Biggie’s Childhood Home Available for $725K

226-st-james-place-030313Big news: The Clinton Hill crib where The Notorious B.I.G. spent his childhood years can be yours for $725,000. Meanwhile, the blogs are debating whether or not this area was once considered Bed Stuy, which he calls home in some of his lyrics. From our own Montrose Morris: “Long story long, the case could be made that when he was a child, in the ’60s, his street was considered to be part of Bed Stuy. However, by the time he started his career as a criminal, it was definitely called Clinton Hill. And by the time he started rapping, there was no doubt it was Clinton Hill, and he was trading on the tough Bed Stuy reputation to make himself look badder and ballsier than his neighborhood actually was.”
Late Rapper Notorious B.I.G.’s Childhood Home Lists for $725K [Curbed]
Where Brooklyn At? Notorious B.I.G.’s Old Apartment On Sale [Gothamist]
Biggie Smalls’ Childhood Apartment in Brooklyn on the Market [NY Daily News]
226 St. James Place 3L Listing [Warren Lewis]
Photo by Warren Lewis

37 Comment

  • “when he was a child, in the ’60s,”

    biggie was born in the 70’s

    and as far as i can remember, and i’ve been in brooklyn all my life, this was never bed-stuy. him rapping about bed-stuy was all for ‘street cred’ because everyone heard about the area. in reality, fulton and st james was just as bad as any part of bed-stuy but it was not as well know.

  • “the case could be made that when he was a child, in the ’60s,” ……Uhhh, he was born in 1972!

  • Montrose just lost her street cred 😉

  • Would this place be more attractive to a potential buyer than any other criminal’s crib????

    That furniture doesn’t look like what I’d expect Biggie to like but maybe I’m prejudjing him.

  • If you read the book Ghetto Crisis from 1969 Washington was the dividing line for Bedford Stuyvesant so MM is right. At that time the neighborhood also went as far south as Eastern Parkway.

  • Back in the ’70s and early ’80s I used to attend meetings of the old Brooklyn Brownstone Conference, representing PLGNA (the PLG neighborhood assoc.) The person who represented Bed Stuy insisted that she was really representing the NEIGHBORHOODS [plural] of Bedford and Stuyvesant Heights and that Bed Stuy was a fictional term made up by the Daily News to mean ANY predominantly black area in Brooklyn where crime occurred. In THAT sense Clinton Hill was part of “Bed Stuy”.

    BTW, the map of NYC neighborhoods used by the Brownstone revival Committee back then showed Clinton Hill as a separate neighborhood, but considered Crown Heights North to be part of Bedford Stuyvesant. Go figure!

  • What a lovely ice breaker for a cocktail party: “Your kid got into Yale? Fabulous! I just bought the childhood home of The Notorious B.I.G.” Big Poppa, here comes Big Momma!

  • I lived 2 little blocks away for 19 years starting in 1989. Many long-time residents considered it to be Bed-Stuy.

  • Hard to imagine that was ever considered Bed Stuy but if people that lived around there back in the day say it was who am I to argue. Clinton Hill as a neighborhood has been around since the 19th century and St James would have always been in its boundaries but it seems there was a time when the notion of what Bed Stuy was spread farther than its boundaries today.

  • This part of Clinton Hill used to be “Bed Stuy” in the same way that anything South of 15th St. in Park Slope was considered “Sunset Park” in the 80’s.

    More evidence of this here:

    Stop sweatin Biggie, before he comes back from his grave and slaps ya! :)

  • A friend’s father grew up in the Farragut Houses in Vinegar Hill the 50s and 60s and remembers people calling it Bed-Stuy – he still says he grew up in Bed-Stuy.

  • I noticed a few years ago there were a few businesses located around… Grand? Or Franklin? that had “Clinton Hills” in their name. Not Hill, but plural. Not that it’s evidence for anything, but it always made me think that “Clinton Hills” was the original name, and went farther… east? than I’d thought.

  • When I moved here in 1971, I was informed that Bed Stuy started at Washington Ave. I agree with BobMarvin that the mainstream NYC media consolidated any black neighborhood in Brooklyn into “Bed Stuy” though – I never heard the term “Clinton HIll” until the area was landmarked and began to be aggressively marketed in New York Magazine and they started publishing “The Hill”.

    That said, not too many years ago my husband and I were chased agressively under the BQE by a van full of young thugs, who swerved towards us yelling “You ever hear of Biggie Smalls white man?”. Well, the answer was yes. Hell, I even lived here before him.

    I hope whoever buys his home loves it.

  • it’s actually closer to ft. greene than bed stuy if you count the number of blocks.

  • Wait. So a brownstone on St James and Fulton is going for 725k?? That seems improbable. Did I miss something?

    Edit. Oh. Condo. 927 square feet…. Yuck. Carry on.

  • Back in the 50s, 60s, Bedford Stuyvesant only made the news when intrepid reporters dared venture into what was nationally called “THE WORST GHETTO IN AMERICA.” As such, any predominantly black part of Central Brooklyn was considered part of Bed Stuy. That unofficial border into the heart of darkness stretched from about St. James to Broadway, Flushing to Eastern Parkway. That’s a huge chunk o’ land, there.

    Everyone who said oldtimers considered about half of Clinton Hill to be in BS are right. The same can be said for much of Crown Heights. But wasder certainly is right, too. Clinton Hill is an old established neighborhood, dating back to the early 19th century. St. James was always a part of Clinton Hill, and is recognized and landmarked as such, which happened in 1981, when Biggie was still a child.

    Ok, I got his birth date wrong. I never claimed street cred, and to be honest, never understood why anyone would find him, his life, or his music to be appealing. But I’m just a middle-aged fuddy duddy.

    • “As such, any predominantly black part of Central Brooklyn was considered part of Bed Stuy.”

      That wasn’t limited to Central Brooklyn, eSIL. When my uncle (in Connecticut) found out that I bought my Brownstone in Carroll Gardens in 1996, he called my mother and said, “How can you let him move to Bed Stuy?!?!?!”. I think to anyone who didn’t know Brooklyn, all or most of Brooklyn was Bed Stuy. And Ted Koppel did a Nightline piece back in the day that only served to entrench the negative image of Bed Stuy.

      (And LMFAO: “I never claimed street cred . . . I’m just a middle-aged fuddy duddy.”)

    • One day, we’ll look back and remember when Nostrand (or even further) was still considered Bed-Stuy (and not Clinton Hill).

      • that’s true.

        if it were up to me, the boarder would be bedford av. aside from the street name making sense, lots of neighborhoods are bound by major streets or avenues and classon isn’t that major.

  • Seriously considered one of the places at 560 State Street, Jay-Z’s old stash box. Feel obligated to go look at this one.

  • Bedford-Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation(BSRC) should be the authority on what defines Bed Stuy. According to them this is the boundaries for BS.

  • Here’s the Community District and HPD maps. Either way St. James is not in Bed Stuy.

  • The cut off should be Classon but in Biggie’s day, it definitely felt like “Bed Stuy” – and was considered as such, by many who lived there.

    In the early 90’s, Fulton and St James was s k e t c h y. I had a delivery job on Atlantic and Grand and there were hookers in the middle of the day – people got shot, crack was not whack. I made sure to count my money in the shop.

    Only a couple of years ago – the triangle by Grand and Fulton gave me the creeps, Classon, even more so.