2012-02-03 / Columnists

Historical Views of the Rockaways

Central Avenue Looking North From Cornaga Avenue Towards Mott Avenue
From The Rockaway Museum Commentary by Emil Lucev, Curator Dedicated To The Memory Of Leon S. Locke

Although the wrong directions are printed on this old postcard view from the year 1915, it is still a great historical view.

In the photo we have automobiles, a trolley car, and two of New York’s finest directing traffic.

Our camera is set up on Cornaga Avenue (left to right) and is looking north to-wards Mott Avenue. On the left is the Old Gotham Inn, where Pabst Blue Ribbon beer was sold exclusively (as the sign says). Down the avenue is an assortment of shops and taverns and restaurants, which includes Nebebzahl’s Department Store (which in 1930 became Grant’s Department Store).

On the right is Lowe’s Apothecary and Soda Fountain, Brower’s shoe and boot store, the Hotel Fran├žois which featured Pierre’s French Restaurant, the Columbia Theatre (a movie house) featuring a movie called, ‘The Laughter of the Wolf’,” and many more shops, butcher shops, bakeries, shoe repair, etc.

The printer did a great service, as many had to do in the old days of yore, by washing out the horrendous look of overhead power lines and trolley line power cables, telephone lines, and street light cables and bulb changing lines. Ours even took out the Utility poles and trolley poles, to boot! If this weren’t done, a spider web (if you will) would be printed.

Quite a messy problem!

In more modern times, some might remember Harvey’s children’s store where Lowe Drugs is, and opposite the Gotham was Morty’s Army Navy Store – where Levis were $5.08 a pair, and on the right was the bank of the Manhattan Company.

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