Kleindeutschland and the Lower East Side, Manhattan - Streets

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Kleindeutschland and the Lower East Side

My ancestors, Catherine Furst Schwartzmeier Lindemann (born Aschaffenburg, Germany 1827), her daughter, Wilhelmina Schwartzmeier Lindemann Goehle (born NYC c 1862), and Wilhelmina's husband, Peter Goehle (born Herrnsheim, Germany 1852) and their extended families lived in the Lower East Side. My grandfather, Frank Goehle, was born at 88 Sheriff Street in 1894.

In the mid to late 1800s a large portion of this the area was known as as Kleindeutschland (Little Germany) because of the high percentage of German immigrants who lived there. The Germans who lived in this part of New York City maintained their language and culture. It was a bit of Germany moved to New York City.

Germany was not unified as a nation until 1871. Up to that time it was made up of multitude of states, princedoms, dukedoms, city states, etc. All of these diverse regions had their own dialects, customs and dress. The "Germans" who came to America in the 1800s tended to form communities within their own regional groups. Bavarians and Prussians were the two biggest German speaking groups who settled in New York City.

Kleindeutschland encompassed the 10th, 11th, 13th and 17th Wards - an area between 14th and Division Streets - the East River and the Bowery. Today this area includes the East Village, Alphabet City, and parts of Chinatown, the Bowery, Little Italy, and NoLita.

Kleindeutschland was the first large urban language settlement in an America city. Between 1855 and 1880 it was the third largest German speaking community in the world - Only Vienna and Berlin were bigger!

The 1870s and 1880s saw a big building boom in the New York City area. Manhattan expanded to the North. By 1878 the Second Avenue El ran form Battery Park to the Harlem River. Yorkville, which extended from 83rd to 89th and from the East River to Third Avenue, offered a better class of tenements and was easily assessable on the el. Yorkville became the center of a newly expanding German neighborhood with Lower East side Germans moving uptown and the 1880s wave of new German immigrants arriving. At the same time the Lower East Side saw and inrush of Eastern European Jews. Many Lower East Side Germans also moved to Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and New Jersey in the late 1880 and early 1900s.

The General Slocum Steamboat Disaster of 1904 is often credited with the demise of Kleindeutchland. This may be true to some extent but the movement was already well underway by 1904.

German Immigration to New York

In the mid 1800s a big export from the US to Germany was tobacco. Tobacco was a bulky trade item that took up a lot of room on the ships. Merchants were looking for a return commodity and they hit on the idea of immigrants. There were economic and social issues in Germany that encouraged emigration. The potato rot of the early 1840s not only effected Ireland but had a sever economic impact on German as well. There was also political unrest in Germany in the 1850s. These factor contributed to a significant increase in emigration from German to the US. Early immigrants to New York were primarily from the Rhineland.

The Civil War slowed the flow. Following the war the pace picked up with many Germans arriving from Prussia.

Many of these Germans arriving in New york City were single young people, predominantly male. They frequently settled in the 10th, 11th, 13th and 17th wards.

Building in the area was on the rise after 1845. Most of the houses were 2, 3 or 4 story wood or brick building. Rear tenements frequently houses work shops and factories. The 10th Ward was the most commercial. The 11th ward had a lot of shipyards along the river and a lot of slaughterhouses. The 13th ward had a lot of breweries, coal yards, timer yards and also had shipping along the river. The 17th ward was the newest and the least industrial. It also contained the largest number o brick or stone houses.

Tompkins Square Park provided a respite from the noise and confusion of the busy streets.

Many of the tenements north of Houston were 5 or 6 stories high on double lots. A lot was 25 feet wide and 70 feet deep. Each floor could have 8 apartments - 4 on the street and 4 in the rear. A 5 story double wide could have 40 apartments in the building. The size of each apartment would accordingly have been 350 square feet.

By 1875 64% of the 10th and 13th wards were German.

By the 1860s a considerable number of wealthier Germans had moved out of Kliendeutschland. The process continued through the 1870 and 1880s as more people moved into the newly developed areas uptown. By the 1870s the lower (wards, 10 and 13th) had increasing larger numbers of Eastern Europeans and less Germans. Many Germans remained, mostly in the 11th and 17th wards, until the 1904 General Slocum steamship disaster. It has repeatedly been stated over the years that his catastrophe, resulting in the death of at least 900 people mostly women and children, was the demise of Kleindeuchland. It may have only accelerated a process that had been going on for some time.

The Bowery

Once one of the most fashionable streets in the city, by the end of the Civil War the Bowery had become the home of popular theaters and German beer gardens.

A 1892 Century Magazine about the Bowery had the following to say:

  • "It is an enormous, crowded, noisy street of retail shop, lodging houses, and museums."

  • In addition to "respectable" shops like grocer's, baker's and a shop for "the supply of firemen's goods" there were a abundance of cheap jewelry stores and pawnbrokers.

  • The "foreign inclination" of the street was noted:
    "one sees the force of foreign inclination unmistakably in other features of the street. The frequency of signs painted with Hebrew characters in German words even in the windows of banks, is no more mistakable than the occasional "delicatessen", shops, as the Germans call these places which are nearly like our "fancy groceries". The number of places for the sales of muscial instruments is so great as to indicate that the majority of their customers are from continental Europe, and in the still larger numbers of cheap photograph-galleries the same influence is apparent"........... Not only are the types of faces Teutonic and Slavonic, but the sitters have shown a fondness for being pictures in fancy costumes and maskers' dresses.".......... The sources of the fancy costumes is seen in the many places for the hire of masquerade dresses that are in the Bowery.......The costumes are hired for use at masquarade balls and it is on the morning after such a ball, before the dresses are returned, that the dancers wear them once again to the photograph-galleries."

  • The inhabitants of the Bowery area were joiners and everyone became members of numerous "societies". Each occupation had one of more societies. One became a member of the society of people who came from the same village of area of Germany. Other societies included: singing clubs, sharpshooting clubs, secret societies, mutual benefit societies, burial societies, gymnastic clubs, and various church groups.
    "Fraternity and fun are at the bottom of all these organizations — a kind of fun we Anglo-Saxon are too stiff to enjoy, and a sort of vigorous and ostentatious fraternity that we do not see the necessity for............No matter what the aim or title of the organization, dancing and the drinking of wine and beer seem to us the main purpose of the members."
    Many of these clubs members mixed on "equal terms" regardless of their social standing. The king of a given "ball" could have been "wage-earner", "clerk, a "professional" or a "well-to-do shop keeper".

    One society had the sole purpose to "bring together the people for a Rhenish village for a grand dance and feast of new sausage and new wine once a year."

  • The large number of drinking establishments was noted:
    "The street is fourteen blocks long, and there are sixty-five places where drink is sold on on its east side and seventeen on its west side"
    The numbers included: four music halls, four restaurants, four oyster houses, two or three wine houses, one wholesale liquor store, and several bars connected with theaters and variety-halls.
    "Some of the saloons have glittering exteriors and costly fittings, but not one is so called fist rate. In the main they are cheap places of a low class."
    The exception was the "one orderly resort — The Atlantic Garden"

    "Lager beer is of course the standard tipple of the Bowery, and it flows there in such torrents that I am not guilty of the slightest exaggeration is saying that early on Sunday morning, after a busy Saturday night, the very air that is breathed in the great avenue is weighted with the odor of soured beer."
  • There were six museums on the Bowery. They showed such things as "the fattest women on earth"

  • The Bowery was one of the most brilliantly lit streets of the day. Although Julian Ralph deems it "cheap and vulgar".

  • The Old Bowery theater had recently been "given over" to entainment for "Polish Hebrews".
    "The language used on the stage is a strange jargon of bad Russian, Polish, old Hebrew, and one or more other tongues"

  • Germans abounded:
    "More numerous than all others on this great East-Side parade are the people of German origin."

Oil painting - The Summit Hotel, 63 Bowery, 1886. [Looking north on the Bowery from below Canal. Street Perspective is from about 50 - 54 Bowery - The Atlantic Garden.] Image courtesy of Adam Woodward April 2018.

1874: Summit Hotel 65 Bowery corner Canal street, rooms by the day and week; 50c, 60c, 75c and $1 per night, heated by steam, weekly prices reduced, B. Breder Proprietor (New York Herald 04 January 1874)

1876/77: Gouldings New York City Directory: Summit Hotel 65 Bowery

1880: "Frederick Albers was rendered unconscious by inhaling water gas at Summit Hotel, Bowery, and was with with great difficulty revived." N. Y. Tribune, December 27, 1880. (Report of the Commissioner of Health on Illuminating Gas)

1880: August 10, 1880 New York Times A man who gave the name, William Schmidt, registered at the Summit Hotel at No. 65 Bowery. He drank a "shoppen" of red wine at the bar and then retired to his room. some time later a maid heard strange noises coming form the room. Upon investigation it was discovered that he had committed suicide by strangulation. His identity was later established as R. G. Tuelff, age 36, born in Silesia. The head line was "SUICIDE CAUSED BY RUM'

1883: "Eliza Wagner Mauchwitz, a disowned daughter of Baron Von Stein and a graduate of the royal medical college of Saxony, killed herself last week by inhaling gas in her bedroom at the Summit Hotel, 65 Bowery, New York city". June 1883 (Argus and Patriot Montpelier Vermont)

Mrs. M. E. Wagner Nanshurtz a married woman and graduate of the Royal Medical college of Saxony was found dead in her room (The Brooklyn Union)

The room was broken into when the smell of gas attracted attention. It was a clear act of suicide as strips of brown paper had been pasted over the cracks in the door and a straw mattress had been pushed up against the door. The window had been covered with a thick blanket. The gas had been turned on but was not lit.

"Mrs. E. A. Wagner, at Manchurtz, a graduate of the Royal Medical College, Saxony and the daughter of Baron Von Stein, a wealthy German land owner, committed suicide at the Bowery Hotel. ... She was disowned for marrying against the wishes of her parents and it is supposed that lack of funds led to the act." (the Butte Weekly Miner 30 May 1883 & other papers) It was said she ran away from home with a married man or married a man her parents did not approve of.

1893: "Dyer D Lum, greenbacker and anarchist, was found dead in his bed at the Summit Hotel, 65 bowery". He had registered under the name D. Miller (which was said to be his real name). Cause of death was determined to have been heart failure but it was noted in some papers that he had recently been drinking heavily. Lum was 51 and had been born in Northampton, Mass. He had fought on the Union side during the Civil war and when the war ended allied himself with the greenbackers*. 09 April 1893 San Francisco Chronicle

*a post Civil War political party who opposed reducing the amount of paper money in circulation.


1901: Western Union Telegraph Office 65 Bowery - Summit Hotel

1905: Walter Essler, married, about 30 years old and a well dressed farmer from Huguenot Station, Staten Island, was discovered unconscious in his room at the Summit Hotel 65 Bowery. He had taken eighteen morphine pills. He was taken to Chambers street Hospital and was expected to recover.

1908: "Cornelius Sullivan, a policeman attached to the Elizabeth street station, was arrested in the Summit Hotel. No 65 Bowery". The charge was drunkenness, disorderly conduct and "causing a crowd to collect". Sullivan, age 27, had been on the force for nine months. He had threatened to shoot the bartender. (Feb 4, 1908)

Otto Zimmerman owner of The Summit Hotel, Bowery & Canal. ca.1888 - Oil painting - Image courtesy of Adam Woodward April 2018.

Polk's Directory of 1908 and 1913 listed Zimmermann, & son (Gustav & George T. Zimmermann) 65 Bowery.

