New York Songlines: 5th Avenue

139th | 138th | 137th | 136th | 135th | 132nd | 131st | 130th | 129th | 128th | 127th | 126th | 125th (Marcus Garvey Park) | 120th | 119th | 118th | 117th | 116th | 115th | 112nd | 111st | 110th (Central Park) | 109th | 108th | 107th | 106th | 105th | 104th | 103rd | 102nd | 101st | 98th | 97th | 96th | 95th | 94th | 93rd | 92nd | 91st | 90th | 89th | 88th | 87th | 86th | 85th | 84th | 83rd | 82nd | 81st | 80th | 79th | 78th | 77th | 76th | 75th | 74th | 73rd | 72nd | 71st | 70th | 69th | 68th | 67th | 66th (Central Park Zoo) | 65th | 64th | 63rd | 62nd | 61st | 60th | 59th/Central Park South (Plaza Hotel) | 58th | 57th (Tiffany's) | 56th | 55th | 54th | 53rd | 52nd | 51st (Rockefeller Center/St. Patrick's) | 50th | 49th | 48th | 47th | 46th | 45th | 44th | 43rd | 42nd (New York Public Library) | 41st | 40th | 39th | 38th | 37th | 36th | 35th | 34th (Empire State Building) | 33rd | 32nd | 31st | 30th | 29th | 28th | 27th | 26th (Madison Square) | 25th | Broadway | 24th | 23rd (Flatiron Building) | 22nd | 21st | 20th | 19th | 18th | 17th | 16th | 15th | 14th | 13th St | 12th St | 11th St | 10th St | 9th St | 8th St | Washington Square North (Washington Square Park)


While most areas of Manhattan have gone in and out of fashion, Fifth Avenue has always meant high society—from its beginnings as a row of elite townhouses to its current status as a pricey shopping district. How many streets have had both a car and a candy bar named after them?

5th Avenue divides most Manhattan streets into East and West—street addresses generally start counting upwards from here in either direction.




W <===     W 143RD ST/HARLEM RIVER DRIVE     ===> S

West:

369th Armory

369th Regiment Armory 2366 (block): An Art Deco armory ("a superb example of the bricklayer's art"—AIA Guide) built in 1933 to house the 369th Infantry Regiment, also known as the Harlem Hellfighters—New York's first Black National Guard unit, organized in 1916, and one of the first Black US military units to have Black as well as white officers. They fought with distinction in World War I, with 170 members receiving the Croix de Guerre from the French government.

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Harlem River Ramp

There is a walkway here that leads to the Harlem River Park, a waterfront greenway that stretches from 125th to 145th Street.







W <===     142ND STREET     ===> E

West:

Global Community Charter School

2350 (corner): Global Community Charter School, founded in 2011, was built in 1923 as a Bordens Ice Cream factory. From 1970 through 1994, it was a industrial dry cleaning facility that used tetrachloroethylene, which led the state to declare it a Superfund site in 1998. It was declared decontaminated in 2015, which is when GCCS moved in. (It still has a sign reading "Harlem Self Storage," which is what it was in the interim.)

The exterior murals are by the youth program Creative Art Works.


W <===         141ST ST


2300 Fifth Avenue

2300 (block): This 16-story building, built in 1959, is part of Savoy Park, a 13-acre, seven-building complex whose footprint includes the site of the legendary Savoy Ballroom--recalled in the standard "Stomping at the Savoy."

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369th Infantry Regiment Memorial

369th Infantry Regiment Memorial

This black granite obelisk, a replica of one in Sechault, France, was unveiled in 2006 to honor the 369th Infantry Regiment, aka the Harlem Hellfighters. It bears their coiled rattlesnake insignia.










Riverbend Houses

Riverbend

2331-2333 (corner): Middle-income public housing project completed in 1967, named for the turn in the Harlem River that marks the top of Fifth Avenue. It was designed by Davis, Brody & Associates, who emphasized "the design of circulation spaces and the sidewalk/street life to increase a sense of community."

The project introduced the "giant brick" (5-1/2” high x 8” wide) in an effort to make large-scale masonry more economical and attractive.


W <===     139TH STREET     ===> E

West:

Lincolnton Station

Lincolnton Post Office

2266 (block): US Postal Service facility serving the 10037 zip code.

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2289 (block): More Riverbend Houses.















W <===     138TH STREET     ===> E

West:

10 West 138th Street

Corner (10 W 138th): This seven-floor building from 1984 is called Chauncy Hooper Towers, memorializing the commander of Hooper's Troopers, the 369th Coast Artillery Regiment. Stationed in Hawaii during World War II, they were successors to the 369th Infantry, the Harlem Hellfighters. Hooper was a prominent member of city politics and Harlem society after the war.

1 West 137th Street

2252 (corner): This 1920 building of six stories includes a Kennedy Chicken & Pizza outlet. Kennedy is not an actual franchise, but rather a name used by various owners—often Afghan-American—to describe a way of selling chicken.


W <===         137TH ST

Central Harlem Health Center (Short)

2238 (block): Central Harlem Health Center was built by the city's Health Department in 1936.


W <===         136TH ST

PS 197 John B. Russwurm

John B. Russwurm Elementary School

2230 (block): Public elementary school named for John Brown Russwurm (1799-1851), a mixed-race abolitionist who edited Freedom's Journal, the US's first Black-owned newspaper. He was an advocate of resettling freed Blacks in Liberia, where he lived the last years of his life.

The building also houses the Democracy Prep middle school, a charter school that takes inspiration from the South Korean educational system, though the student body is overwhelmingly Black and Latinx.

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Riverton Houses

Riverton Houses

2265 (corner): A residential development opened in 1947 by the Met Life Insurance Company, designed to house returning World War II vets. While Met Life's Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village were initially whites-only, Riverton was intended for Black vets. Notable residents have included former Mayor David Dinkins, Reagan-era HUD Secretary Samuel Pierce and jazz pianist Billy Taylor.




Riverton Houses


























































2225 (corner): More Riverton Houses


W <===     135TH STREET     ===> E

West:

Lenox Terrace

Lenox Terrace Towers

Opened in 1958 as Harlem's first luxury residential development, it was called "Harlem's Best Address" by the New York Times. The six 17-story brick buildings have been home to notables like former Gov. David Paterson, DC powerhouse Charles Rangel, singer Mahalia Jackson, comedian Nipsey Russell and gangster Bumpy Johnson.

A plan by the complex's owners, the Olnick Organization, to replace the complex's low-rise retail buildings with five 28-story towers was rejected by the City Council in 2020. Olnick has threatened to go ahead with a scaled-down plan that would not requiring rezoning.

2210 (corner): Some of the low-rise retail Olnick wants to replace. One of the few tenants here is the Golden Deli Grocery.

2186: The Lenox Terrace highrises have individual names—this is the Buckingham.

2180 (corner): More low-rise retail—currently vacant.

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Corner: Abraham Lincoln Playground

Abraham Lincoln Houses

2199 Fifth Avenue

2199-2175: NYCHA housing project opened in 1947. In 2018, the Manhattan DA indicted 17 residents as alleged members of Lincoln Ova Everything, a street gang. (Media critics warn us to be skeptical of official narratives.)




















W <===     132ND STREET     ===> E

West:

Greater Central Baptist Church

2152 (corner): The Greater Central Baptist Church was organized in 1933, and bought this property in 1939. The present building dates to 1955.

2150: Was Stingray's, restaurant. This building forms a more-or-less matched set of brownstones with 2144-48 to its south.

2144: Harlem Blues Cafe is in a brownstone less preserved than its neighbors to its north, having had its stooped removed to increase its ground floor commercial space.

2140 Fifth Avenue

2142: Used to house Vintage Treasures Thrift Shop. Presents a unified facade with 2140, but an aerial view reveals they were built as separate structures.

2140 (corner): Building with AJ Food Center is described as "rather battered...budget Beaux Arts" by the Landmark Branding blog.

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2 East 132nd Street

Corner (2 E 132nd): You can see from architectural details—e.g. the arches below the cornices—that the corner building that houses Mocha Deli Grocery was built at the same time as its neighbors to the south, though records claim that they were built in 1910, 1900 and 1920, from north to south. These buildings appear to be among the few on Fifth Avenue to be built as tenement apartments rather than single-family townhouses (per Landmark Branding).

There is a small community garden at what used to be 2155. Lion Corbel

2151-53: These siblings of 2 East 132nd are distinguished by ferocious lion corbels.











Corner: A sweet (private) playground.


W <===     131ST STREET     ===> E

West:

Courtney Callender Playground

Callender Playground

This small park is named for Courtney Callender (1937-1983), who became the first African-American Parks Department official in 1965; he established the Community Relations division that seeks to involve surrounding neighborhoods in park decisions. From 1969-72, he was deputy commissioner for cultural affairs, as which he organized the Harlem Cultural Festival. He died of cancer at the age of 43.

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PS 133: Fred R. Moore

PS 133 Bulldogs

2121 (block): Elementary school named for Frederick Randolph Moore, a mixed-race journalist and activist who was a protege of Booker T. Washington. He bought the New York Age in 1907 and turned it into the biggest African-American newspaper of its era. He helped found the Negro Protective League in 1892 and the National Urban League in 1910.


W <===     130TH STREET     ===> E

West:

2108-2118 (corner): These six rowhouses form a matched set, built c. 1909 in English Renaissance style.



















2100 (corner): A three story post-modern structure from 1991 houses people with autism in a facility run by the organization Life's WORC.

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2105-2119 (corner): This stretch of 19th century brownstones is mostly intact, with one sad exception.

2113: The brutal defacement of this brownstone c. 2017 to add two stories on top highlights the need to create historic preservation districts to Harlem.

2105: The end of this row of brownstones houses the Mt. Horeb Holiness Church of God. Mount Horeb is the place where Moses got water from a stone for the Israelites—and in Deuteronomy it's where Moses received the Ten Commandments. 2099-2101 Fifth Avenue

2099-2101 (corner): Though two separate buildings, a unified facade makes these addresses appear to be one glorious brick and brownstone mansion (built c. 1880). The New York Times ran a story on the travails of restoring 2099.


W <===     129TH STREET     ===> E

West:

Corner (2 W 129th): Grab & Go Food is in a seven-story building from 1921 with bay windows in its northeast corner.

2080-2084: The Collyers brothers' building looked like one of these.

Collyer Brothers Park

031407 054

2078 (corner): This pocket park was built in the 1960s on the site of the brownstone that was home, from 1909-47, to Homer and Langley Collyer, famous hoarders. After Langley became blind in 1933, the brothers became increasingly reclusive. As their house filled up with newspapers and assorted junk, paths became tunnels, in which Langley constructed booby-traps to discourage treasure seekers. One such trap eventually killed Langley, which led to his brother's death from starvation. When cleared out, the house was found to contain a Model T chassis, human organs pickled in jars, eight cats, 14 pianos, 25,000 books and much else — some of which was later exhibited at Hubert's Dime Museum.

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Brownstone Stoops

2083-2087: Three beautifully preserved/ restored brownstones. The city says they were built in 1905.

2081: Once a match with its neighbors to the north, it's had much of its architectural detail stripped off. Has a plaque that says "All Saints Cooperative."









2077 (corner): Buildings don't come much blander than this seven-story effort from 2007.


W <===     128TH STREET     ===> E

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2076 Fifth Avenue

2068-2076 (corner): A row of handsome 1890s townhouses, red brick with rusticated brownstone. 2076 on the end features "a corner turret Rapunzel would find useful" ( Forgotten New York). The aluminum windows installed in 2068 really bug the AIA Guide.




2064 Fifth Avenue

2066: A philistine architect defaced the facade of a Renaissance Revival brownstone with an incongruous modernist approach, but left the original stoop.

2064: This 1880s mansion has a neo-Dutch Renaissance roofline and an abundance of detail.




1 West 127th Street

Corner (1 E 27th): The Harriet, a 1914 apartment building with a striking corner bay.

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Corner (2-4 E 128th): An early apartment building designed to look like a single-family brownstone. The facade features rather fierce-looking green men. Green Man

2071: The Abingdon is a well-preserved Beaux-Arts apartment building dated 1921.
2069 Fifth Avenue

2069: Untapped New York calls this a "red-brick standout, with an off-center, dentillated pediment."







St. Andrew's Episcopal Church

St. Andrew's Entrance

2067 (corner): A Gothic Revival landmark designed by architect Henry M. Congdon. The building was originally erected on 127th Street between Park and Lexington in 1873, and was dismantled and rebuilt here c. 1889.

The church's congregation was largely or entirely white until 1942, when it stopped charging pew rental. Today its flock is largely Caribbean.


W <===     127TH STREET     ===> E

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2056 Fifth Avenue

2056 (corner): An attractive Beaux Arts building from 1917, orginally built as the Fifth Avenue Hall by the Finnish Socialist Party to serve as a Finnish Community Center. In the 1970s, it became the Gospel Temple Church. In 2005, it was converted to residences by BKSF Architects, who restored the cornice and added two stories in a complementary modern style. Branded as Rhapsody on Fifth. Mount Moriah Baptist Church

2050: Was Mount Moriah Baptist Church, originally Mount Morris Church, built in 1888 with Romanesque Revival arches. (Moriah is the mountain where Abraham was supposed to sacrifice Isaac.) In 2011, it was bought by artist Ugo Rondinone for $2.7 million to serve as a studio and exhibition space.

2042 Fifth Avenue

2042 (corner): Also known as 1 West 127th, this orange brick Art Deco apartment building from 1940 was home to musical legends Eartha Kitt, Billy Eckstine and Della Reese.

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2053 (corner): The St. Andrews, a Beaux Arts apartment building unfortunately missing its cornice—the decorative ledge along the roofline.



















2049: Built in 1921, this building is a bit better preserved than its neighbors to either side.


















2041 (corner): A 40-unit Beaux Arts apartment building from 1921—a strong design, but again stripped of its cornice


W <===     126TH STREET     ===> E

West:

2040 (corner): West Harlem Deli Corp Quad-Colored Rowhouses

2038: One of a set of four brownstones, built c. 1909, now in four assorted colors—mostly well-preserved, though this one is missing its stoop. Houses Fanta Hair Braiding.

2034: Macenta African Hair Braiding

2032: The last of the quad-colored brownstones. Creative Art Works III

Corner (1 W 125th): A two-story commercial building that dates to 1901. Now a Shake Shack outlet, opened in 2019, featuring art inside and out by the youth group Creative Art Works. Harlem Shake Shack

It was formerly an Applebee's, which closed in 2017; when it opened in 2009, it was the franchise's 2,000th outlet. In 1969, this was the Israeli School of Universal Practical Knowledge, a congregation of Black Hebrews$mdash;the movement that preaches that African Americans are the descendants of the 12 Tribes of Israel. The sects that descend from this school are today known as the One West Camp due to this address.

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2033-2037 (corner): This three-story building, which dates to 1940, was the original home of the Studio Museum in Harlem from (1969-82). It was later Nubian Heritage of Harlem and the Harlem Visitor Information Center. Most recently, the Elizabeth Dee Gallery was located here from 2016-18; its lease was not renewed because the building is slated to be demolished.

Keep Soul Alive

There is some striking street art on the 126th Street side of the building.




















National Black Theatre

Harlem - National Black Theater

2031 (corner): Founded in 1968 by Barbara Ann Teer, this Off Broadway stage has featured the likes of Nina Simone, Maya Angelou and Nikki Giovanni. Plans are underway to replace the current building with a 20-story tower whose second through fourth floors would be occupied by the theater, (cc photo: Ajay Suresh)


W <===     125TH STREET     ===> E

This intersection has been named Frederica Teer Square, after the civil rights activist who was executive director of the National Black Theatre from 1974-79.

West:

2018 (corner): Once a brownstone, at some point it was "given a PoMo facelift suitable for a downscale Long Island strip mall" ( Landmark Branding). The ground floor now has a Kennedy Chicken on the corner.



2012-2014: These well-preserved brownstones seem to date to 1882.

2010: St. James/St. Philip AME Church is in a brownstone built along with its neighbors to the north, but time has been less kind to it. Harlem Brownstones

2004-2008: These gorgeous brownstones are some of the oldest row houses in Harlem, built in 1869 by developer Christian Brand. Note the mansard roofs.

2002 (corner): The newcomer on the block, this 2004 apartment building replaced a vacant hulk that had once been used a bus depot.

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2015-2017 (corner): A vacant lot that seems to be returning to forest.

2013: Like the rest of the brownstones on this block, this was "designed in 1878 by David and John Jardine for the developer Charles Wellde," according to Christopher Gray. This number was rebuilt as an apartment building in 1888, with the stoop replaced by a large Romanesque arch and a large shield with the name Marcella—a Roman saint—added to the facade. Harlem Rowhouses

2005: Converted to a bed & breakfast, the Urban Jem Guest House, in 1997.

2007: This brownstone was owned by Black feminist author Dorothy Pitman Hughes. In 2001 she sold it to the rapper DMX.

2001 (corner): The last of the Jardines' brownstone row.


W <===     124TH STREET     ===> E

Marcus Garvey Park

Marcus Garvey Park Marcus Garvey Park

This 20-acre park exists because of an outcropping of Manhattan schist that rises 70 feet above sea level, known to the Dutch as Slang Berg, or Snake Hill, and later called Mount Morris, possibly after Mayor Robert Morris, elected in 1841. The hill was deemed too steep to build streets over and too big to remove, so when the 1811 grid plan for Manhattan was extended to the neighborhood, a square was laid out here. It was opened to the public in 1840, but not landscaped until 1869.

Before the invention of the telegraph, New York relied on a series of fire towers located on high ground to watch for and warn of outbreaks of fire, a prime threat to the mostly wooden city. The 47-foot cast-iron tower here, erected in 1856, is the only surviving example and is a New York landmark listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

This was the site of the Harlem Cultural Festival, also known as Black Woodstock, a concert series in the summer of 1969 that featured the likes of Stevie Wonder, Nina Simone, B.B. King, Sly and the Family Stone, The 5th Dimension, Gladys Knight & the Pips, Mahalia Jackson and Moms Mabley. The NYPD refused to provide security, so the Black Panthers kept the peace instead.

A swimming pool, rec center and amphitheater were added to the bark between 1969-71.

Mount Morris Park was renamed in 1973 for Black nationalist Marcus Garvey, founder of the Black Star Shipping Line and coiner of the phrase "Black is beautiful."

The gates of Marcus Garvey Park used to be around Bellevue Hospital—which is why they say "BH."


W <===     120TH STREET     ===> E

West:

Corner (2 W 120th): A striking 1901 brick and terra-cotta apartment building by George F. Pelham. Ms. Bubble Laundromat is now on the ground floor.

1488: 5th Avenue Church of God














1484: Mt. Pisgah Methodist Church. Pisgah, also known as Mount Nebo, is the summit from which Yahweh showed Moses the Promised Land.

