Recent Articles

  • Close up detail of Nathan Hindin, 1916
    I came across this photo posted in a local history group - the only information provided was the caption, "Leonard Street 1916". Based on the photo and caption, there was not a lot to go on. A stern gentleman - let's call him Nathan - standing in front of a rowhouse. Judging by the ironwork and windows, the buildings to the right appear to be 1850s transitional Italianate/Greek Revival. Nathan's building - based just on the ironwork (nothing else is visible) - is not part of the same development and is probably early 1840s. So where is this photo?
  • The Woodward outdoor movie theater, 1912
    In 1912 Harry Horowitz and Louis Rosenberg went on the lam at 756 Woodward Avenue in Ridgewood. They captured in part due to the outdoor movie theater located next door.
  • South 3rd Street Presbyterian Wells
    The South Third Street Presbyterian Church of Williamsburgh is one of the oldest congregations in Williamsburg. The church was organized on April 19, 1844 in a meeting held at the public school at South Third Street and Fifth Street (Driggs Avenue) - across the street from the current church. The church was founded with 27 members, most of whom came from the First Presbyterian Church of Williamsburgh.
  • Doelger storefront

    The most distinctive feature of Teddy’s Bar at 96 Berry Street is the projecting wood and sheet-copper corner storefront with a beautiful decorativ

  • Claver Institute 1931
    The history of St. Peter Claver parish dates to 1915, the year that the Catholic Colored Club (CCC) was founded by Jules DeWeever.  The Club was formed with the express purpose of having a “Church for Colored Catholics established in this [Brooklyn] Diocese.”  Coincidentally, at about the same time, in 1916 Bishop McDonnell of Brooklyn called for the establishment of “Home Missions” to meet the needs of the heterogenous Catholic population of the Diocese.  Rev. Bernard Quinn responded to the Bishop’s call by proposing the establishment of a church for African Americans, and volunteered to work on this "Colored Mission" for the Diocese.
  • Domino Refinery HAER
    The Domino Sugar Refinery is one of the most prominent industrial sites on the East River waterfront. The complex consists of seven larger buildings and many other smaller structures, occupying a six-block site on the Williamsburg waterfront immediately north of the Williamsburg Bridge. The existing complex includes two buildings from the refinery’s earliest period of construction, 1884, as well as a number of other significant structures from the 1920s-1930s and 1950s-1960s.
  • Brooklyn is called the borough of churches, and in the 19th century, it seems that Brooklyn was also a big game of musical churches. Congregations would start up, grow quickly, and then split up or just plain disappear. Often the splits were the result of doctrinal disagreements among congregants or between congregants and their pastor. It was not uncommon for half a congregation to walk away from their church and establish a new church a few blocks away. Other times, demographics would lead to changes in congregations. As one result of all this factional tumult, church buildings would frequently change hands, being passed from denomination to denomination or among congregants of the same denomination.
  • Williamsburg Bridge Plaza panorama
    Panorama view of Williamsburg Bridge Plaza, created from two ca. 1908 images from the Library of Congress. At the far left in the photo is the cast-iron building at 242 Broadway (Theobald Engelhardt, 1891). Immediately to the left of the bridge is the Williamsburgh Savings Bank building, and the the right of the bridge is the Williamsburgh Trust Company building, under construction.
  • St. Peter & Paul 1895
    This is the original church of Sts. Peter & Paul, Wythe Avenue between South Second and South Third Streets. Sts. Peter & Paul was the first Catholic parish in Williamsburg, and the third Catholic parish in Kings County. Constructed in 1847, this church was the first church designed by Patrick Charles Keely, who went on to design hundreds of other Catholic churches throughout New York and the Northeast (by some accounts, Keely designed over 700 churches).
  • North 4th and Kent, 1868 map

    Street names and numbering in Brooklyn changed a number of times.

  • Gandar's Bookstore
    J. C. Gandar was a civic and literary leader of early Williamsburgh. His bookstore (pictured) was located at the corner of Grand and Fifth Streets 1
    • 1 The address on the advertisement above (156 Grand Street) seems to be incorrect - other versions of this add show the street names on the side of the building: Fifth Street is on the left facade and Grand Street is on the right.
  • Mechanics & Traders Bank
    Designed by architect Alonzo B. Jones and constructed in 1889. The story behind the complicated search for those simple pieces of information.
  • Mother Goose
    At the turn of the 20th Century, south Williamsburg was home to at least two of the country's largest printing houses. The larger of these was D. Appleton & Co. on Kent Avenue between Hewes and Penn Streets; the building was taken down for the construction of the BQE. The second publisher - McLoughlin Brothers - was located on South 11th Street between Wythe and Berry.
  • 10 Fillmore Place

    Editor's note: This article was originally written for the Waterfront Preservation Alliance of Greenpoint and Wil

  • Map of Williamsburg, 1846

    Editor's note: This article was originally written for the Waterfront Preservation Alliance of Greenpoint and Wil

  • Fillmore Place looking west

    Editor's note: This article was originally written in 2007 for the Waterfront Pres

  • Bushwick Creek historical course

    Editor's note: This article was originally published by Brooklyn 11211 .