One day MacCracken stumbled across a for sale sign in the Bronx advertising a large plot of land owned by Belgian consul and New York University graduate, H.W.T Mali. Upon seeing the estate, MacCracken decided that this land, with its spaciousness and impressive scenery, would be the perfect location for the new undergraduate college.
For more images of the Mali Estate and the Bronx, click the thumbnails below.
MacCracken began soliciting donations to purchase the land by advertising the estate’s rural character, but also its proximity to Manhattan which would allow students to study the urban metropolis.The chancellor also emphasized his mission to help “create a permanent neighborhood of desirable character.”
In 1892, with the help of donors, most notably Jay Gould, a wealthy railroad tycoon, MacCracken secured enough funds to purchase the Mali Estate. His family would maintain close ties to NYU throughout the decades