photo: Debby Davis
Dead Horse Bay is a small body of water located in Brooklyn on the southwest shore of Barren Island. It got it’s name from more than two dozen horse rendering plants which were situated there between 1850 and 1930. As cars became more plentiful, the rendering plants disappeared and the city began to use the area as a landfill which was capped by 1930. In the 1950’s, the cap burst, flooding the beach with garbage.
Today the beach is a veritable museum of bottles, old shoes, wig hair, nylon stockings and pieces of horse bone from the 20’s and 30’s. The sounds of the waves blend with the tinkling of the bottles and the wailing of the gulls.