Tuesday, July 11, 2017 6:30-8:00 pm

Anthony W. Robins Book Talk

New York Art Deco
A Guide to Gotham’s Jazz Age Architecture

SUNY Press, 2017

Lively and informative, New York Art Deco leads readers step-by-step past the monuments of the 1920s and ’30s that recast New York as the world’s modern metropolis. Anthony W. Robins new walking tour guidebook traces itineraries in Manhattan and across the boroughs. Maps by John Tauranac and color plates by Art Deco photographer Randy Juster enrich the mix. Join Tony for a talk that distills his thirty years experience hunting the urban Art Deco.

A native New Yorker, Anthony W. Robins is the author of books on Grand Central Terminal, the World Trade Center, and the art and architecture of the New York subway system. A popular leader of walking tours all over the city, he specializes in Art Deco, having organized series for many organizations, including the Art Deco Society of New York and the Municipal Art Society. He is the recipient of the 2017 Guiding Spirit Award from the Guides Association of New York City.

The Skyscraper Museum offers 1.5 LUs for AIA Members for this program.

Reservations are required, and priority is given to Members and Corporate Member firms and their employees.
All guests MUST RSVP to programs@skyscraper.org to assure admittance to the event. Not a member? Become a Museum member today!

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From The North Shore Local-Staten Island Local:

SI Then: The Goethals Bridge

After the First World War, the U.S. was on the move.

With the new prosperity, wanderlust and mass-produced automobiles, the Goethals Bridge was built to accommodate interstate travel.

The bridge opened on June 29, 1928, the same day as the Outerbridge Crossing. Both were designed by John Alexander Low Waddell. This was the first successful bi-state development project by the then-new Port Authority. It sported two 10-foot-wide lanes in each direction.

The new bridge was named after Major General George W. Goethals. Construction supervisor of the Panama Canal and the first consulting engineer of the NY/NJ Port Authority, he died just three months before the bridge’s opening, which also would have been his 70th birthday.

The same month saw the establishment of the Port Authority Police. Its 40 original officers, known as Bridgemen, were deployed to patrol and protect both the Outerbridge and the Goethals bridges.

The Goethals did not recoup its original construction costs until 1964, when the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge was completed.

This year, 3,566,101 EZpass equipped vehicles crossed over it between January and March.

It was finally closed this month when the first of two new parallel bridges opened to replace it. The second will open in 2018. Built higher and wider, they will accommodate more traffic and larger ships passing under them.

Until it is finally dismantled, the original Goethals is truly now only a bridge to the past.

As of July 4th, 2017, the original Goethals Bridge is closed for good, and the first of the new parallel bridges has been officially opened. What name, if any, will be given to them, remains to be seen.


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From silive.com:

Schaffer’s Tavern: Winky says ‘it’s time’ for last call; sets closing date

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Sat 05 2017 , by

Feltman’s Hotdogs?

A German immigrant named Charles Feltman, who ran a bakery on Coney Island supplied pies and other baked goods to the restaurants that opened up near the Coney Island Boardwalk in the period following the Civil War in the 19th century. In historical sources, Feltman has also been described as a butcher.

From Ephemeral New York: “A Coney Island pie maker invents the hot dog

“By the 1870s, small [sausage] stands were to be found along the beach, to the dismay of conventional restaurant owners who regarded them as unsanitary, fire hazards, and a competitive threat,” explains Savoring Gotham.

Feltman’s genius, the story goes, is that he pioneered the elongated bun that fit the frankfurter perfectly and made it the top-selling street food for hungry beachgoers.


“Feltman and a wheelwright named Donovan conceived the idea of installing an oven in Feltman’s pie wagon, which enabled him to sell boiled sausages wrapped in pastry rolls up and down the beach,” wrote Michael Immerso in Coney Island: The People’s Playground.

Nathans1939andrewhermanmcnyAs Coney boomed, he replaced his cart with Feltman’s, a beer garden–like restaurant on Surf Avenue, selling his hot dogs for a dime a piece.

By the 1920s, Feltman was undercut. A former employee, Nathan Handwerker, opened his own hot dog stand a few blocks away and charged a nickel per dog.

Feltman’s survived until 1954. Nathan’s—like hot dogs all over the city—is still going strong.”




