The Bronx Historian
BronXcursions are tours and programs centered on Bronx history, the borough's current and emerging cultures, and its unique qualities. These services are to inspire Bronx pride amongst its residents while educating them and visitors from all over the world. BronXcursions provides you with all the information you need about our thriving borough. Whether by foot, bus, train, or car, BronXcursions will offer an amazing experience that you will never forget. We also give lectures and travel to your location.
Call: (718) 844-4724 for your next booking!
Angel Hernandez is a Nuyorican native of The Bronx, particularly from the Soundview section. A proud graduate of CUNY Herbert H. Lehman College with a B.A. in Sociology and M.A. in History, Angel enjoys educating locals and visitors about the borough's rich history and ever-changing demographics. He works closely with educational institutions to teach local and neighborhood history to students – a subject rarely taught in the classroom. In May of 2023 he was announced by Borough President Vanessa L. Gibson as the official Bronx Historian
In April 2019, Angel was elected president of The Huntington Free Library and Reading Room, a historic city landmark completed in the 1890s and considered to be one of the borough's oldest public libraries. Leading the library’s daily operations on the cusp of a new age, Angel envisions new implementations that will keep its legacy alive. For example, the library's entire collections are currently being digitized and its roof restoration project is slated to commence. He also currently works at The New York Botanical Garden as Director of Government Relations.
Susan Mills Birnbaum's lifelong fascination with history ignited a journey that transformed her into an ardent advocate for preserving the past and sharing its riches. Armed with a Bachelor's degree in History from Hunter College, Susan's affiliation with The Bronx, Brooklyn, and New York Historical Societies exemplified her commitment to historical preservation.
As a devoted docent at the Museum of the City of New York, Susan's ability to bring history to life became evident. Her dedication culminated in the prestigious 2010 Bronx Tourism Award, 2023 Women in Tourism & Guiding Spirit is from GANYC honoring her unmatched dedication to revealing The Bronx's vibrant story.
Pairing her historical expertise with a Master's degree in Social Work from Rutgers University, Susan seamlessly merges her passion for people with her love for history. This synergy led her to creating SusanSez NYC Walkabouts—a platform that offers a unique, off-the-beaten-path exploration of the city's lesser-known wonders. Susan’s tours are an embodiment of her infectious love for New York, surprising even native New Yorkers with untold narratives.
Beyond iconic landmarks, Susan's tours unveil the authentic essence of the city. If you seek to escape the tourist crowds and experience the genuine rhythm of New York City, SusanSez NYC Walkabouts is your avenue to a truly immersive and enlightening adventure.
Bronx Tours Descriptions
Mott Haven Historic Walking Tour
In 1639, Jonas Bronck settled in this area with the idea of creating farmland outside of colonial New York. Within 4 years, the land was in the possession of the Morris family who assisted with the industrial developments over the next 2 centuries. The influx of German and Irish immigrant families created multiple opportunities for work and upscaled the residential lifestyles of the neighborhood.Named after Jordan L Mott (inventor of the coal burning stove) and with the development of three historic districts (Bronx Antiques, Bertine Block & Mott Haven East) Mott Haven is a prime example of how a neighborhood with a rural beginning can eventually flourish into an industrial and urban landscape.
Meeting Location: Graham Triangle (East 138th Street between Lincoln and Morris Avenues)
Nearest Subway: 6 Train to 138th Street - Third Avenue
Estimated Duration: 2. 5 Hours
Norwood-Kingsbridge Heights Historic Walking Tour
Originally named North Woods, this neighborhood has a mixture of historical significance (From its early beginning as home of the Mosholu Indians, to it becoming the birthplace and dwelling of many stalwarts of contemporary American History (Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein).Kingsbridge played a significant role in the American Revolution as home to the site of Fort Independence which was rediscovered in 1915. During the early 1900’s there was a surge of Irish and Eastern European Jews who contributed to the lush development of the neighborhood.
Meeting Location: Valentine - Varian House (Van Cortlandt Park East and Bainbridge Avenue)
Nearest Subway: D Train to 205th Street and 2 block walk to VCP East.
Estimated Duration: 3 hours
Riverdale Historic Walking Tour
Riverdale is one of the wealthiest neighborhoods in New York City. It was originally overlooked by early farmers & settlers due to steep inclines and rocky terrain but dramatically sought by wealthy merchants and settlers as an oasis and escape from the overpopulated city. With the development of beautiful parks (Van Cortlandt Park and Wave Hill ) and community landscapes (Fieldston and Greystone), Riverdale continues to be the standard bearer of wealth in the Bronx.