1480 (corner): New Ebenezer Baptist Church

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1489: Dressmaker Lena Himmelstein Bryant opened a shop here in 1904 that grew into the plus-size retail chain Lane Bryant. (The chain's name was based on a bank's misspelling of "Lena.") three ladies on West 120th Street in Manhattan

1485 (corner): 5th on the Park, 28-story condo from 2008, designed by FXFowle Architects. In front of the entrance is Friends, a sculpture of three voluptuous women by Nigerian-born sculptor Nnamdi Okonkwo. (cc photo: Jim Forest)

1483 (corner): Bethel Gospel Assembly was founded in 1916 by Lillian Kraeger (1884-1964), who began traveling to Harlem to minister to two African-American girls who had been rejected by her white church because of the color of their skin. Its current home is incorporated into 5th on the Park.


W <===     119TH STREET     ===> E

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1461 (corner): Prince Deli & Grocery


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W <===     117TH STREET     ===> E

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1429 (corner): El San Juan, Puerto Rican restaurant. "City Island on Fifth Avenue." Mount Morris Theatre

1421 (corner): Built c. 1911 by the Ancient Order of Hibernians, an Irish-American club, as a theater. As the Mount Morris Theatre, it showcased both vaudeville--a very young Milton Berle performed here--and silent films. As East Harlem became increasingly Latino, the cinema began showing Spanish-language films under a variety of names: It was the Teatro Campoamor by 1934, Teatro Cervantes by 1936 and Teatro Hispano by 1940. From 1959-61 it was Teatro Santurce.

It's currently home to the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ of the Apostolic Faith, part of the Oneness Pentecostal faith; the denomination's somewhat unorthodox theology rejects the Trinity in favor of a singular god (named Jesus) who manifests as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.


W <===     116TH STREET     ===> E

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1415 (corner): Empire Corner II

1405: Furniture on 5th









1401: Cencerro Deli

Corner (3 E 115th): Preferred Pharmacy


W <===     115TH STREET     ===> E

West:

King Towers

King Towers

NYCHA projects opened in 1951 as the Stephen Foster Houses, named for the pre-Civil War New York songwriter who specialized in minstrel show tunes. It was renamed at the insistence of residents after the 1968 assassination of Martin Luther King.










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Taft Houses

Taft Houses

1395: These NYCHA projects, inaugurated in 1962, were named not for President William Howard Taft but for his son, Sen. Robert Taft, Republican of Ohio who served briefly as Senate majority leader. He is remembered for the anti-union Taft-Hartley Act, but it's presumably his support for the Housing Act of 1949, which supported projects like these, that made them his namesake.

1367: The Fire Factory, firehouse for Engine 58 and Ladder 26. Engine 58 was organized in 1893 and moved here in 1960.

1345: Another Taft house


W <===     112TH STREET     ===> E

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1330 (block): Harlem Academy









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1325 (corner): Fifth Avenue Pharmacy







1325 (corner): Maxwell's


W <===     111TH STREET     ===> E

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The Heritage

The Heritage

1303 (corner): The northmost of a pair of 35-story octagonal apartment towers, built in 1974 to a Gruzen & Partners design.

1295 (corner): The southern Heritage tower.


W <===     CENTRAL PARK N / E 110TH ST     ===> E

Duke Ellington Circle

The traffic circle at the intersection of Fifth Avenue and 110th Street/Central Park North was renamed in honor of the jazz musician in 1995. (It had previously been named Frawley Circle, for state Sen. James Frawley, a Tammmany Hall leader whose construction company built the Manhattan and Queensborough bridges.) The center of the circle features a sculpture of Ellington standing by a piano held aloft by muses.

West:

Central Park

NYC - Central Park: The Pond by wallyg, on Flickr

An 853-acre expanse of green in the middle of Manhattan, its 25 million annual visitors make it the most-visited public park in the world. Responding to calls from civic leaders like William Cullen Bryant, the city acquired the land in 1853 and held a design contest in 1857, choosing the Greensward Plan of Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux (rhymes with "Walks"). After the moving of 3 million tons of earth and the planting of 270,000 trees and shrubs, the park—almost entirely landscaped, despite its naturalistic appearance—opened to visitors in 1859 (though not officially completed until 1873).

Pioneers Gate

One of the 20 gates named by the Commissioners of Central Park in 1862—though the names were not actually inscribed until 1999. The names were intended to reflect the democratic intentions of the park; no doubt this choice reflects the remote character of 110th Street in the mid-19th century.









Harlem Meer

Central Park-Harlem Meer, 11.09.13 This 11-acre lake (which is "meer" in Dutch) is the third-largest body of water in Central Park, after The Reservoir and The Lake. It was originally a brackish wetland at the coming-together of Montayne’s Rivulet (now The Loch) and Harlem Creek, an inlet of the East River that no longer exists aboveground. Dredged into open water by Olmsted, it was given a concrete shoreline by Robert Moses in the 1940s that was removed in a 1990s renovation.









Bernard Family Playground











Conservatory Garden

Central Park-Conservatory Garden, 08.10.14 Central Park's only formal garden was originally a nursery to supply plantings for the park; later, from 1898 to 1934, it was home to a greenhouse known as the Conservatory. When the greenhouse had to be dismantled in 1934 because it cost too much to maintain, replacing it with a garden became one of the first efforts of the Works Projects Administration, which created more or less the current garden in 1937.




Untermyer Fountain I

The six-acre garden is divided in three parts with distinct styles. The northern third is in the French mode, noted for its spring tulips and autumn mums; it's centered on the Untermeyer Fountain, featuring Walter Schott's sculpture Three Dancing Maidens.




Conservancy Fountain

The center portion is Italianate, showcasing flowering crabapple and wisteria. Its focus is a geyser fountain known as the Conservatory Garden Center Fountain.


Secret Garden Fountain

The southernmost section is an English-style garden with abundant magnolia and lilac. A pool here presents statues of Mary and Dickon from The Secret Garden.










Vanderbilt Gates

The wrought iron Vanderbilt Gates mark the entrance to the gardens; originally designed by George B Post for the Vanderbilt mansion at 5th Avenue and 58th Street, they were salvaged and gifted to the park in 1939 by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney.









Former Marion Sims Statue

100_5071.JPG

A statue of J. Marion Sims, a pioneer of gyneco- logical surgery, stood here from 1934 until 2018. (The statue, by Ferdinand Miller, was first placed in Bryant Park, and was moved here during subway construction to a place opposited the Academy of Medicine.) Sims' surgical experiments were conducted on enslaved women, generally without anesthesia, a history that led to the relocation of his statue to Green-Wood Cemetery, where Sims is buried. (photo: Charles Smith)









Girls' Gate

Eden at Girls' Gate One of the 20 gates named by the Com- missioners of Central Park in 1862—though the names were not actually inscribed until 1999. The names were intended to reflect the democratic intentions of the park.

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The Africa Center

Africa Center Roofline

1280 (block): The newest and furthest north institution on the Museum Mile is in a 2011 building designed by Robert Stern. Originally the Center for African Art and then the Museum for African Art, it was founded in 1984 on East 68th Street.


E 109TH ST         ===> E

1274 Fifth Avenue

1274 (corner): A six-story brown-brick building from 1935. A rare rental building on Fifth Avenue facing Central Park.

1270 (corner): A 14-story building put up in 1957 as the first middle-income co-operative apartment house in Manhattan.


E 108TH ST         ===> E

Vista on Fifth

1261 (corner): Vista on Fifth assisted living home, 14 floors built in 1998.

1255 (corner): This eight-story building was dedicated in 1927 as the Home of the Daughters of Israel, an old folks home. Now a co-op.


E 107TH ST         ===> E

1250 Fifth Avenue

1250 (block): Lakeview Apartments, a complex built in 1974 to provide affordable housing under the Mitchell-Lama program.


E 106TH ST         ===> E

Terence Cardinal Cooke Health Center

Cooke Health Center With Ambulance

1240 (block): Originally built in 1938 as the Flower-Fifth Avenue Hospital, designed in Beaux-Arts style by York & Sawyer. The X-shaped hospital, run by the New York Medical College, broke with tradition by having no wards, only private rooms. In 1978, the College affiliated with the Catholic Archdiocese of New York, then led by Terence Cooke, whose namesake the facility now is.


E 105TH ST         ===> E

El Museo del Barrio

El Museo del Barrio

1230 (block): A museum of Latin American and Caribbean art, with a focus of Puerto Rico, located since 1977 in a neo-classical building built in 1921 by the Heckscher Foundation for Children as a shelter for abused and neglected children. The building's Teatro Heckscher was the first home of the New York Shakespeare Festival. (photo: Guy Dickinson)


E 104TH ST         ===> E

Museum of the City of New York

Museum of the City of New York

1220 (block): Founded in 1923 and originally housed in Gracie Mansion, this NYC-focused museum moved into this brand-new Georgian Revival building in 1932. Its collection includes Eugene O'Neill manuscripts, Jacob Riis' glass negatives and a dollhouse that features a miniature artwork by Marcel Duchamp. Alexander Hamilton

The statues of influential New Yorkers Alexander Hamilton and DeWitt Clinton that flank the facade, installed in 1941, are by Adolph Alexander Weinman, who did Penn Station's eagles, among many other works.


E 103RD ST         ===> E

New York Academy of Medicine

Academy of Medicine

1216 (corner): Founded in 1847 to advance medical practice in the city, the society was instrumental in making NYC a leader in public health. The neo-Renaissance landmark, completed in 1927 to a York & Sawyer design, is made from limestone and sandstone for an interesting checkerboard effect. Hygiea & Asclepius

The Greek god of medicine Asclepius and his daughter Hygeia appear above the entrance, with a motto that translates as "They who shall be born a thousand ages hence shall not be barred from adding their contribution." 1215 Fifth Avenue

1215 (corner): Brisbane House, built by journalist Arthur Brisbane, who lived in a 30-room apartment on the top three floors. Another resident was Mayor Fiorella La Guardia, who made many of his radio broadcasts from his apartment here.


W <===     102ND STREET     ===> E

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Arthur Brisbane Monument

Arthur Brisbane Memorial

A memorial to Arthur Brisbane (1864-1936), whom William Randolph Hearst called "the greatest journalist of his day" and Damon Runyon said was journalism's "all-time No. 1 genius."

Starting out as the New York Sun and Pulitzer's New York World, he was hired away by Hearst to run several of his publications, including the New York Journal, Evening Journal, New York Mirror and Chicago Herald. Brisbane's syndicated column, "Today," reached 30 million readers. "If you don't hit the reader between the eyes in your first sentence of your news column, there's no need to write any more," was his writing philosophy. Arthur Brisbane

Considered the era's highest-paid journalist with a salary of $260,000, Brisbane was also a real estate developer, backing such projects as the Ziegfeld Theatre, the Warwick Hotel and the Ritz Tower (as well as Brisbane House across Fifth Avenue). He provided PR advice to tycoons like Henry Ford, Thomas Edison and John D. Rockefeller.

His grandson, also named Arthur Brisbane, served as public editor of the New York Times from 2010-12.

This memorial, designed by Shreve, Lamb and Harmon with a bas relief portrait by Richmond Barthe, was dedicated in 1939.

Bendheim Playground

2002 Summer NYC - Central Park - Bendheim Playground

One of the perimeter playgrounds proposed by Robert Moses in 1936 and built with WPA support, in 1997 it became the first in the park to be accessible to children with disabilities. It's named for Robert Bendheim, a textile manufacturer and money-giver who was associated with nearby Mount Sinai. (photo: CaptainKidder)

East Meadow

Central Park-East Meadow, 04.26.14 This six-acre rolling lawn is cited as one of the success stories of the Central Park Conservancy, which restored it from a " forbidding dustbowl" in 2010. In the early 1970s, this was considered one of the most dangerous areas of Central Park, with 10 percent of the 853-acre park's robberies occurring here.

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1212 Fifth Avenue

1212 (corner): A 1926 building of 16 floors by George and Edward Blum. Allen Dulles lived here before he headed the CIA. At some point Mount Sinai bought the building for nurses' housing, converting it to condos in 2012; Carmelo Anthony bought a unit in 2015 when he was playing for the Knicks.

1200 (corner): The Park View, 17 stories designed by Emory Roth in 1928. It was home to opera singer Marian Anderson from 1958-1975 (NNY).


E 101ST ST         ===> E

Mount Sinai Hospital

Mount Sinai

Corner (1440 Madison): Founded in 1855 as the Jews' Hospital, Mount Sinai moved to Fifth Avenue in 1904. Doctors here were the first to type blood to ensure compatibility for transfusions—and coined the term "pre-menstrual syndrome."















1170 (corner): A 16-story co-op by J.E.R. Carpenter, built in 1926. Clarence Day, author of Life With Father, lived here from 1928-1934 (NNY).


E 98TH ST         ===> E

1165 (corner): This 16-story building from 1925 by J.E.R. Carpenter is almost a twin of 1170 across the street. It was the childhood home of author George Plimpton (NNY).






1160 (corner): A six-story neo-Georgian apartment building from 1923, designed and built by Fred F. French.


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Bertel Thorvaldsen Statue

Bertel Thorvaldsen This bronze, dedicated in 1894, is a copy of a self-portrait of a Danish Neo-Classical sculptor. Thorvaldsen (1770-1884), better known in Europe than in the US, was memorialized by Danish-Americans; he's the only visual artist with a sculpture in Central Park. He made the statue of Hebe that stands atop the Temperence Fountain in Tompkins Square Park.

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1158 (corner): A 15-story apartment building from 1924, designed in French Renaissance style by C. Howard Crane and Kenneth Franzheim. Sports writer Grantland Rice, who gave us the phrase "win one for the Gipper," was living here at the time of his death in 1954 (NNY).



1150 (corner): Eleven-story building by J.E.R. Carpenter, built 1924. William Shawn moved here in 1951, just before he became editor of the New Yorker; he died here in 1992, five years after his involuntary retirement. (His son, actor Wallace Shawn, grew up here.) Masterpiece Theatre host Alistair Cooke lived here for many years, dying here in 2004; author Walker Percy stayed here in 1944 when he was a young medical student (NNY).


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Woodman's Gate

One of the 20 gates named by the Commissioners of Central Park in 1862—though the names were not actually inscribed until 1999. The names were intended to reflect the democratic intentions of the park.









East 96th Street Playground

Created in 1935-36 as one of the perimeter playgrounds; restored in 1994.





























Rhododendron Mile

Central Park-Rhododendron Mile, 05.06.14

The stretch of the East Drive between 96th and 85th Street was a problem for Frederick Law Olmstead, who complained in 1858 that the expanse of the Reservoir reduced the park to a “mere passage-way for connection," and it would therefore "be difficult to obtain an agreeable effect in this part of the design.” Landscape architect Samuel Parsons Jr., who refurbished the park from 1903-11, attempted a solution by planting thousands of rhododendrons here, donated by Olivia Slocum Sage, the philanthropist widow of Russell Sage. The original plantings did not last long, but in 2012, the Central Park Conservancy launched a recontruction of Parsons' landscaping. (photo: Gigi NYC)












































Engineers Gate

Engineers Gate One of the original 18 named gates of Central Park; Andrew Haswell Green, on the naming committee, explained that the engineer deserved to be honored because "the highroad, the plankroad, the railroad, the canal, the breakwater, the dock, the tunnel, the viaduct, the aqueduct, and the reservoir are all called into existence by his skill and indomitable perseverance." This location was chosen because of its proximity to the Reservoir, a remarkable engineering feat.

It's also known as the Runners Gate, because this is where the Marathon enters the park for its final leg.

While most of the entrances to the park, in keeping with Olmsted and Vaux's wishes, are simple gaps in the perimeter wall, the Engineers Gate is a striking neo-classical structure, designed by Thomas Hastings (co-architect of the NYPL) and Donn Barber in 1926 as part of the John Purroy Mitchel memorial.

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1148 (corner): This 1923 building by J.E.R. Carpenter, 13 stories tall, successfully fought a 75-foot height limit imposed on Upper Fifth Avenue two days after plans to build it were filed.

Future governor and Republican presidential candidate Thomas Dewey was living here in 1935 when he was made a special prosecutor to target mobsters. Dutch Schultz did not appreciate being targeted, and had a hit man stake out Dewey here in preparation for an assassination. This reckless move prompted Lucky Luciano to have Schultz killed—though Dewey would soon send Luciano himself to Sing Sing.

1140 (corner): A 15-story building in a Renaissance style, built in 1922 by Fred F. French.


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1136 (corner): A 15-story apartment building from 1925, designed by George F. Pelham Jr. 1130 Fifth Avenue

1130 (corner): This neo-Georgian mansion, built in 1915 to a Delano & Aldrich design, was "one of the last grand private homes completed on Fifth Avenue" (All Around the Town). Its original owners were Willard and Dorothy Whitney Straight, wealthy liberals who founded the New Republic and the New School for Social Research. (Willard died in the influenza pandemic while helping to arrange the peace conference in Paris.) In 1927, Dorothy sold the house to Elbert Gary, chair of US Steel and namesake of Gary, Indiana, who died here soon after the purchase.

From 1952-71, it was Audubon House, headquarters of the Audubon Society. The International Center of Photography had a museum here from 1974 to 2000, but sold it to hedge fund chair Bruce Kovner, who turned it back into a private residence—one of only three on Fifth Avenue.


E 94TH ST         ===> E

1125 (corner): This 14-story Italian Renaissance building, put up in 1925 to an Emery Roth design, has been home to numerous celebrities, including Bette Midler, Jon Bon Jovi, Kevin Kline and Phoebe Cates, and Disney chair Bob Iger.




1116-1120 (corner): Jacob Ruppert


E 93RD ST         ===> E

1115 (corner): John O'Hara

The Jewish Museum

Jewish Museum

1109 (corner):


E 92ND ST     ===> E

1107 (corner): Marjorie Merriweather Post, EF Hutton, Gore Vidal NNY

Convent of the Sacred Heart

Convent of the Sacred Heart

1100 (corner): Founded in 1881 by the Catholic Society of the Sacred Heart, it's the oldest private school for girls in the city. It moved here in the 1930s, to a mansion built for financier Otto Kahn in 1918 (co-designed by CPH Gilbert).

Prominent alumni include Stefani Germanotta (later known as Lady Gaga), Broadway star Elaine Stritch and several Kennedys.


E 91ST ST         ===> E

Cooper-Hewitt Museum

Cooper Hewitt Museum

1095 (corner): Andrew Carnegie AATT




Corner (1 E 90th): Otto Kahn NNY


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Fred Lebow Statue





































































































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Church of the Heavenly Rest

1085 (corner): Church of the Heavenly Rest

National Academy of Design




1080 (corner):


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Guggenheim Museum

The Guggenheim

1071 (block):





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Corner (2 E 88th):

1067: Oscar Hammerstein NNY




1060 (corner):


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1056 (corner): Mel Brooks NNY


1054: Bernard Baruch NNY

1050 (corner):


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Corner (2 E 86th): Otto Rank NNY Hector Guimard AATT




1046: Harry Hopkins NNY 1040 Fifth Avenue

1040 (corner): A 17-story apartment building built in 1930; designed by Rosario Candela, it's noted for its picturesque collection of arcades and chimneys on its roof. Its most famous resident was Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, who lived here from 1964 until her death in 1994; from her full-floor 15th floor apartment, she had a view of the Temple of Dendur that she helped bring to New York, and the Reservoir that now bears her name. Other notable residents include fascist-friendly publisher Generoso Pope, Nazi-coddling Gen. Lucius Clay, Vietnam war criminal Robert McNamara and US Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island.

