Lenox Hill Neighborhood House

331 East 70th Street
Frederick P. Kelley

In 1894, the Normal College Alumnae Settlement House was established by members of the Alumnae Association of Normal College, now known as the Hunter College of the City University of New York. Originally located at 446 East 72nd Street, the settlement housed a free kindergarten for the children of immigrant families in Lenox Hill and Yorkville. The organization grew to offer a multitude of social welfare, educational and recreational programs, and by 1915, the settlement constructed a larger building at 511 East 69th Street and renamed itself the Lenox Hill Settlement. In 1926, the settlement outgrew its space once more, and constructed this building, funded in part by donations from John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Once complete, this simplified Romanesque Revival style structure was the largest settlement house in the world, serving over 10,000 families and including a multitude of modern features, including gymnasia, a pool, theater, health clinic, cooking school, workshops and lodging rooms. It was at this time that the settlement changed its name to the Lenox Hill Neighborhood House, which today serves over  individuals across five locations on the East Side between East 54th and East 102nd Streets. Its services include adult education, English courses, an early childhood education center, summer camps, a fitness center, homeless and housing services, legal advocacy, elderly services, a visual and performing arts program and a volunteer program. Both the building and the institution are important reminders of the area’s cultural and immigrant history.