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Rafferty Triangle

Historic Sites, Monuments, Landmarks, and Public Art ()


This small urban park is dedicated to the memory of Captain Malcolm A. Rafferty. A resident of Long Island at the turn-of-the-century, Rafferty served in Company F of the 71st New York Volunteers during the Spanish-American War and distinguished himself during the famous Battle of San Juan Hill. During the heat of that battle, Rafferty was ordered to lead his company to the top of San Juan Hill. According to the report published by the Adjutant General of New York, Rafferty was one of several line officers ordered to lead his men up the hill, although several other officers either failed to receive the order or reported back that the order could not be followed.

Rafferty's monument can be found within the triangle and was recently restored by the NYC Parks Department and volunteers from the Newtown Historical Society.
This depiction of Rafferty appears in the San Francisco Call, May 23, 1899. The article reported the news that Rafferty was ill and dying in Trinidad. He suffered from the disease for another four years before dying of malaria in Trinidad.
Learn more about the Spanish-American War. Click the link below to learn more about this book from the University Press of Kansas.


Captain Malcolm A. Rafferty is one of the most-decorated soldiers from New York to serve during this war. According to an article in the San Francisco Call, Lafferty contracted malaria during the war. After returning to the States, he accepted a position for a Long Island company that sent him to Trinidad--apparently in hopes of recovering his health in a warmer climate. He appears to have served the company between 1899 and 1903 when he perished from malaria in Trinidad. His monument was dedicated on Memorial Day in 1937. Sometime during the 1970s, the monument was defaced and the bronze plaque had been removed. Thanks to the efforts of the Newtown Historical Society, the plaque has been recreated and the monument has been restored.


Annual Report of the New York State Adjutant's Office, 1899.

Gallant Captain Rafferty Dying, San Francisco Call, 23 May 1899.

Capt. Rafferty's Body Here, to be Buried To-day with Military Honors, New York Times, September 3, 1903.

Matthew Er, "Hero Capt. Malcolm Rafferty is Honored," Queens Chronicle,Dec 18, 2014 accessed 2/28/16

44th Drive and Hunter St
Queens, NY 11101
  • Military History
This location was created on 2016-02-28 by Clio Admin .   It was last updated on 2017-05-26 by Clio Admin .

This entry has been viewed 520 times within the past year


  • I am the Great Nephew of Malcolm Rafferty and live near Melbourne Australia. I have been searching for information about him for some time, for a family history I am compiling.
    He was born in England and educated at the well known Rugby School. He went to Tasmania with his family (father was Regimental Sergeant Major Joseph Rafferty) then travelled to Canada, where he was the Chief Constable on the Canadian Pacific Railroad in the early 1890s. h
    He then joined the 71st Volunteer Regiment of New York, was promoted to captain and went to the Spanish American War 1898. He served with distinction at San Juan Hill , was extremely popular with his men & was given a ticker tape parade welcome back to New York. he joined the Bermuda Asphalt Company & was directly involved in the Bitumen Wars with Venezuela. He died in 1903 from Malaria contracted whilst on military service. His funeral cortege was again given a ticker tape parade through New York. He is buried at the Woodlawn Cemetery.
    He came from a very long line of military men. His brother (my grandfather) served in the Boer War (1898-1900) was a Lt Col in WW I & was awarded the D.S.O and Mentioned in Despatches twice. More recent family members have also served with the Australian forces. I am very happy to provide further details if requested (incl. photos) and would welcome more details about him, particularly of his time in Canada. David Rafferty.

    David Rafferty on 2016-10-30

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