1900: 23rd street, Manhattan; Gustaves Zimmermann Head M 36 date of birth, January 1864, Germany, hotelkeeper, Mary Zimmermann Wife F 42 New York, 5 children 5 living, George Zimmermann Son M 18 New York, born New Yrok barkeeper, Katie Zimmermann Daughter F 16 New York, Millie Zimmermann Daughter F 13 New York, Sophia Zimmermann Daughter F 26 Germany, Charles Rheinhardt Servant M 37 Germany

George Zimmermann was born 04 July 1881 to Marie Kemph and Gustav Zimmermann

1899: Gustave Zimmermann 877 W 23d New York, New York, USA Occupation: Liquor Publication Title: New York, New York, City Directory, 1899

1905 Hotel Vote George Zimmermann 65 Bowery (Documents of the Assembly of the State of New York, Volume 133, Issue 2)

1912: Zimmermann, George 65 Bowery HOTEL (Annual Report of the State Commissioner of Excise, Volume 2)

Bowery and Elevated Road, New York

Post marked 1910

By the mid 1870's elevated trains ran along 2nd, 3rd, 6th and 9th Avenues. While they improved the speed of travel they were loud and caused pollution.

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Bowery and Doubledeck Elevated R. R., New York City

Not posted

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Printed on back
The Bowery, one of the most noted thoroughfares in the city, runs in a northeasterly direction through the most congested district of the famous East side. It practically begins at the Brooklyn Bridge under the name of Park Row and ends at Cooper Square. Was formerly a part of the old Boston Post Road.

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Third Avenue El — From Battery Park to Harlem along the Bowery and Third Avenue.

New York Public Library ID 805719


"The Bowery is devoted mainly to the cheap trade. The children of Israel abound here. The display of goods in the shops flashy, and not often attractive. Few persons who have the means to buy elsewhere care to purchase an article in the Bowery,

as those familiar with it know there are but few reliable dealers in the street. If one were to believe the assertions of the Bowery merchants as set forth in their posters and hand bills, with which they cover the fronts of their shops, they are always on the verge of ruin, and are constantly throwing their goods away for the benefit of their customers. They always sell at a "ruinous sacrifice;" yet snug fortunes are realized here, and many a Fifth avenue family can look back to days passed in the dingy back room of a Bowery shop, while papa "sacrificed" his wares in front. Sharp practice rules in the Bowery, and if beating an unwilling customer into buying what he does not want is the highest art of the merchant, then there are no such salesmen in the great city as those of this street. Strangers from the country, servant girls, and those who, for the want of means, are forced to put up with an inferior article, trade here. As a general rule, the goods sold here are of an inferior, and often worthless quality, and the prices asked are high, though seemingly cheap. Pawnbrokers' shops, "Cheap Johns," third-class hotels, dance houses, fifth-rate lodging houses, low class theatres, and concert saloons, abound in the lower part of the street. The Sunday law is a dead letter in the Bowery. Here, on the Sabbath, one may see shops of all kinds-the vilest especially-open for trade. Cheap clothing stores, concert saloons, and the most infamous dens of vice are in full blast. The street, and the cars traversing it, are thronged with the lower classes in search of what they call enjoyment. At night all the places of amusement are open, and are crowded to excess. Roughs, thieves, fallen women, and even little children throng them. Indeed it is sad to see how many children are to be found in these places. The price of admission is low, and strange as it may sound, almost any beggar can raise it. People have no idea how much of the charity they lavish on street beggars goes in this way. The amusement afforded at these places ranges from indelicate hints and allusions to the grossest indecency. Along the line of almost the entire street are shooting galleries, some of which open immediately upon the street. They are decorated in the most fanciful style, and the targets

represent nearly every variety of man and beast. Here is a lion, who, if hit in the proper place, will utter a truly royal roar. Here is a trumpeter. Strike his heart with your shot, and he will raise his trumpet to his lips and send forth a blast sufficient to wake every Bowery baby in existence. "Only five cents a shot," cries the proprietor to the surrounding crowd of barefoot, penniless boys, and half-grown lads, "and a knife to be given to the man that hits the bull's eye." Many a penny do these urchins spend here in the vain hope of winning the knife, and many are the seeds of evil sown among them by these "chances." In another gallery the proprietor offers twenty dollars to any one who will hit a certain bull's eye three times in succession. Here men contend for the prize, and as a rule the proprietor wins all the money in their pockets before the mark is struck as required. The carnival of the Bowery is held on Saturday night. The down-town stores, the factories, and other business places close about five o'clock, and the street is thronged at an early hour. Crowds are going to market, but the majority are bent on pleasure. As soon as the darkness falls over the city the street blazes with light. Away up towards Prince street you may see the flashy sign of Tony Pastor's Opera House, while from below Canal street the Old Bowery Theatre stands white and glittering in the glare of gas and transparencies. Just over the way are the lights of the great German Stadt Theatre. The Atlantic Garden stands by the side of the older theatre, rivalling it in brilliancy and attractiveness. Scores of restaurants, with tempting bills of fare and prices astonishingly low, greet you at every step. "Lager Bier," and "Grosses Concert; Eintritt frei," are the signs which adorn nearly every other house. The lamps of the street venders dot the side-walk at intervals, and the many colored lights of the street cars stretch away as far as the eye can reach. The scene is as interesting and as brilliant as that to be witnessed in Broadway at the same hour; but very different.

As different as the scene, is the crowd thronging this street from that which is rushing along Broadway. Like that, it

represents all nationalities, but it is a crowd peculiar to the Bowery. The "rich Irish brogue" is well represented, it is true; but the "sweet German accent" predominates. The Germans are everywhere here. The street signs are more than one-half in German, and one might step fresh from the Fatherland into the Bowery and never know the difference, so far as the prevailing language is concerned. Every tongue is spoken here. You see the piratical looking Spaniard and Portuguese, the gypsy-like Italian, the chattering Frenchman with an irresistible smack of the Commune about him, the brutish looking Mexican, the sad and silent "Heathen Chinee," men from all quarters of the globe, nearly all retaining their native manner and habits, all very little Americanized. They are all "of the people." There is no aristocracy in the Bowery. The Latin Quarter itself is not more free from restraint. Among the many signs which line the street the word "Exchange" is to be seen very often. The "Exchanges" are the lowest class lottery offices, and they are doing a good business to-night, as you may see by the number of people passing in and out. The working people have just been paid off, and many of them are here now to squander their earnings in the swindles of the rascals who preside over the "Exchanges." These deluded creatures represent but a small part of the working class however. The Savings Banks are open to-night, many of them the best and most respectable buildings on the Bowery, and thousands of dollars in very small sums are left here for safe keeping.

Many of the Bowery people, alas, have no money for either the banks or the lottery offices. You may see them coming and going if you will stand by one of the many doors adorned with the three gilt balls. The pawnbrokers are reaping a fine harvest t--night. The windows of these shops are full of unredeemed pledges, and are a sad commentary on the hope of the poor creature who feels so sure she will soon be able to redeem the treasure she has just pawned for a mere pittance. Down in the cellars the Concert Saloons are in full blast, and the hot foul air comes rushing up the narrow openings as you

pass them, laden with the sound of the fearful revelry that is going on below. Occasionally a dog fight, or a struggle between some half drunken men, draws a crowd on the street and brings the police to the spot. At other times there is a rush of human beings and a wild cry of "stop thief," and the throng sweeps rapidly down the side-walk overturning street stands, and knocking the unwary passer-by off his feet, in its mad chase after some unseen thief. Beggars line the side-walk, many of them professing the most hopeless blindness, but with eyes keen enough to tell the difference between the coins tossed into their hats. The "Bowery Bands," as the little street musicians are called, are out in force, and you can hear their discordant strains every few squares.

Until long after midnight the scene is the same, and even all through the night the street preserves its air of unrest. Some hopeful vender of Lager Beer is almost always to be found at his post, seek him at what hour you will; and the cheap lodging houses and hotels seem never to close. Respectable people avoid the Bowery as far as possible at night. Every species of crime and vice is abroad at this time watching for its victims. Those who do not wish to fall into trouble should keep out of the way. p. 194

"Lights and Shadows of New York Life: or, the Sights and Sensations of the Great City" by James Dabney McCabe, 1872

James Dabney McCabe on Sundays in the Bowery:
"Broadway wears a silent and deserted aspect all day long, but towards sunset the Bowery brightens up wonderfully, and after nightfall the street is ablaze with a thousand gaslights. The low class theatres and places of amusement in that thoroughfare are opened towards dark, and then vice reigns triumphant in the Bowery. The Bowery beer-gardens do a good business. The most of them are provided with orchestras or huge orchestrions, and these play music from the ritual of the Roman Catholic Church.

Until very recently the bar-rooms were closed from midnight on Saturday until midnight on Sunday, and during that period the sale of intoxicating liquors was prohibited. Now all this is changed. The bar-rooms do a good business on Sunday, and especially on Sunday night. The Monday morning papers tell a fearful tale of crimes committed on the holy day. Assaults, fights, murders, robberies, and minor offences are reported in considerable numbers. Drunkenness is very common, and the Monday Police Courts have plenty of work to do.

William Louis Sonntag, Jr. (1822-1900), "The Bowery at Night"1895

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck, The Centry Magazine, 1892

From a painting by Andre Castaigne, 1891

Collection of Adam Woodward - 2018 El R.R. Bowery NY North from Houston st.)

Die Bowery in New York von der Hochbahn durchzogen

Collection of Adam Woodward - 2018

Printed 1898 by Arthur Strauss, New York

For information on Coogan Brothers furniture and John P Jude carriage materials see Lower East Side Notables

Germania Bank

Image courtesy of Adam Woodward, April 2018

Germania Bank Building

The World Almanac and Book of Facts 1871 listed the following places of "amusement" on the Bowery:
  1. Bowery Theatre 46 Bowery near Canal, melodrama etc.
  2. Liederkranz Hall 35 East 4th Street near Bowery
  3. Stadt Theatre 45 Bowery, German plays
  4. Tony Pastor's Opera-House 201 Bowery near Spring st, variety performances
Other German places on the Bowery:
  1. Lindenmullers Odeon 205 Bowery
  2. Germania Hall, 291 - 293 Bowery
  3. Germania Bank 190 Bowery

The Third Avenue railroad line, which opened to great fanfare in July 1853, ran from Park Row up Chatham street and the Bowery until it joined the Forth avenue at Grand Street. The end of the line was a 61st Street. Drawn by horses there were originally 19 cars on the line.

Germania Fire Insurance Company - 175 Broadway and 357 Bowery

The Germania Fire Insurance Company was founded in New York in 1858. The company erected 175 Broadway in 1865 as noted by the date on the front of the five story building. In 1870 they opened branch offices at 357 Bowery.
Image courtesy of Adam Woodward, April 2018

Cash Capital 500,000 - Germania Fire Insurance Company - This certifies that F. W. Deitering is entitled to fifteen (15) shares of the Capital Stock of the Germania Fire insurance Company transferable only by the said F. W. Deitering or his attorney on the books of said Company on surrender of this certificate. New York, 16, March 1864.

Frederick W. Deitering was born circa 1814 in Germany and died in Hoboken, New Jersey in January 10, 1872. He was buried in Greenwood Cemetery Brooklyn.

Germania Fire Insurance Company - 357 Bowery

Library of Congress - Undated

Image courtesy Adam Woodward - April 2018

357 Bowery located near 4th street on the east side of the Bowery is the building with the pool parlor in the lowest level. The three and a half story building was erected in 1870. To the north of 357 this images includes 359 and 361 Bowery. A 1890-93 fire insurance map of the city show 359 Bowery as a brick building and 361 as a wooden building. 357 and 359 are still standing more less looking as they are show in this image. 361 as seen in this image no longer exists.

1895 - 359 Bowery:

"I have sold on the Bowery ... 359 Bowery near Fourth street. Values are not the same at this section as they are at Fourth street, I think they are worth a little more down below Houston; that sale that I speak of was made in June, 1885 ; the lot was 21 feet wide by 70 feet three inches deep, and had four-story brick house on; I was broker for the seller; the property brought $22,250; since then changes have been made in the property, they took the front down and practically made a new building of it; at the time I sold it there was a furniture store."

