Chelsea was named by Major Thomas Clarke, who was the first settler in the area. He named it Chelsea after a hospital for veterans since he had been a soldier. When the Hudson River Railroad, was built, more settlers started to move into the area. The settlers were mostly immigrant workers who wanted to work in the factories built along the railroad. Consequently, a large part of Chelsea still feels very industrial today. This part, extending from tenth avenue to the river with 25th street to the south and 28th street to the north, is now known as the West Chelsea Historical District. This part of Chelsea was home to many important industries from the late 1880s to early 1990s, including the Otis Elevator Company and Cornell Iron Works. While many of the original factories in the area have been replaced with more modern buildings, West Chelsea was named a Historical District in order to preserve its Industrial History. As written in the Designation Report, “the historic district still retains nearly all of its historic building stock, and represents a unique and enduring part of New York City’s architectural and cultural heritage.”
Christopher, Brazee D., and Most L. Jennifer. West Chelsea Historic District Designation Report. Rep. Ed. Betts B. Mary. New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission, 15 July 2008. Web. 17 Nov. 2013.
Salkaln, Donathan. “The History Of Chelsea.” Chelsea Reform Democratic Club. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Nov. 2013.