6. The Channel Between Governors Island and Brooklyn Used to Called the Buttermilk Channel

The small channel between Brooklyn and Governors Island, approximately one mile long and 1/4 miles wide, was once called Buttermilk Channel. There are a few different theories about how this channel received its name but we know it dates as far back as the Revolutionary War. Some believe farmers crossed the channel by foot with their cows because it was so shallow. The cows would then graze on the island. Others believe its named Buttermilk because the channel was so choppy that when farmers crossed, their milk churned into butter by the time they reached the other side.