Housing for All: A History of Social Housing in NYC | Episode 224

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As we approach New York City’s primary elections on June 22, housing, as always, is a key issue on the ballot. So we are looking back at the history of social housing in New York – not just the city’s vast NYCHA public housing system, but also other forms of government and philanthropic intervention that have tried to tame the beast of unsafe, unsanitary, and unaffordable housing over the past 100+ years. This program will look at examples of model housing designed by social reformers, landmark cooperatives built by labor unions and community groups, the rise of public housing beginning in the 1930s, and public subsidies for private developments. This wide-ranging examination will take us from the Home and Tower Buildings to the First Houses, from Stuy-Town to the housing lottery.

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Virtual Walk of the Brooklyn Navy Yard Perimeter | Episode 204

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Explore the neighborhoods surrounding the Brooklyn Navy Yard, including Vinegar Hill, Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, and Williamsburg, on this walk around the Yard’s long perimeter. We will explore connections between the Yard and the surrounding communities, including a peek at the landmark Commandant’s House, the Prison Ship Martyrs’ Monument in Fort Greene Park, and other buildings that provided housing for Yard workers and produced components for the shipyard. We will also explore some of the public areas of the Yard, including Building 77, the Admirals Row site, and the Naval Cemetery Landscape. Follow along with our map guide created for Open House New York Weekend 2020.

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Black Sailors and Shipworkers at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, 1866–1966 | Episode 195

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The celebrate Black History Month and the 220th birthday at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, we are looking at the obstacles and opportunities that Black people encountered at the Brooklyn Navy Yard from the end of the Civil War through the Yard’s closure a century later. The program will examine the long history of African-Americans in the maritime trades, their systematic exclusion from the uniformed ranks of the US Navy in the Jim Crow era, and the new opportunities that emerged during World War II. We will look at profiles of trailblazers, innovators, and activists who worked and served there, and how the Yard became an important to Black economic and cultural life in Brooklyn. This virtual program follows up where we left off with last year’s “An Unfree Fleet,” which looked at the Yard’s connections to the institution of slavery.

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Russ & Daughters at the Brooklyn Navy Yard

A bright but old-fashioned looking neon sign at a retail shop that has a fish graphics and reads Russ and Daughters Bagels and Lox appetizing since 1914

Founded in 1914 on the Lower East Side by Jewish immigrant Joel Russ, Russ & Daughters is a New York institution. Now a fourth-generation business run by Joel’s great-grandchildren Josh Russ Tupper and Niki Russ Federman, they have expanded from their Houston Street store to cafés on Orchard Street and at the Jewish Museum, and now a new retail store, company headquarters, and commercial bakery in the Brooklyn Navy Yard’s Food Manufacturing Hub at Building 77. Here they serve their impeccable selection of perfectly-sliced smoked and cured fish, and their fresh-from-the-oven baked goods like bagels, rugelach, black and white cookies, challah, and more. Come stock up on nosh essentials, or grab a bagel sandwich for breakfast or lunch.

Building 77, 141 Flushing Ave // Open Every Day, 8:30am–4:30pm // More Info

Eating Around the Brooklyn Navy Yard

Brooklyn Navy Yard Building 77 at nighttime

The Brooklyn Navy Yard covers 300 acres of the waterfront, touching neighborhoods from Dumbo to Fort Greene to Williamsburg. Both inside and outside the Yard’s gates are a growing number of places to eat and drink. If you’re traveling to the Yard via Dumbo, this neighborhood is packed with eateries for fine dining, a quick bite, or a drink. Nearby BLDG 92, there are great places for sandwiches, coffee, pizza, Mexican food, and more. The Yard is also a short walk from Downtown Brooklyn, where you can find the many offerings of the DeKalb Market Hall and the iconic Junior’s Restaurant.

Within the Yard, you can have coffee and bite at the Brooklyn Roasting Company Café in BLDG 92, grab a drink at the Gatehouse of Kings County Distillery, and stop by the Food Manufacturing Hub at Building 77, home to the newest location of Russ & Daughters. Click the map below for more information. >> Continue reading

The Many Names of the Brooklyn Navy Yard

Some of the subjects we frequently have to address on our tours of the Brooklyn Navy Yard are: where is it? and what is the official name?

So let’s start with the first question. The Brooklyn Navy Yard is located on the banks of the Wallabout Bay, a bend in the East River located opposite Manhattan’s Corlears Hook. The Yard has grown considerably since it was established in 1801 with the purchase of 23 acres of land on the bay’s western shore. Today, it encompasses 300 acres that encircle the bay from west to east, bounded by Little Street and Navy Street to the west, Flushing Avenue to the south, and Williamsburg Street, Kent Avenue, and Division Avenue to the east. >> Continue reading