Such as my parents)

Thanks to this constant influx of immigration, Polish Greenpoint developed into a self sufficient ethnic enclave, containing all the comforts of home. Churches, restaurants, barbers: everything.

In recent times a combination of a lack of fresh immigration, Americanization, and gentrification has contributed to the loss of Polish character. For example, I know of a Popeyes replacing an old school Polish deli.

I recommend visiting Nassau avenue for the authentic Polish experience. Also, visit Cafe Riviera. Good stuff.

It’s bittersweet, but such is life in the city.

Look forward to hearing from me this wednesday!


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