Business of the Month: Random Accessories, 77 East 4th Street

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You might walk right past the narrow but action-packed kitschy shop on East 4th stocked with a wide array of gifts for all occasions and persuasions. With one cozy end-to-end aisle lined with items cute, useful, clever, campy, beautiful or tasty, like champagne infused gummy bears, Random Accessories at 77 East 4th Street is a feast for the eyes and all other senses, and our July Business of the Month.

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Many Layers of History at 7th Avenue and 12th Street: St. Vincent’s Hospital

St. Vincent’s Hospital

This piece is part of a series about Village blocks that correspond to calendar dates.  You can read some of the other ones here.

Another day, another date that corresponds to a Village intersection!  For many in the Village, 7th Avenue and 12th Street holds a strong place in their memories of the neighborhood: this was the location of the former St. Vincent’s Hospital.  In honor of today’s date, we’re taking a look at the hospital, its history, and what has been done to remember the site since. Read the rest of this entry »

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Woman Crush Wednesday: We Love Willa Cather!

Willa Cather

The Village is a very far cry from the Nebraska prairie where Willa Cather spent much of her childhood.  But her most productive writing period was indeed while she lived in various apartments in the Village, where she lovingly and vividly wrote about the people and places she knew and cherished from her childhood in that distant place. Read the rest of this entry »

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Lee Morgan, East Village Jazz Trumpet Prodigy

Lee Morgan, prodigy jazz trumpeter, born on July 10, 1938, in Philadelphia. One of his sisters bought him his first trumpet, and by the time he was a teenager he played with John Coltrane for the album Blue Train. At 18, Dizzie Gillespie tapped Morgan to join his band. The jazz world opened up before him. Starting in the 1960’s, Morgan was a regular performer at Slugs’ Saloon at 242 East 3rd Street, between Avenue B and C, where – well, let’s say, headlines were made.

Lee Morgan

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C.B.J. Snyder and the East Village

We have written a number of times about the former P.S. 64/ CHARAS-El Bohio Community and Cultural Center and our efforts to save the landmarked building. The beloved historic structure was built in 1906 and designed by architect and then-New York City Superintendent of School Buildings C.B.J. Snyder.  During his tenure in that position from 1891 to 1922, Snyder designed close to three hundred fifty schools and school additions, nearly all of which were considered landmarks of educational design.  Unfortunately, not all of the master’s school buildings survive to this day.

But the East Village is especially fortunate.  It boasts seven more C.B.J. Snyder designs in addition to P.S. 64, all built between 1893 and 1911. They are: 324 East 5th Street (113 East 4th Street, currently the Manhattan School for Career Development), PS 122 at 150 First Avenue, 265-275 East 4th Street (currently the George Daly House), PS 188 at 422 East Houston Street (446 Avenue D), PS 63 Star Academy at 121 East 3rd Street (150-160 East 4th Street), PS 15 The Roberto Clemente School at 333 East 4th Street, and PS 61 at 604-626 East 12th Street. These structures serve not only as a testament to the great work of Snyder, but also as a representation of the tremendous need for schools for a booming underage population in what is now the East Village at the turn of the 20th century, which, along with the Lower East Side, was the most densely populated area in New York City at that time.

C.B.J. Snyder, Superintendent of New York City Schools 1891-1922

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They Lived on West 9th Street: Dashiell Hammett

14 West 9th Street

They Lived on West 9th Street: Dashiell Hammett is the 4th in a series.

Dashiell Hammett is arguably one of the most mysterious and alluring characters of American 20th century literature. Dashing and elusive, he rose from nothing to becoming one of the most celebrated of American writers. Read the rest of this entry »

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Beyond the Village and Back: Cooper Hewitt Museum, Former Andrew Carnegie Mansion

In our series Beyond the Village and Back, we take a look at some great landmarks throughout New York City outside of the Village, the East Village, and NoHo, celebrate their special histories, and reveal their (sometimes hidden) connections to the Village.

The Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum at 2 East 91st Street is a renowned museum and institution, the only of its kind in the United States, born of a long history and connection between philanthropy and industry. The landmarked building is an exemplary bit of ornate, turn-of-the-20th-century architecture, and today we explore its history and ties to the Village in our latest Beyond the Village and Back.

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A Cast Iron Gem That’s Worn Many Different Hats

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Many Layers of History at 7th Street and 2nd Avenue

East Village Gas Explosion Site, 2nd Ave. & 7th St.

As we enter July, it’s not hard to notice that some of the dates align with some neighborhood intersections.  In honor of today’s date, we are taking a look at some of the buildings and history around the intersection of 7th Street and 2nd Avenue . Read the rest of this entry »

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They Dwelt 0n West 9th Street: S.J. Perelman

64 West 9th Street. The former home of S. J. Perelman

They Lived on West 9th Street: S. J. Perelman is the 3rd in a series.

Al Hirschfeld and S.J. Perelman were good friends and collaborators

Born in Brooklyn in 1904, S.J. Perelman grew up in Providence RI, the son of a dry goods store owner. Perelman entered Brown University in 1921 but dropped out in order to pursue his dreams in New York City. He ended up in Greenwich Village in 1929, where he took up residence at 64 West 9th Street, above what was Hudson Hand Laundry. Read the rest of this entry »

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