Previously on the lot was the mansion of financier James Clews, as well as that of architect Whitney Warren, co-designer of Grand Central Station.


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Ancient Playground

Osborn Gates

An adventure-style playground designed in 1973 to resemble an ancient city, inspired by the Temple of Dendur. The Osborn Gates feature bronze animals by Paul Manship; they're dedicated to Henry Chuch Osborn, president of the Met.









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Metropolitan Museum of Art

metropolitan museum of art.

(1000 5th Ave): The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City's premier art institution, was incorp- orated in 1870 and moved to this location in 1880. (The city's gift of Central Park's land to the museum is why New Yorkers can pay whatever they wish here.) The original building was designed by Calvert Vaux and Jacob Wrey Mould in a red-brick High Victorian Gothic style, already seen as dated at the time. This became the rear central portion of the museum, engulfed by the Beaux Arts facade now associated with the Met, which was designed by Richard Morris Hunt and completed in 1902 by his son, Richard Howland Hunt, and George B. Post. Metropolitan Museum of Art, cornice

The facade sculpture by Karl Bitter includes caryatids representing Sculpture, Painting, Architecture and Music, as well as portraits of the artists Bramante, Michelangelo, Raphael, Dürer, Rembrandt and Velázquez. The blocks of stone atop the pillars were intended to become representations of Egyptian, Greek, Renaissance and Modern art, but were left unfinished for financial reasons.

The north and south wings were added by Charles Follen McKim from 1906-18. The Modernist rear wings were added by Kevin Roche from 1978-87. JOHANNES VERMEER

Among the masterpieces in the Met's collection are Vincent Van Gogh's Wheat Field With Cypresses, El Greco's View of Toledo, Rembrandt's Aristotle Contemplating a Bust of Homer, Vermeer's Young Woman With a Water Pitcher, Picasso's Gertrude Stein, Emanuel Leutze's Washington Crossing the Delaware, John Singer Sargent's Madame X, Breugel's The Harvesters, Valasquez's Juan de Pareja and Jacques Louis David's Death of Socrates. NYC: Metropolitan Museum of Art - Sackler Wing - Temple of Dendur

The 2,000-year-old Temple of Dendur, rescued from the rising waters of the Aswan Dam and relocated here in 1963, is the only complete Egyptian temple in the Western Hemisphere. It's housed in the Sackler Wing, named for the family that played a major role in the opioid crisis that has killed hundreds of thousands of Americans. Period Room: Bedroom from Sagredo Palace, Venice, 18th century (ca. 1718)

The Period Rooms, featuring complete interiors from various eras, were used as a hiding place by the kids in From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. The title character in 1999's The Thomas Crown Affair plots an art theft at the Met, while the crew in Ocean's 8 runs a jewelry heist at the Temple of Dendur—which is also featured in When Harry Met Sally and 2007's I Am Legend.

On February 4, 1963, the Met welcomed its most famous visitor — the Mona Lisa, loaned to the US by special request of First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy. After a million art lovers paid their respects, the painting went back to France on March 7 and hasn't left to Louvre since. Fragment of Alexander I Fragment of a monumental statue of Alexander the Great.











Tiffany Grapes Grapevines by Tiffany.




Saint Jerome El Greco's Saint Jerome.















Perseus With Medusa's Head Perseus with the head of Medusa—by Antonio Canova.










Diana August Saint-Gaudens' Diana, formerly atop Madison Square Garden (when it was on Madison Square).





NYC - Metropolitan Museum of Art: Armor for Man and Horse

The Met's extensive collection of armor includes a suit made for Henry VIII.





Hatshepsut Pharaoh Hatshepsut, stepmother of the pharaoh to whom the Obelisk is dedicated.











Slapend meisje, 1656, Vermeer Among the Met's European paintings are one-seventh of all the Vermeers in existence.









Friedman Playground

Three Bears

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1020 (corner): Barbara Hutton NNY


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1016 (corner): Stella Adler NNY


































Goethe Institute










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1010 (corner): Wendell Wilkie NNY








































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995 (corner): Charlie Parker NNY; Stanhope Park Hyatt

993: George M. Cohan NNY

American Irish Historical Society

990 (corner): Frank Woolworth Barbara Hutton NNY


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Corner (2 E 80th): Barbara Hutton AATT





























985: This was the address of a house built in 1907 by Isaac Brokaw for one of his sons, in the style of his own home.

984 (corner): Another Brokaw house in a similar style for a different son was built here in 1907.

Corner (1 E 79th): This was the home of garment manufacturer Isaac Brokaw, built in 1888 in French Renaissance style—featuring turrets, gables and almost a moat. This style came to be known as the Fifth Avenue style.


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Miner's Gate























































































































































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Corner (2 E 79th): Five-story townhouse built in 1899 to a C.P.H. Gilbert design; decorated with sea life. First owner was coal tar magnate Isaac Fletcher; after he died in 1917, it was bought by Harry Sinclair of Sinclair Oil, who spent a year in prison in connection with the Teapot Dome scandal. In 1930, the house was bought by Augustus van Horne Stuyvesant, the last patrilineal descendant of Peter Stuyvesant. Two years after his death in 1953, it became headquarters of the Ukrainian Society. Payne Whitney House

972: John Hay Whitney NNY Originally Payne and Helen Hay Whitney House/and originally Henry Cook House/now Cultural Services, Embassy of France, 1902-1909. Stanford White of McKim, Mead & White.




Corner (1 W 78th): Duke House -- now NYU's


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962: The address of the William Clark House, an ornate Beaux-Arts mansion designed by Lord, Hewlett & Hull for William Clark, a former senator from Montana who was at first denied a seat because he had bribed state legislators to get it. "I never bought a man who wasn't for sale," he insisted. The house was torn down in 1927 to make way for... 960 Fifth Avenue

960 (corner): This luxury apartment building, 15 stories completed in 1928 by Warren & Wetmore with assistance Rosario Candela, is considered one of the three finest residences on Fifth Avenue. Time founder Henry Luce and his wife Clare Boothe Luce were living here until his death in 1967. Other notable former residents include billionaire Edgar Bronfman, suspected murdered Claus Von Bulow and poet Louis Untermeyer.


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940 (corner): Commonwealth Fund


E 75TH ST         ===> E

French Consulate General

French Consulate

934: This Italian Renaissance townhouse was built in 1926 for Charles E. Mitchell, president of National City Bank. His architects were Walker & Gillette, who also designed Rye Playland. Mitchell was a pioneer in retail banking and an informal advisor to presidents Harding and Hoover. His wife Elizabeth hosted musical evenings here with musical stars, most notably George Gershwin. Ruined by the stock market crash and subsequent investigations into financial irregularities, Mitchell was forced to sell the house in 1933. The French government bought it in 1942 to serve as consulate.





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926: Both 1899. Both by C.P.H. Gilbert.

925: Originally John W. Simpson House/formerly Mary E. W. Terrell House, 925 Fifth Ave., bet E.73rd and E.74th Sts.

923 (corner): Pulitzer Mansion


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912: Arnold Rothstein NNY


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Inventor's Gate

Statue of Samuel Morse




East 72nd Street Playground




William Morris Hunt Memorial









Central Park, New York by  Mathew Knott, on Flickr











Fifth Avenue/Central Park by edenpictures, on Flickr












Dene Shelter

This rustic structure visible from 5th Avenue sits atop Dene Rock and overlooks The Dene, a winding valley laid out by Olmsted that connects the Children's Zoo to East Green.

107th Infantry Memorial

107th Infantry memorial by angermann, on Flickr

A powerful sculpture, completed in 1927, featuring seven U.S. soldiers fighting in World War I. The sculptor, Karl Illava, was himself a sergeant in the 107th and able to depict the trauma of war from first-hand experience.

The 107th descends from a New York State Militia unit formed in 1806 in 107th Infantry Memorial II by edenpictures, on Flickr response to skirmishes with the British Navy off the coast of Sandy Hook. As the 7th Regiment, it helped to put down the Astor Place Riot in 1849, the Dead Rabbits and Bowery Boys in 1857 and the Draft Riots in 1863. Known as the Silk Stocking Regiment because of its ties to New York's social elite, it was based at the impressive Park Avenue Armory.




Billy Johnson Playground

Also known as the Rustic Playground, it features play equipment made of wood and other natural materials, as well as a 45-foot slide coming down off Dene Rock.


















Students' Gate

One of the 22 named entrances to Central Park—or is it?





























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Frick Collection







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884 (corner): A 13-story building, built in 1927, by the master of apartment design, Rosario Candela. AKA 2 East 70th Street. The penthouse here sold for $40 million in 2012.

880 (corner): There are 162 residential units in this 20-story Art Deco building from 1948, designed by Emery Roth and 880 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr built by the Uris brothers. Residents have included Mitch Leigh, who wrote the music for Man of La Mancha and the Sara Lee jingle, and John Hertz, founder of the rental car company. Earlier on this site was the home of railroad magnate Edward H. Harriman.


E 69TH ST         ===> E

875 (corner): A 19-story apartment building from 1941, designed by Emery Roth in the Moderne style. Three mansions were knocked down to build it, including the home of Ogden Mills, Herbert Hoover's last Treasury secretary, designed by Roth's mentor, Richard Hunt. Among the notables who have lived here are Phil Donahue and Marlo Thomas.

871: Site of the home of Stanford White in the Gout Rothschild style, including the installation of a 60-foot 870 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr ballroom from a French chateau. Gertrude was a sculptor and the founder of the Whitney Museum.

870 (corner): A 21-floor beige-brick building with curved bays, designed by William I. Hohauser and built in 1949.


E 68TH ST         ===> E

860 (corner): This 20-story 1950 co-op, designed by Sylvan Bien, sits on the site of an 1895 mansion designed by William Schickel for cable car and tobacco magnate Thomas Fortune Ryan, as well as a R.H. Robertson house designed for subway financier Charles Yerkes (replaced by a garden by the time the present building came along).

857 (corner): Described by critic Carter Horsley as 857 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr "one of the city's most stylish white-brick apartment buildings"—which sounds like damning with faint praise--this 1963 building has 21 stories but only 17 apartments. It was designed by Robert Bien, whose father Sylvan designed the building taking up the rest of the block.


E 67TH ST         ===> E

Future Prime Minister Winston Churchill looked the wrong way before stepping into the street at this intersection on December 11, 1931. The car that hit him broke two of his ribs.

Corner (2 E 67th): This 13-story Rosario Candela building went up in 1926 on the site of Temple Beth-El, an 1891 synagogue designed by Brunner & Tryon that merged with Temple Emanu-El. It's home to New York Observer founder Arthur Carter, cosmetics billionaire Leonard Lauder and Loews Hotels CEO Jonathan Tisch, who paid $48 million for an apartment here in 2008.

Serbian Mission

Serbian Mission by edenpictures, on Flickr

854: This Beaux Arts townhouse, a survivor of what was once a row of mansions along Fifth Avenue, was built in 1905 for R. Livingston Beeckman (later governor of Rhode Island) to a design by Warren & Wetmore, architects of Grand Central Terminal.

It was bought by the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1946 to serve as its permanent mission to the UN; the mission was more permanent than the multiethnic nation, which was whittled down to just Serbia by 2006. A 1975 bombing broke windows in the mission; the perpetrator, Serbian nationalist Bosko Radonjic, became leader of the Irish-American crime gang The Westies after being released from prison in 1982. 1 East 66th Street by edenpictures, on Flickr

Corner (1 E 66th): This 19-story Rosario Candela apartment building was one of the architect's last, built in 1948. Vera Tucker, who lived here more than half a century, made headlines in 1986 when, as an 87-year-old, she knocked a pursesnatcher off his bicycle here by whacking him with her umbrella.

Previously on this was the mansion of Henry Havemeyer, founder of Domino Sugar, who with his wife Louisine amassed an amazing art collection, featuring important works by the likes of Rembrandt, El Greco, Manet, Degas and Monet (many of which ended up in the Met). The house where these were displayed was itself a masterpiece, with an interior designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany. It was torn down in 1930, a year after Louisine's death.


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Children's Zoo

IMG_4563 by holycalamity, on Flickr

The petting zoo portion of the Central Park Zoo, featuring rabbits, ducks, sheep, goats, llamas, etc. Opened in 1961, its sculpted gates featuring a boy dancing with goats were designed by Paul Manship, who did Rockefeller Center's Prometheus. It's formally known as the Tisch Children's Zoo, for media mogul Laurence Tisch, who gave $4.5 million to complete a 1997 renovation after Edith and Henry Everett, reneged on their promise to fund the project, upset that their names on the zoo wouldn't be in big enough type.









trio by peyri, on Flickr



































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4 East 66th Street by edenpictures, on Flickr

845 (corner): This 12-story apartment building, designed by James E.R. Carpenter and put up in 1920, started the midrise multi-unit boom on Fifth Avenue. It ruffled feathers by overshadowing the Astor mansion next door, resulting in a 75-foot height limit for buildings on the avenue from 60th to 96th Street--a restriction that lasted only until 1923. The buildings wealthy inhabitants have included oil baron Sid Bass, Bear Stearns CEO Ace Greenberg and Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, who bought both the entire 11th floor and the 12th floor penthouse.

Temple Emanu-El

Temple Emanu-El by joshbousel,  on Flickr

840 (corner): The Congregation Emanu-El ("God Is With Us") was founded by German immigrants on the Lower East Side in 1845, occupying synagogues on Chrystie Street, East 12th Street and Temple Emanu-El (5th Ave - New York) by joshbousel,  on Flickr East 43rd Street before moving here in 1929, merging with Temple Beth-El. Emanu-El, an influential Reform congregation, introduced such innovations as the use of vernacular language, the introduction of music to accompany services and the end of gender segregation.

The present building, designed by Robert Kohn, Temple Emanu-El by joshbousel,  on Flickr seats 2,500, making it the largest synagogue in the world. Also on the grounds is Chapel Beth-El, commemorating the co-parent congregation.

This was formerly the site of the mansion of Caroline Schermerhorn Astor, built in 1893 to a French chateau–inspired design by Richard Morris Hunt.


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The echo-y archway connecting the Central Park Zoo to the Children's Zoo is named the Denesmouth Arch.

Delacorte Music Clock

Untitled by Cresny,  on Flickr

Every half hour from 8 am until 5 pm, the bronze animals on this musical clock whirl into action, playing one of the 44 songs in their repertoire. The clock was a gift from George Delacorte, founder of Dell Publishing, who also gave Central Park the Delacorte Theater and the Alice in Wonderland statue. Andrea Spadini was the sculptor.

Central Park Zoo

Central Park Zoo by La Citta Vita,  on Flickr

The zoo dates back to the earliest days of the park, when people used to donate miscellaneous animals which were displayed near the Mall. It was chartered by the New York Assembly in 1864, making it the second-oldest public zoo in the country (after Philadelphia's), and the oldest zoo in New York.

In 1865, around the time it acquired a trio of Cape buffalo General William Sherman had picked up during his march through Georgia, the menagerie was moved to the Arsenal. Against the opposition of Central Park architects Olmsted and Vaux, permanent enclosures were built on the site of the present Zoo in 1870. DSC01097  by Fenix_21,  on Flickr

In 1934, new enclosures for the animals were designed by Aymar Embury, who designed hundreds of projects for Robert Moses. Some of his neo-Georgian brick and limestone buildings, arranged in a quadrangle around the sea lion tank, still remain, but the depressing menagerie-style cages were eliminated in a 1988 redesign by Kevin Roche, Dinkeloo, after the New York Zoological Society took over the facility. Lounging polar bear by ericskiff,  on Flickr

The zoo's best-known resident was Gus the polar bear, whose psychological issues stemming from captivity, and his keepers' efforts to treat his neuroses, made him his species' most famous individual--the subject of books, a play, even a song by The Tragically Hip. He died in 2013, at the advanced age of 27, one of very few bears to get a New York Times obituary. His enclosure now holds grizzly bears, who seem to fare better in captivity. Central Park Zoo by Alexandra Tinder,  on Flickr

Other zoo notables include Roy and Silo, a same-sex chinstrap penguin couple. (They have since broken up.) Also on view are sea lions, snow monkeys, red panda and dozens of species in an indoor rainforest. Since 2009, the zoo has been home to three rare snow leopards.

A perfect symbol of wildness captured by civilization, the zoo features in such films as Madagascar, The Day After Tomorrow, Jack Nicholson's Wolf and Woody Allen's Alice; books like Mr. Popper's Penguins and Catcher in the Rye; and the Simon & Garfunkel song "At the Zoo."



















Children's Gate

The Arsenal

One of only two buildings in Central Park that are older than the park itself, The Arsenal was, as its name suggests, originally used to store arms for the New York State National Guard. It replaced a former repository located in what's now Madison Square Park; it was constructed between 1847 and 1851 in a project overseen by state comptroller Millard Fillmore, who later became president. It was designed by architect Martin E. Thompson to look like a medieval fortress, with a crenulated cornice.

In 1857, it was bought by the city and turned into an administrative office and police station for the nascent park. In 1859, it began to accumulate a collection of animals donated by notables like P.T. Barnum, Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman and August Belmont--a menagerie that was evicted in 1871 as unsafe and smelly.

From 1869 to 1877, it was a temporary home for the American Museum of Natural History, as well as a dinosaur reconstruction studio. It also served as an art gallery and the site of Central Park's weather station, relocated to Belvedere Castle in 1918.





























Wien Walk

Portrait of a Girl by ~W~,  on Flickr Entering the park from Freedman Plaza, you will find many sketch artists and a few puppeteers or balloon animal makers. There used to be more masseuses.

It's named for Lawrence Wien, a real estate lawyer who once owned the Empire State Building and the Plaza Hotel. He gave millions of dollars to Central Park and other nonprofit causes, particularly Columbia University.











Freedman Plaza

Living Sculpture I by edenpictures, on Flickr

Doris Freedman, the plaza's namesake, was the city's first director of cultural affairs, the founder of the Public Arts Council and president of the Municipal Arts Society. Appropriately enough, her plaza is home to a series of temporary sculptural installations.

Scholar's Gate

This entrance to the park is The Scholar's Gate—because the NYPL is 17 blocks south? It was intended to be and is the busiest entrance to the park.

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838 (corner): Built in 1950 as an 11-story office building for the Union of American Hebrew Congregations--which explains why it has "Love Thy Neighbor as Thyself" inscribed across its facade. It gained a story when it was converted into a condo building in 1999. Seagram co-chair Charles Bronfman bought a penthouse here at the time for $18 million. Fifth Avenue Skyline

834 (corner): This 16-story Rosario Candela apartment building, completed in 1931, has been called "the most pedigreed building on the snobbiest street in the country's most real estate-obsessed city." Residents have included 834 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr Laurance Rockefeller, John Delorean, Harold Prince, Henry Kravis, Robert Wood Johnson, Charles Schwab, Elizabeth Arden and Robert Bass. In 2005, Rupert Murdoch bought the penthouse form Laurance Rockefeller for $44 million, the most ever paid for a co-op apartment.


E 64TH ST         ===> E

828 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr

828 (corner): Built 1893–1902 for Edward Berwind, then the world's richest coal tycoon. His house later served as Institute of Aeronautical Sciences before becoming an apartment building in the 1970s, when it became home to disco queen Donna Summer and feminist sex writer Shere Hite.