Supreme Court 1895

361 Bowery:

Jesse Baldwin Jr. owned 361 Bowey in 1835. Circa 1835 James Crumbie [born circa 1810] was listed as a druggist at 361 Bowery [also listed as the corner of 4th and the Bowery]. Abram [Abraham] Polhemus had a grocery store at 361 Bowery from at least 1848 to at least 1865. In 1898 the following were listed for 361 and 357 Bowery - 361 Bowery, Bauer Charles, Bauer, Valentine, 357 Bowery. See Lower East Side Notables

Museum of the City of New York

Germania Fire Insurance - 175 Broadway

Germania Fire Insurance Company - 357 Bowery - The stories behind the buildings, statues and other points of interest that make Manhattan fascinating.

175 Broadway - New York Times Nov. 1, 2012

Cooper Union

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Cooper Union, New York. Posted 1911.

Cooper Union located in Cooper Square (Bowery, Third Avenue and 7th Street) was founded in 1859 by Peter Cooper and offered free classes to everyone, regardless of race, gender, religion or social status.

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

HARPER'S WEEKLY, July 2, 1870

Red Cloud, leader of the Oglala Kakota Sioux spoke at Cooper Institute in New York.

An excerpt from his speech:

"This was all very well until the Great Father sent another kind of men out there — men who drank whiskey; men who were so bad that the Great Father could not keep them at home, so he sent them out there"
The article indicates that Red Cloud left the impression that his "expectations had not been met at Washington, and that his intentions were not altogether pacific."

Red Cloud did not take part in the Lakota War of 1876-1877 (aka as the Great Sioux War) when Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull led their men in several battles against the United States Army. One of these battles was the the infamous battle of the Little Big Horn.

On February 27, 1860 Abraham Lincoln gave an historic speech on slavery at Cooper Institute.

Forth Avenue

Steinway Hall, East 14th Street near 4th ave concerts, The World Almanac and Book of Facts 1871

Steinway Hall was built in 1866. It contained concert halls, showrooms and sales rooms for Steinway pianos. Steinway Hall

Third Avenue

Third Avenue was a heavily populated street lined with small shops. It did not contain any important public buildings, with the exception of Copper Union.

Cooper Institute Hall East 8th and 3rd ave, concerts and lectures, The World Almanac and Book of Facts 1871.

See Cooper Union above.

Scheffel Hall at 190 Third Ave was built in 1894-94. A beer garden and restaurant it was modeled after a 17th century building in Heidelberg, Germany. New York Architecture

There was a trolley line on Third Avenue from 1853. The Second and Third Avenue lines ran together until Chatham Square. The Third Avenue line ran up the Bowery to Third Avenue (at 6th Street). Originally pulled by horses, the trollies were later run on cables. In 1899 electric cars were introduced.

An elevated railway was constructed on Third Avenue in 1878.

The trollies (or surface cars) and the El were built and operated by different companies.

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck, January 2012

Private Mailing Card, posted 1904, Cooper Union, 3rd Ave Elevated R. R., New York

Second Avenue

Second Avenue also had a trolly line.

The New Metropolis 1899, cut from book, collection of Maggie Land Blanck


The two buildings on the right are the N. Y. Historical Society and the Second Avenue Baptist Church

"In the quaint and historic structure of St. Marks church, at Tenth Street, is an interesting landmark. For a time this was a part of the German quarter."

The New Metropolis, 1899

Second Avenue and 11th Street New York Historical Society and the Second Avenue Baptist Church

King's handbook of New York city: an outline history and description of the of the American metropolis, edited by Moses King, 1892

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Located at 137 Second Avenue (near East 8th Street) the German Dispensary was built in 1884. The Dispensary and the library next door were the gifts of Anna and Oswald Ottendorfer the owners of the German/American newspaper, Staats-Zeitung. The dispensary was originally founded in 1857.

New York Library Digital Gallery, German Dispensary, 1840-1870, Print, No. 8 Third Street, Original Source: From Manual of the Corporation of the city of New York. (New York : The Council, 1840-1870) New York (N.Y.). Common Council, Author, Digital ID: 805213

The first facility of the German Dispensary was located at 132 Canal Street. In 1862 it moved to 3 East Third Street. By 1887 when it was located at 137 2nd Ave. the Dispensary was treating 28,000 patients a year, most from the neighboring German community. In 1905 the facility moved to Park Ave and 77th Street. It is now the Lenox Hill Hospital.

Cut from magazine, collection of Maggie Land Blanck

GERMAN BRANCH Y. M. C. A. 140 and 142 Second Avenue near 9th Street

"The German Branch, on Second Avenue, was organized in 1881 for work among the East-Side Germans, by whom it is greatly appreciated."

Kings handbook of New York City By Moses King

Isaac T Hopper House 110 Second Avenue. Built 1837-38 Isaac T. Hopper House

HOUSE OF THE HOLY FAMILY, a Catholic Charity at 134-136 Second Avenue was run by the Sisters of Divine Compassion. It was an association for befriending children and young girls. Established in 1870 its object was:
"The reformation and training, industrial, mental and religious, of girls not hardened by vice."

"Girls between the ages of 10 and 21 years may be committed or admitted on their own application or that of their friends; they must remain long enough to show fruits of their training."

There were 102 girls "cared for" in 1900.

The King's handbook of New York City of 1892 shows a 6 story building with a plain facade.

First Avenue

The New Metropolis 1899, cut from book, collection of Maggie Land Blanck


According to The New Metropolis, 1899 the elevated train gave First Avenue "an air of gloom and poverty".

"It comprises mile after mile of small shops on its west side and generally factories on the eat side, or yards of lumber, coal or stone."
There were apparently hundreds of cigar-makers on First Avenue "nearly all producing exceedingly cheap goods".

Avenue A

The New Metropolis 1899, cut from book, collection of Maggie Land Blanck


Avenue A was the main thoroughfare of the German community in Lower Manhattan.

"Its entire lower end, from East Houston to Fourteenth Streets, is lined with shops that are German, spread with signs that are German, and promenaded by men and women who are, without question, prosperous German-Americans. A decade ago little else but the German tongue in its various dialects was heard here; now much English, though often a broken English, is to be heard. This is not because the Germans have moved, however. As a matter of fact there are more of this nationality about there than ever before, and Avenue A, for about fifteen blocks, is the pivotal center of "Kleine Deutchland". The reason of this gradual dropping of the German language is the influence of the growing generation which attends American schools. The older generation still speak the dialects of their native land. On the evenings just proceeding Christmas the curbs are lined with booths of decorations and toys, and it takes on an especially picturesque and foreign aspect. Avenue A abounds with "wein stubes," "bier Halles," bowling alleys, and numerous quaint shops."

The New Metropolis 1899

In 1861 Julius Lindemann was listed at 133 Avenue A. Julius Lindemann and his second wife, Catherine Furst Schwartzmeier Lindemann, lived at 133 Avenue A at the time of their marriage in 1863. I do not know when they moved, but in January 1865 the family was at 216 2nd Avenue. See Goehle Homes in New York City, Julius Lindemann and/or Catherine Furst Schwartzmeier Lindemann

133 is just north of St. Mark's (8th Street). A newer building is at that address today.

Schwenk Bank failure 1914, 7th street and Avenue A - Library of Congress

L. W. Schwenk was a private bank.


As a result of investigations made by authority of a new law in New York concerning what are called private savings banks, the state's Superintendent of Banks, Mr. Richards, closed nine of these banks a few months ago. The courts are now beginning to punish the men who, by means of these institutions, robbed the poor of their savings. The first to be prosecuted was Ladislaus W. Schwenk. He had a bank in the great city, with branches in towns on Long Island. The poor were induced to place $700,000 in his hands. He lost nearly all of it in speculation. Knowing that he was insolvent, he continued to seek and to receive deposits until the end of July last, when the state authorities interfered.

He has been convicted and sent to the penitentiary for a term which must be two years and may be four years and a half. Four more "bankers" of the same kind await trial. Their deposits were nearly $5,000,000. In all the nine banks closed by Superintendent Richards the deposits amounted to $11,173,000, and nearly all of this sum has been lost by men and women who could not afford to lose anything. There should be severe punishment for those who are guilty of this stealing and responsible for at least a dozen suicides. Schwenk's sentence shows what others soon to be tried may reasonably expect."

(The Independent, Volume 81)

1910 Census: Bedford ave Brooklyn, Ladislaus Schwenk 40, banker, born Austria Poland, marriage 2, immigrated 1893, Katherine Schwenk 24, wife, marriage 1, Victor Schwenk 19, son, junior banker, Mary Schwenk 16, servant

He was listed in the 1915 and 1920 censuses in Queens with his wife, son and servants.

Ladislaus Schwenk was pardoned December 30, 1918 and released from Sing Sing Prison.

14 Ave. A

In 1895 George Lutz Jr ran a florist at 14 A between 1st and 2nd streets.

He was listed in the 1892 directory at that address.

See Lower East Side Notables

70 Ave. A

1895: Keller Brothers Reliance Wine Company 70 Ave. A between 4th and 5th Ry and burbon Whiskeys Cognac Brandies

1892: Theodore Keller, wines 70 Avenue A - Keller, Bros wine 70 avenue A.

101 Ave. A

101 Avenue A, built in 1876 between 6th and 7th. The upper floors were apartments the ground floor pallor was used as a meeting place.

In January 1895 the Journal of the Dauntless Pleasure Club* advertised:

Grover Cleveland - Benny Harrison
L. P. Morgan
Wm. L Strong and numerous other cele-
brities have kindly accepted the invitation
to attend the
of the
on Saturday Evening April 6th, 1895
G. Fritz's Hall, 101 Ave. A
Hoping to meet all of our friends on
this occasion.
Yours respectfully
Harmonie Pleasure Circle

Professor Fred Witt's full orchestra played and Mr. William Kampf "the well known German Comedian" and a strong company of performers entertained.

Note: Grover Cleveland was president of the USA in two non consecutive terms 1885 - 89 and 1893 - 97. Benjamin Harrison was president in the term in between Cleveland's two terms. (1889-1893). Levi P Morton was vice president under Harrison and served as United States Ambassador to France, as a Representative from New York, and as the 31st Governor of New York. William L. Strong was the mayor of New York from 1895 to 1897.

In 1891 George Fritz, Liquors, was listed at 101 Ave. A in the city directory.

In 1892 the East Side Ladies Aid Society was listed at 101 Ave. A (Directory of Social and Health Agencies of New York City, Volume 5)

In 1892 The Marschner Mannerchor and the Arion Quartett Club were listed at Fritz Hall, 101 Ave. A. (Columbus-Feier Saenger-Verband: Festschrift fur das Columbus-Concert zur 400)

In 1892 Geo Fritz beer, 101 Ave. A, was listed in the city directory

1894: George Fritz of 101 Ave. A listed as a member of the Democratic Party.

1901: Charles Wunderlich 102 Ave. A, picture frames

History of 101 Avenue A

* Adam Woodward shared a page from the Journal of the Dauntless Pleasure Club in April 2018.

102 Ave. A

1870: 7th street, Charles Wunderlich 38, cabinet maker, Saxony, Henrietta Wunderlich 30, Prussia, Robert Wunderlich 81 Julie Wunderlich 6 Amelia Wunderlich 4, children born NY

1880: 102 Avenue A Charles Wunderlich 48, picture framer, bron Saxony, Henriette Wunderlich 40, Robert Wunderlich 17, framer, Julia Wunderlich 15, Amalia Wunderlich 13, Richard Wunderlich 9

Five families in the building in 1880.

1895: Charles Wunderlich manufacturer of Looking Glasses - window cornices and picture frames - ceiling moldings put up - No. 102 Avenue A. between 6th and 7th

1900: 102 Avenue A Charles Wunderlich 68, frame maker, Henrietta Wunderlich 60, 5 children 4 living, Richard Wunderlich 29, frame maker - five families i the building.

