Posts Tagged ‘Park Slope history’

An infamous murder on Brooklyn’s Lincoln Place

May 8, 2013

LincolnfifthavenuesignEver notice that Brooklyn’s Degraw Street suddenly becomes Lincoln Place after crossing Fifth Avenue?

The name change has to do with a gruesome murder near this intersection in 1873, then the media attention that gripped the block for the next few years.

In March, Charles Goodrich, a 41-year-old widower, was found with three gunshot wounds to the head in his brownstone at what was then 731 Degraw Street.

At first, police thought it might be suicide or a robbery. But strangely, his body had been laid out neatly and cleaned of blood.

LizzielloydkingSo when neighbors reported that a young woman had been living in the house and that they often saw Goodrich with her on the stoop, police took the investigation in a new direction.

They believed the woman’s name was Kate Stoddard (right); she was a Massachusetts native in her 20s who worked in a hat factory in Manhattan. But for months, she proved to be elusive.

Finally, after a sighting by Stoddard’s ex-roommate on the Fulton Ferry, cops tracked her down.

During questioning, she denied everything—until detectives found Charles Goodrich’s personal items in her room in a boarding house on High Street.

Reportedly she confessed. Turns out her real name was Lizzie Lloyd King. She’d met Goodrich through a personal ad, and they soon married.

DegrawstreetfifthandsixthThen Goodrich told her the marriage was a sham and he wanted her to leave him alone, as he was now engaged to another woman.

During an argument in the house on Degraw Street, a spurned King drew a gun and shot Goodrich dead.

In 1874, she was committed to an upstate insane asylum for life—but not before residents of Degraw Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues  (left) petitioned the city to have the street’s name changed, fearing the “unpleasant associations” with the murder.

Al Capone’s boyhood roots in Brooklyn

March 22, 2010

Alphonse Gabriel Capone made his name as a gangster in Chicago. But where did young Al get his start? Brooklyn, of course. 

His parents arrived there from Naples in the 1890s, first settling on Navy Street and then moving with their eight kids to an apartment at 38 Garfield Place (below).

It was one of two addresses on the block the Capones reportedly called home.

The Garfield Place building is on the perimeter of Park Slope—which back in Al’s day was just another rough and tumble South Brooklyn neighborhood.

Like other neighborhood kids, “the fat boy from Brooklyn,” as his New York Times obituary states, attended Public School 133 on Butler Street—either dropping out or getting expelled for hitting a teacher.

Later he was married at St. Mary Star of the Sea church on Court Street in Carroll Gardens.

By then, his Brooklyn days were nearing their end. Capone left for Chicago in the 1910s and died of heart failure in 1947.