New York's Seedy History Hides in Plain Sight on the Bowery

Despite a decade of gentrification, New York "oldest streetscape" still retains enough of its historic character to warrant recent listing on the National Register of Historic Places. Sam Roberts explores the "palimpsest of New York City history."

"Today, a cursory survey might suggest that much of the Bowery’s storied past already has been obliterated. But the facades and the bones of nearly 200 buildings lining the 1.25 miles between Chatham Square and Cooper Square still conceal two centuries of New York history — so authentic, compelling and enduring that the Bowery has just been listed on the National Register of Historic Places."

"Kerri Culhane, an architectural historian and associate director of the Two Bridges Neighborhood Council who wrote the report that led to the designation, calls the Bowery 'the city’s oldest streetscape.' And despite a wave of gentrification — new restaurants, bars and hotels — vestiges of the block’s grimy, boozy past remain."

Full Story: Behind the Facades, a Seedy Past Endures

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