Inwood’s First Selfie: The Work of Vermilyea Avenue Photographer William Davis Hassler

William Davis Hassler

Selfie: “A photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website.”  -Oxford English Dictionary In 2013 the Oxford English Dictionary officially recognized the word “selfie”, but as early as 1913 Inwood photographer William Davis Hassler was perfecting the technique. Hassler, a skilled […]

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History of Inwood’s Isham Park

Isham Park, Inwood, New York City

In 1862 a businessman named William Bradley Isham rented a summer retreat in northern Manhattan. He fell in love with the place and returned two years later to purchase the property. What follows is an exhaustive photo essay describing the origins of Isham Park.

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Inwood’s Mission of the Redeemer

Mission of the Redeemer from 1922 Bromley Map.  Inwood, New York City.

Not long ago, before a presentation of Inwood History Night, regular attendee Michael Frank turned up with a massive ­­­­­1922 edition of Bromley’s atlas of New York.  Scanning through sturdy volume of thirty-two beautifully hand colored linen plates, I noticed the outline of a structure located not far the site of the tennis courts in […]

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Inwood’s 215th Street Incinerator Smokestacks

Inwood Department of Sanitation on 215th Street

“When the Mayor of New York dedicated the new incinerator at 215th Street and Ninth Avenue a little while ago, he said plainly that he didn’t like it. Perhaps he was justified in his opinion of it as a piece of sanitary engineering, but when he went on to say that it looked ungainly and […]

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Spark Plug Inventor Gustave Herz and His Eclectic Inwood Home

Thumbnail image for Spark Plug Inventor Gustave Herz and His Eclectic Inwood Home

On a steamy July day in the summer of 1918 Austrian inventor Gustave Herz purchased a large stable on the northern tip of Manhattan.  While many before him had built grand monuments to equestrian sportsmanship, given the neighborhood’s proximity to the Harlem River Speedway, Herz was no horseman. Instead, Herz was a dreamer who planned […]

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The Deconstruction of the 215th Street Steps

215th Street stairs

Inwood’s 215th Street Stairs Generations of Inwood residents have trudged up and down the familiar stairs, which connect Broadway with Park Terrace East. The steps themselves have stood frozen in time as the surrounding neighborhood reached maturity. The stairs are a familiar sight to anyone who has ever passed through Inwood. The ancient passageway was […]

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Inwood 1931: The Dyckman Street Madonna

Madonna on Dyckman Street

In 1931 Inwood was two years into the throes of the greatest economic downturn this nation has ever seen.   Heads of household were out of work.  A barter system was established. And, while some sought solace in the speakeasies hidden neatly beneath the commercial strips along Broadway, Dyckman and 207th Streets, others prayed for […]

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Old Real Estate Ads from Inwood and Surrounding Area

Inwood real estate ads from ages past

Below are a collection of real estate advertisements from ages past.  As both a real estate agent and fan of Inwood history, I found the below images fascinating.  If you’ve lived in any of these building and have stories to share, please feel free to comment in the space below the image box.

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