I love the old sign on the building across from Jefferson Market. It has an old phone number that uses a name with numbers, Algonquin4-1817, instead of 5 numbers. Ours used to be Oregon, OR5-0138, the same number that his mother had since 1945.
A short walk south from Christopher to 7th Avenue on Barrow Street in Greenwich Village, New York City. Bedford Street Doors are for Norm’s Thursday Doors, April 28.
A door next to ps3:
100 Bedford Street or 17 Grove Street (NE corner of Bedford and Grove): House of William Hyde, window-maker, built 1822. Author James Baldwin frequently stayed here. “The most complete wooden frame house in Greenwich Village”
SW corner of Grove and Bedford Streets.
95: Built as stables in 1894, later serving as a winery before becoming apartments in 1927. Alternate story by a local, “the building was actually built by J. Goebel & Company as a factory for crucibles–containers for holding molten glass”.
86: This unmarked door was the entrance to Chumley’s, a former speakeasy that never had an outside sign. A literary hangout for Steinbeck, Fitzgerald, O’Neill, Dos Passos, Faulkner, Anais Nin, Orson Welles, Edna St. Vincent Millay, James Thurber etc. And movie stars such as Humphrey Bogart would frequent this out of the public eye saloon. It evolved into a popular, cozy bar and restaurant; it can be seen in such films as Reds, Bright Lights, Big City, Wolfen and Sweet and Lowdown. Closed after a wall collapse in 2007 and has yet to reopen.
A short digression east on Commerce Street:
16 Commerce c. 1821: This old building has sagged alot. possibly due to the construction of 7th Avenue and the subway which cut through that section of Commerce Street.
23 Commerce: One of a row of Federal-style houses.
75 1/2 Barrow Street: Narrowest building in NYC. It fills in a former alley for carriages. Originally a cobbler’s shop and then a candy factory, poet Edna St. Vincent Millay lived here (1923-24), as did actors John Barrymore and Cary Grant.
70: Built 1807 by John Roome, sailmaker and court crier.
Doors and famous people on Horatio Street (the street I live on) from the Hudson River to Greenwich Avenue, Greenwich Village, New York City. Horatio Doors are for Norm’s Thursday Doors, April 21.
95 and 113 are luxury condos converted from factory buildings near the river. Odd numbers are on the north side and even on the south side of the street. This yellow brick building was built in 1947. While under construction the wood foundations of a 1812 fort were found. Pumps were installed in the basement to supply freezing brine water to the whole sale meat venders in the area.
Washington Commons – a small park on the south side of Washington Street between Jane and Horatio Streets.
83 has a tradesman’s entrance or entrance to rear building (lower door on the right) to the rear.
82: Playwright Clifford Odets lived in an apartment building there in 1933-35; he wrote Waiting for Lefty there in 1934.
81: Writer James Baldwin lived here in the 1960s while writing Another Country.
79 is a four-story 1870 building that was home to novelist William Gaddis in the 1930s and 1940s. It was sold for $7.4 million in 2008, and for $10.5 million in 2012. Note the larger French style windows.
77 was Built c. 1836.
73 houses the West Village Nursery School, a coop founded c. 1962. It was a nursery school before then because my husband Marc Felix attended it back in 1949.
Marc Felix at nursery school 1949
Marc at 73 Horatio St nursery school 1949
71 looks good in the snow.
69: Larry Kert, the original Tony in West Side Story, who later won a Tony as the lead in Company, lived here from 1977 until his death in 1999.
68 is modern.
65: Marc was friends of the Leacock’s children who lived here in the late 1950s to early 1960s.
62 was once a stable, now a home for a classic Porsche. This, like some other houses, had its stoop removed and the lower trademans entrance became the main entry.
Corner of Horatio (633 Hudson): Writer John Cheever lived in a former building here, a teenaged dropout living on bread and buttermilk, when The New Republic published his first short story. Earlier, this address was the headquarters of the Hudson Dusters, a criminal gang whose territory was Manhattan below 13th Street and west of Broadway. They were shut down by police in 1916.
48: The sculptor Cheim Grosshad his studio in this old Firehouse. The famous actor Anthony Quinn visited Gross for sculpture lessons.
47: Abstract Expressionist Jackson Pollack lived there briefly in the early 1930s.
1, 3 and 5: Gypsies live at number 3 which used to be a variety store.
Green Triangle at Horatio Street, Jane Street and 8th Avenue.
2 is on the corner of Greenwich Avenue and was the address of Jackson Hall (1859-63), the meeting place of the Mozart Hall faction of the Democratic Party – opponents of Tammany Hall. A 17-story red-brick coop, built in 1931, stands there now.
Before the Van Gogh apartments at number 2 (1960) there were one story shops there. In one there was a furniture maker, a friend of Marc’s mother, who only used wood joinery in his constrctuiion. Sadly, he commited suicide.
Jackson Square Parkis bounded by Horatio Street, Greenwich Avenue and 8th Avenue. It was acquired by the city in 1826, named for President Andrew Jackson, and was redesigned by Calvert Vaux and Parks superintendent Samuel Parsons in 1887. The cast-iron fountain was installed in 1990.
