The name change has to do with a gruesome murder near this intersection in 1873, then the media attention that gripped the block for the next few years.
In March, Charles Goodrich, a 41-year-old widower, was found with three gunshot wounds to the head in his brownstone at what was then 731 Degraw Street.
At first, police thought it might be suicide or a robbery. But strangely, his body had been laid out neatly and cleaned of blood.
They believed the woman’s name was Kate Stoddard (right); she was a Massachusetts native in her 20s who worked in a hat factory in Manhattan. But for months, she proved to be elusive.
Finally, after a sighting by Stoddard’s ex-roommate on the Fulton Ferry, cops tracked her down.
During questioning, she denied everything—until detectives found Charles Goodrich’s personal items in her room in a boarding house on High Street.
Reportedly she confessed. Turns out her real name was Lizzie Lloyd King. She’d met Goodrich through a personal ad, and they soon married.
During an argument in the house on Degraw Street, a spurned King drew a gun and shot Goodrich dead.
In 1874, she was committed to an upstate insane asylum for life—but not before residents of Degraw Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues (left) petitioned the city to have the street’s name changed, fearing the “unpleasant associations” with the murder.