The Turn of The 20th Century Manhattan Walking Tour
Architecture -- History -- Interesting Pictures and Stories
A Walking Tour of Manhattan's Past and the Present
The tour is guided by Alfred Pommer a college graduate, a native New Yorker, and an informative, licensed New York City Guide,
with over 27 years experience researching, creating and leading walking tours in Manhattan's many diverse neighborhoods.
He is the author of four Manhattan guide books published by The History Press
walking tour features interesting pictures and stories and focuses on:
the history and
architecture in 2 Manhattan neighborhoods (Madison Sq. & Gramercy Sq.) for the 2½ hour tour
or 4 Manhattan neighborhoods (Madison Sq.; Gramercy Sq.; Union Sq. & Washington Sq.) for the 3½ hour tour.
The neighborhoods were changing at the turn of the last century (the Gilded Age) and
we will see some surviving buildings along with pictures and stories from the past
that inform us what the neighborhoods were and what they became as they evolved.
The turn of the 20th century (1880- 1920) included a major part of the Gilded Age (1869 - 1896) which represented unequaled economic growth (wages, GDP, and capitol formation) at that time. In Europe the era was called Bell Epoque, French for: the Beautiful Era which lasted from about 1870 to the start of W.W. 1 in 1914. In England their was the Victorian Era and the Edwardian Era. Basically all fueled by the industrial revolutions, improved technologies and inventions. In the commercial arts there was a movement to adopting Renaissance and 18th century styles to modern forms of the day that included architectural styles such as: Belle Epoque, Art Nouveau, and Beaux Arts Structuralism.
The Cross Chambers building is one of the few examples of Belle Epoque style of architecture in New York City.
We start at the site of the largest and most spectacular entertainment establiishment of the Gilded Age and we will walk through the heart of the Flatiron District,
through Madison Square Park, the surrounding
area down Broadway passing through part of Ladies Mile Historic District and into and through Gramercy Park Historic District to end the 2½ hour tour. For the 3½ hour tour we will continue to, Union Square Park and ending in the neighborhood once known as: Washington Square a part of, Greenwich Village.
For the 2½ hour tour each participant is given an itinerary with 28 stops including 14 New York City landmarks and 4 national landmarks . ≥
For the 3½ hour tour each participant will get an itinerary with 38 stops including 20 New York City landmarks and 5 national landmark.
All stops are fully discussed.
Some of the stops and what you will find out about in the 2½ hour tour:
- Where and why Stanford White was murdered.
- Where Winston Churchill’s mother was raised and who her father was.
- A beautiful turn of last century Beaux Arts style court house with classically inspired ornamentation and outstanding caryatids
- The first Art Nouveau Memorial in America.
- Chester Arthur
- Originally the Sohmer Piano Company Building from 1897
- A turn of the century “Aesthetic Movement” mural
- Obelisk and grave of Major General William Jenkins Worth
- A Plaque on the site of famous, The Fifth Ave. Hotel, at the turn of the last century
- The church Edith Wharton was married in and the site of the house she grew up in.
- Where was the Great White Way and how did it get its name.
- Originally the Lord & Taylor Bldg. from the 1870's and Fashion Row
- Western Union Telegraph Annex Bldg., & Henry J. Hardenbergh
- Find out about cable cars on Broadway at the turn of last century
- The Flatiron Bldg., The Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. Bldg., The St. James Bldg.,
The Croise Bldg. The Western Union Telegraph Annex Office Bldg.
all office buildings built at the turn of last century as the Madison Square neighborhood changed from residential to commerical
- Where Theodore Roosevelt was born and raised.
- Find out about William H. Seward & ‘Seward’s Folly’ and the Rocking Chair Riots.
- Find out about "Manhattan’s Four Squares" designed after English residential squares.
- The site of Stanford White's mansion in Gramercy Square.
- Find out about, David Graham Philips "The Literary Murder of the 20th Century" & the Princeton Club
- The Gramercy one of the oldest surviving luxury apartment buildings
- See the gargoyles over Gramercy Park and Knights in armor too
- The Goelet Building from 1886
- The Warren Building from 1890
- originally The Russell Sage Foundation Building from 1913
- Find out about the meanest man in New York City in the Gilded Age.
- Edmund Booth's statue and Edmund Booth's mansion, The Players Club
- Samuel Tilden's Mansion, The National Arts Club
- The Stuyvesant Fish Mansion remodeled in 1887
- See some of the sites listed in the novel "Time and Again" :
where Sy and Julia hid over night in Madison Square Park
the boarding house where Julia worked & Sy lived
- The Gramercy Park Hotel - Humphrey Bogart and John F. Kennedy
- Gargoyles in Gramercy Park and more
The below stops are included in the 3½ hour version of the walking tour:
About the neighborhood that use to be called Washington Square
Where Mark Twain lived.
Elsie de Wolfe & Elizabeth Marbury lived here "never complain, never explain" but not Washington Irving
About Union Square and its history
About the first president of the US to be married while in office.
The site of New York's first apartment house and a picture of what it looke like, it was demolished 50 yrs ago and was mentioned in the novel "Time and Again"
Manhattan's second oldest bar
The Lockwood DeForest Mansion and what makes it unique
The Century Bldg., The Bank of the Metropolis Bldg., The Decker Bldg., The Lincolin Bldg.
- Where Tammany Hall was and a little about its history.
All were office buildings built at the turn of last century changing Union Square in to a commercial neighborhood
O'Henry drank here and lived across the street where he wrote, "The Gift of the Magi" and more
About 2½ hours or a 3½ hour version
Meet in front of 51 Madison Ave. between E. 26 St. & E. 27 St.
Interested in a Private Walking Tour" ?
Call: (212) 979-2388 for details www.nycwalk.com
Or : E Mail Me