Posts Tagged ‘14th Street’

The Jeanne d’Arc “French Flats”

January 28, 2009

It’s a strange sight: On the mostly nondescript commercial corner of 14th Street and 7th Avenue is a striking red-brick apartment building—complete with a statue of Jeanne d’Arc above the front entrance.

jeannedarcapts Called the Jeanne d’Arc, the building is a remnant of the brief time in the 1880s when West 14th Street was a wealthy residential area.

It’s also one of the city’s first “French Flats,” a fancy name for a middle- to upper-class multiple-family dwelling. In other words, it’s the standard apartment house we know and love that’s all over New York City today.

jeanndarcstatueapt Completed in 1889, the Jeanne d’Arc was designed to attract upwardly mobile families who could afford a building with design touches such as a pressed-metal cornice, carved figures and griffins, and a statue of Jeanne herself.

There she is with her sword and shield, ready to fight for 14th Street. The letters at one time must have spelled out her name, but now it just looks like “lear.”

For more Jeanne d’Arc in New York, check out the Jeanne d’Arc Home “for friendless French girls.”


Legendary Lüchow’s on East 14th Street

January 23, 2009

I’m not aware of any New York City eatery with an umlaut in its name. But for a century, there was Lüchow’s—the German restaurant that served wiener schnitzel, sauerbraten, and other old-world, heavy-duty delicacies since 1882.


Lüchow’s opened when Union Square was New York’s theater and music hall district. It consisted of seven separate dining rooms, a beer garden, a bar, and a men’s grill. One room was lined with animal heads; another displayed a collection of beer steins. Must have been a serious dining experience.

Of course, when the city’s fortunes turned in the 1970s, so did Lüchow’s. The restaurant shut its doors for good after a mysterious 1982 fire. It’s now the site of a New York University dormitory.

Check out this review from Knife and Fork in New York, a 1949 guide to the city’s best eateries:


“Ho every one that thirsteth”

October 20, 2008

As inscribed on the water fountain/wash bowl on the facade of East 14th Street’s Gothic-style Immaculate Conception Church, built in 1896.

The phrase comes from the Old Testament: “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money, come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.”


Unfortunately it doesn’t look like the fountain works, and the basin was filled with trash last week when the photo was taken. Still, the words are inspiring, and how many fish spouts do you see in the city?