Faded outlines of phantom Manhattan buildings

Many of these ghost buildings, remnants from an older New York, are visible for just a short period of time—between the bulldozing of the old structure and the construction of a new one.

One that’s been viewable for at least a couple of years now is this sloped-roof house on Eighth Avenue in the 40s.

The best part is the faded ad above it, actually one ad for a cheap hotel superimposed over an older one advertising cigars.

Here’s another, with construction boards in place, near East 50th Street.

The painted rooms where people once lived their lives and the staircase they went up and down thousands of times are eerily outlined.

What kind of home was here once, on Riverside Drive around 100th Street? Maybe a stable or two-story house, with a little chimney sticking up.

This building near the South Street Seaport reveals a phantom outline, plus ghostly 18th-century looking windows and a tall ghost chimney.

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6 Responses to “Faded outlines of phantom Manhattan buildings”

  1. All About New York City » Blog Archive » Out of the Past: The Shadowy Phantom Buildings of New York City Says:

    [...] City’s hidden historical gems: the faded outlines of the buildings that once stood there. Ephemeral New York has photographs of several of the more interesting phantom buildings, most of which show the [...]

  2. Rich T Says:

    In the second picture, the beam holes (whatever the term is) correspond to the floors in the building which is still standing. Would the purple paint have been the interior wall of the gone building? If the beam holes of the gone building were in a wall that was torn down, how could the purple have been an interior wall? At any rate, great pics, as always.

    • wildnewyork Says:

      Good point. But I wonder why the interior would be painted purple? Anyway, thanks for giving it a close look. Mysterious.

  3. FeRDNYC Says:

    Those were definitely interior walls — you can still see electrical outlets mounted in several of them. The white wall below our purple friend has a surface-mount outlet box on it, also painted white. And both the green wall and the half-white-half-tan(?ish) wall below it appear to still have in-wall outlets, complete with matching painted wall plates!

    (As far as the colors go, I know at least one Hell’s Kitchen resident whose apartment formerly had walls EXACTLY that shade of purple, and other walls an even more vivid green than its neighbor. At the same time, in a studio apartment! …Oh, to top it off: The ceiling was canary yellow.) :-)

  4. Heshy Says:

    FYI: That 2nd picture with the colored walls at 50th St. was the building pulverized by the construction crane that fell a few years ago.
    There were 2 people in it. One hurt very badly, one died. Plus 6 construction workers died. That side brick wall of the little building was the only piece standing.

  5. Spooky outlines of long-gone Manhattan buildings « Ephemeral New York Says:

    [...] and old New York collide on the sides of buildings all over the city. Sometimes the faded pattern of a dormer window or chimney is visible for years, other times just a days before developers cover these remnants [...]

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