Flatlands is a neighborhood in the New York City borough of Brooklyn. The area is part of Brooklyn Community Board 18.
One of the original five Dutch towns on Long Island (given the right to local rule by Peter Stuyvesant in 1661), this neighborhood was originally known as Nieuw Amersfoort, after the Dutch city of Amersfoort, but the name was changed to "Flatlands" after the British captured the area (future Kings County) from the Dutch in 1664. The area may have been settled by French Walloons as early as 1623, and by native Lenape Native Americans long before that.
Flatlands was originally a farming community where tobacco, corn, squash, and beans were grown, and oysters and clams were harvested from Jamaica Bay. Historic homes dated to the 18th century include the Stoothoff-Baxter-Kouwenhaven House and Joost Van Nuyse House.
The neighborhood borders are roughly delineated by Flatlands Avenue on the North, Avenue U to the south, Ralph Avenue to the east, and Flatbush Avenue to the west (other sources say Ave. H-Ave T. / Ralph Ave. - Nostrand Avenue. -- again, N/S/E/W).
Flatlands is one of the few Brooklyn neighborhoods not served by many subway lines; those that do serve it are the IRT Nostrand Avenue Line (2 5) at the Junction of Flatbush and Nostrand Avenues, and the BMT Brighton Line (B Q) (connected by city buses on Avenue L and Kings Highway). City bus lines serve the neighborhood.
According to the 2000 census, combined population of Canarsie and Flatlands is roughly 194,653 people (total Brooklyn residents: about 2,465,286).
There are several historical structures in Flatlands, including the Hendrick I. Lott House (East 36th Street between Fillmore Ave and Ave. S, built around 1720), which was a stop on the Underground Railroad, and the Flatlands Dutch Reformed Church.
Flatlands is also home to the Gemini Lounge where Roy DeMeo of the Gambino Mafia Family frequented during the late 1970s-early 1980s. However, today the Gemini is a church.
The Town of Flatlands was annexed by the City of Brooklyn in 1895, the last municipality in Kings County to be annexed by Brooklyn.