Brooklyn, one building at a time.
Name: Marine Commandant’s House, Brooklyn Navy Yard, now BLDG 92
Address: 63 Flushing Avenue
Cross Streets: Carlton Avenue
Neighborhood: Fort Greene
Year Built: Original building, 1857, new addition and BLDG 92 complex, 2012
Architectural Style: Original building, Italianate
Architect: Original Marine Commandant’s house — Thomas U. Walter. BLDG 92 rehab and addition — Beyer Blinder Belle
Other works by architect: Walter — fourth architect of US Capitol. BBB — recent projects: Thurgood Marshall Courthouse, Lincoln Center Promenade, Morgan Library, all Manhattan, as well as many, many more.
The story: The Brooklyn Navy Yard is one of those places that not only defines Brooklyn, but helps define American history. That’s why it’s always been such a shame that for the longest time, since its decommission in 1966, the historic legacy of the Yard has remained shut away behind guarded iron gates and tall fencing. Passersby could see bits and pieces of the historic buildings that make up the Yard, but with the exception of an occasional tour, it was off-limits to the general public. Of course, if you worked at one of the many businesses in the Yard, you got to see more of it, but that still left most of us on the other side of the fence, literally.
There were always two Navy Yards, the first being the 19th century Naval Yard that served a fledgling US Navy since 1801. It saw the building and manning of the ships that protected the US during the War of 1812, and launched the Union vessels, including the iron-clad Monitor, during the Civil War. The 19th century produced some of the Yard’s most beautiful buildings, including hospital buildings, barracks, shipyard buildings, and housing for those who commanded the Yard, including the Naval Commandant, the Admiral’s Row officer’s houses and this, the Marine Commandant’s house. (more…)