Unfortunately, Greenwich Village is no longer a center for artists. It is the new “Gold Coast.” Low cost housing, the old hangouts and neighborhood stores are gone; replaced with condos, expensive restaurants, nightclubs, and boutiques.
It was a rainy chilly day on January 7, 2016 so we warmed up with a full English breakfast of eggs, sausage, bacon, grilled tomatoes, black pudding, baked beans, toast and marmalade in a lovely place by Smithfield Market. Fully fueled we walked over to the British Museum. There is a piece of the old Roman London Wall visible from one of the windows.
New Road, Regents Canal 1/7/2016
Passage, Smithfield, London 1/7/16
Passage, Smithfield, London 1/7/16
Smithfield, London 1/7/16
Smithfield Market, London 1/7/2016
Smithfield Market, London 1/7/2016
Smithfield Market, London 1/7/2016
Smithfield is best known for its meat market, dating from the 10th century, London’s only remaining wholesale market in continuous operation since medieval times. In the Middle Ages, it was a broad grassy area known as Smooth Field, located beyond London Wall to the River Fleet. Street names (such as Cow Cross Street and Cock Lane) remain, but many others (such as Chick Lane, Duck Lane, Cow Lane, Pheasant Court, Goose Alley) have disappeared. In 1174 William Fitzstephen described Smithfield as a smooth field where every Friday there is a celebrated rendezvous of fine horses to be traded, and in another quarter are placed vendibles of the peasant, swine with their deep flanks, and cows and oxen of immense bulk.
In 1710 the market was surrounded by a wooden fence containing the livestock within the market; and the Gate House at Cloth Fair (Fair Gate) used a chain (le cheyne) on market days. Between 1740 and 1750 the average yearly sales at Smithfield were reported to be around 74,000 cattle and 570,000 sheep. By the middle of the 19th century, 220,000 head of cattle and 1,500,000 sheep per year where forced into an area of five acres, in the heart of London, through its narrowest and most crowded thoroughfares. The numbers of cattle driven daily to Smithfield raised major concerns.
Smithfield Market’s Victorian building was designed by Sir Horace Jones in the late 19th century. Some of the buildings on Lindsey Street opposite the East Market were demolished in 2010 to allow the construction of the new Crossrail Station at Farringdon. In March of 2015, the Museum of London revealed plans to vacate its Barbican site and move into the General Market Building and, if funding can be achieved, would be complete by 2021.
The Roman wall was built in the late 2nd or early 3rd century, between 190 and 225. The reason for the wall’s construction is unknown, it may have been connected to the invasion of northern Britain by Picts who overran Hadrian’s Wall in the 180s. Many historians think the political clash between Septimius Severus, and the governor of Britain Clodius Albinus over the right to succession as emperor led to the wall’s creation. Albinus may have ordered the construction of the wall in the 190s. Septimius defeated his rival in 197.
The London Wall was one of the largest Roman construction projects in Britain; as were Hadrian’s Wall and the road network. It was constructed largely from Kentish ragstone brought by water from Maidstone. The wall was 3.2 kilometers (2 miles) long, enclosing an area of about 330 acres (130 ha), and was 6 to 9 feet (2 to 3 m) wide and about 20 feet (6 m) high. It had a ditch or fossa measuring 6 feet (2 m) deep and 9 to 15 feet (3 to 5 m) wide in front of the outer wall. It had at least twenty-two bastions spaced about 70 yards (64 m) apart, on the eastern section of the wall.
The economic stimulus provided by the wall and Septimius’s campaigns of conquest in Scotland revived Londinium’s fortunes somewhat in the 3rd century. In the late 3rd century (457) Londinium was raided on several occasions by Saxon pirates. This led to the construction of an additional riverside wall. The wall was redeveloped in the medieval period with the addition of crenellations, more gates and further bastions.
The original five gates to the Roman roads were Ludgate, Newgate, Cripplegate, Bishopsgate and Aldgate. Aldersgate, between Newgate and Cripplegate, was added around 350, and Moorgate, between Cripplegate and Bishopsgate, was built in the medieval period. The boundaries of the City of London went past the old city wall during the medieval era. The seven gates to the City of London, with many repairs and rebuilding over the years, stood until they were all demolished between 1760 and 1767.
The wall’s moat forms the line of the street of Houndsditch. Once London’s main rubbish disposal site and was notorious for its appalling odor. The moat was finally covered over and filled in at the end of the 16th century, becoming the present street.
During the Great Fire of London in September 1666, almost all of the medieval City of London inside the wall was destroyed.
In the late 18th and 19th centuries the wall underwent substantial demolition, although large portions of it survived by being incorporated into other structures. During the Blitz of WWII, some of the tallest ruins left standing were remnants of the Roman wall.
Today all that remains of the wall are a few fragments, some of which can be seen in the grounds of the Museum of London, in the Barbican Estate and around Tower Hill. A section near the Museum of London was revealed at Noble Street, after an air raid on 29 December 1940. Another section is at St Alphage Gardens, and other sections form parts of the walls or foundations of modern buildings. A large fragment of the wall is just outside Tower Hill tube station.