Armistice Day

A photo of Armistice Day in Harlem. The photo is taken looking up Lenox Avenue (you can see the 134th Street sign and the subway entrance on the crowded sidewalk).

One lone soldier appears in the crowd.

25th Precinct’s Community Council Meeting

HAPPY NEW YEAR ALL,

We made it to 2023!  New beginnings…….. 

I just wanted to remind you that our next Council meeting is scheduled for:

Wednesday, January 18, 2023 @ 6:00PMat the 25th Precinct120 East 119th StreetNew York, NY 10035
We look forward to seeing you there for this month’s conversation.  Our guest for this month is TBD.Many thanks to all of you for your dedication to contributing to making our community safe. 

Kioka Jackson

Follow your dreams………

Edward Hopper and Harlem

The Whitney Museum has opened an exhibition of the work of Edward Hopper – the famed mid-century American artist who created a number of iconic images of the alienation in urban life.

Hopper also created a two-page drawing of the Macombs Dam Bridge (155th Street) that now connects Sugar Hill to Yankee Stadium.

In the 1850’s, a century before Hopper illustrated the scene, you can see in the drawing (below) that the structure was truly a combination dam and bridge.

Hopper’s drawing (below) from the 1930’s shows the bridge structure pretty much as it stands today, with no Yankee Stadium or much development on the hill on the Bronx side of the Harlem River

A contemporary photograph shows how faithful Hopper’s sketch was.

“As New York bounces back after two challenging years of global pandemic, this exhibition reconsiders the life and work of Edward Hopper, serves as a barometer of our times, and introduces a new generation of audiences to Hopper’s work by a new generation of scholars. This exhibition offers fresh perspectives and radical new insights.”

Hopper’s relationship with Whitney began in 1920 when he had his first solo exhibition at the Whitney Studio Club, which closed in 1928 to make way for the Whitney Museum of American Art. Hopper’s work first appeared in the inaugural Whitney Biennial in 1932 and in 29 Biennials and Annuals through 1965, according to the museum. In 1968, Hopper’s widow, artist Josephine Nivison Hopper, bequeathed the entirety of his collection to the museum, which today is home to more than 3,100 works by the artist.

Edward Hopper’s New York will be on view from October 19, 2022, through March 5, 2023.

Calvary Church – 1908

A view of the Calvary M. E. Church on a 1908 postcard (at the corner of W. 129/ACP):

And today:

Storefronts

Harlem, 1930’s. Storefronts that may be on a street (not an avenue), given the strong noontime shadows.

Note the postman with cap, in short sleeves:

Resolve to Start 2023 By Joining Your Community

The Office of Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine has announced the opening of the 2023 Manhattan Community Board application period. Applications are now open through 5 pm on March 17, 2023. Current members who wish to serve another term must reapply.

Eligibility: Community Board members must live, work, or have an otherwise significant interest in the neighborhoods served by the community district, and be a New York City resident. In addition, we look for applicants with histories of community involvement, expertise, skill sets, and attendance at Board meetings and who can commit to a two-year term.

To learn more about community board membership and how to apply CLICK HERE.

Africans in Harlem

A new book – Africans in Harlem – by is highlighted in an interview with the City College of New York professor and author, Boukary Sawadogo on France 24:

The book focuses on the experience of immigrants from sub-Saharan Africa. Boukary Sawadogo, associate professor of cinema studies at the City University of New York, explains that three quarters of African arrivals to the US came after the year 2000, many of them economic migrants from French-speaking countries like Senegal, Mali and Burkina Faso. Sawadogo joined us to chat about the African affinity for Harlem, the relationship between Africans and African-Americans, and the power of seeing Black heroes on screen in films like “Wakanda Forever” and “The Woman King”.

As Seen in Harlem

Radio

In the photo below, a group of men listen to a radio, mounted on a box. Their semicircular gathering allows the camera to take in a vignette with the central object (the radio) in full view – all of which suggests a staged photograph.

The image was taken in the 1930s during the depression. This location on Lenox Ave. is now the Mother Hale Bus Depot.

PIX11 Report on East Harlem’s Clean Team

The nonprofit group Positive Workforce joined forces with Uptown Grand Central three years ago. It has been a job-training center in the community for 30 years.


The city has recently added funding and resources to bring on 30 workers. It’s part of Mayor Eric Adams’ “Get Stuff Clean” program.


