District on Manhattan Island in New York City, arguably defined as the blocks between 34th Street, 52nd Street, Eighth Avenue and the Hudson River (some sources say it extends down to 14th Street). Hell's Kitchen is also known as Clinton, but is never referred to as Midtown (except by real estate agents). A rather nasty multiple murder in the area in 1881 prompted New York Times to give Hell's Kitchen its name.

Since the end of the American Civil War the area had a well deserved reputation for vice, corruption and crime. Colourful characters like Dutch Heinrichs, Mallet Murphy, 'Mad Dog' Coll, 'Spitting Williams', Battle Annie Walsh, Owney Madden and Bully Morrison ruled different parts of Hell's Kitchen at various times. The district also produced Father Francis Patrick Duffy and the 'Fighting 69th' Regiment, and inspired Thomas Wolfe, William Sydney Porter ("O Henry") and most famously, the West Side Story

Less dramatically, Hell's Kitchen was where a large underclass of immigrants found their first homes and jobs in America. The area is considerably tamer than it was earlier; perhaps too gentrified for some people's liking.