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I previously went on a different tour with Boroughs Of The Dead, and receive e-mail from them:

NEW Tour! Lovecraft in Brooklyn


Boroughs of the Dead is excited to announce a brand new tour in partnership with writer, tour guide, and H.P. Lovecraft aficionado Jane Rose. “Lovecraft in Brooklyn follows the trajectory of the writer’s time living in Flatbush and Brooklyn Heights in the 1920s – a brief, difficult, but ultimately artistically significant period in the author’s life.
BUY TICKETSMore About The Tour

Twentieth-century horror writer Howard Phillips Lovecraft, whose persona and works are closely tied with his native Providence, RI, spent just over two years living in Brooklyn. Beset by a troubled marriage, financial difficulties, and a phobia of New York’s immigrant population, Lovecraft produced only a few stories while living in the city – works reflecting his attitude toward the teeming metropolis. Lovecraft’s time in Brooklyn, although difficult, proved transformative. Upon returning to Providence, H. P. Lovecraft would immediately produce his most masterful and best-loved works.

This tour will trace a path from Lovecraft’s high hopes at the beginning of his Brooklyn sojourn in Flatbush, to tough times in the area now known as Brooklyn Heights, and artistic renewal beyond. While Lovecraft, an avid walker and antiquarian, roamed New York City and its surroundings widely, this tour will focus specifically on his ties to Brooklyn, exploring his impressions and inspirations along the way.

The tour will take place in two sections, with a prequel in Flatbush and main section in Brooklyn Heights. Attendees can come to either section, but both are strongly recommended in order to get a full picture of Lovecraft’s life while in Brooklyn. Transportation time is allowed between the sections. Admission covers both sections.

Dates, Times & Tickets

Saturday, May 27 10:30am*
Saturday, June 10 at 10:30am*
Additional dates to be announced in Summer/Fall 2017
Visit our website to purchase tickets
Advance purchase is strongly recommended

* Tour meets at 12:15pm if you are meeting at Borough Hall in Brooklyn Heights for the second half of the tour only; additional meeting point details, directions, etc. are provided to ticket holders.

About the Tour Guide

Jane Rose comes by her interest in H.P. Lovecraft, weird horror, and the supernatural honestly due to her upbringing in rural New Hampshire, where crumbling Colonial houses and centuries-old graveyards abound. A writer, filmmaker, and sometime special FX makeup artist, her movies have screened at the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival in Portland, Oregon, and elsewhere. Ms. Rose created and designed the “Lovecraft in Brooklyn” tour, which she previously led with the former Morbid Anatomy Museum.



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Boroughs of the Dead is a unique tour company devoted to strange, dark, and unusual walking tours of New York City.

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From Richard Simpson via facebook:

Another piece of local history was demolished this week. It was the old Richmond Ice Company building on Edgewater Street at the corner of Sylvaton Terrace in Rosebank. The four-story cement building topped with gargoyles was built ca. 1905.

The company’s name Richmond Ice Company is/was inscribed on the waterside of the building which made it a prominent landmark when sailing into New York Harbor.

The Richmond Ice Company building was owned by the Richmond County Ice Company, incorporated in 1897 with capital of $5,000. Its directors were John Franzreb, James Guyon Timolat, Charles Jacobsen, John F. Smith, all of New Brighton and Robert G. Solomon of Concord.

Ice harvesting was a big business here in Staten Island. The ice trade also known as the frozen water trade made many men very wealthy. One of the largest ice companies was E.A. Britton & Sons who owed Britton’s Pond. The “E” stood for Elizabeth. The “A” might have stood for her deceased husband, Abraham, who built a grist mill on the pond cr. 1825. About 1880 the mill was turned into an ice house. Elizabeth and Abraham’s sons were Harry C. and Winfield S. Britton.
The Britton’s cut the ice in large chunks sometimes measuring ten feet by ten feet. The chunks were put on a conveyor belt and pulled into the ice house where it was cut into smaller more manageable pieces. The ice was distributed to local businesses, especially beer breweries.

James Guyon Timolat married into the Britton family and took the ice business to the next level. He cut the ice from the pond and transported it by horse and carriage to the company’s ice storage house on Edgewater Street. Every other day a boat or barge (which at that time pulled up to the ice house) was loaded with ice and shipped to Manhattan and other cities in the Metropolitan area where it was sold to food purveyors, restaurants, hospitals and private residences. Many of the wealthy who summered on Long Island built a small ice house on their property and served iced tea and lemonade over ice on a hot summer day.

By the late teens and early 1920s the ice business decreased due to the invention of the ice box (refrigerator).

In the early 1920s the Richmond Ice Company sold the Britton Pond property to the New York City Parks Department and was renamed Clove Lakes.

Ironically, the Richmond Ice Company building is located a few hundred feet from St. Mary’s R.C. Church on Bay Street which unless it is landmarked is also in danger of being demolished.

