A spooky old house in Bushwick

Bushwick Avenue in the late 19th century was lined with the mansions of local beer barons. This was back when the neighborhood was populated by German immigrants who built several successful breweries.

One mansion that still stands—and stands out—is at the corner of Bushwick and Willoughby. In the early decades of the 20th century it was the home of Frederick Cook, a doctor and explorer who claimed to be the first man to make it to the North Pole.

Unfortunately his claim was pretty much disregarded; he eventually went to prison for stock fraud and died in 1940.  

But his home is still in Bushwick, between a Kentucky Fried Chicken and the elevated tracks of the M train. Reportedly Black Panthers stayed in the house in the 1970s. In 2008, graffiti mars the brick facade and the turreted roof gives it a haunted house vibe. 

A pot of flowers greets guests at the front door. Despite the way it looks from the street, it’s not a totally abandoned house after all.

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7 Responses to “A spooky old house in Bushwick”

  1. kevin james wise Says:

    iam a published author my book is called one russian winter I tell you this becuase I am looking for a house and want to know the interior of this house in bushwick who knows whre

  2. Kevin J Wise Says:

    I am a published author my book is called (One Russian Winter) I tell you this becuase I became published in Maryland and the east or the west coast is where I would like to end up who knows where Ill end up but I like the house and who knows am interested in owning either the house in question or another house when the money is right. any case would like to see the entrior of teh house thanks sincerely Kevin James Wise

  3. beverky jones Says:

    I lived on Bushwick avenue for 22 years and visited a lot before I became a resident. I have always wondered about the large mansion still houses on bushwick Ave, My building was up Bushwick Avenue going toward the Interboro,which is now know as THe Jackie Robinson Highway, but the Building shown was always a wonder to me, I had an Idea that it belonged to someone of means, your informationcleared it up for me. It was a landmark for me , because when ever I was coming into the neighborhood and saw this building I knew I was home.

  4. rec Says:

    Well the house is beautiful in the inside, we are not rich, but are slowly but surely trying to bring this mansion to its original or close to its original state. It is true from faraway you can see the house and know you are home.

  5. Smitty Says:

    Wow I used to play stick ball right on the other side of the El on Willoughby ave and Evergreen ave. I did not go on the other side of the El unless our ball went that far. I lived on Evergreen ave. between Willoughby & Troutman St. from 1950 – 1974. Unfortunately, I have not been back there since.

  6. Tom "Smitty" Smith Says:

    Wow, growing up there I never knew the history of this building. of course, I was just a kid then. I have not been back to the old neighborhood since I left in 1974. I moved to Long Island after I got married and I currently live in Florida.


  7. An 1877 Park Avenue mansion funded by beer | Ephemeral New York Says:

    […] While beer had been a popular beverage in the city since colonial days, this sudden population surge fueled a demand for beer that led to the opening of several huge breweries in Manhattan and Brooklyn. […]

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