The Story Of North Brother Island, The Abandoned New York City Quarantine Site That No One’s Allowed To Visit

Once the site of a sprawling quarantine compound that housed Typhoid Mary in the early 20th century, North Brother Island was abandoned in 1963, leaving its 25 crumbling buildings frozen in time.

New York City is a bustling place. Everywhere you look, there are people — getting on the subway, walking in and out of stores, and moving down the street. But on the East River is an island called North Brother Island where no one has lived since 1963.
For almost a century, the island served a particular purpose. It was purchased by the city in the 1880s in order to build a hospital for patients suffering from diseases like typhus, tuberculosis, and smallpox.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, North Brother Island saw its fair share of tragedy as a result. It not only housed one of history’s most famous patients, Typhoid Mary, but also bore witness to one of the most horrific tragedies in New York City history, the 1904 sinking of the PS General Slocum.

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