Brooklyn, one building at a time.
Name: Private house
Address: 218 Arlington Avenue
Cross Streets: Corner Ashford Street
Neighborhood: Cypress Hills
Year Built: Around 1900
Architectural Style: Queen Anne
The story: Cypress Hills has a fine collection of housing stock that brings a smile to the face of most old house lovers. This part of Brooklyn has often been forgotten by the rest of Brooklyn, except for those who grew up here and remember the streets and homes with nostalgia and great pride. One of those residents, Ricardo Gomes, began a website devoted to the history, architecture and reminiscences of the neighborhood, and today, the East New York Project is always my go-to source for photographs and information about buildings in Cypress Hills, Highland Park and East New York proper.
Cypress Hills was planned as a late 19th, early 20th century suburban neighborhood, and has an interesting mixture of row houses and blocks of detached and semi-detached suburban style housing. In very many ways, it’s quite similar to parts of Flatbush, which, ironically, it used to be part of, way back in the late 1600s and early 1700s. The “New Lots” of East New York were new lots for the Flatbush settlers who originally moved here. There’s a lot of history here.
The streets of Cypress Hills were developed for upper middle and middle class folk, many of whom came from the German American communities of Bushwick, not all that far from here. As many of them had houses built, or moved into speculative housing, they left their businesses behind in Bushwick and commuted to work. In time, many of those businesses also came to East New York, making the area, called the 26th Ward, quite prosperous. The houses on some of the blocks, and the churches and civic buildings built for the new neighborhood, reflect that prosperity. (more…)