Southwestern Queens: Woodhaven

Woodhaven is a middle class mixed neighborhood. Founded by a John R. Pitkin, he named the town Woodville in 1835, due to the area’s large tree population. The name was changed because a Woodville, in upstate NY already existed. Jamaica Ave runs through the heart of Woodhaven. The area is known to have some of the oldest small family owned businesses in Queens.

Pictured is Schmidt’s Candy located on Jamaica Ave. Opened in 1925 by Frank Schmidt, with the idea to bring old-world German chocolate recipes to the U.S. The store is currently run by Margie Schmidt, Frank’s granddaughter.

In 1930 Dexter Park, on Jamaica Ave, was the 1st baseball field with an engineered lighting system. Dexter Park was also home to the Brooklyn Royal Giants of the Negro Leagues.

The History section is in collaboration with Steve Vazquez of Queenscapes.