170 Ave. A

1888: 170 Ave. A Bakery (The City Record: Official Journal, Volume 16, Part 4)

1895: B. Schwartz, Jr. Bread, Cake and Pie Bakery also Fine Confectionary, no 170 Avenue A, bet. 10th and 11th, Wedding Cakes a Speciality

245 Ave. A

In November 2018 Dr. Robert G Behrens wrote of his ancestor, Johann Behrens (born 1855 in Lilienthal, Hanover,) and his older brother, Hinrich, who together had a grocery store at 245 ave A near 14th street.

Birth of Johann Beherns: c 1855 Lilienthal, Hanover Germany


Marriage of Johann Behrens: Mary/Marie Pebler -

1880 census: - 290 Ave A. George Pebler 45, butcher, born Bavaria, Lizzie Pebler 46, born Bavaria, Kate Pebler 20, Mary Pebler 18, Ella Pebler 16, Clara Pebler 14, Eugene Pebler 12, Lillie Pebler 10, Anna Pebler 7, children all born New York

Death of Marie Pebler Behrens: Behrens - on June 19 in her 57th year Marie Pebler. Service at her late residence 245 Avenue A. New York Tribune June 22, 1918


  1. John circa 1884

  2. Dora/Dorothy c 1887 - married Otto Muller - 01 February 1905 - Manhattan (LDS)

  3. Claire c 1889 - married Harry Serenbetz - 12 October 1912 - Manhattan

  4. 1920 Census: Brooklyn - Harry Serenbetz 33, clerk bank, Claire Serenbetz 31 Winifred Serenbetz 4

  5. Alice c 1892

  6. Catherine c 1893

    Death: October 11, 1918

    Behrens - Catherine Helen on Wednesday October 9 in her 27th years, beloved daughter of John and the late Marie Pebler, and sister of John, Jr., Dorothea, Claire, Alice and Henry - 245 Ave A. (New York Tribune)
  7. Henry George 1898

    Death: Henry George Behrens Birth 16 Mar 1898 Birth Place: Manhattan, Death Date: Jan 1968 Death Place: New Hyde Park, Nassau County, New York, United States of America Father: John (Johann) Behrens Mother: Marie Behrens Spouse: Claire Behrens (Find A Grave)

1880: 258 Ave. A Behrens, Henry age 33, grocer, John brother age 24, grocer, and a grocer's clerk

1900: 245 Ave A. multi family, John "Behans" 42, grocer, Mary Behans 38, wife, 7 children 6 living, John Behans 17, grocer, Dora Behans 13, Clara Behans 11, Alice Behans 9, Katie Behans 8, Henry Behans 2, Mary Weiss 17, servant

1900: June 12, Star-Gazetter Elmira NY - Gertrude Bass, a four year old child fell four floors from a fire escape at the rear of 245 Avenue A in Manhattan. She did not survive.

1903: New York Times 25 July 1903 - Alterations No 245 Avenue A to a four story brick tenement - J Behrens premiss owner

1905: 245 Ave. A, John Behrens 49, groceries, Mary Behrens 38, wife

At same address John age 22 clerk and Adeline wife age 20

1906: City Record - Department of Health - John Behrens & Son, to sell milk at No. 245 Avenue A.

1907: City Record, John H. H. Behrens, Jr., No. 245 Avenue A.

1910: 245 Ave. A. "Beyrens" John age 54, grocery, own store, Marie, wife, age 49, 6 children 6 living, Claire, daughter, 21, Alice, daughter, 18, Catherine, daughter, 17, Henry, son, 12, and a servant

At same address John H Behrens 27, grocery, own store, Adaline Behrens 25, 2 children 2 living, Adaline M Behrens 62, mother in law 6 children 4 living, widowed, John H Behrens 4, Margurite A Behrens 2

1918: Death of Marie Pebler Behrens born 12 September 1863 died 19 June 1918 buried Lutheran All Fath, Queens

1920: 245 Ave. A. John H H, 36 Adeline, wife, 35, clerk grocery, John H. H. son, 13 Marguerite daughter, 11 Dorothy, daughter,7 Schaummann, Adeline, mother in law 70 widowed immigrated 1906

at the same address, Behrens John Sr. 65 immigrated 1875, naturalized, proprieter grocery, Alice, daughter, 28, Henry G son, 22. Muller, Ann May niece 1ge 14

1925: 6 Michigan Road, Hempstead, Nassau County, New York, Behrens, John 70 retired, Alice, daughter, 27, Muller, Anna M, niece, 18, college

Death: John (Johann) Behrens Birth 26 Oct 1855, Death Date: Dec 1926 Cemetery: Lutheran All Faiths Cemetery Spouse: Marie Behrens

Children per Find a Grave: Catherine H. Behrens, Dorothea Elizabeth Muller, Claire Helen Serenbetz, Alice Ruth Behrens, George F. Behrens, Henry George Behrens

Find a Grave, with images

Dr. Behrens also wrote:

"My great grandaunt is the Vaudeville star Lottie Gilson, also known as the Little Magnet. Lottie Gilson was born as Lydia Degan in 1862 in Basel, Switzerland and died 10 Jun 1912 in Manhattan. Her real name is Lydia Degan, born to Heinrich Johann(??) Degen who was born in Switzerland, died in Manhattan 1876 and to Sophie Wildenstein born 1836 Kandern, Loerrach, Baden and died after 1900 in Orangetown, Rockland County, New York. It is not clear when Lottie Gilson made her stage debut, but it is believe to have been Miners London Theater in the Bowery. Lottie Gilson is probably most famous for singing "The Sunshine of Paradise Alley" and "Sidewalks of New York". Lottie Gilson died destitute and is buried in the Actors' Society plot in evergreens Cemetery, Brooklyn."

Image courtesy Robert Behrens, November 2018

Avenue B

St Marks' Place

St Marks' place is "8th Street" between 3rd Avenue and Avenue A.

The Hamilton-Holly House 4 St Mark's Place was built in 1831. Originally a private home the building was later used as a meeting hall and apartments.

The German American Shooting Society Clubhouse 12 St. Marks Place. The Deutsch-Amerikanische Schuetzen Gesellschaft at 12 St. Mark's place was headquarters for 24 German shooting clubs from New York City and adjoining areas. The shooting ranges were mainly located on Long Island to the south and east of Brooklyn.

"It has a fine club-house at 12 St. Mark's Place, near Third Avenue, which contains, besides the usual club-apartments, a large hall for social events."

King's handbook of New York city: an outline history and description of the of the American metropolis, edited by Moses King, 1892

The Erxmeyer brothers, Fred and Henry, were members of the Hoboken Schuetzen Club. They were active in shooting events in the New York City area. Fred was on the Advisory Board of the National Schuetzen Bund in 1891. See Fred Erxmeyer and/or Henry Erxmeyer

Daniel LeRoy House, 20 St Mark's Place, was constructed in 1820.

From King's handbook of New York city: an outline history and description of the of the American metropolis, edited by Moses King, 1892

Arlington Hall, 21 St. Marks Place was the headquarters of the Arlon Society, a German musical club from 1870 to 1887.

Children's Aid Society, Girls Lodging House, 27 St Mark's Place

King's handbook of New York city: an outline history and description of the of the American metropolis, edited by Moses King, 1892 Children's Aid Society Girls Lodging

German Odd Fellows Hall 69, St. Mark's Place

From King's handbook of New York city: an outline history and description of the American metropolis, edited by Moses King, 1892

The cornerstone was lain for the German Odd Fellows building on November 19, 1889.

Houston to 14th Street

E 4th Street N. S. West - Avenue D
With permission of the New York City Library — Manhattan: 4th Street (East) - Avenue D Sperr, Percy Loomis, 1935 1890-1964 -- Photographer, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 710889F

Margaret Goehle was born at 374 E 4th Street in April 1897. I do not know when the family left 88 Sheriff Street and moved to 4th Street nor when they moved on again to 709 East 12th Street.

East 12th Street S - E from No. 644
With permission of the New York City Library — Manhattan: 12th Street (East) - Avenue C Sperr, Percy Loomis, 1890-1964 -- Photographer, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 7111209F

Lena Goehle, the last child of Peter and Wilhelmine was born at the Lying In Hospital. The family address was 709 E 12th Street. A modern Google map shows this between Avenues C and D.

"John Pierpont Morgan, an affluent patient of Dr. Markoe, was responsible for the next important advance, the purchase in 1894 of the Hamilton Fish Mansion on Second Avenue and 17th Street to be used as the Lying-In Hospital. This was later expanded toward 18th Street. In 1899, the facilities were overtaxed and the need for a larger hospital was evident. The generosity of Morgan made possible the demolition of the mansion and the construction of a modern, eight-storied hospital that opened in 1902."

Lying-In Hospital of the City of New York

At this period of time most babies were born at home. The fact that Lena was born in a hospital could indicate that there was some issue with Wilhelmine's pregnancy.

Manhattan 12th Street (East) - Avenue C
With permission of the New York City Library — Manhattan: 12th Street (East) - Avenue C Sperr, Percy Loomis, 1890-1964 -- Photographer, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 711118F

The general impression of the tenements is one of poverty, dirt, cramped courters, cold water flats, and other discomforts. In fact tenement immigrates were often clean, hard working and industrious. People made do with what they had and most stove for a better life. See Tenement Life now or at the bottom of the page.

This image shows the feather beds and pillows out to air.

Manhattan 12th Street (East) - Avenue C
With permission of the New York City Library — Manhattan: 12th Street (East) - Avenue C Sperr, Percy Loomis, 1890-1964 -- Photographer, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 711119F

No's 639 to 647 East 12th Street, north side, west of Avenue C."
These images were taken when the buildings in the area were being demolished in the mid 1930s. In fact these buildings could not have been that old. They were probably build in the late 1800s and were typical of many of the tenements of the time. . See Tenement Life now or at the bottom of the page.

Tompkins Square

Tompkins Square is located between Avenues A and B, 7th and 10th Streets. The park, which opened in 1850, was a breath of fresh air in the congested area of Little German. It was also the scene some unrest:

  • 1857 — immigrants demonstrated against unemployment and food shortages and were attacked by police

  • 1863 — Draft Riots

    See 1863 Draft Riots now or at the bottom of the page

  • 1871 - German Peace Celebration.

    The celebration included a parade which culminated at Tompkins Sqaure. See German Peace Celebration below.

  • 1874 — Labor riots.

    See image below

  • 1877 — conflict between the National Guard and crowd gathered to head Communist revolutionary speeches

The park contains a monument to the victims of the General Slocum boat disaster in 1904. See General Slocum Disaster

"Tompkins Square is one of the largest in the city, and is laid off without ornament, being designed for a drill ground for the police and military. It occupies the area formed by avenues A and B, and Seventh and Tenth streets."

"Lights and Shadows of New York Life: or, the Sights and Sensations of the Great City" by James Dabney McCabe, 1872

New York Public Library Digital Gallery &mdasg; Poor people's parks - Tompkins Square. 1873 Print From Hearth and home. (New York : Orange Judd & Co., 1873-) . Catalog Call Number: PC NEW YC-East Digital ID: 801462


HARPER'S WEEKLY September 13, 1873 Collection of Maggie Land Blanck


Those lucky enough to live close to one of the few parks in the Lower East Side could enjoy a more pleasant space — no traffic, less noise, trees, greenery.

The church in the background is St. Bridget's Roman Catholic started in 1848 by famine survivors. It is at Avenue B and East Seventh Street. The church has been the center of a lot of controversy in the last several years as the Archdiocese of New York sought to demolish the building. In May 2008 an anonymous donor gave $20 million to save the building and provide an endowment for the parish.

