I few weeks ago, I was musing about the history of these very old-looking twin buildings on Grand Street in Chinatown. I determined, with the help of readers, that they at least dated from the late-19th-century.
I received an amazing comment the other day that indicates they are even older than I thought. Someone names Bonnie wrote: "Number 300 Grand Street was my great, great grandfather's home and shop for many years in the mid-1800s. It is in the census record as well as the Civil war registration in 1863 I think it was. He was a hatter and he was born in Prussia."