69° Good Evening
69° Good Evening

Donald Trump's New York: From the president’s Queens roots to Manhattan legacy

While his life may not be like that of the average New Yorker, President Donald Trump has countless ties to the city.

Gwenda Blair, author of “The Trumps: Three Generations That Built an Empire,” said the president's persona still reveals his Queens roots.

“People don’t see him as an elitist snob,” she said. “He’s like a regular guy from Queens -- a regular guy who happens to have a lot of money.”

And it’s true that Queens is where it all began for Trump, who was born in the borough on June 14, 1946. It’s where he learned his first lessons from his father about working hard, and it’s where he aspired to be powerful and wealthy.

In commemoration of his inauguration anniversary, here are some of the places in New York City that are connected to Trump, from his childhood home to his real estate empire.

Childhood home in Jamaica Estates

The five-bedroom Tudor, located at 85-15 Wareham Place
Photo Credit: Paramount Realty USA

The five-bedroom Tudor, located at 85-15 Wareham Place in Jamaica Estates, is where Trump spent the first four years of his life.

The home, which was built by his father, was bought for $2.14 million in March 2017. The property was listed as a rental on Airbnb for $600 a night back in August, but the listing has since been taken down.

Second family home in Jamaica Estates

Trump was the fourth of five children of
Photo Credit: Google Maps

Trump was the fourth of five children of Fred and Mary Trump. Before he was born, the family was already crowded in their home on Wareham Place in Jamaica Estates, so Fred Trump built a new, larger home, pictured, next door on Midland Parkway.

The house, the largest on the block, has 23 rooms and nine bathrooms, and was complete with a maid and a chauffeur.

Blair said the president and his siblings had a "more than comfortable life," but the rules were very strict in the Trump household. From the start, Fred and Mary taught their children lessons about money, she said.

"Fred and Mary Trump made sure their children knew something about the value of a dollar," she wrote in "The Trumps." "Sometimes it seemed that life's highest priorities were to remember to turn out all the lights, to eat every single mouthful on their plates, and to be ever mindful of all the poor, starving children all over the world."

They were also taught early on the importance of having a job. Trump and his brothers delivered papers in the neighborhood. If the weather was bad, though, they got a ride in one of their dad's Cadillac limousines.

Kew-Forest School

Trump attended the Kew-Forest School on Union Turnpike,
Photo Credit: Google Maps

Trump attended the Kew-Forest School on Union Turnpike, where he was known as a rebellious student who always pushed the limits.

In his book "Never Enough: Donald Trump and the Pursuit of Success," Michael D'Antonio describes how the president stood out among other students.

"Erasers hurled at teachers and cake flung at birthday parties were notable examples of the problem-child behavior that separated Donald Trump from the other kids at the private Kew-Forest School," he wrote.

After school, Trump hung out with his close friend Peter Brant.

"Sports was our whole life then," Brant is quoted saying in Blair's "The Trumps." "After school we would look through sporting goods catalogs and see if we could buy equipment. We would go to stores together and look at the best possible mitt we could afford. Our life revolved around watching the Brooklyn Dodgers play."

In "Never Enough," Trump is quoted saying he is not much different now than when he was young.

"When I look at myself in the first grade and I look at myself now, I'm basically the same," he told D'Antonio. "The temperament is not that different."

Father's buildings in Queens and Brooklyn

Blair said many people who knew the Trump
Photo Credit: Donald Trump via Facebook

Blair said many people who knew the Trump family said the president was always a hard worker like his father. Fred Trump often worked seven days a week, and on weekends, he would pile his kids into one of his Cadillacs and check up on his buildings, Blair and D'Antonio both wrote.

"A son or daughter who wanted his time would accompany him on a weekend trip to the office, or a tour of construction sites," D'Antonio wrote in his book. "He called it 'making the rounds.' Along the way they would hear about the importance of ambition, discipline, and hard work."

F train

Trump and Peter Brant would take the subway
Photo Credit: Samantha Wieder

Trump and Peter Brant would take the subway into Manhattan without their parents knowing, Blair said. (Trump mentioned taking the F train near his home in a New York Times interview.)

The two would go to a magic store on West 49th Street and Broadway, according to Blair. "There they bought stink bombs and smoke bombs and plastic vomit," she wrote. "Another favorite was hot peppered gum, which they gave to unsuspecting schoolmates. After seeing 'West Side Story,' they became fascinated with switchblades."

When his father found the switchblades, Trump was sent to the New York Military Academy, Brant said in Blair's book.

In an interview with The New York Times, Trump confessed it's been years since he's ridden the subway, but he did reminisce about his childhood.

"It's been a long time. It's been a long time," Trump said. "I know the subway system very well. I used to take it to Kew-Forest School, in Forest Hills, when I lived in Queens. And I'd take the subway to school. Seems a long time ago. I'd take it from Jamaica, 179th Street. Jamaica, right? To Forest Hills. I understand the subway very well. I used to ride between the cars."

NYPD Chief of Transit Bureau Joseph Fox later tweeted about the interview, telling people not to use the president as an example. "Please don't ride between the subway cars," he wrote.

Fordham University, father's Brooklyn office

After Trump graduated from the military school, he
Photo Credit: realdonaldtrump via Instagram

After Trump graduated from the military school, he moved back to Queens and commuted to Fordham University. His commute wasn't bad, though, since he drove a sports car, Blair said.

He stayed at Fordham for two years before transferring to the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania. The photo above of Trump and his father shows them at his graduation from Wharton in 1964.

During his college years, the president worked at his father's office in Brooklyn when he wasn't at school, and when he graduated, he returned to work with his father. They worked out of Fred Trump's office in his Beach Haven development near Coney Island.

"Inside a nondescript, three-story brick building on Avenue Z, the headquarters of the Trump family empire still looked like the dentist's office it had once been, with a linoleum floor, shag carpet, and chest-high partitions between cubicles," Blair wrote in "The Trumps."

Upper East Side

Trump's aspirations were always to be in Manhattan.
Photo Credit: Getty Images / Spencer Platt

Trump's aspirations were always to be in Manhattan.

"He was mainly interested in gaining a toehold in the place that had dominated his imagination ever since he knew what waited on the western end of the Queensboro Bridge," D'Antonio wrote.

His first Manhattan apartment was on the Upper East Side, on 75th Street between Lexington and Third avenues.

"Settling into a small, dark studio on the seventeenth floor of a twenty-one-floor building, he blithely referred to his new living quarters as a penthouse and began carving out a new life as a debonair bachelor," Blair wrote.

Eventually he would end up in the actual penthouse of Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue (pictured above) before setting his sights on the White House.

Trump Tower New York served as headquarters for both his presidential campaign and transition team. First lady Melania Trump and son Barron, 11, continued to live in the building for nearly five months of Trump's presidency, moving to Washington, D.C., on June 11, 2017.

NYC real estate portfolio

Trump has since grown a global real estate
Photo Credit: Aaron Zebrook

Trump has since grown a global real estate portfolio, which includes multiple properties in the city. The president owns several residential towers, including Trump SoHo and Trump Park Avenue, as well as commercial buildings like 1290 Avenue of the Americas and even a skating rink (Wollman Rink in Central Park, pictured).

Henry Hudson Parkway

If you take a drive along the Henry
Photo Credit: Google Maps

If you take a drive along the Henry Hudson Parkway on the west side of Manhattan, you may notice the president's name on the side of the road. The Trump Organization donated to the Adopt A Highway program in 2016, taking on responsibility for a swath of the southbound Henry Hudson Parkway from 119th to 72nd streets. The sign can be seen at 79th Street.


We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

News photos & videos