New York Public Library — Popular concert in Tompkins Square, N.Y. Thulstrup, Thure de, 1848-1930 -- Artist 1891 Harper's weekly : a journal of civilization. (New York : Harper' s Weekly Co., 1857-1916.) . Catalog Call Number: PC NEW YC-Parks Digital ID: 806158 Digital Item Published: 10-28-2005; updated 2-13-2009

Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper January 31, 1874 Collection of Maggie Land Blanck


There were not that many open spaces in the lower part of the city. A group of mostly immigrant, working-class, laborers requested a permit to demonstrate in the square. Political leaders suspected the group of Communist leanings and at the last minute revoked the permit to hold the rally. Large numbers of men and their families had gathered without realizing they no longer had a permit. Mount police wielding clubs rode down on the crowd.


The so-called workingmen of the American Commune were announced to meet in Tompkins Square on Tuesday morning January 13th, and by ten o'clock at least 6,000 persons had assembled in the square. Many were also outside the railing inclosing the square and in the adjoining streets. Suddenly squads of police marched to the center of the square, crowds quickly hemming them in. Commissioner Duryea formed the men in line, and ordered the crowd to disperse. The officers, at almost the same moment, made a rush upon the crowd, which broke and ran, hotly pursued by the police who used their clubs indiscriminately. The square was soon cleared, except one portion, where Christian Meyer held froth as a leader of the Tenth Ward Association. He defied the police, and, with his crowd made a desperate resistance. He struck Sergeant Berghold with a hammer on the head, laying open the scalp a length of three inches. The sergeant's wounds were dressed at the station. His assailant was severely clubbed, and, with several of his bodyguards, was arrested. Several policemen were severely cut while taking the prisoners to the station house.

In the crowd were several hundred Communists, with red flags. The Central Committee of the Workingmen left the Casino, in Houston Street, at eleven A. M. followed by mounted police. On reaching Topmpins Square, the crowd hooted and yelled and stoned the police. While Captain Walsh was clearing the square his attention was suddenly directed to a body of men, numbering about two hundred, who were marching down the avenue followed by numerous rabble. The leader, Justus Swab, a Communist, carried an immense red flag which he defiantly waved over his head. When he reached the square, Captain Allaire arrested him and sent the flag to the police station. The First Avenue Station-house was besieged for several hours by the friends of those who were confined there. Our illustration represents the mob flying before the police."

Library of Congress, January 2012

Tompkins Square, between c 1910 and c 1915, Bain News Service

Library of Congress, Bain News Service September 2013

Playground Tompkins Square Park

Museum of the City of New York, September 2013

Tompkins Square Park circa 1903

Hamilton Fish Park

In 1900 it was stated:

"Hamilton Fish Park in Sheriff st, in front of Public School No. 22, occupies two blocks which until the buildings were torn down, was the most densely populated part of the city."

The park was to included swings, seesaws, sand courts, "and all the attractions of other playgrounds".

See 88 - 90 Sheriff street

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck, Review, November 1905

Visable in the background is Houston Street at the corner of Sheriff Street.

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck, Review, November 1905

I believe that this view is of the Stanton Street side of Hamilton Fish Park.

To see more images of Hamilton Fish Park go to Children, New York City, Tenement Life

Hamilton Fish Park

With permission of the New York City Library — Manhattan: Pitt Street - Stanton Street Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Stephen A. Schwarzman Building Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History, Digital ID: 720301F

Peter Goehle lived at 139 Pitt Street from his marriage to Catherine Christ in 1875 until at least the birth of his daughter Elizabeth in 1876. This image is of the Hamilton Fish Park Pool and gymnasium which backs up to the 100 block of Pitt Street (between Stanton St. and Houston St.). The buildings to the right in back of the gymnasium is the approximate location of 139 Pitt Street. The park was completed in 1904 as part of a slum clearance project.

Note: While the New York City Public Library grants permission to web sites like mine to use the images in their digital gallery for free, they charge $50 to get an image of better quality. Because that price would make the whole thing a little too expensive I have had to settle for images that are not as sharp and detailed as I would like.

The Goehle family subsequently moved one block down to 80 Pitt Street (between Stanton and Rivington Streets). They were at 80 Pitt Street for the birth of Frank in November 1878 and at his death in September 1880. A daughter, Louise, was born at that address in June 1880.

Library of Congress, January 2012

Hamilton Fish Park, undated, Bains News Service

Library of Congress, January 2012

Hamilton Fish Park, undated, Bains News Service

Rivington Street

The Ghetto, New York

Not posted

The sign post says Rivington Street

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Printed on back
The Ghetto

This district, located on the East side, is one of the most densely populated areas in the city. The narrow streets are lined with push-cart venders, dealing in all classes of food stuffs. Electric cars traverse very few of the streets, as the old-fashioned horse car is still to be found, moving slowly through the narrow street.

Library of Congress, The Ghetto, New York, N. Y. Rivington Street, circa 1909, January 2012

The street sign says RIVINGTON ST

Library of Congress, T Rivington Street, circa 1909, January 2012

Sunday morning at Orchard and Rivington, New York City c. 1915 Photo by Bain News Service

Rivington Street N. S. Columbia Street
With permission of the New York Public Library — Manhattan: Rivington Street - Columbia Street, 1920? Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History, Local History and Genealogy Digital ID: 722991F

Comments with this image:

"Rivington Street, north side, at Columbia Street. The view shows the DeWitt Memorial Church at No 280 Rivington Street, between Columbia and Cannon Streets. These buildings are reported to be over congested; 1 building having 96 people in 62 rooms."

246 and 248 Rivington Street

The following two wonderful old photos of East Rivington Street where graciously shared by Mary Canzler, September 2006

Mary writes:
"My great great grandfather, Philipp Meckel immigrated from Germany sometime around 1865-1870, worked hard and made enough money to send for his best gal, Katharina Knapp to come over and become his wife. He also put a down payment on two brand new buildings, 246 and 248 Rivington Street. Each building was 4 stories with two stores fronts in each.

My grandfather, Michael Koch opened a barber shop in one of the store fronts at 248 sometime around 1890-1892. He then won the heart and hand of Philipp's daughter Elizabeth and they married. At that time, Philipp was proprietor of Meckel's Orange County Dairy and was also one of the founding fathers of the New York dairymen's league. He picked up the milk from the train station at 11th Avenue. A cousin (or a nephew, family lore is not clear) of Philipp's came over after his mother died. John Meckel had been an officer's chef in the German army, and he worked in the dairy making creamed pickled herring and pot cheese (now known as cottage cheese). Philipp died in 1904 and Michael took over the running of the dairy store and changed the name from Meckel Dairy to Koch Dairy, and added groceries. After Michael died, a man named Joe Rempe bought the business. I believe there is a connection to Joe via a marriage of Philipp Meckels son Philip P. to Mary M. Rempe. It is possible Joe was Mary's brother as I remember "Uncle" Joe as a young girl and he was pretty old then.

As for the people in the photos, none of them look "familiar" to me, they were probably just passersby hamming it up for a moment in eternity.

At least one of the buildings on Rivington Street stayed in the Koch family until around 1956 or so as my Great Aunt Marie and Great Uncle Philip (brother and sister) inherited them. One of the buildings may have already been sold, but one was still in family hands, though not for long. I have a letter from my aunt reporting on the progress of the workers who were taking measurements and discussing the problems of collecting the rents from the apartments. The postmark on the letter was 1956. I have a sad suspicion that when I make my road trip in the spring, I will find that those buildings have been razed and something new and ugly will be in their place. Progress."

September 2006

For more information on the Meckels and some additional great photos go to Meckel

New York City Library, ID 1659347

Public School No 4, Rivington St. near Ridge. (1853)

See 88 Sheriff Street for more information on Grammar School No 4.

Museum of the City of New York, September 2013

Public School, Suffolk and Rivington ca. 1897

Museum of the City of New York, September 2013

Public School, Rivington, Forsyth and Eldridge ca. 1897

Museum of the City of New York, September 2013

Public School, Hester and Ludlow circa 1897

Museum of the City of New York, September 2013

The first free public baths in New York City opened in March 1901 at 326 Rivington Street.

326 Rivington was just east of Columbia St. The address no longer exists.

For more images of Rivington Street, go to Goehle Houses in New York City now or at the bottom of the page.

Sheriff Street

My grandfather, Frank Goehle, was born at 88 Sheriff Street in March 1894

Sheriff Street - E. S. - North - Rivington - Stanton Streets
With permission of the New York City Library — Manhattan: Sheriff Street - Rivington Street, 1923, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 723194F

While a current Google map shows 88 Sheriff between Houston and Stanton, an 1899 map from the New Metropolis shows 100 Sheriff at the corner of Sheriff and Stanton, which would put 88 Sheriff in the middle of the block between Rivington and Stanton on the West side — approximately across the street from the above image.

Sheriff Street - Nos 86-88
With permission of the New York City Library — Manhattan: Sheriff Street - Rivington Street, 1923, Sperr, Percy Loomis, 1890-1964 -- Photographer, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 723196F

I found it quite exciting that one of the clearest and largest images in the New York Library Digital Gallery was actually of the back of at least a part of 88 Sheriff Street.

Notice the outdoor latrines.

The Goehle family was at this address in the fall of 1890. A federal census was taken in 1890 but New York City officials decided that that census did not reflect a true accounting of the citizens of the city so the New York City policemen did another census between September 19 and October 14, 1890. The count was 13% higher than the federal census. The really fortuitous part of the Police Census is that when the federal census burned before it could be microfilmed the Police Census remains for historians and genealogists to work with.

Frances Goehle was born at 88 Sheriff in May 1891. Her brother, and my grandfather, Frank Goehle, was born here in March 1894. Their father, Peter Goehle, was the son of Franz Goehle. He tried through two marriages to have a son named Frank (Franz). He had nine children by his first marriage including a Frank and a Frances who both died in their infancy. He was in his second mariage and age 39 when Frances was born. He had five children from the second marriage. The last when he was 47.

See Peter Goehle

88 Sheriff Street had a notoriously bad reputation. See 88-90 Sheriff Street

No 86 Sheriff Street

This image is labeled "No 86 Sheriff" Street but I am not sure if 86 Sheriff Street is the building to the right, the empty lot or the building in the background. In any event, it gives a feel for the neighborhood.

With permission of the New York City Library — Manhattan: Sheriff Street - Rivington Street Sperr, Percy Loomis, 1890-1964 -- Photographer, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 723195F

Museum of the City of New York, September 2013

90-94 Sheriff March 4, 1937

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck, Review, November 1905

Sheriff Street south of Houston. The original of this image focused on the Hamilton Fish Park but I am more interested in the buildings.

Museum of the City of New York, September 2013

Hamilton Fish Park, ca. 1890

Again, the images original focus was on the playground activity, but I chose to empathize the buildings.

These buildings are all gone.

Hamilton Fish Park currently encompasses the area between E. Houston, Stanton, Sheriff and Pitt streets. It includes a part of what once was Willett street.

The Gymnasium, located on the western edge of the park, is the only part of the original as designed in 1898. The address given for the Gymnasium is 130 Pitt Street. The park was opened in 1900.

Museum of the City of New York, September 2013

Hamilton Fish Park, ca. 1890, facing the corner of Sheriff and Stanton.

The building with the kind of eyebrow effect over the windows was NY Grammar School #22, located at the corner of Stanton and Sheriff.

Museum of the City of New York, Byron Company, 1898September 2013

NY Grammar School #22, located at the corner of Stanton and Sheriff.

1898: Stanton Street A large crowd of children entering a public school on Stanton Street. A police officer presides over the crowd.
According to several city maps the facade of the school was on Sheriff street. And the side was on Stanton. This view is looking north along Sheriff towards Houston.

See 88 - 90 Sheriff street

1916 Map, New York Public Library, digital collection.

1916 map showing location of school in relationship to the Hamilton Fish Park.

Photo Maggie Land Blanck, 2010

88 Sheriff Street is now in the middle of the Masaryk Towers. See 88 Sheriff Street

Photo Maggie Land Blanck, 2010

The Park at the center of Masaryk Towers.

Pitt Street Street

The Goehle family lived at 80 Pitt street between 1878 and 1880.

