Decades before Marc Jacobs, Ralph Lauren, and Magnolia colonized Bleecker Street in the West Village, it was a small-scale main street running through the Village’s thriving Italian neighborhood, packed with groceries, fish stores, and bakeries.
This little building, on Bleecker and Christopher Streets, looks like a grocery; see the crates getting some shade (no AC back then) behind the canopy. It was constructed between 1802 and 1810, predating the city’s grid system. The photo is from 1925.
Over the years the little house and storefront continued to be used as a grocery store or deli. Here it is in 1975. Looks like it was painted white.
Today, the house—and remarkably, the other houses around it—still stands. The clapboard siding, shutters, and old-style lamppost are gone, but the little quarter-round windows remain.