A Truly Historic House Tour! Village Preservation’s 21st Spring House Tour in the Greenwich Village Historic District

We recently celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Greenwich Village Historic District (GVHD50) with a bash in Washington Square Park. But thankfully, there’s even more GVHD fun right around the corner.  The actual anniversary is April 29th, when we will be rolling out some truly fantastic online tours of the district, and our 21st Annual Spring House Tour on May 5th  will exclusively feature some of the most incredible homes within Greenwich Village Historic District.  It’s a wonderful way to learn about and appreciate the district, and support its continuing preservation.

Looking up at an altered 1847 Greek Revival house from a previous tour.

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Grace Church Choir Celebrates its 125th Anniversary with a Free Concert

Did someone say FREE CONCERT?  Yes, indeed we did!  Celebrating the 125th anniversary of its historic choir, Grace Church is offering a free concert featuring current choir members and alumni, as well as professional singers, at 7:00 PM on Friday, April 26th at Grace Church, 805 Broadway at 11th Street.  The music will include compositions by Randall Thompson, Barry Rose, and Leonard Bernstein, among others.

While we have written previous posts about the glorious Grace Church, here is a brief refresher on its history. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Origins of Greenwich Village Historic District Street Names: Part II

This is one in a series of posts marking the 50th anniversary of the designation of the Greenwich Village Historic District.  Check out our year-long activities and celebrations at gvshp.org/GVHD50

The streets, parks, and squares of the Greenwich Village Historic District are named for a unique collection of historical figures. In honor of the 50th anniversary of the Greenwich Village Historic District, we have developed a guide to how these locations got their names. Click here to read other posts about the origins of GVHD Street names.

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Small Stores Thrive in Landmark Districts

It may come as little surprise that many people prefer the vibrancy of a historic neighborhood over the sterile monolithic towers and gargantuan chain stores that dominate all-too-much of the cityscape.  Besides the incredible architecture and charm, these are walkable, mixed-use neighborhoods popular with all ages.  But are they good for small businesses and retail vitality?  Evidence seems to suggest yes.

Mc Sorleys Ale House, Bulb Concepts, East 7th Street

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Artists Homes of the Greenwich Village Historic District

This is one in a series of posts marking the 50th anniversary of the designation of the Greenwich Village Historic District.  Check out our year-long activities and celebrations at gvshp.org/GVHD50. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the designation of The Greenwich Village Historic District (GVHD). The GVHD contains a treasure-trove of important history, architecture, and culture spanning more than two hundred years. It’s been fertile ground for creative minds since at least the beginning of the 19th Century.

Today we’re taking a look at six of the homes and/or studios of some of the many visual artists who have lived and worked in the Greenwich Village Historic District.  These are but a few of my personal favorites.

Berenice Abbott

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“The NEW New York” – Immigrant Heritage Learning at Village Preservation

Immigration means something different to everyone — it reminds us of our ancestors, of how the world is constantly changing, or of how, as people, we are always on the move.  Our neighborhoods, and New York City in general, are a global hub for movement and have been for hundreds of years. This history is apparent in the fabric of the city, its architecture, its cuisine, the structure of its neighborhoods, and so much more. April 17, 1907 is the day when the largest number of immigrants arrived at Ellis Island. It also kicks off Immigrant Heritage Week, established in 2004 and coordinated by the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs as a city-wide celebration that honors the experiences and contributions of immigrants in New York City. 

This year, Village Preservation and our colleagues at the Merchant’s House Museum have been highlighting immigration to the Village during the 19th century, exploring overarching themes, and local and global activism that have shaped our world through the immigrant experience. Let the experts guide us… Read the rest of this entry »

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A Walk Through Astor Land with East Village Building Blocks

One of New York most prolific and high-profile building families, the Astors left their indelible mark on countless areas of the city. Though their name is typically connected to grand pieces of our city’s history, like the Astor Library and, of course, Astor Place, an enormous collection of their output hides almost in plain sight: the large assemblage of tenements built on their land in the East Village. A clear testament to John Jacob Astor’s purchasing power, and to his son William’s legacy as the “Landlord of New York,” these blocks serve are a testament to the Astors’ impact and form what is likely the largest collection of pre-law and pre-Civil War tenements in New York. A new tour on East Village Building Blocks guides us through this significant portion of their domain.

The Randel Composite Map, courtesy of the Museum of the City of New York, www.mcny.org.

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The Greenwich Village Home Where Lincoln’s Assassination Might Have Been Averted

This is one in a series of posts marking the 50th anniversary of the designation of the Greenwich Village Historic District.  Check out our year-long activities and celebrations at gvshp.org/GVHD50

President Abraham Lincoln, after saving the Union and winning the Civil War, was shot by actor John Wilkes Booth at the Ford Theater in Washington, D.C. on April 14, 1865, finally succumbing to his wounds the next morning on April 15th. Lincoln was the first U.S. President ever assassinated, and his death led to a protracted period of national mourning and political tumult, including the first impeachment of a U.S. President, Lincoln’s successor Andrew Johnson.

The assassination of President Abraham Lincoln. Currier & Ives

But this event which changed the course of history might never have happened were it not for events connected to one of the most unusual houses in Greenwich Village, which thanks to landmark protections still stands, constructed by one of Greenwich Village’s most prolific builders.

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Business of the Month: Left Bank Books, 41 Perry Street

Your input is needed! Today we feature our latest Business of the Month — help us to select the next.  Tell us which independent store you love in Greenwich Village, the East Village, or NoHo: click here to nominate your favorite.  Want to help support small businesses?  Share this post with friends.

I was ecstatic to find out about the re-opening of Left Bank Books in a new Greenwich Village location at 41 Perry Street between West 4th Street and Waverly Place.  Though they just opened at this new location in March. Left Bank Books has been around in one form or another since 1992, occupying three different locations and undergoing four ownership transformations.  So we had to honor them as our April Business of the Month!

Image may contain: outdoor

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GVHD50 Partner Roundup: Restaurant Edition

This is one in a series of posts marking the 50th anniversary of the designation of the Greenwich Village Historic District.  Check out our year-long activities and celebrations at gvshp.org/GVHD50

Friends; we have such great friends!  Last year, as we set our sights on celebrating the extraordinary milestone of the 50th anniversary of the designation of the Greenwich Village Historic District (GVHD50), we began to reach out to the array of amazing businesses and institutions that thrive in the district to inquire if they would be interested in joining us in the year-long celebrations.  We were overwhelmed by the response.  The outpouring of support was truly a welcome response, and is one of many reasons why this weekend’s Greenwich Village Historic District Open House is going to be such a special and unmissable experience (click here for the full schedule and list of deals and offers; click here for the map needed for access to many of the sites, events, and offers, and for notifications about future #GVHD50 events).

Map of the Greenwich Village Historic District

So, in thanks to those who so enthusiastically embraced the idea, we want to reciprocate by hailing the businesses who so graciously signed up to be a part of the party — the restaurants and boites that make the Greenwich Village Historic District such an extraordinary destination for tourists as well as a place that residents love and cherish. Read the rest of this entry »

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