I believe 80 Pitt was between Stanton and Rivington. There are housing developments at this location today.

Old Cottage Double-House, Pitt street between Broome and Delancy Sts. - 1861 - Lith of Sarony, Major & Knapp, 449 Broadway for D. T. Valentine's Manuel 1861

Museum of the City of New York, Wurts Bros. September 2013

Pitt street between Houston and Stanton during the construction of Hamilton Fish, 1930.

Division Street

Old Houses in Division St. between eldridge & Orchard Sts. - 1861 - Lith of Sarony, Major & Knapp, 449 Broadway for D. T. Valentine's Manuel 1861

Willet street

Willett Street from Stanton toward Houston Street, Bone Alley Park made there, Museum of the City of New York, September 2013, Jacob A Riis, ca 1895,

Willett Street

Hester Street

Hester Street, New York

No date

There was another copy of this card for sale on ebay in January 2012 with a post mark of 1907.

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck

In March 2016 Fred Buck wrote:

"a colorized version of a black-and-white photograph of Hester Street from its east end where it used to T into Clinton Street. I believe that the photo was taken in about 1888. The first building on the right side of the photograph is No. 1 Hester Street. That was the address of my great-grandfather Henry (Hinrich) Buck's grocery store between 1881 and 1883. Henry Buck and his family lived just around the corner on Clinton Street (first door down the street to the right of the photo. Church baptismal records from St. Matthew's Lutheran Church (Elizabeth Street) state that my father's Aunt Minnie (full name Margareta Hermina Buck, married name Kerbs) was born at the Clinton Street address in 1881. My great-grandfather was listed as living at that address and running a grocery on Hester Street from 1881-1883 in NYC Directories. A version of the original B&W photo can be found at Hester and Clinton

The Buck (Bock) Family

Birth of Henry Buck: circa 1847 Germany

Immigration: c 1867

Marriage: Rebecca Wilkens


  1. Henry Nikolous Buck Gender Male Birth Date 15 Oct 1878 Birthplace BIRTH CERTIFICATES, MANHATTAN, NEW YORK, NEW YORK Father's Name Henry Buck Mother's Name Rebecke Wilkens Buck (New York, New York City Births, 1846-1909 - LDS)

    1917: Henry Nicholas Buck Nassau New York born 15 Oct 1878 carpenter John R Hill, wife Minnie Georgina Buck, Post ? ave, Westburg, Nassau, NY Draft Board: 2

  2. Margaretha Wilhelmina aka Minnie

    Margrethe Wilhelmine "Bock" Event Type Birth Event Date 24 Jul 1881 Event Place Manhattan, New York, New York, United States Gender Female Father's Name Henry "Bock" Mother's Name Rebeke Wilkens (New York, New York City Births, 1846-1909 - LDS)

    Marriage 1902:

    Marriage: Miss MinnieBuck daughter of Mr. nad Mrs. Henry buck of Jericho married William Kerbs in the German Lughteian Chruch in Hicksville in November 1901. Agusta Buck was her sister's bridesmaid. Brooklyn Daily Eagle

    Name Hermine Margaretha Kerbs Maiden Name Buck Event Type Burial Event Date 1964 Event Place Hicksville, Nassau, New York, United States of America Photograph Included Y Birth Date 24 Jul 1881 Death Date 20 Nov 1964 Affiliate Record Identifier 118401015 Cemetery Plainlawn Cemetery

  3. Agusta/Gussie circa 1884, per 1900 census

  4. Frederick William Buck Gender Male Birth Date 08 Aug 1885 Birthplace Brooklyn, Kings, New York Father's Name Henry Buck Mother's Name Rebecca Wilson Buck (New York, New York City Births, 1846-1909 - LDS)

    1917: Frederick William Buck, married to Minnie, 342 Park ave Brooklyn, born August 8, 1885,, tool maker, Community Mach. and Tool co.

1880: 66 Hester Street, Buck Henry, age 35, retail grocer, Rebecca 30 both born Prussia, Henry son age 2 born New York.

1900: Oyster Bay, Henry Buck 53, hotelkeeper, immigration 1867, Rebecca Buck 46, 8 children 4 living, immigration 1872, Minna Buck 19, Gussie Buck 16, Frederick Buck 14

1910: Brooklyn Ward 7, Kings, New York Street Park Ave House Number 342, Rebbecca Buck 56, widowed, rent, house, Agusta Buck 26, Fred Buck 24, Chas Beder 35

See Tenement Life now or at the bottom of the page.

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Hester Street 1898

Library of Congress, January 2012

In Hester St., N. Y., Candy, Alfred Campbell c 1896, stereograph

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck, Zeisloft NYC Book Print c 1900s Hester Street

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck, Zeisloft NYC Book Print c 1900s Hester Street

In March 2016 Fred Buck wrote that this images:

"is actually not of Hester Street. In fact, in its actual composition, it is actually not a single photo. The upper 70% or so of the image is from an 1896 photograph of Orchard Street looking south from its intersection with Hester Street. The original photograph can be found at tenement.org - Orchard street

When I first saw the image you posted, I said to myself that someone had taken almost the exact photograph of the photo found at the web address that I listed -- I know the image -- the building in the backgound at the end of the street are on Division Street and are still there today -- the roof-line has been altered with the additions of a Mansard rough, but its essentially the same view today as in the late 1800s. Then, when I started comparing the photo images more closely, I recognized that the vehicles down close near the far end of the street were the same -- this led me to think that both photographs were taken by the same photographer a short time apart. However I then started comparing the images crossing the street about 30% upwards from the bottom of the page and I realized that the image that you posted on your webpage is a composite -- the top 70% is from the 1896 photo that I cited and the bottom 30% or so from a single character-study-type photo or a collage of a number of photo images. It appears that a photographer wanted to sell a Lower-East image and thought the original photo could be jazzed up with a busier foreground.

My interest in the photo that I cited is that my great-grandfather Hinrich had run a grocery store at 38 Orchard Street, which is the address for the corner store on the extreme left of the photo. He and his family lived at 66 Hester Street, which will the first door to the left of the end of the photo."

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck, Zeisloft NYC Book Print c 1900s Hester Street

The previous three images are on one sheet with the following comment:


Here is Hester Street, scene of the wonderful market of the Ghetto. See on Thursday afternoon and evening and Friday morning, when all the housewives are making their purchases for the Shabbas...It is then a most picturesque spectacle, as the sun beats down on it, heightening and brightening the kaleidoscope effect. Miles of push carts, filled with shimmering glistening fish, stretch far away down the adjoining streets. Other hundreds of carts, filled with fruit, vegetables, neckwear, linen, tinware, and merchandise of all sorts and descriptions, crowd in between the fish carts, choking the way. About these carts there swarms and jostles and crowds and jabbers and bargains and barters a heterogeneous mass of people, such as is to be scene nowhere else on the face of the earth"

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck

A Scene on Hester Street, New York City

In March 2016 Fred Buck wrote that this images was NOT of Hester street, but rather of Orchard Street.

Library of Congress, January 2012

Garbage at Essex and Hester Sts (before School 26) circa 1911, garbage collectors strike

Columbia Street

Columbia Street No 28 N. E. Cor and Broome Street showing P.S. 110
With permission of the New York City Library — Manhattan: Cannon Street - Broome Street, 1920, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 71807

The Goehle family was living at 63 Columbia street from 1885 to 1889.

Broome Street

In 1881 the Goehle family was at 73 Broome Street (between Lewis Street and Cannon Street south of the Williamsburg Bridge near). Cannon Street once ran for several blocks between Columbia and Lewis Streets but most of it has been lost to the high rise apartment complexes that are now in the area. A small section still exists south of the Williamsburg Bridge. Construction on the Bridge started in 1896 well after the Katherine was born here in August 1881. The family had moved on by 1883.

Note: The New York Public Library Digital Gallery does have some other images of Broome Street near Columbia, but the images are so small and the quality so poor that they unfortunately do not give much more than an impression of the area.

Corner Broome and Columbia, Harpers Weekly, February 18, 1893

Goerck Street

Goerck Street no longer exists. A 1917 map show that it ran from Grand to Houston street.

Rivington and Goerck Streets, Harpers Weekly, February 18, 1893

Goerck and Delancy Streets, Harpers Weekly, February 18, 1893

Goerck Street, Harpers Weekly, February 18, 1893

Lewis Street

A 1917 map show that Lewis Street ran from Grand to 8th street. A section still exists between Grand and Delancy. The rest is gone.

Lewis and Delancy, Harpers Weekly, February 18, 1893

Lewis Street from Delancy Streets, Harpers Weekly, February 18, 1893

Lewis Street North of Delancy Street, Harpers Weekly, February 18, 1893

Clinton Street

Clinton Street North of Rivington, Harpers Weekly, February 18, 1893

Worster and Third Street

Wooster and Third Streets, Harpers Weekly, February 18, 1893

Note: Worster is actually not in the Lower East Side.

Delancy Street

Delancey Street - No 5 E Columbia- Cannon Strs
With permission of the New York City Library — Street Delancey Street - Columbia Street 1932, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 719294F

At the death of Frances age 2 months, in May 1883 the Goehles were at 63 Columbia Street just north of Delancey. Peter used this address when he was naturalized in October 1883. And the twins, Marie and Peter, were born here in June 1885. The family was still at 63 Columbia at the birth of Clara in 1887. Peter's wife, Catherine, died here of acute post partum hemorrhage in October 1888. A little over three months later in January 1889 when Peter married Wilhelmina Lindemann this was the address listed.

The stay at 63 Columbia Street is a mini versions of the trials, travails and joys of immigrant life in the Lower East Side. Infant mortality was high as was death related to childbirth. Families were large in these days before birth control and when a young mother died it was practical to remarry as soon as possible so the remaining children would have proper childcare.

The family had been moving on an average every two years before the move to 63 Columbia. Frequent moves were common occurrences in immigrant families. The stay of six years at 63 Columbia may indicate some stability in the family's finances.

Norfolk Street

Norfolk St No. 116- showing P.S. 140
With permission of the New York City Library — Norfolk Street - Rivington Street, 1920, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 719946F

Wilhelmine (Winifred) Goehle was born in December 1889 at 145 Norfolk Street. A current Google map shows that mid block between Stanton and Rivington Streets.

The stay at this address was relatively short. In the 1890 New York City Police Census the Goehle family was listed at 88 Sheriff Street.

First street

33 First street

1859 Letterhead of C. Scheig, cabinetmaker 33 First Street. Image courtesy of Adam Woodward, April 2018

Bedstands, Bureaus, Wash Stations etc. Wholesale and Retail

33 First street was on the south side of First between First and Second Avenues.

1865: Cabinet Makers Scheif, Conrad r[ear] 33 First street

(Wilson's Business Directory of New-York City)

1874: "No. 33 First Street (rear), six story, brick, 22 x 60 Iron shutter on side Cabinet manufactory." (Proceedings of the Board of Assistant Aldermen of the City of ..., Volume 135)

See Lower East Side Notables

Undated map, New York Public Library digital collection showing 33 First street. The "6" notation indicates it was a 6 story building.

The yellow buildings were constructed of wood. The pink buildings were constructed of brick. The greenish/blue buildings indicated some sort of insurance issue such as the use of flammable substances on the property.

In 1888 William C. Doscher was listed at 33 Fist street (The Republican Club of the City of New York)

He was also listed in the city directory for 1888 as, Doscher, William C. Mirrors 33 First home 263 11th street.

1880: 263 11th street, Magdl. Doscher 60, born Hanover, Clausine Doscher 33, daughter, Matilda Doscher 30, daughter, Wm. Doscher 23, son, glass manufacturer, Clausine Seaman 16, daughter, Chas. Wilson 25, son in law, real estate, Magdelena Wilson 24, daughter, and three servants.

1893: Willliam C. Doscher, mirror mfc., 404 E 14th street (Club Men of New York)

Second street

1868 map of Second street, Manhattan showing the Roman Catholic Church of St Nicholas.