820 (corner): A 1916 apartment building by Starrett & Van Vleck. The AIA Guide calls this and its southern neighbor "two of the great eclectic apartment houses of New York." Former New York governor 820 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr and defeated presidential candidate Al Smith lived here from the late 1930s until his death in 1944. Herbert Lehman, New York governor from 1933-42, made this his home-away-from-Albany. CBS founder William Paley was a 25-year resident when he died in his 20-room duplex here in 1990. Other residents have included ballroom dancer Arthur Murray and designer Tommy Hilfiger.


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817 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr

817 (corner): A George B. Post condo building from 1925. Cranky millionaire Abe Hirschfeld tried to sell his apartment here to ex-President Richard Nixon in 1979; when other residents blocked the sale, Hirschfeld kept Nixon's $92,500 deposit. Among those who did get approved were casino billionaire Steve Wynn and actor Richard Gere. In the film Scent of a Woman, Al Pacino visits a lady friend here.

814: Sleazy financier Serge Rubinstein was found strangled to death in his mansion that used to be here on January 27, 1955. The murder was never solved; it's said that the victim was hated by so many that the police had trouble narrowing down to a single suspect.

812: Nelson Rockefeller lived in a triplex here with his second wife, Happy, from 1963 (when this 19-story building was new) until his death in 1979.

810 (corner): Nelson Rockefeller and his first wife Mary moved here in 1931 and were living here when he became governor in 1958. He moved out in 1961 when he fell in love 810 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr with Margaretta "Happy" Murphy, who would become his second wife. Richard Nixon moved here in 1963 after losing his bid to be governor of California and declaring that we wouldn't have Nixon to kick around anymore. He moved from here to the White House after winning the election of 1968.


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Knickerbocker Club

NYC - UES: Knickerbocker Club by wallyg, on Flickr

Corner (2 E 62nd): A Georgian revival clubhouse completed in 1915; Delano & Aldrich, architects. The club was founded in 1871 by former members of the Union Club who felt their old club's admission standards were slipping. Franklin Roosevelt and David Rockefeller were members; JP Morgan quit to form the Metropolitan Club when a friend he sponsored was blackballed. 800 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr

800 (corner): This 1978 33-story apartment building was designed by Ulrich Franzen & Associates to match the height of the Knickerbocker Club with a three-story limestone screen wall facing the avenue. Singer Dolly Parton, designer Pierre Cardin, and Donald and Ivana Trump have called this home.

The building replaced the neo-Georgian townhouse of Geraldine Rockefeller Dodge, a Standard Oil heiress who married into the Phelps Dodge and Remington Arms fortunes. Torn down in 1977.


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Hotel Pierre

Hotel Pierre by edenpictures, on Flickr

795 (corner): A slender 41-story tower built in 1930 for acclaimed chef Charles Pierre, whose restaurant had just been replaced by the New York Central Building. The hotel didn't take off, however, until it was bought in 1938 by millionaire J. Paul Getty, whose "smart set" friends began staying here.

French director Rene Clair moved here when he fled the Nazi invasion in 1940; Barbara Stanwyck and Robert Taylor lived here when they were married in the 1940s. NYC - UES: Hotel Pierre by wallyg, on Flickr

Dashiell Hammett started writing The Thin Man here; he checked out without paying his bill, wearing all his clothes. John O'Hara wrote his first "Pal Joey" story here, after telling his wife he was going to Philadelphia and instead going on a two-day binge at the Pierre.

Woolworth's heiress Barbara Hutton had a suite, leading striking clerks to picket the hotel, chanting, "Is 18 dollars a week too much?" Other notable guests and residents: Jimmy Stewart, Audrey Hepburn, Tom Jones, Claire Trevor and Charles Bronson.

On January 2, 1972, armed robbers took over the hotel to rob its safety deposit boxes of as many as $10 million in jewels. Two of the crooks were soon caught; the rest got away with the bulk of the loot.

Al Pacino, Robert Redford, Lee Iacocca and George Steinbrenner were a few of the devoted customers of the hotel barber, Gio Hernandez, who died in 1989.

On Mad Men, the relaunched Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce ad agency temporily does business out of a suite here.

Metropolitan Club

New York City day trip, Dec 6, 2008 by flickr4jazz, on Flickr

Corner (1 E 60th): A club founded in 1891 for the rich and powerful who weren't yet blue-blooded enough for older, snootier clubs, with J.P. Morgan as its first president and Cornelius and William K. Vanderbilt among its original members. The clubhouse was built in 1894, designed by Stanford White, with an east wing with a majestic semicircular gateway added in 1912.


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Grand Army Plaza

grand army by serhio, on Flickr

This plaza, technically a part of Central Park but really a distinct entity, is bifurcated by Central Park South, a layout inspired by Paris' Place de la Concorde. It honors the Grand Army of the Republic, the powerful post–Civil War veteran's organization, comparable to the American Legion.


























NYC - Grand Army Plaza: Sherman Monument by wallyg, on Flickr The northern half of the plaza is dominated by Augustus St. Gaudens' gilded statue of Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman, who marched through Georgia and declared that "war is Hell." The female figure leading Sherman, said to represent Peace, is modeled on St. Gaudens' mistress Davida Johnson.

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Parc V Apartments by edenpictures, on Flickr

787 (corner): A 10-story luxury apartment building, built in 1903 to a Henry J. Hardenbergh design, was torn down and replaced by...

785 (corner): Parc V Apartments, 18 white-brick stories designed by Emery Roth & Sons and completed in 1963. "Would be unattractive even in a slum"--City Review. Nevertheless, it's been home to billionaire David Geffen.

Sherry-Netherland Hotel

The Sherry-Netherland Hotel at night by tomdz, on Flickr

781 (corner): Opened in 1927 by ice cream magnate Louis Sherry and Waldorf-Astoria manager Lucius Boomer. The 38-story building was designed by Schultze & Weaver (who also did the Waldorf-Astoria) in a neo-Romanesque/ Renaissance style with Gothic touches, including griffons guarding the front entrance. The lobby was modeled after the Vatican Library and includes friezes salvaged from Cornelius Vanderbilt's mansion. Guests included Looking Up Fifth by Vidiot, on Flickr many show biz notables like George Burns, Danny Kaye, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr. and Diana Ross; Francis Ford Coppola lived here long enough to make it his daughter Sophia Coppola's childhood home, as depicted in New York Stories.

Stock market speculator Jesse Livermore, one of the few to make money in the Crash of 1929, shot himself outside the men's room here on November 28, 1940.

Cipriani's is the restaurant here, founded by Harry Cipriani and patterned after his Harry's Bar in Venice. Also in the hotel since 1961 is A La Vieille Russie, an antique business founded in 1851 with a specialty in Faberge eggs (Malcolm Forbes was a frequent customer), and Dominico Vacca, men's clothing.


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On July 28, 1917, the NAACP led a silent march from here down Fifth Avenue in protest of lynching; it's sometimes considered the first civil rights march.

Since the early 1990s, this has been where the Gay Pride Parade starts; it used to march uptown from Greenwich Village, until they figured out the Village was a better place to end up for celebrating.

West:

Pulitzer Fountain

NYC - Grand Army Plaza by wallyg, on Flickr The southern half of Grand Army Plaza is centered on this fountain, into which F. Scott Fitzgerald once jumped "just out of sheer joy," It was funded by the will of publisher Joseph Pulitzer --a beyond-the-grave challenge to his rival William Randolph Hearst, who had underwritten Columbus Circle's Maine Memorial. The statue in the fountain is NYC: Grand Army Plaza - Pulitzer Fountain by wallyg, on Flickr Karl Bitter's Abundance, featuring the Roman goddess Pomona. Bitter, who had promoted the Place de la Concorde as a pattern for the Plaza, finished the clay model for the sculpture the same day he was fatally struck by a car outside the Metropolitan Opera House.

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General Motors Building

Apple Store Fifth Avenue by Wysz, on Flickr

767 (block): This was the site of the Savoy Plaza Hotel, an elegant skyscraper hotel from 1892 that was home to Trader Vic's. The 50-story white-marble office tower that Edward Durell Stone designed for the car maker, completed in 1968, contrasts starkly with the decidedly non-Modern look of most of its neighbors. From 1986 to 2015, the north lobby was home to the beloved toy store FAO Schwarz, where Tom Hanks frolicked in Big. More recently the once-sunken plaza here is the glass-cubed entrance to the 24-hour Apple Store, occupying a space that was once the car-themed Autopub. CBS's Early Show is also based here.


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Bergdorf Goodman

754 (corner): Starting out as the tailor shop where Edwin Goodman went to work in 1899 for Herman Bergdorf, the fashionable department store moved here in 1928. The building was originally designed as a series of shops by Buchman & Kahn; Bergdorf Goodman on 5th by zio Paolino, on Flickr Bergdorf Goodman, one of the original tenants, eventually bought and expanded into the whole set except for the Van Cleef & Arpels store at the southern end of the block. The penthouse atop the store, once the Goodman family's private residence, was converted to a spa in 1997, not long after the store was bought out by Neiman Marcus.

744 (corner): Van Cleef & Arpels by Sinbadblue Kong, on Flickr
Van Cleef & Arpels jewelry store was built on the site of the mansion of Cornelius Vanderbilt II, designed by George B. Post and built from 1882-94; it was demolished in 1927 to make way for the row of shops. (Its gate was salvaged and placed at Central Park's 103rd Street entrance.) This Cornelius was the grandson and namesake of Commodore Vanderbilt, the railroad tycoon.

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Old Squibb Building

745 (corner): This 1930 office tower designed by Eli Jacques Kahn, replaced part of Marble Row, a string of white marble buildings built by Mary Mason Jones, Edith Wharton's great-aunt, who appears in The Age of Innocence as Mrs. Mingott. When Marble Row was built, in 1867-69, the neighborhood was largely unpopulated, and the white marble material flew in the face of the ubiquitous fashion for brownstone. Though the houses have all been torn down--this end of the block went in 1929--they still echo in the white and/or marble used in their replacements and in surrounding buildings.

The street-level facade here, unfortunately, was redone in colored marble in 1988--originally to honor Kahn's supposed original intentions, thwarted by Depression Era cutbacks, then, when it turned out Kahn very much wanted a white building here, just because the owners didn't like white marble.

The lobby features a ceiling mural by Arthur Covey featuring stylized airplanes flying over Manhattan.

The Squibb Building was for many years home to the magical toy store F.A.O. Schwartz, which later moved next door, and now houses Bergdorf Goodman's Men's Store.

743: Gilan jewelry




LV by reflexer, on Flickr

Corner (1 E 57th): Louis Vuitton is on the site of Mary Mason Jones' own home on Marble Row. It was replaced in 1931 with the New York Trust Co. Building, by Cross & Cross, which followed the white-marble tradition that Jones had set. From 1993-2001, this was home to the whimsical Warner Brothers Store. The handbag company came in with a remodeling that replaced much of the white marble with a glossy green plastic-like substance. "Every dog and every cat and every people has Louis Vuitton" --Shonen Knife.


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Crown Building

Crown Building by elPadawan, on Flickr

730 (corner): Built in 1921 as the Heckscher Building to a Warren & Wetmore design, it was one of the first office towers put up after the 1916 Zoning Resolution, which mandated setbacks. Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos secretly bought the building in 1981. The Museum of Modern Art's first home was here on the 12th floor; its Modern Architecture--International Exhibition show in 1932, curated by Philip Johnson, New York. Fifth Avenue. Building by Tomás Fano, on Flickr established the International Style as the reigning architectural fashion. The American Mercury, edited by H.L. Mencken and George Jean Nathan, opened here in 1923. Now houses the jewelry stores Bulgari (in the space that used to be I. Miller), Piaget and Mikimoto, as well as Playboy Enterprises.
























724: Prada opened this four-level store in 1998 in an effort to sell its elite brand to the hoi polloi. There used to be a 24-hour branch of the pancake chain Childs here, which featured "evening togs by the cab-load," according to 1931's New York After Dark. DSC05584 by Kramchang, on Flickr

720 (corner): Abercrombie & Fitch, a four-story flagship opened in 2005. Before being repositioned as a "casual luxury" brand noted for its scantily clad young models in 1988, it was a sporting goods store, founded in 1892, that provisioned the likes of Teddy Roosevelt, Amelia Earhardt and Ernest Shackleton. Ernest Hemingway is said to have bought the gun he killed himself with from Abercrombie & Fitch.

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Tiffany & Co.

Tiffany's on Fifth Avenue by hotdogger13, on Flickr

727 (corner): Where Holly Golightly has breakfast. Tiffany & Co. was founded as a stationery store in 1832 by Charles Lewis Tiffany (and co.); by 1853 it had become the noted jewelry store that it is today. On Charles' death in 1902, his son, the glass artist Louis Comfort Tiffany, became the firm's artistic director. Tiffany's is largely responsible for establishing the carat as the standard unit of measurement for diamond size. Tiffany, 5th Avenue by Agatha & Andrew Mleczko, on Flickr

The company moved here in 1940 to a not particularly distinguished building by Cross & Cross. It replaced the Collis P. Huntington mansion, built 1892 to a George B. Post design. Tiffany's by warsze, on Flickr The nine-foot Atlas holding a clock above the entrance has graced Tiffany's main store since 1853; it's wood painted to look like bronze, made by a sculptor of ship figureheads.

Previously on this site lived Cole Porter with his wife Linda Lee Thomas.

Menken's, the fictional department store on the show Mad Men, was located on 5th Avenue next to Tiffany's.

Trump Tower

New York 2008-12-03 17.18.20 IMG_0707 by mnbf9rca, on Flickr

721 (corner): A 68-story bronze-glass residential tower with a saw-toothed facade designed to create as many "corner" apartments as possible. Completed in 1983, it's been home to stars and celebs like Johnny Carson, Steven Spielberg, Dick Clark, Sophia Loren, Fay Wray, Paul Anka, Pia Zadora, Martina Navratilova and Andrew Lloyd Webber. Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley had their honeymoon here. Featured in The Devil's Advocate, I'll Take Manhattan and Spider-Man. Gucci on 5th by zio Paolino, on Flickr Gucci's flagship superstore moved here in 2008.

Formerly on the site was Bonwit Teller, department store founded in 1897 and moved here in 1930, to an Art Deco store designed by Warren & Wetmore and almost immediately redesigned by Eli Jacques Kahn. Surrealist Salvador Dali smashed the window here on March 15, 1939, furious that the store had altered the display he had designed. The company folded not longer after Trump forced one last move. On Mad Men, Joan worked as a manager here after leaving the ad agency.


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Harry Winston

I weep when Harry Winston is closed too! by Corey Ann, on Flickr

718 (corner): A prestigious jewelry firm established in 1932. Winston owned the Hope Diamond for 10 years, then donated it to the Smithsonian. He cut the 69-carat diamond that Richard Burton gave to Elizabeth Taylor in 1969. Marilyn Monroe exclaims in "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend," "Talk to me, Harry Winston, tell me all about it." Edward Norton sings to Natasha Lyonne here in Everyone Says I Love You.

Henri Bendel

Henri Bendel ceiling by misocrazy, on Flickr

714: This half of the famed store (the "Bendel bonnet" was immortalized in "You're the Top") was the Rizzoli Building, built in 1909. The store, founded in 1896, moved here in 1990.

712: Also part of Bendel's is the Coty Building (Woodruff Leeming, 1909), whose sparkling glass was installed in 1912 by Rene Lalique and rediscovered when Bendel moved in. A 52-story office tower was added on top in 1990.

Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church

Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church (5th Ave - New York) by scalleja, on Flickr

Corner (7 W 55th): The congregation moved here from 19th Street in 1875. The brownstone neo-Gothic structure was designed by Carl Pfeiffer. Rev. Dr. John Bonnell, the pastor here from 1935 to 1962, introduced Dial-a-Prayer.

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719: George Gustave Heye lived at this defunct address; his collections became the core of the Museum of the American Indian.

Corning Glass Building

717 (corner): Mirrored green glass tower is a 1959 design by Harrison & Abromowitz & Abbe, the first glass-walled building on Fifth Avenue. The distinguished entrance was a 1994 remodeling by Gwathmey/Siegel. The Hugo Boss clothing store is here, replacing a Steuben glass store (a division of Corning).









715: Escada clothing














711 (corner): A graceful 1927 office building, once known as the Columbia Pictures Building and later as the Coca-Cola Building. (Coke until recently had a retail space on the ground floor and I believe still has offices upstairs.) Mickey Mouse on Fifth Avenue by Bobcatnorth, on Flickr The Disney Store opened in 1996, taking the space that used to be the Cote Basque, and is now one of the few remnants of some 800 stores Disney once owned. Alfred Dunhill clothing is also here.


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The Peninsula

NYC: The Peninsula by wallyg, on Flickr

700 (corner): The 23-story Beaux Arts hotel was built in 1905 as the Hotel Gotham--and bankrupted in 1908 because it was too close to the Presbyterian church to sell liquor. (The laws have since been reinterpreted.) Damon Runyon, Tallulah Bankhead and Alexander Woolcott all stayed here. Redesigned in 1987 by Pierre Cardin; renamed the Peninsula New York in 1988. Wempe jewelry, Sergio Rossi clothing and Lindt Chocolatier are on the ground floor.

































684: Florence Adele Vanderbilt and husband Hamilton McKown Twombly lived in a mansion built here for them by her father William Henry Vanderbilt.

University Club

NYC - University Club by wallyg, on Flickr

Corner (1 W 54th): A 10-story "Florentine super-pallazo beyond the Medicis' wildest dreams" (AIA Guide), designed by Charles McKim, a member (along with Meade and White). 1899. The City Review calls it "the city's grandest clubhouse." The club was founded in 1865 to promote art and literature; members were required to have college degrees, hence the name. Women were not admitted until 1987.

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St. Regis Hotel

St. Regis Bar - Manhattan - Maxfield Parrish Mural - Old King Cole  by Al_HikesAZ, on Flickr

703 (corner): Built in 1904, designed by Trowbridge & Livingstone, and named for St. Regis Lake, an Adirondacks resort. One of the city's most elegant hotels, it may have been the first in the world to be air-conditioned, and originally boasted 47 Steinway pianos. The hotel's King Cole Bar is named for its Maxfield Parrish mural, moved here from the bar of the same name in the old Knickerbocker Hotel. This bar introduced the Bloody Mary to America. The hotel was formerly home to the Seaglades and La Maisonette nightclubs. The St. Regis Hotel (2 E 55th St at 5th Ave - New York) by scalleja, on Flickr

Among the St. Regis' many famous guests and residents are Joseph Pulitzer, John Jacob Astor, Ernest Hemingway, Salvador Dali, John Lennon, Yoko Ono, Alfred Hitchcock, Rex Harrison, Humphrey Bogart, John Huston and Marlene Dietrich. Diana Vreeland was "discovered" in the hotel's ballroom and made a fashion columnist for Harper's Bazaar. When Marilyn Monroe stayed here during the filming of The Seven Year Itch, her fight with soon-to-be ex-husband Joe DiMaggio over the famous subway grate scene reportly woke up the whole floor.

