On the Old Bowery: There Before the Avalon

Posted on: March 19th, 2010 at 6:11 am by

Check out this New York Times real estate blurb from March 1921, announcing the construction of a three-story structure at the southeast corner of Bowery and East Houston.  Vincent Astor, son of the prominent John Jacob Astor IV, invested $32,000 in the property, currently the site of the Avalon mothership and its Whole Foods spawn.

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It was here that the Frank Bunz hash house reportedly served up pig brains for fifteen cents in the 1940s and 1950s; a dive joint Jack Kerouac once called “the great bum’s Howard Johnsons of the Bowery.”  In the 1890s, the Nassau (aka The Star) lodging house was situated a few doors to the south, at 275 Bowery.

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But this parcel of land was eventually cleared, and became a vacant lot for many years.

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