“It’s making a big difference. People take notice and are getting on board. The lighting is up. They see people getting involved and they get involved,” said Ruben Thomas with Positive Workforce.

PIX11 has the report:

https://pix11.com/news/local-news/manhattan/clean-team-focuses-on-busy-uptown-manhattan-corridor/

Two Women

This photo of a Harlem Street scene has almost no clues to where it was taken.

The only thing I can speculate on is that the photograph likely shows the south side of a street, as the reflection in the storefront window indicates that only one of the many windows across the street has a window awning – ubiquitous on south and often east and west facing facades, and often absent on northern facades.

The listing on Ebay, refers to the two sitting women who are using crates to sit in an unrented storefront’s doorway.

But notice how their attention has been diverted from their newspapers to something on their right.

A larger view shows a cropped item. A cart or pram – likely converted to use for selling food, sits on the left of the photo – where the women are suddenly looking. Perhaps a customer or passerby has taken a look or taken interest in whatever might be for sale.

Mount Sinai’s East Harlem School of Nursing

Mount Sinai’s new school of nursing on East 126th Street (between Lexington and 3rd Avenue) is open and beginning to produce a new generation of qualified nurses.

CBS has a report on this facility.

https://www.cbsnews.com/newyork/news/mount-sinai-nursing-school-in-east-harlem-bridges-gap-to-community/

The M35

Depending on how long you’ve lived in Harlem, you may remember different iterations of bus access to Randall’s or Wards’ Island. Here are the 3 (former) ways to get to the island by MTA bus:

  • M34 operated between Lexington Avenue/125th Street to Randall’s/Wards Island to Astoria – shortened to operate between Lexington Av/125th Street and Randall’s/Wards Island, and renamed as the M35 in 1995
  • X81 Special Events bus between Randall’s Island and 61st St 7 station/LIRR in Woodside – This service was provided for special events such as concerts and a premium fare was charged. This service was no longer provided as of 2009 or 2010.
  • Bx21 operated between Lexington/125th Street, Randall’s/Wards Island and Morris Park, Bronx.  This service was discontinued in 1984.

Today, with less than 200 people riding it per day on average, here’s the route:

The Business Side of Sylvia’s

Sylvia’s Restaurant – a legendary Harlem restaurant – is featured in a Harvard business podcast that looks not only at the foundations of this icon, but where the family envisions taking the business in the future.

Have a listen:

https://hbr.org/podcast/2022/11/planning-the-future-for-harlems-beloved-sylvias-restaurant

Woman Walking

Another photo from the 1930s with a woman walking past a series of shops. This image is from the 1930s and is taken on 8th Avenu (Frederick Douglass Blvd.) at 143rd Street.

The clothing store advertises men’s suits and has everything from hats to shoes on display.

Note the hostile white man (a shopkeeper?) peering out at the photographer.

Here is the view of that block, today:

The Blacklining Foundation

https://www.blackliningfoundation.com/store

Blacklining Foundation gear is on sale and with the coupon code below, you can get a 30% off discount

https://www.blackliningfoundation.com/store

Christmas Sleighing in Harlem

Sleigh riding on Harlem River Drive, under the Highbridge, headed south.

The text is, as follows:

The New York Speedway, which was built and is maintained exclusively for the trotting horse, is bordered by the Harlem River on one side and a major bluff on the other, which shuts out the wind. It could hardly be improved upon as to elevation and has served as a pattern for others in different parts of the country. Only light vehicles drawn by one or two horses are allowed on it. The sale and rise of high-class trotting horses have increased immensely since its construction in 1895, and what was at first devised as an improvement favouring only a few has proved to be of great value to a large part of the community.

Growing Kale in a Shipping Container

CBS reports on Harlem Grown – an organization that seeks to harvest fresh food for families facing hard times. The 11 year old organization is trying an experimental farm in a shipping container, here in Harlem

https://www.cbsnews.com/newyork/news/harlem-grown-shipping-container-grow-house/

“The average head of lettuce in the U.S. is traveling 2,500, 3,000 miles. This one’s traveling 25 feet,” said Frank Sharp, principal technical leader at the national nonprofit Electric Power Research Institute, which oversees 20 such sites across the country.

The New York Power Authority is paying for the $250,000 project.

Holiday Lights West and East of 5th Avenue