2005-10-28 / Columnists

Historical Views of the Rockaways

Have You Seen Young
From The Rockaway Museum by Emil Lucev, Curator Dedicated To The Memory Of Leon S. Locke

From The Rockaway Museum
by Emil Lucev, Curator
Dedicated To The Memory Of Leon S. Locke

Every time Barney Young created a new window display for his ladies shop at 1043 Central Avenue, the title question made the rounds. Even his competitors admitted that Barney had originality and ability, and maybe a bit of genius thrown in somewhere. Young decorated his own windows and delighted when people came from all over to view his work. This was good for business also.

Over the years, Young put up displays, such as a country club with miniature greens and people, a train display, winged victory, a symphony in black and white women’s clothes, an airplane theme, and a mountain waterfall scene. Barney’s displays were comparable to the best in New York City. He was an accomplished sketcher, and drew his own displays before activating them in his windows.

All the shops and stores in the whole of the Rockaways had displays that the owners were proud of, from the Godzilla-sized roach eating a house, to the size 200 shoe that had a big hole in the sole in the shoemaker shop (with newspaper covering the opening advertising the shop, and the cost of a new sole-which was good for your soul). Above Barney Young’s store was the Far Rockaway Palace Chinese-American Restaurant, and nearby was the Central Deli. Ah! The pastrami on rye with mustard and home fries, and Dr. Brown’s Cel-Ray soda! How about that!

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