Thursday, October 5, 2017
The sidewalk ramp improvement — under a city contract via the Department of Design and Construction — continues in the neighborhood, with workers on Second Avenue now.
Yesterday, while workers were on the southeast corner of Second Avenue and 10th Street, one of the fragile plaques from the Yiddish Theatre Walk of Fame, was damaged...
This plaque in question was already missing part of its border and looked to have been patched up previously.
This development was particularly upsetting to the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, who has been working to have this Walk of Fame preserved and relocated. (You can read about their campaign here.)
In 1984, Abe Lebewohl, who owned the Second Avenue Deli in this corner location, installed this Yiddish Walk of Fame to commemorate when the area was a vibrant Yiddish theater community in the early 20th century. In recent years, many of the stars in the double row have become worn down or broken and are mostly illegible. Higher rents forced Second Avenue Deli to vacate the premises in 2006. A Chase branch is here now.
As we understand it, Community Board 3 District Manager Susan Stetzer was here yesterday and spoke with the owner of the contracting company. He said that his crew will fix the cracked piece and the remaining work will not have an impact on the other five-pointed gold stars.
"Moving forward, we will continue to work with a variety of stakeholders to ensure the long-term preservation of the Walk," said Harry Bubbins, East Village & Special Projects Director, at the GVSHP.
Updated 6:30 p.m.
The work crew patched up the star on the sidewalk...
Thursday, July 6, 2017
If you've walked on the southeast corner of Second Avenue and 10th Street outside the Chase branch, then you've likely noticed the five-pointed gold stars set into granite celebrating names such as Abraham Goldfaden, Bessie Thomashefsky and Michal Michalesko ...
[Top two photos from 2014 by Derek Berg]
In 1984, Abe Lebewohl, who owned the Second Avenue Deli in this corner location, installed this Yiddish Walk of Fame to commemorate when the area was a vibrant Yiddish theater community in the early 20th century.
In recent years, many of the stars in the double row have become worn down or broken and are mostly illegible. Higher rents forced Second Avenue Deli to vacate here in 2006. (Lebewohl was murdered in March 1996.) Since then, the building's landlord, Jonis Realty, who's responsible for maintaining the sidewalks, hasn't apparently done much to repair the stars (though at the same time they didn't have them removed).
There's now a fresh movement afoot to preserve and protect the Walk of Fame in an effort led by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation and several other community groups. Yesterday, EVG regular Daniel noted that reps for Friends of the Abe Lebewohl Yiddish Walk of Fame were collecting signatures of support on this corner...
Here's more on the history of the Walk of Fame ... via the GVSHP...
The Second Avenue Deli closed its doors at this location in 2006. Luckily, the Walk of Fame remained despite the closure. But now this civic tribute is deteriorating. Friends of the Abe Lebewohl Yiddish Walk of Fame is working to promote the history and culture of Yiddish Theatre and the neighborhood inspired by the granite stars first embedded in the sidewalk of Second Avenue by restauranteur Abe Lebewohl. GVSHP is proud to be working with fellow stakeholders, with the support of the Lebewohl family, to secure the future of this important piece of our neighborhood history.
Here's what they have planned ...
Friends of the Abe Lebewohl Yiddish Theatre Walk of Fame seeks to preserve, educate, inspire and reinstall a recreation of the historic plaque tiles in the area of cultural relevance and with long term stewardship. We will work to gently remove the original plaque tiles.
Exhibit them as part of a permanent or traveling exhibition. Support programming that highlights the Yiddish Theatre and the neighborhood, and inspire the continuation of the rich artistic tradition. And we will commission a recreation of the original plaque tiles to be reinstalled somewhere relevant and nearby, with long term stewardship as our goal.
Learn more about the preservation efforts here.