Brooklyn, one building at a time.
Name: Originally half of Shaw’s Hotel, now private house
Address: 28 Danforth Street
Cross Streets: Corner Hemlock Street
Neighborhood: Cypress Hills
Year Built: 1838
Architectural Style: Dutch Colonial
The story: Hidden behind aluminum siding and in pretty sad shape is half of the second oldest building in Cypress Hills. This was Shaw’s Hotel, and there is quite a story here, tucked away on a side street in this neighborhood that doesn’t often get under the popular Brooklyn radar. Back when this area was still New Lots, a Dutch town that was established as an off-shoot of Flatbush, the town that would become Cypress Hills was centered around the most important building in the village – a tavern, of course.
The John R. Snediker Roadhouse was on the Jamaica Plank Road, the main highway stretching from Queens through to the Village of Brooklyn. Its placement was generally along where Fulton Street now lies. The roadhouse was a popular stop for travelers and stagecoaches in the early 1830s, and was quite successful, so successful that Jerome Snediker built his own roadhouse directly across the street from his brother John. Jerome’s establishment burned down, and was replaced in 1838 by a new roadhouse called Shaw’s Hotel, owned and operated by William Shaw.
Shaw’s Hotel was a large two story and an attic frame house in the Dutch Colonial style. It had a central hallway that ran from front to back, with rooms and a stairway on both sides. The sloping front roofline ended with a large front porch that ran the width of the house, and faced Jamaica Plank Road. Around the yard were tall elm trees, shading the hotel. The inn was run by William Shaw, who came to Brooklyn from Virginia, and later by another family member, Ephraim Shaw. (more…)