Why Is New York City Called the Big Apple?
Keep reading to find out. Why Is New York City Called the Big Apple? In 1920’s when New York Morning Telegraph sports writer John J. Fitzgerald overheard African American stable workers using the phrase while talking about New York’s racing scene, which was considered “the big time.” Fitzgerald liked it so much he named his racing column “Around the Big Apple.”
The nickname “Big Apple” was first given to New York City by jazz musicians in the 1930’s. Jazz musicians in the 1930’s and 40’s made it more popular by using it in the same way, referring to the New York jazz scene as “the big time.”
It implies that New York is the most important place to be. In early jazz slang, an “apple” was a city. Jazz groups toured widely, and there were many apples (cities) in which to perform. But to play in New York was to play in the biggest apple of all, and was a sign of success. The nickname became popular in New York and throughout the world, and is now a symbol of New Yorkers’ civic pride.
Is there a big apple statue in New York? Yes, there is a sculpture called “The Apple” at Charles Street at Pier 46 in Manhattan, but there is no indication that it’s in any way connected to New York City’s “Big Apple” nickname. It’s just an apple sculpture in a park.