Beginning in the 1890s and for nearly 40 years after, the Brooklyn Christmas Tree Society brought holiday cheer to Brooklyn’s underprivileged children, treating them to a huge meal, gifts and musical performances.
The annual tradition was founded by a woman named Lena Wilson Sitting, whose legacy of generosity and holiday spirit deserves remembering around this time of year.
A Brownstoner reader is looking to buy a brownstone that needs a plumbing upgrade.
I have an offer in on three story, two family brownstone whose mechanicals are, well, not that great. It seems the average cost for all new plumbing for such a house are coming in at about 40k. Is it possible to redo the plumbing for the first two floors, ignoring the third to save money? There’s a kitchen and a bathroom on the top floor that I could, in theory, shut the door on and ignore for a few years until I could come up with the cash to redo.
Does all the building’s plumbing need to happen at once, or can they hold off on some of it for now to save money? Commenters are on board with this idea — if you’ve had a similar experience, share your thoughts over in the original post.
Need a professional opinion? Try Brownstoner Service Pros.
Not sure what to gift your bookworm this year? Check out our favorite #FridayReads from Instagram. We’ve included some Brooklyn-centric reads and relevant architecture classics that come highly recommended. For more inspiration, follow us on Instagram and chime in every Friday.
A series of perplexing decisions confronted architect Drew Lang of Lang Architecture as he masterminded the renovation of a dark and dreary sliver of a brownstone, formerly three apartments, and turned it into a bright and airy dwelling for a family of former Manhattanites.
Can visitors to the Brooklyn Heights Promenade still see the breathtaking view of Manhattan they have enjoyed since the Promenade was created in the 1950s? Or has the Pierhouse development ruined it — and if so, can anything be done about it now?
Two community groups have filed yet another suit against Brooklyn Bridge Park and developer Toll Brothers, claiming Pierhouse is in the wrong but that it’s not too late to make things right.
The owners of this late-19th-century two-story wood-frame were ready to abandon their dream of adding square footage, after the first architect they consulted produced a design that would have been way beyond their budget.
But then they were introduced to Thomas Warnke, whose pared-down philosophy enabled the job to go forward at a price the couple could swallow. “I prefer clean and simple lines, not too many competing ideas in one project,” said Warnke, originally from Germany, who established his Brooklyn-based design practice, space4a, in 2007.
The huge gray cement factory buildings that span Sunset Park’s shoreline between 30th and 37th streets are the remaining structures of Brooklyn’s largest industrial park, Bush Terminal.
The complex was the brainchild of Irving T. Bush, the son of an oilman-turned-yachtsman. Today, these buildings are known as Industry City, an evolving complex made up of workspaces for Brooklyn’s creative economy, as well as future dining, entertainment and shopping destinations.
We can blame the late Victorian era for the commercialization of Christmas. The late 1800s gave us an affluent society with the disposable income to buy the vast amount of machine-made goods coming out of American factories.
The Brooklyn Eagle gloried in this consumer excess, writing glowing reviews of the merchandise in stores all over the city and running thousands of ads. No time of the year was more important than Christmas.
We’ve picked five Brooklyn stores to highlight for the holiday shopping season — three old-timers from the Victorian age, and two more contemporary. None of them exist anymore.
They were founded by the same kind of smart, successful and lucky entrepreneurs that abound today, all striving to bring Brooklynites the next greatest thing, especially for the holidays.
Thanksgiving in America has always been a rather strange combination of festival, food and frolic. We watch colorful parades in the morning, stuff ourselves in the afternoon and then retire to our couches to watch two teams of modern gladiators beat each other silly for the prize of a silver trophy.
Traditions have evolved since Thanksgiving became a national holiday in the 1860s, but the sentiment has remained the same. Here’s how late-19th-century Brooklyn celebrated, with massive feasts and costumed Fantastics.
“Modern but warm” is how the new homeowners described their vision to Park Slope-based architect Jeff Etelamaki as they embarked on the gut renovation of a stoop-less, early-20th-century row house on an eclectic, non-landmarked block in Prospect Heights.