Posts Tagged ‘Madison Square’

Walking along Madison Square after the rain

September 9, 2016

I don’t know the name of this painting, but the artist, Paul Cornoyer, often depicted Madison Square and other well-traveled hubs of the Gilded Age city, especially after a rainstorm.

cornoyerdeweyarch

Doesn’t look like Madison Square? It must be the arch and colonnades that are throwing things off. It’s all part of the Dewey Arch, erected at Fifth Avenue and about 25th Street for a parade honoring Admiral George Dewey, victorious in the Philippines in 1898.

The triumphant arch only stood for a year. After the 1899 parade, money was supposed to be raised to make the arch permanent—like Washington Square’s new marble arch. Instead, it was bulldozed in 1900.

Characters checking you out on East 27th Street

September 13, 2010

The 27th Street side of luxe condo building 15 Madison Square North has some wonderfully whimsical, mischievous-looking characters carved into the facade.

A little research turned up nothing on who the original business tenants and building designers were. 

So right now, we’ll just have to guess the inspiration for some of these guys, like the whiskered fellow sticking two fingers out and the book-reading, sage-like elder.

There’s a biblical-looking guy with a tablet, and then there’s this one, who look like an escaped mental patient. He’s a real grotesque; that grin is kinda creepy, no? 

A penny postcard of Madison Square

March 26, 2010

Looks like a sweet spring day at the crossroads of 24th Street, Fifth Avenue, and Broadway.

The neighborhood was extremely fashionable around the turn of the 20th century, when this card dates to. 

That’s Madison Square Garden, the Moorish-looking tower on the right. The billboard ad above the red building in the center is a gem—it’s for White Horse Scotch Whiskey.

Madison Square Garden on the move

October 14, 2009

Ever wonder why it’s called Madison Square Garden—when it’s not near Madison Square? 

The current Garden, on 33rd Street, is the fourth incarnation of New York’s premier sports and entertainment arena.

MSGfirstThe first, at right, opened in 1879. Occupying an old railroad depot at Madison Avenue and 26th Street, it became a successful, 10,000-seat venue that featured boxing, bike racing, and ice hockey.

A decade later it was torn down. Famed architect Stanford White designed the second MSG in 1890, below left. This beautiful, 8,000-seat Moorish structure sported cupolas, arches, and a 32-story tower that made it the second tallest building in the city. 

MSG2

 Madison Square Garden II’s rooftop restaurant became a chic place for New York’s Gilded Age elite to socialize. It’s also where White was murdered in 1906.

He was shot point-blank by Harry Thaw, the jealous husband of a teenage showgirl the 40-ish White had been having an affair with.

By 1925, White’s palace met the wrecking ball, and the third MSG was completed at 50th Street and Eighth Avenue. This arena was home to the Rangers, Knicks, and lots of boxing matches.

Outdated by the late sixties, it was replaced in 1968 by the fourth and current Garden, built on the hallowed grounds of the original Penn Station.