Why this Blog Exists

To make the case for expanding the Park Slope Historic District

Friday, August 14, 2009

Documentary History published

The first edition of our Documentary History of the Park Slope Historic District Expansion Study Area is now published on the web.

This document compiles all of the historic documentation that our intrepid band of volunteer researchers has been able to uncover so far about the historic unprotected buildings in Park Slope. We have been posting this same material in the photo comments of our comprehensive photo survey of Park Slope. But this new document consolidates all this information into a single place. We will continue to maintain both the photo captions and this document as new research comes into our hands.

In many cases, we have multiple citations for the same group of buildings, and it is interesting to note how the different citations complement each other. Consider the following citations for the same row of houses on Prospect Place. The first is from the American Architect and Building News, while the second is from the Brooklyn Eagle:

54-64 Prospect Place - unprotected

54-64 Prospect Place

"Building Intelligence; Houses; Brooklyn, N. Y.," AABN vol. 21, no. 599 (Jun. 18, 1887): p. xiii.
– "Prospect Pl., s s, 103' w Sixth Ave., 6 three-st’y and basement brown-stone dwells., tin roofs; cost, $8,000; owner, Theresa B. Collins, 359 Sixth St.; architect, C. P. H. Gilbert."

On Prospect Place, near Sixth avenue, Mr. F. B. Collins will build six three story and basement brick residences, 16.8x45, for one family in each, to cost $48,000. -Brooklyn Eagle, June 11, 1887, p. 2 ("Up Again").

The AABN listing is very specific with regard to location; includes the address of the developer; and also includes the architect's name. The Eagle citation seems to have mistaken the first initial and gender of the developer. However the Eagle's citation includes the buildings' dimensions.

We have tried to minimize "interpretation" of these findings and to let the documentary record speak for itself. Assigning the citations to present-day addresses is, of course, itself an interpretation.

C. P. H. Gilbert, the distinguished architect of this beautiful row of Queen Anne houses, also designed many of the buildings in Montgomery Place and Carroll Street within the current Historic District.

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