Meeting Location: Van Cortlandt Park - 242nd Street and Broadway (in front of Subway entrance)
Nearest Subway: 1 Train to 242nd Street - Van Cortlandt Park
Estimated Duration: 2. 5 Hours
Phone: (929) 316-7080
Travel enthusiast, melophile (lover of music) and historian: Joseph Landon has been a NYC resident since birth splitting his time between the Bronx and Harlem. Joe discovered at a young age that there was so much more to NYC than just the city. As a teenager, he navigated the five boroughs both on foot and by way of public transportation. Joe has worked in the tourism, hospitality, and entertainment industries for more than 20 years before founding Jojo’s Ventures.
Through Jojo's Ventures, Joe seeks to showcase the diverse neighborhoods, rich cultural heritage, and vibrant history of New York City. He leads tours that highlight the city's hidden gems and lesser-known landmarks, revealing the rich tapestry of the city's history and the stories of the people who have shaped it. Whether it's exploring the historic Harlem Renaissance, tracing the footsteps of the city's jazz legends, or uncovering the secrets of the Bronx's urban art scene, Joe is dedicated to sharing the soul of the city with visitors and residents alike.
Joe's passion for music and history is evident in his tours, which often feature live performances by local musicians and artists. He also collaborates with local historians, community leaders, and cultural institutions to provide a unique and authentic perspective on the city.
For Joe, leading tours and curating experiences is not just a job, but a way of life. He is dedicated to sharing his love and appreciation of New York City with others and helping to preserve the city';s unique history and culture for future generations to enjoy.
- ALL tours are conducted by licensed NYC Tour Guides.
- ALL walking tours are available on non-listed days for private and educational groups.
- Tours can be customized and personalized at the request of the guests/groups.
Loving the Bronx shares the amazing history, culture, architecture and character of everything that is the Bronx. Through the eyes of a Bronxite, you will see the true character of the Bronx with fun talking tours. Some curated tours have featured The Bronx River Greenway, The Cross Bronx Expressway and the Hunts Point Tour which is a tribute to the late Morgan Powell.
Nilka Martell is a lifelong Bronxite, parks advocate, environmental activist, writer, and the founder and director of Loving The Bronx. She also serves as chair of the Bronx River Alliance, president of the Friends of Pelham Bay Park, and board member of the Bronx Council for Environmental Quality, Bronx Coalition for Parks and Green Spaces, and the Huntington Free Library.
Exploring The Significance of Happy Land Memorial
The Happy Land Memorial is dedicated to the 87 men and women who lost their lives in the Happy Land Social Club Fire at 1959 Southern Boulevard, on March 25, 1990. It is the deadliest fire in New York City since the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, which coincidentally occurred on the same day in 1911. More than just a monument, it is a landmark that serves as the gateway to the largest Garifuna village in the world and evidence of a long history and lasting Garifuna presence in the South Bronx!
This walking tour explores the historical and cultural significance of the West Farms neighborhood, particularly focusing on the Garifuna people and their unique history. NYC Licensed tour guide José Francisco, and chair of Garifuna Coalition USA, will discuss the historical significance of the Happy Land Social Club Fire to both New York City and the Garifuna community.
Participants will walk along the corridors of 174th Street, Boston Road, Southern Boulevard, and Crotona Parkway Malls, important spaces where Garifunas have lived, worked, and socialized. Along the way, José will provide historical context, sharing stories and insights about the Garifuna community's contributions and experiences in this neighborhood.
Meeting Location: On the SE corner of 174th St & Boston Rd
Ending Location: P.S. 067 Mohegan School at the corner of Crotona Pkwy & E 178th St.
How to get there: 2 or 5 train to 174th, Exit via174 Street Boston Rd SE corner.
To Book a Walking Tour go to josefranciscoavila.com/book-online
José Francisco Ávila is a Garifuna/Afro-Latino author, self-publisher, prominent Garifuna/Afro-Latino social justice activist, father, and grandfather. He was born in Honduras and raised in Boston, MA. He is managing Partner of Garifuna Afro-Latino Entertainment LLC and Chairman of the Board of the Garifuna Coalition USA, Inc.
He lives in New York City with his wife, they have four adult children and two beautiful granddaughters.
He attended Bentley University, where he received his BS in Accounting. One of his professors recognized his unique writing style and suggested minoring in Journalism. His main mission in life, has been to inform, empower, and advocate for Garifuna People. His passion for untold Garifuna/Afro-Latino(a) stories, led him to publish his first book.