Corporal Frank F. Fagan Square honors a World War I veteran that was born in Astoria, Queens. In 1917, he enlisted in Philadelphia as a Marine in the 43rd Company of the 5th Regiment and served until 1919. New York City Parks acquired the site on June 18, 1915 and the square was named for Corporal Fagan on May 3, 1932.
Corporal Frank Farrell Fagan was born on January 14, 1896 in Astoria, Queens. He enlisted in the Marines in Philadelphia on May 2, 1917 and served overseas in France in the 43rd Company of the 5th Regiment until 1919. While he was in France, he fought in numerous battles including the Aisne Defensive in the Chateau-Thierry Sector, the Aisne-Marne Offensive, and the St. Mihiel Offensive.
The Aisne Defensive in the Chateau-Thierry Sector helped turn German forces back after their attack of the Champagne on May 27, 1918. On July 15, 1918, the Allies defeated German forces and captured Soissons in the Aisne-Marne Offensive. On September 12, 1918, Corporal Fagan fought in the St. Mihiel Offensive, led by Major General John Pershing. The St. Mihiel Offensive was the first independent demonstration of American strength on the Western Front (Urban Areas).
Fagan was promoted to Corporal on January 1, 1918, receiving the French Croix de Guerre with a gilt star for coolness and bravery. The French Croix de Guerre was created in 1915 to award all members of the Allied Forces for acts of courage in battle. He was discharged with excellent character on August 13, 1919.
This site was acquired by New York City Parks by condemnation on June 18, 1915 and the square was named for and dedicated to Fagan by local law on May 3, 1932. Despite the dedication to Corporal Fagan, the site does not contain a plaque honoring his contribution to the First World War. Corporal Frank F. Fagan Square, also know as Fagan Square, is part of the Greenstreets Program. This is a joint project of New York City Parks and the New York City Department of Transportation, which began in 1986 and was revived in 1994 with the goal to convert paved street properties, such as triangles and malls, into green spaces.