St. Albans

By The Times/Ledger

Moving to the east out of Jamaica is St. Albans. Named in 1899 for St. Albans, the English village in Hertfordshire, St. Albans, New York City is mostly African-American today and during the 1940s became home to super jazz talents such as Lena Horne, Count Basie and Fats Waller. Many of them settled into Addisleigh Park. Built in the late 20s, Addisleigh Park is several blocks of Tudor-style homes on large plots on 179th and 180th Sts. between Murdock Ave. (114th St.) and Linden Blvd. In addition to the names mentioned, Babe Ruth liked to play golf in St. Albans, Joe Louis got married there, while Milt Hinton and his wife are still residents of the area. Let me add Earl Bostic, Illinois Jacquet, Roy Campanella, James Brown, Brook Benton, Jackie Robinson and the one, the only, Ella – all of them spent periods of time in St. Albans.

Today the economic status of St. Albans is middle class and the character suburban. Lying within St. Albans is Cambria Heights. It is largely an African-American middle-class suburb within the city limits. Another neighborhood alongside St. Albans is Springfield Gardens. The area was settled in 1660 and has made the transition from farms to city residential life. It is believed to have been named for a large spring in the middle of the village back in the 17th century. Laurelton is also down in that neck of the woods. The houses are mostly well-maintained English tudors and Spanish stuccos. Between Laurelton and the city limits is a hamlet that was built after a railroad station opened in 1870, Rosedale.

More info: Community Board 12, 658-3308; Community Board 13, 464-9700.