To many people, Manhattan is New York. On this small island, just 12 miles long by 3 miles wide, are crowded most of the city’s skyscrapers, businesses, museums, theaters, hotels, restaurants, and famous sites. Though by far the smallest of the five boroughs in area, Manhattan is by far the largest in reputation and the jewel in the crown of the state.
Manhattan was settled from south to north, with the first Dutch settlers arriving near what is now known as Battery Park  in 1500. By 1650, the city had spread northward to include today’s Financial District, and by 1800, Greenwich Village  was a thriving community.
The wealthy began moving to the Upper East Side  in the late 1800s, and the Dakota —New York’s first grand apartment building—went up on the Upper West Side  in 1884. Harlem  existed as an independent farming community until 1873, when it was annexed to the borough.