Robert De Niro picks up Cybill Shepherd here in Taxi Driver; Mia Farrow is a cigarette girl here in Radio Days; Michael Caine and Barbara Hershey tryst here in Hannah and Her Sisters.

DeBeers, the most powerful diamond company in the world, has a store on the ground floor.

701: Pucci clothing

697-699: Bottega Veneta handbags Takashimaya Building, NY by VSmithUK, on Flickr

693: Takashimaya, fascinating Japanese department store--founded 1831 as a Kyoto kimono store, on 5th Avenue since 1958, here since 1993, when "the best Post-Modern building in the city" was built for it by John Burgee with Philip Johnson.

Aeolian Building

691: Elizabeth Arden salon is in this 14-story Warren & Wetmore building, built in 1926 for the piano company. Arden and her red door have been here since 1930.

689 (corner): Zara clothing is also in the Aeolian Building, in a space tastefully redesigned in 1970 for Gucci.


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684 (corner): William Henry Vanderbilt built a pair of mansions here in 1879, both designed by John Butler Snook. The one at this corner was built for his daughter Florence and her husband Hamilton Twombly.

680: Florence's sister Eliza (Lila) and her husband William Seward Webb got this mansion. The address, now the corner, is today Buchman Tower.

St. Thomas Church

NYC: Saint Thomas Church by wallyg, on Flickr

Corner: The Episcopal congregation, established in 1823, moved here from Broadway and Houston in 1870. The original church on this site was designed by Richard Upjohn in the Gothic style. After a fire destroyed it in 1905, it was rebuilt "as medievally as was possible in early Twentieth-Century New York" (Fifth Avenue), reopening in 1916 (Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson, architects). St Thomas Reredos by d4vidbruce, on Flickr

Former President Benjamin Harrison was married here on April 6, 1896; Consuelo Vanderbilt married the Duke of Marlborough here November 6, 1895. Thomas Dewey married June 16, 1928. The church is affiliated with the St. Thomas Choir School.

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685 (corner): Gucci moved here from the Aeolian, then went to Trump Tower. Becoming Hugo Bass.

681: Fortunoff jewelry is on the site of Dodworth's Dancing Academy, elite school that became the first home of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1872. Founded in 1922, Fortunoff was on the edge of bankruptcy in 2008, with Lord & Taylor offering to buy them out.



















Fifth Avenue: Fendi by peterjr1961, on Flickr

677: Fendi clothing

675: Nine West shoes

673 (corner): Blanc de Chine ("China White"), Hong Kong fashion


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Tishman Building

666 (block): This was the address of the mansion of William Kissam Vanderbilt Jr., great-grandson of the Commodore, an auto-racing enthusiast who founded the Vanderbilt Cup. The 1905 mansion, designed by McKim, Meade and White, was the last of the Vanderbilts' Fifth Avenue mansions. 666 5th Avenue by Rafael Chamorro, on Flickr

In 1957, an alum- inum-clad office building with an apoca- lyptic address was put up here with a million square feet of space; the lobby waterfall was designed by Isamu Noguchi. Brooks Brothers, founded 1818, is on the ground floor, along with 5th Avenue - NBA Store by Midnight Talker, on Flickr Hickey Freeman and the NBA Store. Top of the Sixes, the top-floor rest- aurant, is now the Grand Havana Room, a private cigar club. In the Marvel Universe, an evil cult known as the Left-Hand Path had its headquarters at the top of this building.

660 (corner): William Kissam Vanderbilt Sr., son of William H., grandson of the Commodore, and "the" Vanderbilt after the death of his brother Cornelius II, was one of the first Vanderbilts to live on Fifth Avenue, living in the Petit Chateau, a mansion designed by Richard Morris Hunt and built from 1879-82 and demolished in 1926.

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03 - Rolex Building by lo83, on Flickr

665 (corner): The Rolex Building was built in 1924 as Georg Jensen, Scandinavian department store. Modernized in 1977 when the watch company moved in. The Swiss consulate is located here; St. John clothing is on the ground floor.

663: Ermengildo Zegna clothing











657 (corner): Fifth Avenue, Manhattan by Geff Rossi, on Flickr
Here were the opulent mansion and offices of Madame Restell, New York's leading abortion-provider from the 1840s until 1878, when she committed suicide after being arrested for selling birth control by Anthony Comstock of the New York Society for the Suppression of Vice. Now Salvatore Ferragamo clothing.


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Corner (2 W 52nd): Formerly the site of the mansion of Emily Vanderbilt and her husband William Douglas Sloane, paid for by Emily's father William Henry Vanderbilt. It was part of the Triple Palace, three Vanderbilt mansions designed by John Butler Snook and built from 1879-82, all paid for by Emily's father William Henry Vanderbilt.

650 (corner): This building was put up by the Pahlavi Foundation, a non-profit started in 1973 by the Shah of Iran--whether as a genuine charity or as a financial scam is unclear to me. In any case, it was taken over after the Iranian Revolution by pro-Khomeini types, who changed the name of the group to the Alavi Foundation and use it to promote Islamic culture. They apparently still get most of their money from the rent on this building from businesses like Mexx clothing and Travelers Fine Jewelry.

Replaced the DePinna Building, a nine-story 1928 structure.
















642: This was the address of the middle section of the Triple Palace, belonging to William Henry's daughter Margaret and her husband Elliott Fitch Shepard.



















640 (corner): First National City Bank of New York; H & M. This was the address of William Henry Vanderbilt's own piece of the Triple Palace. (Actually, he got half of the bifurcated structure, which is only fair since he paid for it.) William, who headed the railroad empire after the death of his father, Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt, was at his death the wealthiest person in the world. Though noted for his quip "The public be damned!" he was reportedly much nicer than his father.

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Cartier

Cartier by Kevin Coles, on Flickr

651 (corner): This entire block was the site of the Catholic Orphanage until 1900. The Vanderbilts bought up most of the land in 1902 to prevent a hotel from being built on this corner, which instead became the Morton F. Plant House (Robert W. Gibson, 1905). Plant sold it to Cartier in 1915 for $100 and a million-dollar pearl necklace. The store was restored to its Renaissance-style glory in the 1990s. The jewelry house, founded in 1847, is credited with inventing the first practical wristwatch in 1904.

Versace

Versace-5th avenue by serdir (at home), on Flickr

647: Versace store was George W. Vanderbilt House (Hunt & Hunt, 1905); George, a younger son of William H., was the one who built Biltmore, a 125,000-acre estate in North Carolina. It and the house at No. 645 were known as the Marble Twins, though they were actually faced with limestone. It was leased to 5th Avenue Versace by Aqualung1981, on Flickr real-estate magnate Robert Goelet, then to art dealers Rene Gimpel and Nathan Wildenstein. Eventually it was sold to American Express. It later served as Olympic Airways' ticket office. Versace leased it in 1995; it's now the only surviving Vanderbilt building on 5th Avenue.

645 (corner): This was the address of Lila Vanderbilt Sloane, granddaughter of William H. Vanderbilt, and her husband William Bradford Osgood Field. Mecca by George Perfect, on Flickr It was torn down in 1945 for Best & Company, high-end children's store, which in turn was torn down for the present building, Olympic Tower (1977), which houses Gant and Armani Exchange clothing, H. Stern jewelry.

641 (corner): The Union Club was based here from 1903 to 1933. The club, founded in 1836, is the oldest men's club in New York City; the Union League, Knickerbocker, Brook and Metropolitan clubs are all spin-offs.


W <===     51ST STREET     ===> E

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Rockefeller Center

IMG_7726 by Maanskyn, on Flickr

The land that is now Rockefeller Center was once the Elgin Botanic Garden, 20 acres of mainly medicinal herbs established by Dr. David Hosack, the physician who attended Alexander Hamilton after his fatal duel with Aaron Burr. The Lewis and Clark expedition sent plants here for identification. Lego Architecture 21007 - Rockefeller Center by InSapphoWeTrust, on Flickr

The garden was sold to the state in 1810, which granted it to Columbia University, which allowed the garden to be developed. In 1929, the land was leased to John D. Rockefeller, who built on it an Art Deco masterpiece that is one of New York City's crowning architectural achievements.

International Building

636 (corner): Completed in 1935 as part of the original Rockefeller Center complex, this is a reduced-scale (41 stories) version of the RCA Building. Its north wing was originally going to be a German counterpart NYC - Rockefeller Center: 636 Fifth Avenue - Commerce and Industry with a Caduceus by wallyg, on Flickr of the Italian, French and British buil- dings to the south, but with Nazism on the march the idea was dropped and the building was generically internationalized. Attilia Piccirilli's NYC - Rockefeller Center: 636 Fifth Avenue - Youth Leading Industry by wallyg, on Flickr Youth Leading Industry and Commerce and Industry with a Caduceus adorn the entrance; symbols of the continents are atop the building.




Lee Lawrie's Atlas, between the two wings, can be seen from St. Patrick's altar. Atlas Closeup by edenpictures, on Flickr It's one of the sites the sailors see in the movie On the Town; it also features in Gentleman's Agreement, Bonfire of the Vanities and Hercules in New York (where it's said to be not a good likeness). NYC - Rockfeller Center: Palazzo d'Italia - Italia by wallyg, on Flickr

626 (corner): The Palazzo D'Italia is taken up entirely by Banana Republic's flagship store--what does that say about Italy? The entrance bronzes The Italian Immigrant and Italia by Giacomo Manzu were given to Rockefeller Center by Fiat.

Department store owner Benjamin Altman died at this address on October 7, 1913.

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St. Patrick's Cathedral

St. Patrick's Cathedral  by sunsurfr, on Flickr

Begun in 1858 and dedi- cated in 1879, St. Pat's is seen as symbol- izing the ascension of New York's Catholic community, as the archbishop's seat moved from the Lower East Side to the heart St. Patrick's by lu abacaju, on Flickr of New York's elite district (though the neigh- borhood wasn't all that elite back then). Designed by James Renwick, Jr.--the architect of Grace Church--who modeled it on the Cologne Cathedral. Here's an aerial view.




DSC00010 by Kramchang, on Flickr

Pope Paul VI said mass here on October 4, 1964, during the first papal visit to America. Funerals were held here for Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman (1891), Gov. Alfred E. Smith (1944), slugger Babe Ruth (1948), conductor Arturo Toscanini (1957) and Sen. Robert F. Kennedy (1968). F. St Patrick's Cathedral by Mister V, on Flickr Scott Fitzgerald and Zelda Sayre were married here on April 3, 1920--but in the cardinal's residence, not in the cathedral itself, because it was a mixed marriage.









St. Patrick's Cathedral by Still Burning, on Flickr











San Patrick Cathedral by  	
El Abogado de la Gran Ciudad, on Flickr













W <===     50TH STREET     ===> E

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British Empire Building

NYC - Rockfeller Center: British Empire Building - Industries of the British Empire by wallyg, on Flickr

620: A 1933 building meant to showcase British culture and commerce, but aside from Crabtree & Evelyn, there's not much anglophilia in evidence. It does have upscale shops like Cole Haan shoes, Coach handbags and Teuscher Swiss chocolates. Over the entrance is Carl Paul Jennewein's bronze Industries of the British Commonwealth. This building has a beautiful rooftop garden, not usually open to the public but featured in the Spiderman movie.

616: Bergdorf Goodman was here from 1914 to 1928.

Channel Gardens

Rockefeller Center's 2007 Christmas Tree 11/9/07: View From 5th Avenue by peterjr1961, on Flickr

As the Channel separates Britain and France, they separate Rockefeller Center's British and French buildings. The Gardens form a promenade that leads to the Center's sunken plaza.

La Maison Francaise

img_1269.jpg by elPadawan, on Flickr

610 (corner): This 1933 building used to house the French Consulate, and it still has the Librairie de France bookstore, L'Occitane, a Provencal beauty products store, and Movado, a Swiss watch company. Kenneth Cole shoes has the 5th Avenue side. Over the entrance is Alfred Janniot's bas-relief, The Friendship of France and the United States, a work of art perhaps more necessary today than ever.

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Corner: Site of the New York Institute for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb, the first such school in the U.S. when it opened in 1852.

Saks Fifth Avenue

Block: Launched in 1924 by Horace Saks and Bernard Gimbel, partners in Gimbel's on 34th Street, it brought upscale shopping to what was then a largely residential neighborhood. The building replaced the Democratic Club and the Buckingham Hotel. NYC: Saks Fifth Avenue by wallyg, on Flickr

See a 360-degree panoramic photo taken in front of Saks Fifth Avenue opposite the Channel Gardens.




nyc-2007-12-05_18-17-44 by nfgusedautoparts, on Flickr






























W <===     49TH STREET     ===> E

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608 (corner): The Goelet Building, a 1932 building of marble, limestone and stainless steel, houses the Swiss Center. IMG_2225 by pamusc93, on Flickr

604: The TGI Fridays here was originally the Childs Restaurant Building (''Now they watch her flipping flapjacks at Childs''--Wonderful Town), built in 1925, and it was designed by William Van Alen, better known for the Chrysler Building.




















600 (corner): This building is technically part of Rockefeller Center, though its neighbors to the north are not. It had a Barnes & Noble branch--the chain's third ever--that closed in 2006.

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IMG_2224 by pamusc93, on Flickr

609 (corner): American Girl Place, a store, cafe, photo studio and theater-- all revolving around the popular historically themed doll line.

601: Was the Dahesh Museum of Art Originally Charles Scribner's Sons by epicharmus, on Flickr

597: The Sephora store was the long-time offices and store of Charles Scribner's Sons, a landmark designed in 1913 by Ernest Flagg (Charles Scribner's brother-in-law). From here were published some of the great American novelists, including F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Edith Wharton, Thomas sephora by dandelion89, on Flickr Wolfe and Ring Lardner. It became Brentano's, arguably the city's best bookstore, which closed in 1983. (Patti Smith worked here when she first came to New York.) It later reopened under the same name, but as a division of K-Mart's Waldenbooks--sort of like coming back from the dead as a zombie.


W <===     48TH STREET     ===> E

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592 (corner): This Modernist white prism with black window-slits started out in 1913 as a neo-Classical design by Carrere & Hastings (of NYPL fame) for the Black, Starr & Frost jewelry company. It was radically reclad in 1964. Once the National Bank of North America, it's now a Fleet Bank branch.

On this corner in 1859 was built the Collegiate Reformed Church, aka the Church of St. Nicholas, for the congregation established by the Dutch in New Amsterdam.

580 (corner): The Diamond Dealers Club, located here, is the governing body of the Diamond District; disputes between dealers are settled here rather than in civil court. This building is also home to the Gemological Institute of America, which established the "four Cs" system for grading diamonds.

578 (corner): From 1870 to 1882, this was the address of financier Jay Gould, a director of the Erie Railroad whose 1869 attempt to corner the gold market sparked the panic known as Black Friday.

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579 (corner): Jay Gould moved across the street to this address in 1882. An insomniac, he paced in front of his house each night with two bodyguards. After his death here on December 2, 1892, the house went to his daughter Helen Miller Gould Shepherd, an eccentric philanthropist. In 1942, it was leased by Gimbel Brothers, whose Kendel Galleries held art and jewelry auctions here. In 1952, when it was demolished, it was perhaps the last Fifth Avenue brownstone in Midtown.


W <===     47TH STREET     ===> E

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Diamond District

Corner: Jewelers on Fifth on this corner is the eastern edge of a block almost entirely devoted to selling diamonds--as featured in the movie Marathon Man.






















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575 (corner): This 1985 Emery Roth & Sons design absorbed the former Korvette's, originally W & J Sloane.

565: The address of the Windsor Hotel, opened 1874, home to John D. Rockefeller and Andrew Carnegie and a favorite dining spot for Jay Gould; other notable guests included writers Oscar Wilde and Matthew Arnold, and King Kalakaua of Hawaii. On March 17, 1899, during the St. Patrick's Day parade, the hotel burned to the ground, killing 33. Isadora Duncan, leading a dance class in the hotel at the time, managed to get her students to safety.

This was later the address of WNEW, the "World's Greatest Radio Station," which pioneered the disc jockey and the hourly news break. It featured pop standards and big bands, championing the music of Frank Sinatra. Launched in 1934 with the merger of two earlier stations, it moved here in 1946, where its golden call letters on the building were a Midtown landmark for decades. The station became WBBR, a financial news station owned by Bloomberg, in 1992.

Corner: HMV Records; the British chain's name stands for "His Master's Voice."


W <===     46TH STREET     ===> E

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556: The art dealer M. Knoedler & Co. had a gallery here designed by Carrere & Hastings. When he moved to East 57th Street in 1925, it became a popular Schrafft's restaurant until c. 1950. The building, greatly altered, is now the Philippine Center, housing the consulate, U.N. mission, trade board and tourist office.






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Before 5th Avenue was built up, the city's slaughterhouse district lay between 5th and 4th (Park) avenues from 46th to 44th streets. 551 Fifth Avenue by Smiley Man with a Hat, on Flickr

551 (corner): The Fred F. French Building, Polychromatic headquarters of the company that designed and built Tudor City, built in 1927. This was previously the address of the Church of the Heavenly Rest, built in 1868 to an Edward Tuckerman Potter design. The congregation was formed by Civil War vets to honor their fallen comrades; President Chester Arthur's funeral was held here in 1886. The church moved in 1929 to Fifth Avenue and East 90th Street.


W <===     45TH STREET     ===> E

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Corner: The site of the Church of the Divine Paternity, where on December 4, 1872, the funeral of Horace Greeley, owner of the New York Tribune, was held. President Grant was among the many notable attendees.

530 (block): Bank of New York

Corner: The Fifth Avenue Bank opened in a former townhouse here in 1890, specializing in serving wealthy society women.

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Corner: This was the uptown site of Delmonico's, long New York's most prestigious restaurant, from 1898 until 1923. This location introduced smoking in the dining room--designed to prevent men from deserting the ladies after dinner--and an orchestra that played background music rather than a concert that people were expected to pay attention to.


W <===     44TH STREET     ===> E

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522 (corner): This building, a Stanford White design, was from 1898 until 1919 Sherry's Hotel, a symbol of Gilded Age excesses featured in Theodore Dreiser's novel Sister Carrie. It was the scene of notorious parties: At one held by C.K.G. Billings in 1903 to celebrate the opening of his stables, the guests sat on horseback and the waiters dressed as jockeys. James Hazen Hyde, vice president of Equitable Life Insurance, spent $200,000 of his company's money here at a party meant to recreate Versailles; public outrage forced Hyde to flee the country and prompted reform of the insurance industry.

Site of the Colored Orphan Asylum

Block: An orphanage housing hundreds of African-American children here was burned to the ground on August 1, 1863 during the Draft Riots. While most of the orphans escaped out the back, a young girl who was found hiding under a bed was lynched.

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Corner: This was the site of The Willow Inn, owned by Tom Hyer, ''a noted pugilist and brawler more violent out of the ring than in'' (Fifth Avenue: The Best Address). When it was torn down in 1905, it was said to be ''the last bar on 5th Avenue.''











Corner: Here was Temple Emanu-El, built in 1867 for the first Reform congregation in New York City. It was designed by Leopold Eidlitz in the Moorish style. The congregation moved in 1927.


