If you’ve ever heard of The Bronx and wondered why it’s called the Bronx, you’re not the only one! For centuries, this thriving borough of New York City has been known by its unique moniker, and there are a few different theories as to why it is called the Bronx.
From its Native American roots to its Dutch settlers, the story of the Bronx is an interesting one. Read on to learn more about the history of the area and how it came to be known as the Bronx.
Why Is The Bronx Called The Bronx?The Bronx is the northernmost of the five boroughs of New York City and is the only borough located on the mainland of the United States. It is home to a population of
4 million people and covers an area of 42 square miles. It is also the only borough in NYC to be called by its name, as the other four boroughs – Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan and Staten Island – all retain the names of their counties.
But why is the Bronx called the Bronx? Here we will explore the history of this part of the Big Apple and find out how it came to acquire its name.
History of the BronxThe Bronx is what is known as a coterminous borough, which is to say it covers the entirety of Bronx County.
The county itself was formed in the year 1914, after being removed from the large Westchester County during the consolidation of NYC’s five boroughs at the beginning of the 20th century. The borough had long been populated by Native Americans for centuries prior to its incorporation into the City of New York.
The Lenape tribesman been the most prominent inhabitants and have been credited with giving the borough its original name.
How Did the Bronx Get Its Name?The borough’s most commonly accepted backstory is that it is named after the Jonas Bronck, the first European settler in the area.
In 1639, Bronck purchased a sizable tract of land on the island of Manhattan’s east bank, and the area around his new residence soon became known as Broncksland or The Bronck’s Land. The spelling of the area changed to Bronx over time, however, and it is also widely believed that the change in name was due to the English spelling being simpler and easier to pronounce.
The borough ultimately maintained the Bronx name when it was annexed to the City of New York in 1898, and it has kept the name ever since.