Photo courtesy of Timothy and Karin Greenfield-Sanders

St Nicholas Church, rectory, and convent on 2nd Street between First Avenue and Avenue A. The church and convent are no longer standing.

The Catholic Church in the United States of America Vol 3. - posted July 2013

Another view of St. Nicholas Church and rectory. My grandparents, Isabelle Walsh and Frank Goehle, were married in this church on February 6, 1921. See Frank Goehle

The first church of St. Nicholas was build on Second street in 1836 and the first mass was said there on June 28, 1836. A second church of St. Nicholas was build in 1848. The school was build in 1868. The rectory on 2nd street was built when Father Nicholas Sorg was pastor (after 1879 and before 1888).

Library of Congress, January 2012

Deutsche RomischKatholische Kirche in New York c. 1848

4th street

66 and 68 East 4th Street - New York Turn Verein

Image courtesy Adam Woodward, April 2018

Theodore G. Dimmers born in Germany circa 1838 had a photography studio at 388 Bowery as early as 1868.

NY Turn Verein

New York Turn Verein

German Societies in NYC

Aschenbroedel Verein and Schillerbund Hall 74 East 4th Street

Aschenbroedel Verein 74 East 4th Street, built in 1874, home of a a professional Orchestra, music society's social and beneficial association. When the society moved to Yorkville in 1892 the building became the home of the Gesangverein Schillerbund one of the leading singing groups in Keindeutschland. The facade was altered in 1892. It is currently home of LaMama experimental theater.

In 1895 Fritz M. Meyer was the lessee of Schillerbund Hall at 74 East 4th street. It was advertised as being First Class with a large hall, elegant lodge rooms, bowling alleys and the best accommodations.

Cooper Station Post Office 93 4th street

93 4th street:

Cooper Station Post Office 93 4th street

328-326 East Forth Between Aves C and D

"GVSHP has unearthed incredible documentation showing the house's original owner built the first steamship to cross the Atlantic Ocean (nearby Avenue D was the East River's edge, which in the early 19th century was full of working piers before shipping activity shifted to the wider and deeper Hudson); that in the late 19th century these houses were transformed from homes of successful merchants into tenements to house the waves of immigrants moving into the area; that in the early 20th century 326 and 328 East 4th Street were converted to house a Hungarian Synagogue, as the Lower East Side became the largest Jewish community in the world; and that in the 1970s, they became the home of the Uranian Phalanstry, a self-described "anarchist utopian commune for practitioners of art and cosmology," which still resides there today. Amazingly, through all of these changes, the architectural detail of these 170 year old houses remains remarkably intact. We hope that this, along with the incredible history we have documented, will convince the the Landmarks Preservation Commission to take a second look at these buildings, and not allow them to be destroyed on their watch."

5th street

This images is from the book about the General Slocum disaster of 1904. It shows the shop of Henry Seigwart at 225 East 5th street.

Caroline age 9 and Pheobe age 6 died in the Slocum disaster. See General Slocum

6th street

This images is from the book about the General Slocum disaster of 1904. It shows the door to the home of the Deppert [Dippert] family at 328 6th street. The awning at the right would indicate that there was a store at this address in 1904.

See General Slocum

Historic Buildings on 7th street:

7th street

The above image is from the book about the General Slocum disaster of 1904. It shows the doorway and first floor windows of the "tenements" at 54and 52 7th street near 2nd avenue.

See General Slocum

This images shows 64 7th street -the parsonage for St. Mark's Evangelical Lutheran Church and the home of the Rev. and Mrs. Haas in 1904. It also shows 62 and 66 7th street. These addresses are between 1st and 2nd avenues. 62 is on the right. This images is from the book about the General Slocum disaster of 1904.

Notice the shutter which are not in good shape, but they are closed in mourning - which must have made the house very dark inside.

See General Slocum

St Marks Place - 8th Street

Hamilton Holly House 4 St Marks, built 1832

German-America Shooting Society Clubhouse 12 St Mark's built 1888-89 (Deutsche-Amerikanische Schutzen Gesellschaft) Headgquarters for 24 shooting clubs. Shooting gallery in basement. Also had a bowling alley. Assembly rooms, lodge rooming on other floors.

Daniel Le Roy House 20 St Mark's, completed in 1832.

Children's Aid Society, Industrial School, 295 East 8th Street

9th Street

Public School 64 (former) 605 East Ninth, built 1904-06.

10th Street - North Tompkins Square Park

New York Public Library Tompkins Square, built 1904.

11th Street -

11th Street Methodist Episcopal Church, built 1867-68, altered 1901.

Eleventh Street Baths, built 1904-05.

Miscellaneous Images of the Lower East Side

A "slum" that was torn down to be replaced by the high rise apartment complexes that now run along the East River from the Brooklyn Bridge to 23 Street
New York City, State, and Nation by Sol Holt, a 1955 Junior High School civics book. Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

One side of a stereo view Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

On the East Side, New York, 1905

Work May 1909


Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Essex Street, N. Y.. City, 1906

Library of Congress, "Imported Armericans" shopping from push-carts on the lower East side, N. Y. C. 1907, Underwood & Underwood, stereograph card January 2012

Library of Congress, "How the other half lives" in a crowded Hebrew district, Lower East Side, N. Y. C., 1907, Underwood & Underwood, stereograph card January 2012

Library of Congress, January 2012

Organ Grinder on Street, East side Bain collection, not dated

Library of Congress, January 2012

On the East Side, N. Y. C., circa 1906, stereograph

Library of Congress, January 2012

Selling Sox, Hester Street between 1908 and 1916, Bain collection

Library of Congress, January 2012

New York "Little Jerusalem" between 1908 and 19196 Bain collection

Library of Congress, January 2012

Jewish Market on the East Side, New York between 1890 and 1901 Detroit Publishing Co.

The three story building at the left of this image shows an example of the older wooden tenement houses. As described in an 1873 article in Harpers Weeky this type of wooden structure was "liable at any time to take fire, and from its position, and from the fact that it is unprovided with fire escapes, such a casualty might involve a frightful loss of life. "

Library of Congress, January 2012

Jewish life - celebrating the Jewish New Year on the East side of New York, between 1905 and 1915, Bain collection

Library of Congress, January 2012

East Side Women discussing price of meat during N. Y. C. meat boycott April 1910, Bain collection

This images is a great example of layering to keep warm.

Note: The "meat boycott" was a nation wide consumer movement that attempted to gain a reduction in the price of meat. "Boycott", meaning to join with others in refusing to have any dealings with some other individual or group, is derived from an incident that occurred at Lough Mask House near Ballinrobe, County Mayo, Ireland in 1880. See Boycott

January 1908. These ladies have on even more petticoats and shawls the the group pictured above.

Modern reproduction of 1907 photo. Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Corner of Broome and Essex, 7-12-1907

According to his naturalization record, Joseph Hymson was born January 10, 1870 in Russia and immigrated in 1899. He gave his address as 226 Broome Street and his occupation as druggist.

The Tenement House Problem report to the New York State Tenement House Commission of 1900.

Lower East Side of New York

Library of congress

In the 1902, 1903 and 1906 City directories Israel Deitsch, grocer, was listed at 85 Willett street near Delancy.

1900: Delancey near Willet, Israel Deitch, no birth year or age given, born Austria, immigrated 1884, grocer, alien, Jennie Deitch, married 12 years 5 children 3 living, immigrated 1886, Peppie Deitch 11 Samuel Deitch 7 Mollie Deitch 6 Sarah Deitch 1

The store was later run by Louis and Dora Brustman. See The Brustman Family with another photo of the shop.

New York Public Library, ID 1659342

Front elevation of Ward School House No 20 in Chrystie near Delancy Street, Tenth Ward (1853)

New York Public Library, ID 805522

R. Hoe & Co.s printing press and saw manufactory (1884)

R. Hoe & Co were located above Grand between Sheriff and Columbia Streets.

Modern reproduction of old photo. Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

I was told that this is a copy of one of the oldest photos of New york City and was taken somewhere near the Five Points. While that is technically not the Lower East Side I believe that the buildings with their awnings are representative of the shopping areas of lower Manhattan at the time.

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Lower New York, Harpers Weekly, September, 1877. Close up of a larger picture, see New York Waterfront

Most of the tenement buildings where the Goehle's and their related kin lived in in the late 1800s were replace with complexes like this one.
New York City, State, and Nation by Sol Holt, a 1955 Junior High School civics book. Collectin Maggie Land Blanck

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck.

Printed on the back:
" East River Park, located at the foot of the New East River Drive. A modern playground at the East River's edge. In the background can be seen the skyline of Midtown Manhattan.
Not posted.

The tennis courts at the bottom of the card are just above Delancey. The East River Park and East River Drive (Franklin Delano Roosevelt Drive or, FDR ) was a Robert Mosses pro

Around the Williamsburg Bridge

From at least 1875 until at least 1897 Peter Goehle and his family lived either one block north or one block south of Delancey Street on the Lower East Side.

Several of the addresses where they lived were very near that east end of Delancey Street which is now the approach to the Williamsburg Bridge. Construction on the Williamsburg Bridge started in 1896 and was completed in 1903. The buildings north of the bridge ramp remained until the 1950s when all of the buildings north of Delancey, east of Pitt Street (Avenue C) and south of Houston over to the river were razed and the Samuel Gompers Houses, Masaryk Towers, and Baruch Houses were built in the area.

For a period of time the Goehles lived at 63 Columbia Street. This address would now lie between Masryk Towers and Baruch Houses. They also lived on Sheriff Street which now lies east of Hamilton Fish Park just south of Houston. Sheriff Street once extended down to Grand through what is now the grounds surrounding Masaryk Towers.

Samuel Gompers housing was build in 1964. The project was named for Samuel Gompers who was born in London of a Dutch Jewish family. The family immigrated to New York City in 1863. Gompers was president of the American Federation of Labour from 1886-1894.

Baruch is a large complex of 18 towers located between Columbia Street and the East River Drive that was mostly built in 1959.

The following pictures give some idea how the area looked in the early 1900s just after the Williamsburg Bridge was built.

The Old Wharf, Williamsburg Bridge
Etched by C. H. White from Harpers magazine, February 1905 collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Etched by C. H. White from Harpers magazine, February 1905, collection of Maggie Land Blanck.

This view is of an unknown street running east/west north of the bridge and fairly close to the river. The two streets just north of the bridge were Rivington and Stanton.

Williamsburg Bridge Approach, New York City
Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Printed on the back:
Williamsburg Bridge, a combined cantilever and suspension bridge, opened Dec. 19, 1903, crossing the East River from Delancey Street, New York City to Broadway, Brooklyn. Total length 7,200 feet, width 188 feet, height 135 feet clear. Cost $10,000,000."
Not posted Edward Hopper painted a scene From Williamsburg Bridge in 1928. Edward Hopper

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Printed on back:

"Schiff Parkway (formerly Called Delancy Street) was named after the great philanthropist, Jacob Schiff."

Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

South of the Williamsburg Bridge on the Manhattan side of the East River.

Allen and Delancey

July 5, 1907

Allen Street continues south of First Avenue below Houston. By 1880 the Second Avenue elevated train ran from Allen Street all the way up to 65th Street.

Photo collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Photo collection of Maggie Land Blanck

1907 Delancey at Elridge

In 1881 Peter Goehle and family lived on Broome Street just west of Allen and a block below Delancey.

East River Bridges As Seen From Woolworth Tower, New York

No date

The Brooklyn Bridge (at the right of the photo) took 14 years to complete. It was the longest, highest bridge in the world when it opened in 1883.

The Manhattan Bridge (in the center of the photo) was completed in 1912.

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Electrical Lighting in The Lower East Side

Harper's Weekly July 27, 1889, Collection of Maggie Land Blanck


According to the accompanying article, the Brush Electric Light Company station was at 210 Elizabeth Street.