W <===     43RD STREET     ===> E

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512 (corner): This was the address of the Hotel Renaissance, home to notables like architect William Rutherford Mead (of McKim, Mead and White) and German-American publisher and politician Carl Schurz. Naturalist Ernest Thomas Seton had a suite here decorated with animal skins.

510: St. Bernard's School was founded here in 1904.









500 Fifth Avenue by massmatt, on Flickr

500 (corner): The Transportation Building originally housed offices of national railroads; later it became a center for international airlines. Nat Sherman, tobacconist to the world, is on the ground floor. This building appears in the 1946 film noir The Dark Corner as the "Grant Building," where a character is thrown from a dentist office on the 31st floor--where, in fact, a dentist office can be found today.

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511 (corner): At this defunct address was the brownstone residence of William "Boss" Tweed, the famously corrupt leader of Tammany Hall, New York's reigning political machine. When Tweed was arrested for graft in 1876, he was allowed to return here to get clothes for jail-- but instead fled from here to Florida, Cuba and Spain. Spain extradited him back to New York, where he died in jail in 1878.

In 1882, Richard T. Wilson, a former Confederate cotton merchant, built a house at this address; he was noted for his attractive children, who married into the Astor, Vanderbilt and Goelet families. The house was demolished in 1915.

509: The address of Elizabeth Arden's first cosmetic shop.


505 5th Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr

505 (corner): A glassy 27-story building from 2004, designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox. There was a Bickford's cafeteria at this address in the mid-20th Century.

501: Peck & Peck, an elite men's wear shop, moved here from the Flatiron district in 1910, one of the first major retail outlets to move above 42nd Street.


W <===     42ND STREET     ===> E

By 1837, 5th Avenue was paved to this intersection--which was menaced by Godzilla in the American remake.

See The Big Map for photos of the avenue from here to 59th Street.

West:

New York Public Library

New York Public Library by NoirinP, on Flickr

Tech- nically, this is just one of four research libraries --the Hum- anities & Social Science Library, to be specific--but this is the heart and soul of the NYPL. One of the world's 2008-05-10 New York 087 Fifth Avenue, New York Library by Allie_Caulfield's photostream, on Flickr greatest libraries, the NYPL was formed in 1895 by combing the Astor, Lenox and Tilden libraries. From 1902 to 1911, this Beaux Arts architectural masterpiece designed by Carrere & Hastings was constructed to house the collection. New York Public Library by armatoj, on Flickr The Main Reading Room, restored in 1998, is con- sidered one of the city's great interiors.

Authors who have used this library include Isaac Bashevis Singer, Claude Levi-Strauss, E.L. Doctorow, Somerset Maugham, Norman Mailer, John Updike, Tom Wolfe and Frank McCourt. Poet Elizabeth Bishop met her mentor Marianne Moore here. The Xerox copier, the Polaroid camera and the atomic bomb were all researched here. Almost all the information in Ripley's Believe It or Not! came from here--as did much of Reader's Digest.

A ghost haunts the stacks here in the first Ghostbusters film; it's a refuge from freakish weather in The Day After Tomorrow and the headquarters of a criminal mastermind in Escape From New York. New York Public Library Lion by ax2groin, on Flickr

The famous marble lions in front of the library are nicknamed Patience (south) and Fortitude (north)--so dubbed by Mayor Fiorella LaGuardia. The Cowardly Lion hides behind one in the movie The Wiz.

This was previously the site of the Croton Distributing Reservoir, a massive tank holding water from the Croton River, completed in 1842. Walking along its monumental Egyptian walls was a popular recreation, recommended by Edgar Allan Poe; the base of the reservoir serves today as the library's foundation. Croton Cottage, a place of refreshment, was at the corner of 5th and 40th.

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479-481: This was the last store (here from 1915 until the mid-1980s) of the Rogers, Peet clothing chain, which helped introduce such innovations as the fabric label, the money-back guarantee and the use of illustrations of merchandise in advertising. Actor John Barrymore worked for a time drawing cartoons for Rogers, Peet ads.






























E 41ST ST         E ===>




























W <===     40TH STREET     ===> E

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NYC: HSBC Bank Tower - Knox Hat Building by wallyg, on Flickr

452: HSBC Tower, formerly the Republic National Bank Tower, a 1983 building that incorporates the 1902 Knox Hat Building. (Knox Hats-- one of which was worn by Abraham Lincoln--is still around on 8th Avenue.) HSBC is the Hong Kong Shanghai Bank Company. The building houses the Boomer Esiason Foundation, fighting cystic fibrosis.

450: Defunct address was the Macbeth Gallery, where the painters known as "The Eight" (aka the Ashcan School) had a groundbreaking show.

438 (corner): Circus promoter P.T. Barnum used to live at this defunct corner address. Later this was the site of the Wendel mansion, home of the heirs to John Jacob Astor's partner in the fur trade. ''North of it [was] the 'million-dollar yard' which they refused to sell because... the three Wendel ladies, spinsters all, desired to keep the yard for their little dog to exercise in''-- Greatest American City

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Mid-Manhattan NY Public Library

NYC - NYPL Mid-Manhattan Branch by wallyg, on Flickr

445: Not as cool as the Main Branch, but here you can check the books out. It's the largest lending library in the NYPL system.

On this site was Gordon's Riding Academy, where the first polo game in America (and perhaps the first ever indoors) was played in 1876, introduced to this country by newspaper heir James Gordon Bennett Jr.











W <===             39TH STREET             ===> E

West:

Lord & Taylor

Lord and Taylor by joseph a, on Flickr

424-434 (corner): A New York fixture since 1825, the department store built this (once) elegant building in 1914-- breaking neighborhood tradition by looking like a store, not a mansion. When built, the window displays could be lowered on tracks to the basement, for instant replacement. Still noted for its Christmas displays.

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445 (corner): Fifth Avenue Tower, 34 stories completed in 1985.




435: Alberene Cashmeres, good prices on fine woolens








W <===             38TH STREET             ===> E

West:

Corner: Site of the W&J Sloane store. (Their previous store is now ABC Carpets.)

414: Former Stern Brothers clerk Franklin Simon opened a store here in 1902, the first important retail business to open above 34th Street on 5th Avenue.

Corner: From 1858 to 1938, this was the site of the Brick Presbyterian Church, where Mark Twain's funeral was held, April 23, 1910. Samuel Osgood, the first postmaster general, was buried here in 1813.

At this corner, Buster Keaton got on a double-decker bus--on a different level from his date--in the silent movie The Cameraman.

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417 Fifth Avenue by billyqiu, on Flickr

417 (corner): This 1911 building contains the editorial offices of Marvel Comics. It was built as the flagship of Bonwit Teller, which moved up the avenue to 56th Street in 1930. Billionaire Carlos Slim, at the time the world's richest person, bought the property in 2010, his first investment in New York City real estate.


W <===             37TH STREET             ===> E

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404 (corner): This was the A.T. Stewart & Co. store, built in 1914 to a Warren & Wetmore design, noted for its delicate blue-and-white terra cotta. The store moved further uptown to 56th Street in 1928; the building was landmarked in 2006.

Everything else on this block was demolished in 2007.

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409 (corner): Stanford White designed this building for Tiffany's in 1906, basing the plan on Venice's Palazzo Grimani. It was "the most magnificent retail space in New York City," according to Christopher Gray. The jewelry firm moved to 57th Street in 1940.


401: As Seen On TV, a store that sells things "not available in any stores."

393: Yankees Clubhouse, sports souvenirs

389: Was Fifth Avenue Coffee Bar & Restaurant


W <===             36TH STREET             ===> E

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390 (corner): Gorham Building, designed for the Gorham jewelry company by Stanford White in 1905. From 1925–59 this was Russeks, a department store that started in the early 1900s as a furrier. By the 1930s, the store was owned by Gertrude Russek Nemerov and her husband, David Nemerov; their daughter, Diane Nemerov, was a 13-year-old working as a photographer in the store's marketing department when she met another teenage employee, Allan Arbus; Allan and Diane Arbus were married in 1941. In 1960, the new owner, Spear Securities, ordered much of White's delicate relief sculpture and archways to be torn off.





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383: A branch of the female-centric tearoom chain Schrafft's was here, decorated in Colonial style.







375: Oxford Cafe



W <===             35TH STREET             ===> E

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Corner (2 W 35th): Catwalk, bar with an actual catwalk where would-be models can practice their moves.












Corner (1 W 34th): Site of the opulent marble mansion of department store founder Alexander T. Stewart, who despite his wealth was shunned by New York society, as represented by his neighbor, Mrs. William Astor. Stewart built his mansion in 1867 after tearing down the previous mansion of Dr. Samuel B. Townsend, the Sarsaparilla King. The mansion was for a time the home of the Manhattan Club, a Democratic Party association. It was torn down early in the 20th Century.

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CUNY Graduate Center

by Kramchang, on Flickr Building was B. Altman & Co. Department Store; when it opened in 1906 it helped pull upper-class retail to this stretch of Fifth Avenue. Bankrupt in 1989. Now the B. Altman Advanced Learning Super Block, including CUNY's Graduate School and beautiful woodwork by yarnivore, on Flickr University Center, the NYPL's Science, Industry and Business Library, and Oxford University Press. The building appears in the movie Elf as the department store where Will Ferrell works.

W <===             34TH STREET             ===> E

See The Big Map for photos of the avenue from here to 42nd Street.

West:

Empire State Building

Empire State Building by midwinterphoto, on Flickr

This block was the site of two mansions owned by the Astor family--the northern half was owned by Caroline (Mrs. William) Astor, whose annual parties literally defined New York society; the ballroom could hold 400 guests, and these "Four Hundred" were considered the who's who. Empire State Building by btocher, on Flickr

The southern half held the mansion of her nephew, William Waldorf Astor, which inspired the fashion for mansard roofs. Feuding over who had the right to be referred to as "Mrs. Astor," the nephew in 1893 replaced his house with the Waldorf Hotel, designed by Henry Hardenbergh, in order to spite his aunt. (Waldorf was John Jacob Astor's hometown in Germany.) Caroline Astor responded by replacing her own home with the Astoria Hotel, also designed by Hardenbergh, NYC: Empire State Building by wallyg, on Flickr which were combined in 1897 to create the Waldorf-Astoria (though Caroline insisted on the right to re-separate the hotels at any time). The hotel catered to the super-wealthy; B.C. Forbes, of Forbes magazine, used to have a regular poker game there with Henry Clay Frick and other plutocrats. U.S. Steel was born at the hotel in 1901. The Waldorf salad was invented there in 1896, and Thousand Island dressing popularized; the Gibson and the Rob Roy were created at the Bull & Bear Bar here. In 1929 the hotel relocated uptown, and the Empire State Building was built on this site.

With ground broken on January 22, 1930, the building took only a year and 45 days to complete. The architect, William Lamb, said his design was inspired by a pencil. At 102 stories and 1,454 feet, it was the tallest building in the world from 1931 until 1974; there are still only three buildings in the world with more floors. Top of the Empire State Building by lemoncat1, on Flickr

The mast on top was supposed to be a mooring tower for dirigibles, but the idea was abandoned due to chronic high winds shortly before dirigibles were themselves abandoned. On July 28, 1945, a B-25 bomber flying through fog crashed into the 79th floor, killing 11 people. Allen Ginsberg briefly worked in an advertising office here. The Heartland Brewery on the ground floor used to be a branch of the Longchamps chain, decorated in Mississippi riverboat style. empire state building by Ron Layters, on Flickr

The building was famously climbed by the giant gorilla in King Kong, and was a meeting place for lovers in An Affair to Remember and Sleepless in Seattle.

See the official guide to the colors of the Tower Lights.

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347: J.S. Sutton & Son, New York Souvenirs--est. 1925. It's older than the Empire State Building--the Empire State Building should be selling souvenirs of this place!



























Empire State Reflection by edenpictures, on Flickr

339 (corner): This 1916 building by Trowbridge and Livingston has beautiful large arched windows.


W <===             33RD STREET             ===> E

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Corner (330 5th Ave): Maui Tacos





322: Hudson River School painter Albert Bierstadt died at his home at this address in 1902.

320 (corner): A neo-classical building from 1904 that houses handbag and accessory showrooms.

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333 (corner): Big George's Pizza; Sedutto Ice Cream

325: The Irish Treasury, pub





319 (corner): The location of the exclusive Knickerbockers Club.


W <===             32ND STREET             ===> E

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316 (corner): Kaskel & Kaskel Building, "a wonderful crusty old Beaux Arts building" from 1903--AIA Guide. Designed by Cady & Berg--note the Kaskel monogram in the cartouche above the grand entrance. Houses 316 Fifth Avenue Electronics; Soup & Smoothie Heaven.

314: Empire (formerly Mimmo's) Pizza is at the address of Polk's Hobby Shop, a model-train Mecca featured in The Godfather. You can still see the old name above the doorway.

312: Andiamo Fine Men's Wear & Shoes

310: JJ Hat Center, a serious hat store

306: Torkan USA, rugs

304: LaCrasia/Glove Street, specialty glove store that includes a glove museum.

302: Was Shields Fifth Avenue, jewelry outlet that became a trademark.

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315: A 1905 Renaissance Revival building by Maynicke and Franke. Galleria is on the ground floor; on the third floor is the Third Floor Cafe. This was the address of Durand-Ruel, an art dealer that provided European Impressionists for American millionaires.

313: Collegeware USA




309: Sinclair Lewis lived at this address as a struggling short-story writer.

307: Hiram Haddad Building, designed in 1928 by William I. Hohauser, has stylized facade designs--sort of Mideastern Deco.

303 (corner): Veratex is in a 20-story 1909 building designed by Buchman & Fox, built as a headquarters for the FAO Schwartz toy store.


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West:



DA180801_crop by gmpicket, on Flickr

284 (corner): Shalom Brothers Oriental Rug Gallery is in the Wilbraham Building, 1890 Belle Epoque apartments designed for bachelors by David & John Jardine. Spookily charming. On the second floor is Kyokushin Karate.

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Textile Building

295 (block): An imposing 1920 building by Sommerfeld & Steckler, it began the shift of this stretch of the avenue from retail to wholesale commerce. Still houses showrooms for the bed, bath and linen industry.



291: Was the address of the Little Galleries of the Photo-Secession, also known as 291, where Alfred Steiglitz showcased such new artists as Henri Matisse (1908), Henri Rousseau and Paul Cezanne (both 1910), and Pablo Picasso (1911).


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West:

Holland House

Corner: Named for Lord Holland's mansion in London, on which it was modeled, it was considered one of the premier hotels in the world when built in 1890 (Harding & Gooch, architects). Georgiana Cavendish by Ben Sutherland, on Flickr Gainesborough's Duchess of Devonshire, the most famous stolen painting of its day, spent the night here in 1901 after being recovered after being stolen for 25 years by criminal mastermind Adam Worth. (See All Around the Town, p. 217.)

The first cross-country auto trip ended here July 16, 1903, when Horatio Nelson Jackson drove to the hotel from San Francisco in 63 days.

On the fourth floor here was Harry "A" Chesler's pioneering comic book studio-- the "A" stood for "Anything."

Marble Collegiate Church

Marble Collegiate Church by bowiesnodgrass, on Flickr Corner (1 W 29th): Built in 1851, this Dutch Reformed church is noted for being the pulpit of Norman Vincent Peale, who combined Christianity and motivational speaking in such books as The Power of Positive Thinking. Richard Nixon attended this church Norman Vincent Peale + Ribbons by Vidiot, on Flickr and was influenced by Peale; his daugter Julie married Dwight Eisenhower II here in 1968. Other famous weddings here were Enrico Caruso's to Dorothy Benjamin in 1918, Donald Trump's to Ivana in 1977 (he also met Marla Maples there), and Liza Minelli's to David Guest in 2002.

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260: This building was used for rooftop shots in Spider-Man 2.

256: Building with Silver & Crystal Collection is a "neo-Venetian Gothic, somewhat Moorish phantasmagoria"--AIA Guide. It's hard to find three square inches that aren't decorated.

254: Dano Bar

250 (corner): Broadway National Bank was Second National Bank (1908)--a lesser McKim, Mead & White effort.

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261 (corner): A 26-story 1929 highrise from Buchman $amp; Fox.







251: The address of Black, Starr & Frost, a fashionable jewelry firm, from c. 1876 to 1913.


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At this intersection in 1939, Murder Inc.'s Louis "Lepke" Buchalter surrendered to FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover and columnist Walter Winchell, hoping that he would get more lenient treatment from the Feds than from local authorities. He was executed in the electric chair in 1944.

West:

246 (corner): Yi Li Da Inc., export/importers, is in an 1892 building I find very interesting, with its three-story arch and its asymmetry.

242: Glassy facade was ahead of its time in 1892.

240: Man Hing Import Corporation, Oriental art and antiques

238: Istanbul Grand Bazaar, carpets

236: Ilili, high-end Lebanese

234 (corner): Naturally Tasty, health food coffee shop. At this address, Enrico Caruso recorded the first million-selling record—"Vesti La Giubba" from Il Pagliacci.

At this corner, 25-year-old Dorothy Arnold was last seen on December 12, 1910. The disappearance of the wealthy young woman is a mystery that has never been solved.

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241: Chohung Bank of New York

235: Great Eastern Bank

museumofse[x]

Museum of Sex by technotheory, on Flickr

233 (corner): A newish institution dedicated to erotic history and culture. Its website used to have an amazing map of Manhattan's sexual history.


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West:

230 (corner): The Victoria Building is on the site of the Victoria Hotel, where President Grover Cleveland lived between his two separated terms of office. Ax-wielding prohibitionist Carry Nation stayed there on a trip to New York in 1901, insisting that a marble statue of Diana in the lobby be covered with cheesecloth. The present 19-story building, a 1914 effort by Schwartz & Gross, has Alpine Designs, oddly named oriental furniture store, on the ground floor; Miller Import and La Vie International have moved out, as the upscale part of the Wholesale District seems to be vacating. 230 5th rooftop bar by peterkellystudios, on Flickr On the roof is 230 Fifth, a trendy bar with a spectacular view.

224: Was Jay Import

222: PTS International. This was the address of the Travelers' Club, a 19th Century organization that presented talks by prominent visitors. Present building c. 1900. nycshots 010 by snapsparkchik, on Flickr

220 (corner): Crystal Clear Galleries is on the ground floor of the 20-story Croisic Building (Frederick C. Browne and Randolph H. Amiroty, 1910)— on the site of the Croisic Hotel, named for Richard de Logerot, Marquis de Croisic, aristocrat and hotelier. (Actor Richard Mansfield used to live at the hotel.) Note fleur-de-lises on the facade, fancy gargoyles on top floor.

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The Grand Madison

Brunswick Hotel by edenpictures, on Flickr

225 (block): Handsome red-brick building was formerly the Brunswick Hotel, noted as the home of the Coaching Club, which held carriage parades up 5th Avenue. On July 14, 1880, on the 16th day of a celebrated 40-day fast, Dr. Henry S. Tanner stopped here and drank two ounces of water. April152006 050 by ShellyS, on Flickr Later it was known as the Gift Building, "the premiere international giftware showplace." Now converted to luxury condos—why couldn't they have called it The Brunswick, a name with 125 years of history?




