Posts Tagged ‘1940s New York City’

These city boys tried to rent out their snow fort

February 17, 2017

Sometime around 1940, after a storm blanketed city streets in the kind of snow that makes for good packing, a group of cheeky boys came up with a brilliant way to capitalize on New York’s always-tight housing market.

8x11mm_X2010_7_1 261

8x11mm_X2010_7_1 261

How much do you think they could have made off that super cool snow fort? I guess it depends on the neighborhood, which isn’t noted in the photo caption, unfortunately, and if they put a loft inside.

[Photo by Wurts Brothers from the digital collection of the Museum of the City of New York: x2010.7.1.16299]

A 1940s Midtown bar vanishes without a trace

October 4, 2012

What kind of place was George’s Cafe?

Based on this 1940s black and white postcard, it was a cozy joint, one with a long, well-stocked bar and solid stools that didn’t swivel.

A handful of checkered-tablecloth booths were available if you wanted to eat and drink. A poster of a horse race is tacked up on the far wall next to the American flag.

Was it wartime—or was the flag always up? There’s a jukebox too. I wonder what songs it was stocked with.

George’s was just off Seventh Avenue on 33rd Street, right next to Penn Station. It probably attracted customers who were in no rush to catch their train or bus back home.

It doesn’t appear to be a total dive either. Look at the slogan on the back: “A delightful retreat for good friends to meet.” George Mitchell, the owner, ran a tight ship.

I tried to find some information about George’s, but I uncovered no trace of it in newspaper archives or bar and restaurant guidebooks of the era.

When did it disappear? There is no 203 West 33rd Street anymore; the nearest address, number 210, is a one-story postwar building that houses a Capital One Bank branch.

Perhaps it went down with the old Penn Station itself in 1963. But here it is, frozen in time in a throwaway penny postcard.