Inside Crown Heights’ Historic Homes

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Outgoing Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz kicked off the Crown Heights North Association house tour Saturday, congratulating the group on the state of the neighborhood and their successful landmarking efforts. The group presented him with a Crown Heights-themed pillow, sewn by none other than our own Montrose Morris, who coordinated this year’s house tour from her home upstate and also wrote the program guide. “My dream was always to be Brooklyn borough president — nothing more,” Markowitz added, saying “I’m not leaving voluntarily. Term limits!”

After the jump, photos of some of the houses on the tour, taken with permission of the home owners.

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Markowitz speaks at a breakfast at the start of the tour, above. Tour volunteers wear orange shirts.

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Almost all the light fixtures at 1234 Dean Street are original to the house, including the unusual chandelier above, which appears to be a very early example of electric lighting, circa 1900. The shades were found with the fixture in the basement of the house, which was an SRO when the current owner bought it.

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Two of the fireplaces have their original gas inserts and work. The house has central heating.

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One of two original gas sconces in the rear parlor. The gas has been disabled. The owner installed new old-fashioned push-button light switches throughout the house.

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An original marble sink and claw foot tub in one of the bathrooms, which was completely gutted. The tile and plumbing are all new.

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A restored pass-through sink between two bedrooms.

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This bathroom was also gutted and has a brand-new marble sink and bathtub.

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The original stove was saved and a brand-new kitchen built around it. A new steel beam allowed the kitchen to be opened up to the garden.

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The exterior of 1234 Dean, above, with Brownstoner commenter Amzi Hill at the door.

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Above, the entry at 1259 Dean Street. The house, built in the early 1890s, was recently purchased by Brownstoner commenter Adam Dahill and has not yet been restored.

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The house features a center-hall stair.

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Above, original encaustic tile in the entry.

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An onyx fireplace.

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The entry hall of 979 Park Place. The freestanding shingle and brick house was built in 1886 and designed by George Poole Chappell. The entry hall is extremely unusual for a Brooklyn house and features a fireplace on a little platform to the immediate left of the entry and a u-shaped staircase.

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The coffered ceiling in the entry.

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The tile in the entry may be an early 20th century replacement.

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The unusual exterior mixes brick and shingles.

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