221: This nonexistent address was the home of Napoleon Solo, the Man From U.N.C.L.E.










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West:

212 (corner): This was the site of Dodworth Studios, where Teddy Roosevelt took dance lessons as a boy. In 1876 Delmonico's, at the time the most fashionable restaurant in New York, moved here. The women's organization Sorosis met in an upstairs room. When Delmonico's moved uptown in 1899, it became Cafe Martin, where on June 25, 1906 architect Sanford White had his last meal before being shot at his Madison Square Garden.

This 21-story neo-Gothic building, designed by Schwartz & Gross, went up in 1913; the FX cable channel was here in the 1990s. In 2019 the three-story penthouse was bought by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos (along with two other apartments in the building), despite his cancellation of plans to build a second Amazon HQ in Queens.

210: Dramatic bay windows and over-the-top detailing mark the Cross Chambers Building, a 1901 project of John B. Snook & Sons. Used to house Dewey's Flatiron, notable neighborhood restaurant now on 30th Street; also used to be the flagship store of Mark Cross.

208: Was Yedsonic electronics

206: Memories of New York, elaborate souvenir shop. On the 3rd floor is Urban Angler. Here were the offices of Seven Days, the radical news magazine, from 1975–77.

204: Pentagram, international design company that has done work for the Public Theater, the Mesa Grill and the New York Times Magazine, among other clients. Used to be MK, a 1980s nightclub where Moby played his first live electronic gig in 1989. Madison Square by Payton Chung, on Flickr

202 (corner): Commonwealth Criterion, manufacturer of Christmas decorations, is part of the Christmas District. The site of Worth House, a hotel that by 1900 housed the Berlitz School of Languages. The present building, dating to 1918, was the flagship store (with science museum) of the A.C. Gilbert Company, a toy company that made the Erector set, radioactive chemistry sets and American Flyer model trains.


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Worth Square

NYC: Madison Square - General William Jenkins Worth Monument by wallyg, on Flickr

Marks the grave of Gen. William Jenkins Worth, namesake of Ft. Worth, Texas and downtown's Worth Street. After fighting in the War of 1812, he became commandant of cadets at West Point. During the Seminole Wars, he pioneered the targeting of civilian populations and the use of starvation as a tool of warfare. NYC - Madison Square: General William Jenkins Worth Monument by wallyg, on Flickr Fighting in the Mexican-American War, he led the capture of Mexico City, and was given command of the newly conquered terriories of Texas and New Mexico. He died of cholera in San Antonio in 1849, and was buried here in 1857.

The rectangular structure leads to Water Tunnel No. 1, carrying water from the Catskills.

In 1899, an arch made of wood and plaster was erected over 5th Avenue between 25th and 24th streets to celebrate Admiral George Dewey's destruction of the Spanish fleet in Manilla Bay. Only Dewey's rapid fall in popularity prevented it from being replaced with a permanent stone version.


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International Toy Center

Toy Center by aka Kath, on Flickr

200 (corner): International Toy Center, since 1925 the center of U.S. toy business; note toy and holiday displays. The 1912 building is by Maynicke & Franke. On the corner, you can still make out a sign for the Garfield National Bank, which was around from 1881–1929 before merging with the Chase National Bank. In The Sweet Smell of Success, this building serves as the offices of The New York Globe, J.J. Hunsecker's newspaper. Fifth Avenue Building by Rev. Santino, on Flickr

Replaced the Fifth Avenue Hotel (1858–1908), once the most exclusive hotel in NYC; presidents Grant and Arthur, as well as the Prince of Wales, stayed here. It was a gathering place for fat cats like Boss Tweed, Jay Gould, Jim Fisk and Commodore Vanderbilt, who would would trade stocks here after hours. A Republican bastion, it was here that the Democrats were first described as the party of "rum, Romanism and rebellion." But it was also a hangout for cultural figures like Mark Twain, O. Henry, Edwin Booth, William Cullen Bryant and Stanford White. It was used as the setting of Gore Vidal’s 1876. International Toy Center by edenpictures, on Flickr

Earlier on this site was Franconi's Hippodrome (1852-59); before that was Corporal Thompson's Madison Cottage, a roadhouse described by the New York Herald as "one of the most agreeable spots for an afternoon's lounge in the suburbs of our city." It had been the house of John Horn, who used to own what is now Madison Square Park. My Tourist Shot by alan(ator), on Flickr

The sidewalk clock, from 1909, was a once common sight in the pre-wristwatch era.

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Madison Square Park

The Empire State Building through the haze of Madison Square Park by permanently scatterbrained, on Flickr

The 1807 plan set aside 240 acres in this vicinity as The Parade, to be used for military training. In that same year, the U.S. Arsenal was built here to defend the strategic intersection of the Bloomingdale Road (now Broadway) and the Eastern Post Road. By 1814, when the park was named Madison Square after the then-current president, it had been reduced to 90 acres. In 1847, when Madison Square Park was opened, less than seven acres remained. Madison Square Park by alistairmcmillan, on Flickr

The park, which was laid out in its current form in 1870, was the center of New York society in the 1860s and '70s. "The vicinity of Madison Square is the brightest, prettiest and liveliest portion of the great city," James McCabe wrote in 1872.

In July 1901, an attempt to turn seating in the park into a for-profit concession sparked rioting. Madison Square Park April 7, 2007 _MG_6845 by Darny, on Flickr

The park provides a setting for O. Henry short stories like "The Cop and the Anthem" and "The Sparrows in Madison Square").

The U.S. Arsenal was converted by 1824 to the House of Refuge of the Society for the Reformation of Juvenile Delinquents—the first such institution in the country.













Admiral Farragut Memorial

NYC: Madison Square Park - Admiral Farragut Monument by wallyg, on Flickr 1881 commemoration of David Glasgow Farragut, Civil War fleet commander, best remembered for his "damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead" line. Sculpture by Augustus Saint-Gaudens, pedestal by Stanford White. Considered to be the first use of Art Nouveau in U.S. nice font by sidewalk_story, on Flickr
























Eternal Light

Madison Square Park by peterjr1961, on Flickr World War I memorial flagpole (1918–23), said to symbolize the eternal peace produced by the "War to End All Wars." When Charles Lindbergh was given a parade in 1927—attended by an estimated 4 million spectators—he stopped here to lay a wreath.

































William Seward Statue

NYC: Madison Square Park - William H. Seward Statue by wallyg, on Flickr

Statue of William Seward (1801-72); an early abolitionist who became NY governor (1838–42) and a U.S. senator (1848–61), he served as secretary of state under Lincoln and Andrew Johnson. He's best remembered for buying Alaska ("Seward's Folly") from Russia for $7 million in 1867. In 1876, sculptor Randolph Rogers, after being stiffed on his commission, reused a cast of Lincoln's lanky body to make the statue cheaply; Seward was actually a short man with a big head.


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Madison Square Park by Das Bobby 2000, on Flickr

Fifth Avenue was extended from 13th Street to 23rd Street in 1830—taken to 42nd Street in 1837.

Stage coaches left twice a week for Albany from this intersection in the late 18th Century.

See The Big Map for photos of the avenue from here to 34th Street.

West:

Western Union Building

Western Union Building by edenpictures, on Flickr

186: Built 1883 in Queen Anne style by Henry Hardenbergh. Sent messages via pneumatic tube 2.5 miles to downtown office. Note "W.U. 1883" near peak. Jadore French Bakery, Luz's Shoe Repair are on the ground floor.

184: Was Marino's catering/deli; earlier Squire's Coffee Shop, whose cool neon sign was briefly uncovered.

182: Deli Marche is in a four-story building from 1920, which seems to have a cast-iron facade. This was the address of the shop of Anson Randolph, bookseller, who in 1856 published the first American book on paper doll-making. His business was founded c. 1850 and moved to 91–93 5th Avenue in 1896. Fifth Avenue Brownstone by edenpictures, on Flickr

178: City Market Cafe is in a well-preserved brownstone, one of the last to survive on an avenue that used to be lined with them.

Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop

Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop by warsze, on Flickr

174: Opened in 1927, it hasn't changed much since then—an unparalleled Old New York experience. Popular with cabbies, who praise the tuna salad. (Eisenberg's did not make it through the Covid pandemic, but there is still hope for a resurrection, so I'm keeping this item in present tense for now.) Upstairs is Russian Bookstore No. 21. 90a.Chelsea.NYC.AM.25mar06 by ElvertBarnes, on Flickr

172 (corner): Lucky Brand Blue Jeans. Formerly Mom's Cigars, complete with wooden Indians.

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Flatiron Building

Flatiron Building by MCSimon, on Flickr

175 (block): Built 1903; originally called the Fuller Building, but the nickname was too appropriate. A traditional publishing center, its still home to St. Martin's Press and Tor Books. In 1910s, it housed the Socialist Labor Party , the ancestor of most U.S. left parties. Loiterers at 23rd Street hoping NYC - Flatiron Building (detail) by wallyg, on Flickr tricky Flatiron winds would expose women's ankles were shooed by one Officer Kane, supposedly originating the expression "23 Skidoo." Flatiron, Manhattan by katherine of chicago, on Flickr

The Flatiron features in the movie Spider-Man as the office of the Daily Bugle. Jimmy Stewart and Kim Novak are teleported to the roof in Bell, Book and Candle.

The St. Germain Hotel, previously on this site, is remembered as the location of the first electric sign— advertising houses in Manhattan Beach, Long Island. Flatiron by laverrue, on Flickr

















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West:

Sohmer Piano Building

170 5th Avenue (left) & Flatiron Building (right) by Flatbush Gardener, on Flickr

170 (corner): Zales jewelry is on ground floor of this 1898 building, designed by Robert Maynicke, noted for its gilded rooftop dome. Was a piano showroom; now houses publishing and design companies.



168: BCBG Max Azaria


166 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr

166: Seven-story building with Eileen Fisher clothing is a heavily detailed 1910 work by the Parfitt Brothers.


164: The American Institute of Graphic Arts often has an exhibit on typography or the like.

Fifth Avenue Lions by edenpictures, on Flickr

162 (corner): Eleven-story bank building with roaring lions near the cornice was built in 1904; Buchman & Fox, architects. It went up on the site of the Union Club, where New York Herald heir James Gordon Bennett Jr. was horsewhipped on the front steps by Frederick May, Bennett's fiancee's brother, after Bennett urinated in the May's fireplace during a New Year's Day celebration. The disreputable Bennett fled to Paris, where he founded the Paris Herald. Moe Ginsburg suits used to be here.

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Albert Building

Albert Building by edenpictures, on Flickr

Corner (935-939 Broadway):

The building that houses Renaissance Hardware was built in 1861–62 as the Glenham Hotel by architect Griffith Thomas. Also known as the Albert or Mortimer Building. According to City Reads, this building once housed the saloon of Dr. Jerry Thomas, master mixologist (for whom the Tom and Jerry was named). Cornelius Vanderbilt Jr., son of the Commodore, shot himself here on April 2, 1882, after a night of drinking and gambling.

The long-stopped clock on this corner inspired the They Might Be Giants song "Four of Two"— though it runs now.

Rapaport House

Charles Scribner's Sons by edenpictures, on Flickr

155: Home to United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism since 1974. Built for Charles Scribner's Sons in 1894 (note "S" on balcony), publishers of Henry James, Edith Wharton, Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Thomas Wolfe, R.L. Stevenson, Kipling et al. Designed by Ernest Flagg, Scribner's brother-in-law, in Beaux Arts style.

149 (corner): Ann Taylor is on site of the Lotos Club, an organization for "journalists, artists and members of the musical and dramatic professions, and representatives, amateurs and friends of literature, science and fine arts." The club threw dinners for Gilbert and Sullivan when they were in the city in 1879, and for Henry Morton Stanley in honor of his finding Dr. Livingstone.


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West:

Mohawk Building

160 (corner): Club Monaco clothing is on the ground floor of this 1892 building by Robert H. Robertson that originally housed architectural offices; Stanford White and his firm McKim, Mead and White occupied the 5th floor from 1895–1913.

158: Site of Mason & Hamlin Hall, a concert and recital venue.

Presbyterian Building

Paternoster Row (Detail) by edenpictures, on Flickr

156 (corner): Building with magnificent arched entrance was built in 1895 (Rowe & Baker, architects) as part of the Presbyterian Building Archway by edenpictures, on Flickr "Paternoster Row" of religious publishers between 16th and 23rd streets. House Beautiful used to have its offices here. The corner was previously 1 W. 20th Street, where McKim, Mead and White had their offices before moving to the Mohawk.

154: Site of the house of Robert L. Stuart, sugar refiner, art collector and bibliophile. As president of the American Museum of Natural History (1872–81), he oversaw the construction of its current building.

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Merchants Central Building

141 (corner): This 1897-1900 layer cake of a building was the Merchants Bank of New York (now a Valley National branch); don't miss the dome on the roof. (It was designed by Robert Maynicke, who also put the dome on the Sohmer Piano Building.) On the site of the South Dutch Reformed Church (1849–90).




139: The Corndiac building, a five-story building by Alfred Zucker that went up in 1905, recently lost its obscure nameplate. Houses Thor Equities.




137: Was Otto Tootsi Plohound, footwear for the ultra-hip. The 12-story building is by Robert Maynicke.




On this block was the source of Minetta Creek, which used to run through Greenwich Village and still flows underground.





135 (corner): Now that the Body Shop is renouncing its founder's politics, it's even more annoying. Nice pink brick on this 10-story 1900 building.


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West:

Methodist Book Concern

Paternoster Row by edenpictures, on Flickr

150 (corner): Lenscrafters, Skechers are in another Paternoster Row building, a stunning brick structure put up in 1890; note "M.B.C." on cornice.

146: Bravo Pizza. If I put up a building as ugly as this next to the Methodist Book Concern, I would cry myself to sleep at night.

144: Was The Gauntlet, the U.S.'s oldest body piercing establishment; helped spark the "Modern Primitive" trend. Ground floor is the Fifth Avenue Epicure. Note address on facade.

142 (corner): American Apparel, softcore fashion, was Weiss & Mahoney, "the Peaceful Army & Navy Store." The 10-story 1899 building is by Robert Maynicke.

Robert De Niro meets up with a gun dealer on this corner in Taxi Driver.

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133 (corner): Sisley, Italian women's casualwear.

129: A/X, Armani Exchange

125: Intermix, trendy store that's a favorite with the Sex and the City crowd.









119 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr

119 (corner): Sephora is in an eight-story building from 1906. Pages Restaurant, a coffee shop, was here in the 1970s.


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140 (corner): Aveda is in a 12-story building from 1902.

138: Food Depot (formerly Lucky Deli) is at the address of Chopsticks, a noted Korean brothel in the 1970s. Also Artista, a salon where the Sex and the City gang got their nails done. The four-story building dates to 1901.

136: White House/Black Market is the Andrews Coffee Shop, heavily redesigned.

134: Innovation Luggage & Travelware
























130 (corner): Express is in an 11-story Robert Maynicke building, built in 1903. It's on the site of Chickering Hall, auditorium built by the Chickering Piano Company, site of lectures by Oscar Wilde and Matthew Arnold. Here Alexander Graham Bell made the first interstate telephone call in 1877—to New Brunswick, New Jersey. Today, the offices of Interbrand are here—consultants to everyone from Wal-Mart to Oxfam.

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Arnold Constable Building by edenpictures, on Flickr

115 (corner): Haunted house–looking building with Nine West and Victoria's Secret is the former Arnold Constable department store, which moved to Ladies Mile in 1867 and grew to take up most of its block; this annex, designed by William Schickel, seems to have been built in 1877. Several architects had offices here, including Schickel himself, Cass Gilbert and Henry Bacon (who designed the Lincoln Memorial).

Founded by Aaron Arnold in 1825 (son-in-law James Constable became a partner in 1837), the store offered "Everything From Cradle to Grave." Mary Todd Lincoln was a frequent customer, along with Carnegies, Rockefellers and Morgans.

Earlier on this corner, from 1852-75, was the 5th Avenue Presbyterian Church, designed by religious architect Leopold Eidlitz. In 1875 it was dismantled and moved to 57th Street. 111 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr

111 (corner): Swedish retailer H & M (formerly Daffy's 5th Avenue) is in a stately 13-story building from 1895 designed by William Schickel & Company (who also did the Stuyvesant Polyclinic). Built on the site of financier August Belmont Jr.'s mansion, the first in the city to have a private ballroom. Belmont helped underwrite NY subway construction, and owned his own private subway car; his hobby was horse-racing—he bred Man o' War—and the Belmont Stakes are named for him.


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Gas street lights, introduced in New York in 1823, line 5th Avenue up to this intersection by 1847.

West:

126 (corner): Gap Kids is in a 15-story Robert Maynicke building completed in 1900. Built on the site of the Hotel de Logerot, owned by Richard de Logerot, the Marquis de Croisic.







122: Above the Gap are the world headquarters of Barnes & Noble. Strange art in the vestibule.




120 (corner): Gap Body is in an 11-story 1906 building by John B. Snook & Sons.

118: Address of the JL Mott Iron Works, which entered art history in April 1917 when Marcel Duchamp bought a urinal here and renamed it Fountain, launching the idea that anything could be art.

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Barnes & Noble

Barnes & Noble Flagship by edenpictures, on Flickr

105 (corner): This 11-story building was built in 1901 to a Robert Maynicke design. The bookstore chain started a branch here in 1932, and it became the corporate flagship. The mansion of steamship tycoon Marshall O. Roberts used to be here; he owned the painting Washington Crossing the Delaware.

103: Juicy Couture (formerly Fossil) is in the Pierrepont building, an eight-story building from 1926 designed by Louis Korn. This was the site of the Art Students League's first school, opened in 1875.

101: Zara is in an 11-story 1908 building by Mulliken & Moeller.

97 (corner): Aldo is in an eight-story building from 1900 designed by Robert Maynicke.


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West:

114 (corner): Banana Republic is on the site of the home of Ambrose Kingsland, mayor and sperm-oil merchant. Later the offices of Oxford University Press.



Judge Building

Judge Building by edenpictures, on Flickr

110 (corner): Esprit (formerly Emporio Armani) is on the ground floor of a striking, large-arched McKim, Mead and White building that was built in 1888 to house Judge, a sophisticated, pro-Republican humor magazine founded by ex-staffers of Puck. The building replaced the Athenaeum Club.

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95 (corner): Kenneth Cole, the intellectual's shoe store, is in a nine-story building built in 1920, supposedly designed by Robert Maynicke (though the architect died in 1913). This was painter Childe Hassam's first New York address in 1889; artist Bruce Crane also lived here. Fifth Avenue Caryatids by edenpictures, on Flickr

91: J. Crew is in an 1894 building with sexy caryatids. Anson Randolph moved his bookstore here in 1896.

87-89: Holds Banana Republic Women and a ghostly sign for Spiegel & Strauss.

85 (corner): Anthropologie was B. Shackman Favors & Novelties. On site of the home of Levi Parson Morton (from 1886-88), a banker and congressmember who became vice president under Benjamin Harrison.


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West:

108 (corner): An odd post-modern building designed by Rothzeid, Kaiserman, Thompson & Bee and opened in 1986. Paul Smith, British fashion, has "best guy shopping," according to Time Out New York--they mean rich guys.

