I never knew why downtown Brooklyn had streets named after yummy things, but not I know it’s because of Miss Middagh. Miss Middagh’s family, who immigrated to the area when it was still New Amsterdam in 1652, was very influential in the area. She didn’t like that her wealthy neighbors were so arrogant as to name the streets they lived on after themselves, so, she tore the street names down and replaced them with botanical names. The city immediately removed these street names, but Miss Middagh did not stop there. She engaged in a long-term campaign against the city to return the botanical street names. After a prolonged battle, she won out, and the Board of Alderman allowed the names return to what Miss Middagh had appointed them as. The irony in all this, of course, is that there are streets right nearby named Middagh and Hicks Streets, after members of her family, even though she looked down upon the practice of naming streets after families.
Nothing more fun than knowing the history of places we see every day!
(adapted from this post)