2008-05-23 / Columnists

Historical Views of the Rockaways

Looking Eastward From The West End Of The 1901 Arverne Boardwalk
From The Rockaway Museum Commentary by Emil Lucev,Curator Dedicated To The Memory Of Leon S. Locke

The west end of the Arverne boardwalk of 1901 was located at Beach 74 Street. Today's view shows the Beach 70 Street ramp to the street on the left, and at Beach 69 Street (Remington Avenue) the Arverne Hotel casino and bath complex connected to the promenade is visible. Beyond are the Remington Batchelor Apartments, and the wide area of the walk which contained shops, stores, a pharmacy, a hairdresser, a tailor, a Hungarian restaurant, and a big bowling alley.

On the south or beach side of the walk is the large Arverne Pier Theatre, surrounded by a deck for outdoor dining and dancing. Built in 1904 and very popular, King Neptune took the place out to sea during the storm of 1914, and needless to say… it was not rebuilt!

Two years later, a Batchelor Inn was built out over the beach at bottom right, and during the storm of 1920 was undermined and knocked on its side in one piece, but internal injury was such that the place was demolished.

Other than small elevated bath houses, buildings were not built out over the beach anymore, and severe beach erosion was now taking place. The city built a new municipal beach and boardwalk in the 1920s from Far Rockaway to the west end, and no structures were allowed on the beachside other than lifeguard/first aid shacks.

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