History

Seward Park Library, Jan. 2015

Preservation and Celebration with the ‘Lower East Side Oral History Project’

Posted January 19, 2017 at 9:48 am

The New York Public Library’s Lower East Side Oral History Project is officially up and running. And ready to celebrate. The recently-launched neighborhood history project aims to document and preserve LES history through the eyes of its inhabitants. The locals. You know, not the droves who hole up in Hell Square on the weekends. Community volunteers have been trained to […]

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Photo: Times of Israel

How One Lower East Sider Forever Changed Chanukah with ‘I Have a Little Dreidel’

Last modified December 29, 2016 at 8:36 am

Each year, when gathering for the Jewish Festival of Lights, candles are lit, latkes (and chocolate gelt) eaten, and traditional songs sung. One such number never fades. And we’re not talking about Adam Sandler’s comedic Chanukah rhyme, either. Rather, “I Have a Little Dreidel,” a folk ditty that was born on the Lower East Side […]

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Photo: New Yorker

Trump’s Grandfather Lived at this Lower East Side Tenement in 1885 [HISTORY]

Posted December 16, 2016 at 5:09 am

The first Trump Palace was a fairly ordinary tenement on the Lower East Side. One that now overlooks Sara D. Roosevelt Park. Donald Trump’s grandfather Friedrich arrived in the United States on October 19, 1885. It was on a steamer called the S.S. Eider. At 16, a barber’s apprentice, he left Germany without performing the mandatory […]

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When Brazen Burglers Stole a 4,000-Pound Safe from a Canal Street Jewelery Shop in Broad Daylight [HISTORY]

Posted December 15, 2016 at 9:32 am

For one Chinatown address, a century of jewelry history is gone. Since as early as 1915, the six-story corner building at 105 Canal Street hosted jewelry stores and diamond dealers on premise almost exclusively. That changed in the spring of 2012 when Crawford Fine Gold Jewelry packed up and relocated to the Bowery. Two failed […]

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Up on the roof - 1970s

What it Was Like Growing Up in the Notorious McGurk’s Suicide Hall on the Bowery [HISTORY]

Last modified October 18, 2016 at 4:32 pm

Here’s a story of a building nicknamed McGurk’s Suicide Hall. You may have read it before. We touched upon the history a while back, but for this go ’round we decided to dig deeper into the past, while chatting with someone who actually lived there: Mr. Mehai Bakaty of forty-year-old pioneer, Fineline Tattoo. 295 Bowery was built in […]

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sammys

Sammy Fuchs and Friends: Revisiting the Legendary Sammy’s Bowery Follies [HISTORY]

Last modified September 21, 2016 at 11:48 am

When we last came together around history, our subject was Weegee; it is therefore apropos that we focus on one of his closest friends. A famous man throughout the old Bouwerie. A man whom, without Weegee, would not have had his establishment documented so thoroughly. A man named Sammy Fuchs, the proprietor of Sammy’s Bowery Follies. Sammy Fuchs […]

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Tenement Museum Prepares for Contemporary Immigrant Exhibit, yet Remains Opposed to LES Historic District

Posted August 19, 2016 at 9:35 am

The Tenement Museum is high on recent coverage of its forthcoming exhibit. One that speaks to a more contemporary history of the block. Starting next summer, the upper floors of 103 Orchard Street (aka 81 Delancey) will offer a glimpse of more modern life at this corner of the Lower East Side (i.e. “Your Story, […]

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You Can Tour the Historic Bialystoker Synagogue Tonight

Posted July 13, 2016 at 9:19 am

This evening, the historic Bialystoker Synagogue on Willett Street, originally built in 1826 as a Methodist Church, and believed to be one of the stops on the Underground Railroad, is hosting a special one hour tour of its house of worship. Presented by the Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy, “Bialystoker The Beautiful” will present a […]

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Opening ‘Windows on the Bowery’ to Appreciate its Cultural Significance

Posted July 5, 2016 at 5:14 am

It’s high time the Bowery receives its due and proper. Grassroots preservationists at the Bowery Alliance of Neighbors implore you to stop, observe, and appreciate the former Native American footpath and onetime boulevard of broken dreams. “Windows on the Bowery,” their new visual walking exhibit, premieres today. The ambitious undertaking essentially serves as a portal […]

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Dominick Didato dead on Elizabeth Street

Weegee: Murder Was His Business [HISTORY]

Last modified June 30, 2016 at 10:49 am

Picture Depression-era New York. Wait, you don’t have to because he took the pictures for you – Weegee a.k.a Usher Fellig. The man who earned his name based on an uncanny, clairvoyant-like ability to beat police to crime scenes…as if he knew…Ouija. He did, however, live across from the old police headquarters and owned a […]

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