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Greenwich Village   By: (1880-1920)

Book cover

First Page:

[Illustration: MILLIGAN COURT. A typical, fragmentary survival of Old Greenwich.]

GREENWICH VILLAGE

By

ANNA ALICE CHAPIN

Author of "Wonder Tales from Wagner," "Masters of Music," etc.

WITH ILLUSTRATIONS BY ALLAN GILBERT CRAM

NEW YORK DODD, MEAD AND COMPANY 1925

COPYRIGHT, 1917, BY DODD, MEAD AND COMPANY, Inc.

To

VINCENT C. PEPPE

WHO FIRST SUGGESTED THE WRITING OF THIS BOOK, AND WHOSE UNTIRING EFFORTS HAVE HAD MUCH TO DO WITH THE SUCCESS OF GREENWICH VILLAGE AS A POPULAR RESIDENCE SECTION,

THIS BOOK IS DEDICATED

CONTENTS

CHAPTER

I. THE CHEQUERED HISTORY OF A CITY SQUARE

II. THE GREEN VILLAGE

III. THE GALLANT CAREER OF SIR PETER WARREN

IV. THE STORY OF RICHMOND HILL

V. "TOM PAINE, INFIDEL"

VI. PAGES OF ROMANCE

VII. RESTAURANTS, AND THE MAGIC DOOR

VIII. VILLAGERS

IX. AND THEN MORE VILLAGERS

A LAST WORD

ILLUSTRATIONS

Milligan Court Frontispiece

Map of Old Greenwich Village

Oldest Building on the Square

Jefferson Market

The Cradle of Bohemia

Old St. John's

Washington Arch

The Butterick Building

59 Grove Street

Grove Court

The Brevoort House

Grove Street

The Dutch Oven

Patchin Place

Washington Square South

Macdougal Alley

A Greenwich Studio

A FIRST WORD

"'Tis an awkward thing to play with souls," and, to my mind, Greenwich Village has a very personal soul that requires very personal and very careful handling. This little foreword is to crave pardon humbly if my touch has not been light, or deft, or sure. There are so many things that I may have left out, so many ways in which I must have erred.

And I want to thank people too, just here. So many people there are to thank! I cannot simply dismiss the matter with the usual acknowledgment of a list of authorities to which, by the bye, I have tried to cling as though they were life buoys in a stormy sea of research!

There are the kindly individuals, J.H. Henry, Vincent Pepe, William van der Weyde, J.B. Martin, and the rest, who have so generously placed their own extensive information and collected material at my disposal. And there are the small army of librarians and clerks and secretaries and so on, who have given me unlimited patience and most encouraging personal interest.

And finally, beyond all these, are the Villagers who have taken me in, and made me welcome, and won my heart for all time. Everyone has been so kind that my "thank you" must take in all of Greenwich.

It is said that hospitality, neighbourliness and genuine cordiality are traits of any well conducted village. Then be sure that our Village in the city is not behind its rustic fellows. For, wherever you stray or wherever you stop within its confines, you will always find the latch string hung outside.

"Does a bird need to theorise about building its nest, or boast of it when built? All good work is essentially done that way without hesitation, without difficulty, without boasting.... And now, returning to the broader question, what these arts and labours of life have to teach us of its mystery, this is the first of their lessons that the more beautiful the art, the more it is essentially the work of people who ... are striving for the fulfilment of a law, and the grasp of a loveliness, which they have not yet attained.... Whenever the arts and labours of life are fulfilled in this spirit of striving against misrule, and doing whatever we have to do, honourably and perfectly, they invariably bring happiness, as much as seems possible to the nature of man."

JOHN RUSKIN.

CHAPTER I

The Chequered History of a City Square

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