A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006. Now a Popeyes fast food restaurant on Google Maps.

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Entry from January 04, 2008
City of Palms (McAllen nickname)

McAllen in South Texas has been called the “City of Palms” since the 1920s. Ancient Jericho was called “City of Palms,” and Miami (FL) was called “City of Palms and Sunshine” in the 1910s. Fort Myers (FL) was also called “City of Palms” since the 1920s and still uses the nickname.
A lot of cities have palm trees!
Wikipedia: McAllen, Texas
McAllen is a city in Hidalgo County, Texas. It is located at the very southern tip of Texas in an area known as the Rio Grande Valley. As of 2005, the city had a population of 126,411. In 2005 the McAllen-Edinburg-Mission-Reynosa metropolitan area had a population of 1,700,634. It is the 187th largest city in the U.S. and the 71st largest metropolitan area. Its southern boundary is located about five miles from the U.S.-Mexico border, the Rio Grande River and about 70 miles west of South Padre Island, the Gulf of Mexico. McAllen is one of the fastest growing cities in the country. It is also the largest city in Hidalgo County. 
McAllen has hosted the Palm Bowl in numerous years, including several NAIA national football championship and NCAA Division II national football championship games in the 1970’s and 1980’s.
City of McAllen
Nickname: City of Palms
McAllen, Texas - City of Palms
McAllen is located in South Texas ten minutes away from the U.S.-Mexican border. Appropriately named the “City of Palms,” McAllen is part of the rapidly growing Rio Grande Valley metropolitan area. Locals simply refer to the area as “the Valley.” A center of international commerce and trade, McAllen is a major gateway to Mexico and the countries of Central America. The city’s population of 110 thousand doubles from October through March, as retirees descend upon the Valley to escape the frozen north. Affectionately termed “Winter Texans,” they come to South Texas to enjoy the tropical climate, Mexican culture, golf courses, and other unique recreational opportunities. 
Handbook of Texas Online 
MCALLEN, TEXAS. McAllen is on U.S. Highway 83 about sixteen miles west of Weslaco and thirty-five miles west of Harlingen in southern Hidalgo County. It is situated on land that was part of porciones 63 and 64, granted respectively by Spain to Antonio Gutiérrez and Juan Antonio Villareal in 1767. Gutiérrez and his heirs inhabited the land at least up to 1883, and Villareal’s heirs lived on his land for at least fifty years prior to 1852. The Santa Anita Ranch was established around 1797 by José Manuel Gómez, who received the land grant from Spain in 1800. He raised cattle, sheep, goats, and horses on his ranch and helped to continue colonizing the area. His great-granddaughter Salomé Ballí, who inherited the land in the early 1800s, married John Young, a Brownsville businessman, about 1848 (see YOUNG, SALOMÉ). They proceeded to acquire land in the surrounding area, and in 1852 Young applied for porciones 64 and 65 in southern Hidalgo County. Young died in 1859, leaving his holdings to his widow and son, John J. Young, with John McAllen, Young’s assistant, as manager. McAllen married Salomé Ballí de Young in 1861, and in 1862 they had a son, James Ballí McAllen. They continued adding land to the ranch, which was renamed the McAllen Ranch. The site of present-day McAllen was within the ranch’s boundaries.
The town was a petroleum and farm chemurgic center with a population of 11,877 in 1940, by which time it had adopted the nickname the City of Palms. 
5 March 1918, Miami (FL) Herald, pg. 8:
Port Arthur, Texas, has begun a campaign to make of itself a city of palms. It is planned to plant trees of a uniform species on all the streets and boulevards.
10 March 1919, Miami (FL) Herald, pg. 4 ad:
One of the Charms of Miami
Our City is rightly called The City of Palms and Sunshine and at this season of the year, could be added and Song Birds.
15 March 1921, Morning Oregonian (Portland, OR), pg. 8:
Jericho was anciently called the “City of Palms.”
(OCLC WorldCat record)
Title: Fort Myers, Lee County, Florida;
the city of palms.
Corp Author(s): Lee County (Fla.). Board of County Commissioners. 
Publication: [New York, Tri Arts Print. Corp,
Year: 1925
(OCLC WorldCat record)
Title: The city of palms :
Fort Myers Florida /
Author(s): Rudisill, Fred.
Rudisill, Rudy, ; (Lyricist)
Platzman, Eugene, ; (Arranger)
Publication: Charlotte, N.C. :; Fred Rudisill,
Year: 1926
Description: 1 score (5 p.) ;; 31 cm.
Language: English
Music Type: Songs
11 May 1927, San Antonio (TX) Light, pg. 10B, col. 5:
McALLEN, May 11. (...) Approximate 1000 gay lions, representing about eighty Texas cities, roared through the decorated streets of “The City of Palms.”   
(OCLC WorldCat record)
Title: Galveston, the magic city of palms and sunshine, where the gulf breezes are born.
Corp Author(s): San Luis Hotel Company. 
Publication: [Galveston, Tex. : San Luis Hotel Co., Clarke & Courts)
Year: 1928
Description: [8] p. : ill. ; 31 cm.
(OCLC WorldCat record)
Title: McAllen, Texas, the city of palms / [compiled and published by the McAllen Chamber of Commerce].
Corp Author(s): McAllen Chamber of Commerce (Tex.) 
Publication: McAllen, Tex. : McAllen Chamber of Commerce,
Year: 1929
30 January 1929, Appleton (WI) Post-Crescent, pg. 7, col. 6 ad:
“The Sunshine Spends Its Winters Along the Rio Grande.
In the magic land of the Valley of the Lower Rio Grande, dreams of boundless wealth are coming true. Where cactus grew in 1911, stands today the “City of Palms” McAllen, a town of 14,000 people, with 20 miles of paved streets—on the “Longest Main Street in the world,” extending from Brownsville on the Gulf to the shores of the Rio Grande and Old Mexico on the West.
6 October 1929, San Antonio (TX) Express, pg. 10A, col. 6:
An elimination will probably be held among McAllen terrapins within the next few days to decide which of the many possibilities in the city will be allowed to wear the Purple and Gold of the City of Palms in the Derby. 
28 December 1930, Brownsville (TX) Herald, Ten-Year Review, pg. 75?, col. 1:
Future Development Looking Even Brighter For “City of Palms” 
6 November 1955, New York (NY) Times, “Deep in the Heart of the Rio Grande Valley” by Irving Wallace, pg. XX31:
McAllen has the largest tourist hall in Texas. The city is known as the “City of Palms” and its slogan is “Texas’ Greatest Tourist City.”
(OCLC WorldCat record)
Title: “McAllen :
50 years of progress”, March 2, 3, 4, and 5, 1961 /
Author(s): Vickers, Paul T. 
Corp Author(s): International Spring Fiesta, Inc. 
Publication: McAllen, Tex. : [s.n.],
Edition: 1st ed.
Year: 1961
Description: 68 p. : ill. ; 31 cm.
Language: English
Geographic: McAllen (Tex.)—History.
McAllen (Tex.)—Centennial celebrations, etc. 
Note(s): Cover title: “City of Palms”: historical facts./ “The history of McAllen in this book was compiled, written and edited by Paul T. Vickers.”

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • Friday, January 04, 2008 • Permalink

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