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Conceived in 1850, Mount Vernon is a young city, founded as an alternative to overcrowded New York City living by a group of ambitious middle- and laboring-class citizens. By the beginning of the 20th century, Mount Vernon was known as "the city of happy homes." It became a bedroom community for the region''s most prominent upwardly mobile movers and shakers. Its ideal location to the city, elegant spacious homes, tree-lined streets, progressive schools and businesses, and receptivity to diversity spawned decades of sustained growth. Today Mount Vernon has become a critical gateway to New York and Westchester County. The images in Mount Vernon highlight the people and places that shaped the formative and golden years of the community, providing the quintessential look at the most dynamic small city in New York.