Charles Lane, a narrow alley from Washington to West Street in the West Village, is all that remains of the northern boundary of Newgate State Prison, which stood at the foot of the Hudson here from 1797 until the 1820s. Also known as Pig Alley, Charles Lane was later paved with unique stones not seen elsewhere in the city, according to the Greenwich Village Society of Historical Preservation.
Here’s Charles Lane in the 1930s, photographed by Berenice Abbott. Is that the old Ninth Avenue El that ran along Greenwich Street, or is it a remnant of the High Line?
Charles Lane today is surrounded by pricey West Village real estate, but it doesn’t look all that different, and the paving stones remain the same. Amazing it wasn’t bulldozed and turned into the Charles Lane Condos: