Historic, but not famous

Thomas Pullis, farmer

Thomas Pullis (1778 – 1854) was a farmer in the Middle Village area of Queens. When he died,  his farm was willed to his three sons, with the instructions that the cemetery was never to be sold. In his estate funds were provided to build a brick wall around the cemetery so that it would be protected. The cemetery established is one of the last private family cemeteries that survives in the city and contains 7 graves and 3 headstones. It was restored by the village in 1993 after a non-profit was set up for multiple historic restorations in the area. It has been transformed into a tranquil and peaceful garden, a fitting tribute to the memory of the Pullis pioneer family of Middle Village.

Mr. Pullis purchased 32 acres in 1822. Pullis, like many local farmers of that time brought their vegetables, fruit and other produce to market. Pullis traveled to the ferry landing at English Kills on Newtown Creek and then onto the ferry which took him to Catherine Market in Manhattan. On his way to Manhattan, Pullis, with others, would often stop at a roadside tavern for a bite to eat. This tavern was Niederstein’s Restaurant, which opened in 1845.

You can visit the Pullis family cemetery which is located on the east lawn area of Juniper Park, east of 80th Street. Nearby, St. Margaret’s Church is situated on land formerly owned by the family and often open for visitors.

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