Building of the Day: 167 Concord Street

Photo: Scott Bintner for Property Shark, 2007

Brooklyn, one building at a time.

Name: Cottage
Address: 167 Concord Street
Cross Streets: Duffield and Bridge Streets
Neighborhood: Fort Greene
Year Built: Unknown
Architectural Style: generally Federal, but hard to tell with years of alterations
Architect: Unknown
Landmarked: No

The story: This western part of Fort Green, sometimes considered part of Downtown Brooklyn, sometimes lumped into Vinegar Hill, although it’s not part of it, is a time warp, a Brigadoon-like enclave of early to mid-19th century buildings surrounded by the boom of the 21st century. Cut off from a lot of the “progress” around it by the ramps and streets leading to the BQE and Manhattan Bridge, there are gems here, and this tiny cottage is one of the most noticeable.

Property Shark says that the building is only 22×28, with one and a half stories. It was once one of row upon row of wood frame buildings settled into by dock workers, and other working class folk who lived and worked here, near the ferry, the piers, the Navy Yard, and the factories in the area. It’s really quite amazing that this has survived.

The red shutters, front door and trim make the house, no doubt about it. An equally amazing survivor is also the tiny red electric car from the 1970’s, a Citicar, designed to save the world from gas guzzling behemoths. These things are now as rare as hen’s teeth, and the ancestors of today’s electric and hybrid cars. Its tiny scale matches the house, and it’s been there a long time. A tax photo from the early 1980’s shows the house sans shutters, but pretty much the same. What’s amazing is the state of the frame houses around it, the one on the right is now gone. The house on the left is highly reminiscent of the houses in Berenice Abbott’s photographs of nearby Talman Street, rickety unpainted clapboard, and all. It has now been re-clad and presumably rehabbed as well.

There are many other interesting buildings, both residential and commercial, on this block. Stay tuned for more, from this forgotten and unclaimed neighborhood. GMAP

Photo: Scott Bintner for Property Shark, 2007

Photo: NYC Tax Photo, 1980's, via Property Shark

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