Posts Tagged ‘Old New York City’

Spooky outlines of long-gone Manhattan buildings

February 9, 2013

New 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 forever.

The building that once stood here on the corner of Greenwich and Vestry Streets in Tribeca, below, doesn’t look fancy. It was probably just a regular walk-up with six or eight apartments in what had been a neighborhood of light industry for most of the 20th century.

But it sure left a formidable impression.

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I love the sloping roof on this long-gone building on Washington Place in the Meatpacking District, below. Was it a garage? Warehouse? Meat packager?

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I have no idea when it went down, but it’s being obliterated forever in favor of another restaurant or boutique or luxury hotel.

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On 31st Street near Fifth Avenue is the imprint of a sturdy chimney and a roof on a slight incline. A coat of paint almost covers most of it up, but a sliver remains of what was once someone’s home.

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The best thing about this bulldozed building on East 29th Street? The phantom smoke coming out of the pattern of a chimney!

What remains of Manhattanville’s Claremont Inn

October 14, 2011

The “Claremont, New York” in this turn-of-the-century postcard looks like a Hudson River village, doesn’t it? But it’s actually the site of present-day Riverside Drive and 124th Street.

“Upon the high promontory overlooking the Hudson, on the south side of Manhattanville, is Jones’ Claremont Hotel,” states an 1866 Hudson River guidebook.

“[It's] a fashionable place of resort for the pleasure-seekers who frequent the Bloomingdale and Kingsbridge roads on pleasant afternoons.”

Originally built as a country estate around 1780, it became a roadside tavern by 1860, a favorite of horsemen, cyclists, and drivers and frequented by wealthy families and celebs of the day, such as Admirable Dewey and Lillian Russell.

Battered by Prohibition and the Depression, the Claremont burned in a mysterious fire in 1951.

The city didn’t completely forget about this remnant of old Manhattanville; a plaque exists in Riverside Park (above), marking the spot where this Hudson River estate turned popular tavern entertained countless New Yorkers.

[Tablet photo from the New York City Parks Department]


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