Posts Tagged ‘bad neighborhoods New York’

The “loud and lurid” Haymarket on 30th Street

June 25, 2010

In the late 19th century, the Tenderloin district—from Madison Square to the West 40s along Broadway—was the city’s boozy, sleazy, party area, kind of like Times Square in the 1970s.

Incredible New York, by Lloyd Morris, describes it this way:

“Here were located the most noted gambling resorts and brothels, the garish saloons, restaurants and dance halls where prostitutes solicited customers, the shady hotels and lodging houses where couples without luggage could hire rooms by the hour or the night.”

But no place in the Tenderloin was as sinful as the Haymarket, here painted by John Sloan in 1907.

“The Haymarket—which combined the attractions of a restaurant, dance hall, and variety show—saw to it that you did not lack feminine companionship,” wrote Morris. “The fun, like the females, was loud and lurid.”