10 February 2011

Main Street Ephemera to Close Shop on Columbia

The owner of the beloved Main Street Ephemera—depository of old photos, maps, menus, bills, books and other paper remnants of Old New York, Old Hollywood and the Good Olde World—is closing his shop on Columbia Street. He will still sell his wares at fairs and on the web, but can not afford to keep the store.

This is a sad loss. Stores such as these are more and more rare in New York. They were quite abundant when I first arrived here 22 years ago. Most of them have now made the transition to the web. This robs the average New Yorker of the joy of browsing through the ephemera of the past, of holding it in one's hands before considering a purchase. I've bought many an item in the store: old photos of Smith Street; old city maps of blocks I have lives on; movie posters; matchbooks from restaurants long gone. I have featured many of these items on this blog.

The owner said he will have a big sale sometime before closing, probably near the end of February.


John Zarrillo said...

My friend just moved around the corner on Sackett, when I saw this place I knew I had to come back and check it out. Guess I better get over there fast, what a shame.

Anonymous said...

No one wants to see a business close, but with esoteric niche products like these it probably makes more sense to sell online and at shows. I would doubt there's much walk-in trade.


Blayze said...

Heading over there today. Can't miss a gem like this and it's last days.

Still, saddening.

CricketNYC said...

What a shame. When I first moved to Cobble Hill in '97, he had a place on Smith Street, I think maybe in the space now occupied by The Grocery. I always enjoyed walking past his shop on weekends, when he'd have his wares out for display.