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I know of three places in New York state that use this name. Technically, “Hidden Harbor” is a toponym–try that word on for size!–an example of a ubiquitous Americana names like Joe’s Place and Dew Drop Inn. But here it is, just east of the boroughs, Hidden Harbor aka Popeye Village, as dubbed by a former resident there from Trinidad. This is the south side. I sometimes called it “cannery row.” It lacked the cannery but had one commercial fisherman.

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As a community, there has never been a home of mine where that word was more real. I miss that about living there, as I do the close contact with natural rhythms of light, waterlife, and migratory birds. I miss the sense of possibilities: check these high-end Dutch floating homes. I do not miss the unreliable electricity and phone lines, the constant perfume of diesel/mustiness on my clothes, which I smelled only if I went away overnight onto land.

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Above is the north side of the harbor. I’ve seen a harbor seal feast in here.

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Alhough most vessels here are house barges like the one below, I had a project boat, but I gave it up sooner than the owner of this beautiful old wooden yacht.

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Know any ports named Hidden Harbor in your part of the sixth borough, the watery part of two-thirds the planet? Any other most common toponyms?

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Graves of Arthur Kill

Click to order your copy of Graves of Arthur Kill, by Gary Kane and Will Van Dorp. 3Fish Productions.

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