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From Gothamist:
You Can Live On This Historic Ellis Island Ferry For $1.25 Million

Dreaming of ditching this concrete landmass for a breezy life on the open sea? While there’s no shortage of charming and affordable houseboats on the market, there’s only one Ellis Island ferry-turned-marine mansion. And now it can now be yours for a mere $1.25 million (remember, in this imaginary world where buying a floating home is not a terrible idea, you also have a million bucks lying around).

The 11-bedroom, 150-foot ferry comes with quite the backstory. Built in 1907, the ship spent its first decade ferrying passengers and cargo through different parts of New England. After the United States entered the war in 1917, the Navy commissioned the ship as the USS Machigonne, and used it to move men and supplies between Boston and Bumpkin Island Training Station. The steel hulled ferry was also fit with two one-pounder guns as a defensive measure.

Following the war, the decommissioned ship was purchased by US immigration services and moved to New York Harbor, where it shuttled new immigrants from Ellis Island to Manhattan for much of the 1920s. (It is the oldest existing Ellis Island ferry.) The ship was called back into service for World War II, again as a troop carrier, before spending the next fifty years as a commercial tour boat. In 1990, the decaying ferry was purchased by a private citizen and towed to Pier 25 in Tribeca for repair. Two years later, it was named to the National Register of Historic Places.

Curbed reports that the ferry’s current residents, artists Richard and Victoria MacKenzie-Childs, are looking to sell after 15 years of living off the shores of New York City. The couple, who also run a home decor business, have overseen some major renovations and restorations in that time. Much of the original wood flooring is still in place, but the upper deck has been turned an open living area and a lower level ballroom, accommodating 150 people, has been added.“You could have a huge party on the top deck or passenger deck or both,” broker Michael Franklin of Franklin Ruttan told TODAY Home.

But don’t let the prohibitive cost of this history-rich party boat sink your seafaring dreams. The regular old ferry will do, and it’s getting a dramatic expansion this summer!”


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Michael Arenella and his Dreamland Orchestra hold the Jazz Age Lawn Party on Governor’s Island Saturday, August 13th and Sunday, August 14th. Dressing in period costume is highly encouraged. A guide for those who wish to dress in 1920s “Flapper” style: How To Wear Stockings Like A 1920s Flapper

Tickets online here.…

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Wit’s End™ presents the Buck and a Quarter Quartet at St. Cloud in the Knickerbocker Hotel, Saturday, March 26, 2016.

This “quartet and a quarter” has made its mission to play forgotten gems—as well as favorites—of the golden age of American popular music. The Buck and a Quarter Quartet also play vintage-inspired originals, all on strings, with some additional instruments like C-melody saxophone, clarinet, temple blocks and bell tree.

Tonight chanteuse—and the party’s hostess—Eden Atencio, the raven-haired beauty with the mischievous smile, will join them. …Wit’s End will be ensconced in St. Cloud—called “New York’s greatest rooftop lounge” with sweeping views of Times Square—sixteen stories above Broadway.

Also on the bill tonight is DJ Mike Will Cut You, New York’s vintage music DJ who plays classic sounds from 80-year old recordings. He is the host of “Ragged But Right” on WFMU Radio and performs at the Jazz Age Lawn Party. The co-sponsor of the party is the Dorothy Parker Society, the drinking club with a book problem.

Early Bird (through March 7): $15
Advance Tickets: $20
Tickets available at the door unless sold-out: $20
Eleven O’Clock Frolic (entry 11pm): $15
Questions? Click here

About the Wit’s End Party:

Doors open at 8:00 pm. At 9:00 pm is a free dance lesson, taught by professional instructors Jeri Lynn Astra and Neal Groothuis. Learn classic steps such as Balboa and Lindy Hop that will be useful once the live music begins. The band begins at 10:00 pm.

Wit’s End serves cocktails made with fresh ingredients and premium spirits following the classic cocktail recipes of the Prohibition Era. St. Cloud will present a classic cocktail menu to transport you back to the speakeasy era, when guests such as F. Scott Fitzgerald and Florenz Ziegfeld were on the premises. Table service is available and reservations are highly recommended. After you buy tickets, email Wit’s End to reserve a table at St. Cloud.

About the Wit’s End Pre-Party Dinner:

The pre-party dinner is served at Charlie Palmer at The Knick, on the 4th floor. The pre-fixe dinner menu is $45 for a delicious three-course meal. Wit’s End will have tables reserved beginning at 6:00 pm. (Cost of dinner is separate from the party admission). After you buy tickets, call 212-204-4983 to make a dinner reservation (singles are welcome).

The Wit’s End Dress Code:

Vintage and vintage-inspired clothing is recommended. Gentlemen must wear coat and tie. Not permitted: Denim, tennis shoes, flip-flops, T-shirts, shirts with graphics, tank tops, baseball caps.…

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