In 1753, George Washington’s raft capsized, and he landed on a nearby island. He ended up sleeping on Herr’s Island, which was later renamed to Washington’s Landing because of this historic event. Its renaming marked the island’s break from its former use into its new residential use.
In 1903 Pennsylvania Railroad bought a portion of the island to be used as a stop-over for its route from Chicago to New York. By law, livestock was required to have rest, food, and water after every 36 hours of travel. The island also became a site for meatpacking and rendering. It emanated a foul smell which drifted for miles.
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