104: Arden B clothing is at the address where Margaret Sanger published the Birth Control Review, and later opened a contraceptive clinic, which eventually grew into Planned Parenthood. Mesa Grill by MoRobb, on Flickr

102: Mesa Grill, owned by celebrity chef Bobby Flay.

100 (corner): On the corner where Bebe clothing store now is, anarchist publisher Carlo Tresca was Carlo Tresca Corner by edenpictures, on Flickr assassinated by future Mob boss Carmine Galente in 1943--perhaps on the orders of Mussolini. In the 1980s there was a short-lived reincarnation of the Peppermint Lounge here, which closed after Mob connections were alleged.

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81: Was Behr Hall, a concert space

79 (corner): A 16-story building by Albert S. Gottlieb, completed 1907, houses Coach, Artistic Tile, etc. Built on the site of Mayor George Opdyke's house; draft rioters tried to burn it down twice in 1863.

77: The building above Regale Deli is strikingly ugly.












73 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr

73 (corner): Designed by Samuel Sass and completed 1907, features a large central arch


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West:

96 (corner): Site of Il Martello-- "the hammer"--Carlo Tresca’s anarchist newspaper

98: The site of the Cosmos Club, a club for fans of Humboldt's Cosmos, dedicated to the promotion of knowledge.

96 (corner): To call this architecture "Soviet-style" would be an insult to the Soviets. The Manhattan Club--an organization of upper-class Democrats--moved to this address in 1865. Later the address of Il Martello--"The Hammer"--Carlo Tresca's anarchist newspaper.



90 (corner): Vidal Sassoon is on the site of the Old Guard of the City of New York, which seems to have once been some kind of military organization but later became a relief society. The current 11-story building dates to 1903.

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71 (corner): Pier 1 Imports is in a large 11-story building by Charles Volz, built 1908. august 169 by emilyaugust, on Flickr

69 (corner): Wedgewood House apartments are built on the site of Delmonico's third location. Banquets were held here for Charles Dickens, Grand Duke Alexis of Russia and Samuel Morse for inventing the telegraph. The first women's organization, the Sorosis Club, was organized here 1868as well as the theatrical Lambs Club in 1874. The building was earlier a private home, owned by Moses Hicks Grinnell, where on February 20, 1861, President-elect Abraham Lincoln met over breakfast with business leaders. Later, this was the address of the Lutheran Publishing Bureau.


W <===             14TH STREET             ===> E
Northern boundary of the Village

See The Big Map for photos of the avenue from here to 23rd Street.

West:

Manhattan Penthouse - 5th Ave by larrykang, on Flickr

80 (corner): An impressive 16-story building; the top floor is a banqueting hall called Manhattan Penthouse. Former offices of the National Gay Task Force, founded in 1973 to work for gay rights from within the system. In 1986, the group (now the NGLTF) moved to D.C. The building now houses Lucille Roberts Fitness; also Cohen's Fashion Optical, Due Amici pizza.

78: East-West Books/Himalayan Institute. All your Eastern philosophical and New Age needs.

74: Twelve stories built in 1910 by Maynicke & Franke. New Valentino Market was Reminiscence, retro clothing. Old Nation Building by edenpictures, on Flickr

72 (corner): This seven-story building built in 1920 later housed the offices of The Nation, where I was an intern in 1985; now it's the New School's Milano Graduate School of Management and Urban Policy. Milano is a chemical industry executive who has given the New School a lot of money.

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Albert List Academic Center

New School Occupation 4.10.09 by joshuaheller, on Flickr

65 (block): Graduate school of the New School for Social Research, in a squat grey-brick Modernist building with slit-like windows. The school was started as a progressive alternative university with the help of John Dewey, Thorstein Veblen and the like in 1919. New School Graduate Center by edenpictures, on Flickr It became a "University in Exile" for refugees fleeing Nazi Germany. Now has war criminal Bob Kerrey as president, who hadn't even heard of the place when he was offered the job.











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When 5th Avenue was laid out in 1824, it stopped at 13th Street. Extended to 23rd Street in 1830.

West:

70 (corner): The New School's University Writing Center

68: New School's Compurt Instruction Center

Parsons School of Design

66: Alumni include Norman Rockwell, Jasper Johns, Edward Hopper and Isaac Mizrahi. This address was formerly the Fifth Avenue Playhouse, a French-language cinema. Now part of the New School. When built, the cellar of this interesting red-brick building was flooded by Minetta Creek, the Village's underground river.

Forbes Building

Forbes Building Quinta Avenida by Rafael Chamorro, on Flickr

60-62: Houses Forbes magazine (and American Heritage) as well as a museum of Malcolm Forbes' strange collections, including some important historical artifacts. Originally Macmillan publishing was based in this "pompous limestone cube" (AIA Guide). Built 1925. Whale-oil merchant Robert Bowne Minturn formerly had a house here.

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61 (corner): Was the Lone Star Cafe, NYC's main country music venue in the 1980s. (Slogan: "Too Much Ain't Enough.") Famous for the giant iguana on its roof. Later Mr. Fuji's Tropicana. Originally built as a branch of Schrafft's, the woman-focused tearoom chain, in the 1930s. Torn down c. 2009.

59: Dilly's was Luahn Restaurant & Lounge

57: Kermanshahi Oriental Rugs

Cardozo School of Law

Cardozo Law School HQ by fake is the new real, on Flickr

55 (corner): Yeshiva University's Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law — named for the Supreme Court justice. The second branch of the Longchamps restaurant chain opened at this address in 1927.

53 (corner): This defunct address was the home of James Lenox, whose family owned Lenox Hill. His book collection, which included the U.S.'s first Gutenberg Bible and the manuscript of Washington's Farewell Address, helped form the basis for the New York Public Library. His home later became Presbyterian House, a center for church offices.


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West:

First Presbyterian Church

NYC - Greenwich Village: First Presbyterian Church by wallyg, on Flickr

48 (block): The congregation here traces its history back to 1716; one of its earliest pastors was a 19-year-old Jonathan Edwards. It moved uptown to this location after the Great Fire of 1835. This gothic revival building, designed by Joseph C. Wells and dedicated in 1846, was modeled on Bath's Church of St. Saviour, with a tower based on Magdalene First Presbyterian Church in the City of New York - south flank by Michael Tinkler, on Flickr College at Oxford. McKim, Mead & White added a south transept in 1893. The Rev. Harry Emerson Fosdick gave a controversial pro-Darwin sermon here in 1922, "Will the Fundamentalists Win?" An enraged William Jennings Bryan engineered Fosdick's removal from the church, whereupon he became the pastor of Riverside Church until 1969.




















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NYC - Greenwich Village: 51 Fifth Avenue by wallyg, on Flickr

51 (corner): This 15-story Thomas W. Lamb building, completed in 1928, was home to former Gov. Al Smith after he lost the 1928 presidential election to Herbert Hoover; he lived here until the early 1940s. The building was featured in the sitcom Mad About You.

Salmagundi Club

NYC - Greenwich Village: Salmagundi Club/Irad Hawley House by wallyg, on Flickr

47: Oldest U.S. artists' club; members included Stanford White, Louis C. Tiffany, William Merritt Chase, John La Farge, Augustus St. Gaudens and John Philip Sousa. Moved to this 1853 building in 1917; the brownstone, the last on lower Fifth Avenue, was built in 1853 for Irad Hawley, president of the Pennsylvania Coal Company.

45: A 16-story 1923 apartment building designed by Sugarman & Berger 43 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr

43 (corner): This 1905 Beaux Arts building was the grandest apartment building on lower 5th Avenue. In 1946, Marlon Brando lived here with a Russian violinist named Igor, who moved out after Brando filled his violin with horse manure. Novelist Dawn Powell was here from 1960–63, when The Golden Spur was published. It was Hugh Grant's place in Woody Allen's Small Time Crooks; the building was also featured in Deconstructing Henry and Everyone Says I Love You.


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West:

40 Fifth Avenue by edenpictures, on Flickr

40 (corner): This 17-story brown brick building, with something resembling Independence Hall on top, is a Van Wart & Wein design finished 1929. Judge Joseph F. Crater, who inexplicably disappeared in 1930, lived on the fourth floor of this building at the time he went missing. "Almost five months after he vanished and after several police searches, three envelopes with cash, insurance policies and the judge's will mysteriously turned up in the bedroom."—All Around the Town.

An earlier building with this number was an early Second Empire house built in 1857, designed by Calver Vaux, co-architect of Central Park, for John A.C. Gray, one of the park's commissioners. Later, from 1866–71, it was the home of reaper tycoon Cyrus McCormick. Sara Wiborg and Gerald Murphy, the models for Nicole and Dick Diver in Fitzgerald's Tender Is the Night, were wed here in 1915. And President John F. Kennedy's personal physician, Janet Travell, was living here as a young woman in 1925.

Church of the Ascension

NYC - Greenwich Village: Church of the Ascension by wallyg, on Flickr

36-38 (corner): This Episcopal church was designed in 1841 by Richard Upjohn, architect of Trinity Church. The interior, remodeled by Stanford White in 1889, features John La Farge stained glass and an altar by Augustus Saint-Gaudens. President John Tyler secretly married Julia Gardiner here in 1844; the bride was 30 years his junior. The funeral of globetrotting journalist Nellie Bly was held here in 1922.

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41 (corner): This 15-story 1923 building was designed by Rosario Candela.

39: Columnist Walter Lippman lived here (1925-29) when he was an editor at the New York World. Michael Lutin, Vanity Fair astrology columnist, has his offices here.

























Rubin Hall

35 (corner): This NYU dorm (acquired by the school in 1964) was built in 1925 as the Grosvenor Hotel. It was the most expensive hotel in New York City south of 28th Street in 1939 (according to the WPA Guide), with rooms starting from $4 a night. Novelist Willa Cather lived here from 1927 to 1932; Mark Twain stayed here as well, in an earlier incarnation of the hotel. This was the dorm (at least in exterior shots) of the title character of the TV show Felicity.


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At this intersection was the home of landowner Henry Brevoort, the first person to live on the new 5th Avenue. The "Old Gentleman" kept a pet bear chained up in his yard.

West:

30 (corner): This 15-story brick apartment building designed by Schwartz & Gross was completed in 1923.

















24 (corner): This building was the Fifth Avenue Hotel, a 1922 effort by Emery Roth. Built on site of the Brevoort House, home of Henry Brevoort Jr., the finest house on 5th Avenue when it was built in 1834 (perhaps designed by Ithiel Town and Alexander Jackson Davis). Now houses Cru, featuring a 222-page wine list with 3,820 vintages, based on the 65,000-bottle collection of Roy Welland, who owned Washington Park, the restaurant that used to be here. Before that (not so long ago) it was Rose Cafe & Bar, featured in As Good as It Gets; earlier known as 24 Fifth.

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33 (corner): Fifteen-story building by Sugarman, Hess & Berger completed 1923

23-27 (corner): This 1919 13-story apartment building, designed by Rouse & Goldstone, has been home to director Brian dePalma. Designer Helen Dryden, best known for her work in Vogue and on the 1937 Studebaker, lived here in 1936.

Previously, No. 25 was the self-designed house of architect James Renwick Jr., designer of Grace Church and St. Patrick's Cathedral. Washington Irving was such a frequent visitor of Renwick's that he had his own library here.

No. 23 was the site of Mabel Dodge's salon; socialite (and lover of John Reed) noted for her literary/political gatherings, with the likes of Sherwood Anderson, Theodore Dreiser, Carl Sandburg, Eugene O'Neill, Robert Frost, Walter Lippman, Max Eastman, Big Bill Haywood, Emma Goldman and Lincoln Steffens.

Mabel Dodge moved here in 1912, when the building's owner, Daniel Sickles, rented her the second floor. Sickles was a former U.S. representative who in 1859 killed Francis Scott Key's son Philip, a U.S. attorney, for having an affair with Sickles' wife Teresa. The killer entered the novel plea of temporary insanity and was acquitted. He later became a general in the Union Army and lost a leg at Gettysburg. He died here in 1914 at the age of 91.

The top floor was occupied by William Sulzer, a governor of New York who was impeached in 1913.


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West:

16: In 1870, writer Bret Harte stayed with his sister at this address.

12: Was the Rhinelander Apartment Hotel; now an apartment building. New York magazine nightlife photographer Patrick McMullan has lived here.










































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21: Site of Mark Twain house (1904–06) designed by James Renwick

17: The address of Henry Bergh, who in 1866 founded the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, initially to protect work horses.

Brevoort Apartments

The Brevoort by Gelatobaby, on Flickr

11–15 (block): On the site of Brevoort Hotel, the first hotel on Fifth Avenue, built in 1854. John Dos Passos, in 42nd Parallel, wrote that "all the artists and radicals and really interesting people used to stay there and it was very French." Among its habituees were Eugene O'Neill, Isadora Duncan, Edna St. Vincent Millay and Lincoln Steffens. Nathanael West lived there in 1935–36. Banquets were held here for Margaret Sanger, indicted for distributing birth control information, and for Emma Goldman on the eve of her 1919 deportation to the Soviet Union. The American Labor Party was founded here in 1936. The hotel's barber is credited with inventing the "bob" (for dancer Irene Castle). The hotel's owner, Raymond Orteig, put up $25,000 for the first person to fly across the Atlantic, and Charles Lindbergh collected at a breakfast here on June 17, 1927. The hotel was torn down in 1948 because it couldn't be brought up to code.

Musician Buddy Holly lived in the replacement apartments in 1958–59, from his marriage until his death. He recorded what are known as The Apartment Tapes here. Carmine DeSapio, last boss of Tammany Hall, also lived here. His 1961 defeat as Greenwich Village district leader spelled the end of Tammany's long sway. He helped close Washington Square to traffic.

Novelist Henry James lived briefly at a house at No. 11 in 1847, when he was a child.


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West:

8 (corner): The north end of the block was the site of New York's first marble mansion, built by John Taylor Johnston in 1856. The Metropolitan Museum of Art was organized here in 1870, with Johnston elected its founding president. Writer/cartoonist James Thurber lived there in 1935-36.

2 Fifth Avenue

2 (block): This behemoth, which destroyed the house that inspired Henry James' Washington Square, helped spark the Village preservation movement. Former Mayor Ed Koch, feminist politician Bella Abzug and gay writer/activist Larry Kramer have lived here, as did Edie Windsor, whose victory in the Supreme Court case US v. Windsor struck down the Defense of Marriage Act. Photographer Andre Kertesz lived here from 1952 until his death in 1985; his photographs of Washington Square taken with a telephoto lens are considered among the best of his U.S. career.

The fountain to the right of the front door is fed by Minetta Brook, a now-underground river that used to meander through Washington Square Park and the Village.

My dentist, Dr. Mark Horowitz, has a practice on the ground floor of this building.



































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3: Home of the Three 5th Avenue Club, an organization of freethinkers. Mark Twain hosted a dinner there in honor of Maxim Gorky— who was not allowed to stay at the Brevoort, because he was traveling with a woman not his wife.

1 Fifth Avenue

NYC - Greenwich Village: One Fifth Avenue by wallyg on Flickr

1 (block): Built in 1926 as an Art Deco hotel; now a co-op. Poet Sara Teasdale committed suicide here January 30, 1933. Photographer Robert Mapplethorpe used to live in the penthouse with his lover, Sam Wagstaff; Mapplethorpe photographed his friend Patti Smith here for the cover of her albums Horses and Wave. Smith bought the apartment below Wagstaff's with her then-boyfriend, Allen Lanier of Blue Oyster Cult.

Candace Bushnell in 2008 published a novel set in the building called One Fifth Avenue.

There used to be a restaurant called One Fifth here, which was featured in Woody Allen's Crimes and Misdemeanors; it's now Otto, noted for its gelato.

Formerly at No. 1 was a girls' school run by Lucy and Mary Green, whose faculty included Teddy Roosevelt's future secretary of state, Elihu Root—and whose students included Jennie Jerome, Winston Churchill's mother. Also the address of the A Club, an early women's rights group.


WASHINGTON MEWS

Corner (1 Washington Mews): Glucksman Ireland House, NYU's Irish studies center NYC - Greenwich Village: 7-13 Washington Square North by wallyg, on Flickr

Corner (7–13 Washington Sq N): Originally separate townhouses, built in 1836 by Sailors Snug Harbor, these have been combined into one apartment building with an entrance on Fifth Avenue. No. 12 was from 1879–1905 the home of Edward Cooper, son of Peter Cooper and mayor of NYC (1878-80). No. 11 was the home of department store owner John Wanamaker; it's also Will Smith's address in I Am Legend. Alexander Hamilton lived at No. 7, as did Edith Wharton in 1882, when she was 20 years old.


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See The Big Map for photos of the avenue from here to 14th Street.


Washington Square Park

Washington Square Park by kalyan3, on Flickr

Originally a marsh surrounding Minetta Brook, in the early years of New York this area was used as a graveyard for slaves and yellow fever victims--25,000 people are thought to have been buried here--as well as a dueling ground and a place of execution. In 1826 it was designated the Washington Military Parade Grounds, which soon was transformed into a public park. In 1834, stonemasons upset about the use of convict labor from Sing Sing to build NYU's main building rioted here.

5th Avenue used to go through to West Broadway, now LaGuardia Place. In 1952, neighborhood residents organized to oppose Robert Moses' plan to increase traffic through the park, and succeeded in getting cars banned altogether--a terrific precedent for Central and Prospect parks. The present relandscaping, which involves centering the fountain and eliminating the sunken plaza, was overwhelmingly opposed by the community--but so far it hasn't destroyed the park's spirit. washington square park by roboppy, on Flickr

Washington Square was at one point the center of New York society, later becoming the unofficial quadrangle of NYU. It's long been a haven for folksingers (including Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan); in 1961, a police crackdown on folksinging led to riots.

This is where Jane Fonda wanted to be Barefoot in the Park; it's also where the skateboarders beat up a passer-by in Kids. (The real-life skate kids are harmless.)

Washington Square Arch

Washington Square Arch by Clover_1, on Flickr Washington Square Arch by Julio Costa Zambelli, on Flickr

Designed by Stanford White, the arch was put up in 1892 to replace a temporary plaster arch erected in 1889 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Washington's inauguration. In 1917, members of the bohemian Liberal Club, including artists Marcel Duchamp and John Sloan, climbed on top of the arch to proclaim the Republic of Washington Square. Harold Lloyd drove a horse-drawn trolley through the arch in the silent movie Speedy; Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal (looking awfully old for college kids) decide to be just friends here in When Harry Met Sally. I remember a date once where we ended up under the arch to get out of the rain, and ended up kissing until a pot dealer urged me to take her home.

Click here for The View From the Top of the Arch.





Is your favorite Fifth Avenue spot missing? Write to Jim Naureckas and tell him about it.

There's a poster of 5th Avenue that is sort of Songlines-like.

A Walk Down 5th Avenue gives a good visual idea of the street.

New York Songlines Home.

Sources for the Songlines.

NYSonglines' Facebook Fan Page.

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If you enjoy the New York Songlines, please link to them from your website. A link to a particular intersection looks like this: http://www.nysonglines.com/8st.htm#3av.