Morris Park is a neighborhood in the Eastern Bronx District of New York City, and it has an intriguing history. It is named after John Albert Morris, who constructed the Morris Park Racecourse, which existed from 1889 to 1910. This racecourse was home to both the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes, and it was one of the last properties owned by the Morris family of Morrisania. Several streets in Morris Park are named after the mayors of New York City during the 18th and 19th centuries. John Morris, a fourth-generation businessman and horse enthusiast, was born on July 29, 1836, in Jersey City, New Jersey. In 1905, Belmont Park opened its doors and became the top destination for New York racing fans.
But did you know that from 1889 to 1904 the Bronx was home to its own racetrack? The Morris Park Racecourse was one of the first racetracks built in New York City, preceded by Jerome Park and Coney Island racetracks. Located at 985 Morris Park Avenue, the library houses a collection of 25,000 books, DVDs, audio recordings, and resources for adults, youth, and children in English, Italian, Albanian, and Chinese (New York Public Library). According to an article published in the New York Times about the racecourse, there is no better drive in this state than the road to Morris Park. Located in the East Bronx and in the heart of New York City, Morris Park Avenue was developed on land formerly known as “Bear Swamp”.On the night of July 21, 1950, Loreto was standing near his home on Hering Avenue when he saw two armed men kidnapping a neighbor. Reflecting its largely Italian-American and Catholic population, Morris Park was politically conservative and remained one of the few solidly Republican neighborhoods in the Bronx until the 1990s. The rent burden or percentage of residents who have difficulty paying rent is 55% in Morris Park and Allerton compared to rates of 58% and 51% in municipal and municipal districts respectively.
When you think of some of the country's most renowned racetracks such as Churchill Downs in Louisville Kentucky Belmont Park in Queens New York and Pimlico Racecourse in Baltimore Maryland you can now add Morris Park Racecourse to that list.