5. Prospect Park Menagerie

Prospect Park-Menagerie-Brooklyn-Lost Structures-NYC

Long before the Prospect Park Zoo was constructed, the Park was home to its own menagerie. Located near the Long Meadow, the menagerie opened in 1890 with a bear pit, and quickly grew to include elephants, deer, lions, monkeys and birds, housed in cages and pens. According to Colley, the collection of animals included the “diabolical cinnamon bear ‘Spite,’ who in 1902 had been transferred from the New York Zoological Park.”

The menagerie was inadequately funded and generally in a dilapidated state. When the official Prospect Park Zoo was constructed in 1935, the Park’s animals were moved and menagerie was demolished.

Want to learn more about the history of Prospect Park? Join us for an upcoming Secrets of Prospect Park Walking Tour, and keep reading for more lost or never built structures!

Secrets of Prospect Park