Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Richmond Terrace and Heberton Avenue - March, 1927

One of the things I can never quite wrap my head around as I do my excavation of the history of Staten Island's North Shore is the amount of destruction that's taken place over the years. Now, I that word as a negative term, simply a descriptive one. Whole blocks of buildings have come and gone over the past centuries. Some commercial buildings have been demolished and replaced with apartments. Others have been torn down and the lots remain vacant decades later.

It's a little discombobulating to realize streets I have grown up on and lived on for nearly fifty years were drastically different once. Nothing in a city stays the same for long. Populations change and grow. Technologies advance and require different infrastructures. I used to get upset about the physical changes on the Island, but now I've come to understand they've always happened and will continue to forever.

So...Richmond Terrace and Heberton Avenue, 1927. First, looking toward (Port) Richmond Avenue. The changes here are the most extreme. I'm not sure any of the buildings in the old photo are still standing. Nothing of the buildings on the right (the waterside) remains at all.

Richmond Terrace and Heberton Avenue - looking west

The next picture is the same intersection (natch), facing toward Jewett Avenue. Here, the changes are as severe and you can even spot some of the same buildings today as in the 1927 shot.  The building that housed the Willy's-Knight Overland dealership on the right is still there being used for an auto repair shop. Several other buildings on both sides of the Terrace can be seen as well.

Richmond Terrace and Heberton Avenue - looking east


Ferryboi said...

What amazes me I how busy Port Richmond is in those pics taken in the 1930s, '40s and '50s. It's like the whole neighborhood up and left in the 1970s and a few stragglers and down-at-the-heel auto body shops remained. Kinda creepy.

The Wasp said...

Well, it did sort of get up and leave. The Plaza and then the Mall drove a stake through the commercial heart of the area. I assume that vacant storefronts encouraged homeowners to think about moving. Now, if the train was rebuilt, I think everything would change again.