Friday, July 15, 2005

Clinton Street History (#79 and Ma Mandelbaum)

If you listened to Naphtali's audio tour you would have heard him mention that Clinton Street was a dangerous block. This winter a young lady was murdered at night on the Southwest corner of Clinton and Rivington. Ironically this was right near 79 Clinton Street, the address where in the late 1880's Frederika "Ma" Mandelbaum had her famous storehouse laden with stolen goods. Here's a fascinating audio clip (5.2MB) that I recorded a few years ago from a WNYC show discussing the movie, "Gangs of New York." mandelbaumaudio
The picture above shows a portion of a comic strip from the 3 volume collection entitled "The Big Apple Almanac," by Patrick Reynolds. It's an excellent, accessible source for studying NYC History. The right side of the picture shows what 79 Clinton Street (brown building) looks like today. I'd be curious to know when that building was constructed and whether any of it incorporates Ma's old store.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The current structure was originally built for PS20's learning fair of 1878 and later brought to the spot using a fleet of pushcarts. It was made from several large cardboard "port -o-san" type outhouse boxes (a precursor to todays refrigerator boxes). They were painted brown and glued together using an adhesive made from a schmaltz derivative.