In 1889 there were 7 electrical companies provide electric service for Manhattan.

  1. The United States Co covered lower manhattan and part of middle Manhattan .
  2. The Brush Co covers the middle.
  3. The Manhattan Co. covered the upper east side and some upper and middle parts of the city
  4. The East River Co. covered the east side and part of the middle.
  5. The Harlem Co. covered the upper east side.
  6. The Mount Morris covered the west side
  7. The Edison covered lower and middle

The Brush and Manhattan supplied only large lights and motors. The Manhattan supplied only small lights. The other companies had similar restrictions.

To see more images of services and utilities in New York City go to Services and Utilities now or at the bottom of the page.

Transportation in The Lower East Side

Harper's Weekly July 27, 1889, Collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Grand Street, New York at Night

To see more images of transportation in New York City go to Trollies, Subways, Cars, Buses, and Boats, now or at the bottom of the page.

Lower New York City and East River Bridges

No date.

The bridge in the center of the photo is the Williamsburg Bridge (completed in 1903) which ends on Delancey Street in Manhattan. Known addresses for Peter Goehle include:

  • Pitt Street just north of Delancey in 1875/76
  • Broom Street just south of Delancey in 1881
  • Columbia Street just south of Delancey from 1883 to 1889
  • Sheriff Street just south of Delancey in 1894
  • Pitt Street just north of Delancey in 1899
Catherine Furst Lindemann and her daughter, Minnie Lindemann, were on Cannon Street just south of Delancey in 1899.

This photo was taken before the FDR Drive was build and before the old buildings near the East River were demolished to make room for the housing projects that now cover most of the area. The Williamsburg Bridge was completeted in 1903. Construction of the FDR began in 1934.

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck


The peculiar formation of the island of Manhattan renders it impossible for the city to expand save in one direction. On the south, east, and west its growth is checked by the waters of the rivers and bay, so that it can increase only to the northward. The lower part of the island is being occupied for business purposes more and more exclusively every year, and the people are being forced higher up town. Those who remain in the extreme lower portion for purposes of residence are simply the very poor. Those who can afford to do so, seek locations removed as far as is convenient to them from the business section. The laboring class, by which I mean all who are forced to pursue some regular occupation for their support, are not able to go far from their work, and are obliged to remain in locations which will enable them to reach their places of business with as little delay as possible.

Consequently the bulk of the population is packed into that portion of the city which lies between the City Hall and Fourteenth street. By the United States Census of 1870, the population of the wards in this district was reported as follows:

Wards Natives Foreigners Total
4 10456 13292 23748
5 9245 7905 17150
6 9444 11709 21153
7 24130 20688 41818
8 20285 14628 34913
9 33020 14589 47609
10 18851 22580 41431
11 34805 29425 64230
13 19288 14076 33364
14 13379 13057 26436
15 16821 10766 27587
17 46033 49332 95365
Total 255757 222047 477804
By the same census, the total population of the city in 1870 was 942,292. The district included in the above wards is about two miles square, which would give for this portion of New York an average population of 238,902 to the mile square. The Seventeenth ward covers less than one-fortieth of the whole area of the island, and contains more than one-tenth of the whole population.

The total area of the city is twenty-two square miles, and we find that one-half of its population is cramped within an area of about four square miles. It is evident, therefore, that they must be housed in a very small number of buildings, and such indeed is the case.

Lights and Shadows of New York, Sights and Sensations of the Great City, 1872, James Dabney McCabe Jr 1842-1883

Union Square

Saturday Night At The Union Market, New York City. Drawn by W. T. Smedley,
Harper's Weekly, October 16, 1886

Print collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Union Square, New York

Not posted

Postcard collection of Maggie Land Blanck

Castle Garden Recruiting of Arriving Immigrants

Print collection of Maggie Land Blanck

This very interesting image from the Illustrated London News of September 17, 1864 depicts the recruiting of newly arrived immigrants outside of Castle Gardens. Castle Gardens was the immigration processing center before Ellis Island. See Immigration for more images of Castle Gardens.

The major focus of this recruitment are the Irish and Germans. Notice the sign is in both English and German. Union soldiers can be seen mingling with the crowd. Unfortunately, the accompanying article is missing.

An Irish "type" can be seen in the center wearing a tall hat, holding a glass, and standing near the soldier with the whiskey keg and two glasses. This is the classic stereotype of the Irish immigrant — apish and a drinker.

There is no clear stereotype of a German immigrant in this image.

German-Americans were the largest ethnic group to fight in the American Civil War. Most fought on the Union side. New York supplied the largest number of German born Union soldiers.

See also 1863 Draft Riots

Free Ice in the Summer

In the heat of summer ice and ice water was dispensed to the poor of the city.

In August 1896, according to the New York Times, the Health Department distributed free ice to the poor at police stations. Patrolmen searched the poorest families on their beat and gave them vouchers for free ice. The ice was cut up into 10 pounds blocks at the police stations 352 tons of ice were distributed throughout the city. The seventh and eleventh precinct included the most crowded tenement districts. The 7th precinct is at 257 Madison the 11th is at 105 Eldridge. Each of these precincts got 11 tons of ice. Nearly all the applicants for the ice were children. The distribution started at 6 o'clock in the morning but children were lining up by 4 o'clock. About 1,500 people were served at the Madison street station and about 2,000 at the Eldridge street station. Petitioners for the ice were subject to questioning and if it was felt that the person in question could afford to buy ice they were turned away.

105 Eldridge is between Grand and Broome.

People waiting on Cyrystie Street for free ice distributed by the Police Department, Home missionary, Volumes 74-75 By Congregational Home Missionary Society, 1902.

The ice was distributed at the Police Station which was two doors from the Camp Memorial Chruch.

The ice being distributed Home missionary, Volumes 74-75 By Congregational Home Missionary Society, 1902

Harper's Weekly, date unknown, Collection of Maggie Land Blanck, 2013

Free Ice-Water

The sign on the wagon reads "FREE ICE WATER MODERATION SOCIETY N Y". In 1894 the Moderation Society of New York and a delegation of women from the Presbyterian Church of Arlington, N. J. were regularly distributing flowers to the "children on the poor" in Five Points, an infamous tenement area made famous in modern times by the movie GANGS OF NEW YORK. See Trailer and New York Times, July 1, 1894

As the name implies the "Moderation Society" was part of the temperance movement. One of it missions during the hot weather was to place the kind of ice water fountains depicted in this image in various poorer neighborhoods of the city, including Tompkins Square and Five Points. A permanent fixture, the Temperance Fountain was installed in Tompkins Square Park in 1890. See Temperance

This images was on a page entitled "NEW YORK TENEMENT-HOUSES ON A HOT DAY". The lady with the parasol does not look like the typical depiction of a woman from the tenement district. Perhaps she is a representative of the Moderation Society.

Goehle Homes in New York City

174 Second Avenue (corner building)

Julius Lindimann lived on the corner of Second and 10th Streets between 1855 and 1858. Julius immigrated in 1847.

According to the Property Valuation Tax Assessments the building that now stands on this site was built in 1900.

Avenue A N. E. 8th Street, 1937
With permission of the New York City Library — Manhattan: 12th Street (East) - Avenue C Sperr, Percy Loomis, 1890-1964 -- Photographer, Photographic views of New York City, 1870's-1970's Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History Digital ID: 715864F

"Avenue A north from East 8th Street. At the right is Tompkins Square. This extends to 10th Street. May 17, 1937, works Progress Administration Five borough Project"
133 Avenue A was the address given at the marriage of Catherine Furst Schwartzmeier to Julius Lindemann in 1863. 133 Avenue A is just north of St. Marks (8th Street). A newer building stands at that address today.

Julius had been listed at this address from 1861 to 1863.

In January 1865 the family was at 216 2nd Avenue at the death of one year old Elizabeth. They were still there in 1866 for the birth of Sophia. 216 was near the corner of 2nd Avenue and 13th Street. I have not found any old images of that intersection and the area is totally new today.

366 8th Street (Between Avenues C and D)

The home of Julius and Catherine Lindemann at the time of Julius's death in 1867

535 6th Street, April 2009

Zillow.com lists this property as built in 1900.

Photo Maggie Land Blanck

533 is the building with the glass blocks on the ground floor.

NYC directory: 1869-1870, Catherine Lindemann 535 Sixth Street widow of Julius

NYC directory: 1870-1871, Catherine Lindemann 412 Sixth Street widow of Julius
NYC directory: 1873, Catherine Lindemann 412 Sixth Street widow of Julius

412 6th Avenue building is no longer standing.

531 5th Street, April 2009

NYC Directory: 1874, Catherine Lindemann, dress maker, 531 Fifth Street

Photo Maggie Land Blanck

504 6th, April 2009

NYC Directory: 1878-1879, Catherine Lindemann 504 Sixth Street widow Julius

Zillow.com does not give a year of construction.

Photo Maggie Land Blanck

1875-77, Catherine Lindeman, wid. Julius, 514 Fifth Street
1879-1880, Catherine Lindemann 152 East 4th Street widow Julius — Gone

518 6th Street, April 2009
Photo Maggie Land Blanck

1880-1881, Catherine Lindemann 518 Sixth Street widow Julius

1881-1882, Catherine Lindemann was listed at 518 Sixth Street as the widow of Julius

Catherine Furst Lindemann and her daughters, Wilhelmine and Sophia, lived at this address from 1880 until at least 1882.

In the 1880 census there were 17 families living in this five story building. It is probably typical of the tenements of the time which averaged four families per floor.

Several other buildings in the surrounding blocks had these same small windows in the middle of each floor.

Zillow.com does not give a year of construction.

236 E 14th Street (the right hand side of the grey and white building)

This was the home of Peter Goehle, his wife, Minnie, and his children, Peter, Mary, Clara, Minnie, Frances, Frank, Margaret and Rosa, as listed in the 1900 Federal Census.

208 East 82nd Street

The Goehle's lived here just before Agnes married Bud in 1941

For more information on the Goehles and related families go to Goehle Introduction Page

To see images of life in the tenements of lower Manhattan go to Tenement life

For more information on the Meckels and some additional great photos go to Meckel

To see images of children on the Lower East Side and for information on education, child labor and other issues see Children of the Tenements

88 and 90 Sheriff Street were addresses that were written about in the press for a number of years. My grandfather, Frank Goehle, was born at 88 sheriff Street in 1894. 88 - 90 Sheriff Street, Lower East Side, Manhattan as a Microcosm of Little Germany (Kleindeutchland)

New York City, Information and Images

Shopping and Street Venders


The German Theater

Actors in the German Theater

Survices and Utilities in New York City

Trollies, Cars, Subways, Buses and Boats in New York City

James Dabney McCabe Jr 1842-1883

German Beer Gardens

German Immigration

German Social Events

German Social Organizations

Lower East side Places of Worship

Life in Germany

Catherine Furst, Julius Lindemann, Peter Goehle, Henry Blanck, the Erxmeyers, the Petermanns were among the millions of German American immigrants. For images of life in Germany, click on the picture of the wooden shoes

Germans in America

Catherine Furst, Julius Lindemann, Peter Goehle, Henry Blanck, the Erxmeyers, the Petermanns were among the millions of German American immigrants. For information on and images of the German American in United States click on the image of the German American Family

The Temperance Movement

For early pictures representing the Temperance Movement in New York City

May 1st Moving Day in NYC

May 1st was a day when many leases, both commercial and residential, expired. Consequently the city was jammed with moving wagons.

General Slocum Fire 1904

On June 15, 1904 the excursion boat, SS General Slocum caught fire on the East River resulting in the death of over 1,000 persons, mostly women and children. It was the biggest disaster in New York City until 9/11.


If you have any suggestions, corrections, information, copies of documents, or photos that you would like to share with this page, please contact me at maggie@maggieblanck.com

Please feel free to link to this web page.

© Maggie Land Blanck - page created 2008 - latest update, August 2019