Caoimhghin, since Anglicized to Kevin (the name means “handsome by birth”) was an Irish monk who lived, according to tradition, for 120 years, from 498-618, in what is now County Wicklow. According to legend, he was educated by St. Petroc and established a monastery in Glendalow, helping Christianity gain a foothold in the Emerald Island. It eventually became one of the most popular pilgrimage destinations in Ireland. He was canonized in 1903 and his feast day is June 3rd. Meanwhile, St. Kevin’s parish of Auburndale, Queens, at 45th Avenue and 194th Street, is the only parish in NYC named for him.
St. Kevin’s Parish was established in 1926 and the present church building was constructed in 1956.
St. Kevin’s School, a carryover from the original parish complex, appears to date to the 1930s and is located along 195th between 45th and 46th Avenues.
On a 1926 property map, St. Kevin’s Church appears, but with very few other houses in the area. Streets were only partially laid out south of 45th Avenue at that time.
These small one family homes on 195th Street facing the school were likely built between 1935 and 1950.
46th Avenue, which was newly paved the day I went past in April 2011, was newly paved. It was built with a center mall, much like 42nd Avenue in Bayside a few miles to the north.
193rd and 194th Streets are lined with handsome Tudor-style buildings between 45th and 46th Avenues. Every once in awhile in eastern Queens, you enter a Tudor wonderland, as isolated Tudor developments appeared — others can be found along 39th Avenue east of Utopia Parkway and 188th Street north of Kissena Corridor Park.