01 September 2011

Three Survivors

Here are a set of old triplets on W. 46th Street east of Broadway in Times Square. Aren't too many left in this area with this level of age on them. The trio is more remarkable in that they're obviously a set, all the same height and width, built at the same time. They may look different now in terms of facade, but take a close look at the window frames on the third and fourth floors (below). They're identical.

No. 134, now O'Brien's Pub, was a restaurant in 1959, with a tailor upstairs and apartments above that. In 1922, the ground floor was a store.

No. 136 had store in the basement space in 1941 (which meant is had a working walk-down space), and an office and music studios on the ground floor, and apartments above.

No. 139 also had a basement-level store in 1922, an office on the first floor and apartments above; same in 1941.

I can't find out when these three were built, but given the history of the area, and the small size of the buildings, I'm gonna guess sometime in the 1890s. Maybe older Fascinated to think that for more than a century, those upper floors have been apartments. Wonder who lives there now. To live in such old buildings, ones that are so much of the old Times Square, must be really feel a part of a previous New York.


Grade "A" Fancy said...

Love those. They bring to mind similar buildings with add-ons on the block south of Rockefeller Center, is it 48th?

Kelsey said...

Records indicate that #134 and #136 were built around 1920.

Gluttoner said...

Margon has excellent food btw, great lunch spot

Brooks of Sheffield said...

What records, Kelsey? Pray tell.

Devyn said...

Based on the cornice details along with the remnants of the lintel styling, these were built in the late 1870s or early 1880s as typical middle class single family townhouses... Long before commerce moved into midtown and basically obliterated blocks of single family townhouses. Most likely they were chopped up into apartments after the turn of the century when the original Times Square began to take shape as an attraction. They were not considered fancy in their day as there there thousands of nearly identical ones built in Manhattan, the Bronx, and Brooklyn. Small developer would build these in twos and threes (which is why you often seen identical houses in small groups) and sell them for profit.
Save for the remaining cornices, I am sure there is very little left of their glory days. Interior details (at least the really good stuff) would most likely have been stripped during reconfiguration into apartments many decades ago.

Brooks of Sheffield said...

Thanks, Devyn. That's the time frame I expected for these houses. Would love to get a peek inside nonetheless.