Located in northeastern Queens, this historic district represents the evolution of the commuter suburb. The development of Douglaston Hill occurred over a span of eighty years, serving as one of the first examples of late-nineteenth-century suburban planning, as well as part of the speculative suburban development that greatly changed the landscape of the borough of Queens in the 1920s and 1930s.
The origins of development on Douglaston peninsula began in 1813, when Wynant Van Zandt, a prominent merchant, acquired the land. In 1829, Van Zandt donated a portion of the land at the highest elevation for the development of Zion Episcopal Church. The majority of the area's development did not occur until after Van Zandt's death in 1831, when the property was divided and ultimately obtained by Jeremiah Lambertson and George Douglas. By the mid-1800s, the Flushing and Northside railroad was expected to provide access to the peninsula in the near future, and Douglaston Hill was laid out for development. However, the construction of houses did not occur until the 1890s.
The free-standing wood-frame houses were largely constructed between 1890 and 1930 in the then-fashionable Queen Anne, Colonial Revival, Shingle, Arts and Crafts, and Tudor Revival styles. The district consists of thirty-one single-family houses, with intricate rooflines, tall chimneys, deep porches, and clapboard and shingle siding in a luscious, park-like setting. ©2014