Clayton’s Corner: Catching up with LES Collectors, Treasure Hunters, and Vendor Barkers [PHOTOS]

Posted on: December 17th, 2015 at 5:10 am by
This image has been archived or removed.

Nathan is a fixture on the corner of East Houston and Orchard Street. He is the eyes and ears of the block. If it happens there, Nathan knows all about it…

This image has been archived or removed.

…Jerry Foust is a local artist who lives wherever and paints where he can. A true do-or-die artist. I first met Jerry in the mid-2000s when he was a part of an art collective that took over 120 St. Mark’s Place. The building later became known as the Cave. Jim “Mosaic Man” Power was the most famous artist in residence. The real-estate man with one of the worst reputations on the LES, Ben Shaoul (aka Magnum Real Estate), bought the building and evicted everyone. It’s a regular habit of Jerry is to get 86’ed from the Clockwork bar on Essex Street…

This image has been archived or removed.

…A street treasure hunter. Self explanatory…

This image has been archived or removed.

…Sax player on the corner of Houston and 1st Avenue…

This image has been archived or removed.

…Angel is another local fixture, sporting the sandwich board advertising the Leather Gallery. The store recently downsized, and sells imported Italian leather garments. However, they’re calling it quits – for good – in the coming weeks…

This image has been archived or removed.

…Irving pulls in the customers that Angel steers down the block. He is a true gentleman who loves his job and the people he talks to. Does not matter if a person is a customer or not, it is Irving’s policy to treat everyone like a respected guest. He gives advise, history lessons, and a positive message…

This image has been archived or removed.

…Albert and his wife. The garden at 16 East 2nd Street is Albert’s Garden. It is now closed for the season. During open season Albert usually is there on Friday afternoon. I met them at Brickman’s hardware…

This image has been archived or removed.

…Chinese Bottle collector. I have photographed many of the bottle ladies and a few of the men. I have regulars I give the returnable bottles to. Always pleasant, always nice, always clean. I admire how hard they work. I photographed one who was 15 years old at the time, and still collects while attending Hunter College to be a nurse. She collects with her mother.

A few years ago, in the early AM, one elderly collector was almost sexually attacked. A local resident returning from work heard the scream and broke up the ugly situation. The local person called me, I got in contact with Alice O’Malley, and we badgered the cops to do something. Eventually we got the whole treatment- a van with a loudspeaker and so on. The ending came when Alice heard a noise in her hallway. Turns out this pervert was a serial, early in the AM rapist, and Alice caught him attacking someone in her hallway. Clear headed and on the ball, she got a description and had the person arrested. She went to court and sealed the sex offenders fate. Alice immediately became a neighborhood hero…

Recent Stories

Dry Dock is Another ‘Cool Pool’ Undergoing Cleanup for the Summer

Something as simple as a fresh coat of paint and updated decor has reinvigorated public pools around the Five Boroughs. It’s part of the city’s so-called “Cool Pools” initiative, which boosted overall attendance last year by 27.2%, per published reports. This summer, the Dry Dock pool in Alphabet City will get the treatment. And, to […]

It Might be Awhile Before ‘Sauce’ Reopens on Rivington Street

Don’t hold your breath for Sauce, the Rivington Street Italian restaurant that’s been closed since late-December. Even though its eponymous pizzeria is serving slices next door, the OG Sauce, a locals favorite, remains down for the count thanks to a kitchen fire over the holiday season. The blaze KO’d both the eatery and a couple […]

Lenny Kravitz Designed Condos at 75 Kenmare Now a Reality

Nearly three years after the wrecking ball came for the parking garage at 75 Kenmare Street, its replacement is now a permanent fixture for Little Italy. See for yourself… As previously disclosed, DHA Capital, which purchased the corner parking garage for $50 million in June 2015, is the developer behind the 55,000-square-foot mixed-use property. Floor […]

Convincing Kids to Stop Graffiti Writing in 1982 [VIDEO]

“Graffiti doesn’t make your life better, it just makes your neighborhood look worse.” Those words come courtesy of then-Knicks player Mike Newlin as part of a 1982 public service announcement against graffiti. A gaggle of local celebrities like Joe Frazier and Celia Cruz were spokespeople for the anti-graffiti campaign – launched by the Koch administration […]

Tensions Mount as L-Train Construction Zone on 14th Street Reduces Hours

The roadway of East 14th Street between Avenue B and First Avenue has been a construction zone for months, emitting plumes of dust and constant noise (and mysterious ooze). At work is an L train entrance at Avenue A, elevators on the north and south sides of 14th Street, as well as a new substation […]