How Did The Name "Paulus Hook" Originate?
The neighborhood now known as Paulus Hook was originally called Arisheck Island. Though the origins of "Arisheck" is unknown, it may come from the word Kaniskeck. Kaniskeck means a long, grassy marsh or meadow. This area was originally an island surrounded by marsh land. Through land-filling efforts it became a part of the mainland.
The land was originally settled by the Dutch West India Company from 1621 to 1624, and then purchased by Michael Pauw, an Amsterdam Burgomaster and Lord of Achttienhoven, in 1630 as part of a Pavonia settlement. The first settlement in this area was founded in 1633.
In 1638, the land was granted by Michael Pauw to Michael Paulez, an agent of the Pavonia settlement. Paulez's name was Anglicized to Paulus, and he became one half of the area's namesake. The "Hook" comes from Hoeck, the Dutch word for hook or point. And that's how our neighborhood became "Paulus Hook."