This section of the Bronx was once known as Morrisania, a township of Westchester County, named for two British Officers, Colonel Lewis Morris and his brother Richard, who purchased a tract of land here in 1670. Although the construction of the Harlem and Hudson River Railroads and the creation of a brewing industry in the area helped to populate Morrisania, the area remained rural until the twentieth century.
Morris High School was opened in 1904. Considered to be a masterpiece of Superintendent of School Buildings C.B.J. Snyder, it is a superior example of Public School Collegiate Gothic, with a turreted tower, terra cotta trim, copper roof, and modified H-plan. The school is located at the highest point in the Bronx and is a centerpiece for the neighborhood. Notable alumni of Morris High School include former Secretary of State Colin Powell, comedian Milton Berle and former Queens Borough President Helen Marshall.
The modest Trinity Episcopal Church, begun in 1874, across from the high school at the corner of Trinity Avenue and East 166th Street, is the oldest structure in the district, but was redecorated in the High Victorian Gothic style in 1906. The residences in the area are mainly two and three- story brick row houses, designed by local architects in a free classical manner, incorporating elements of the English, Flemish and Italian Renaissance Revivals. Located along Forest and Jackson Avenues and built between 1900-04, the houses are richly detailed with cohesive block fronts that enhance the district's turn of the century atmosphere. ©2014