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The establishment of the paper in the 1840s helped develop a separate identity for Brooklynites over the next century.The borough's soon-to-be-famous National League baseball team, the Brooklyn Dodgers, also assisted with this.The first center of urbanization sprang up in the Town of Brooklyn, directly across from Lower Manhattan, which saw the incorporation of the Village of Brooklyn in 1817.Reliable steam ferry service across the East River to Fulton Landing converted Brooklyn Heights into a commuter town for Wall Street.It was built by the Dutch, and the foundation can be seen today.However, the area was not formally settled as a town.Washington, viewing particularly fierce fighting at the Gowanus Creek from atop a hill near the west end of present-day Atlantic Avenue, was famously reported to have emotionally exclaimed: "What brave men I must this day lose! The fortified American positions at Brooklyn Heights consequently became untenable and were evacuated a few days later, leaving the British in control of New York Harbor.While Washington's defeat on the battlefield cast early doubts on his ability as the commander, the tactical withdrawal of all his troops and supplies across the East River in a single night is now seen by historians as one of his most brilliant triumphs.

Industrial deconcentration in mid-century was bringing shipbuilding and other manufacturing to the northern part of the county.

New Netherland was taken in a naval action, and the conquerors renamed their prize in honor of the overall English naval commander, James, Duke of York, brother of the then monarch King Charles II of England and future king himself as King James II of England and James VII of Scotland; Brooklyn became a part of the new English and later British colony, the Province of New York.

The English reorganized the six old Dutch towns on southwestern Long Island as Kings County on November 1, 1683, one of the "original twelve counties" then established in New York Province.

Both major institutions were lost in the 1950s: the paper closed in 1955 after unsuccessful attempts at a sale following a reporters' strike, and the baseball team decamped for Los Angeles in a realignment of major league baseball in 1957.

Agitation against Southern slavery was stronger in Brooklyn than in New York, and under Republican leadership the city was fervent in the Union cause in the Civil War.