CHRONOLOGY OF NEW YORK CITY'S FACTUAL "FIRST" 1524-1999
Researched and Compiled by Miriam Medina

S    E   C    T    I    O    N

 1   8    7    4   ---    1    8    8    0

*Please note this is a work in progress. New researched information will be added periodically.

1 8 7 4

1) There was established on the top of the Western Union Telegraph office at the corner of Dey Street, then one of the tallest and most prominent buildings in the city, a time ball, which was dropped at noon by means of telegraphic connection with the Naval Observatory in Washington. This was of inestimable service to the masters of vessels in the harbor, who were thus enabled to
compare and adjust their ship chronometers; and the inhabitants of the city set their watches by it. *(Bwy)

2) 1874 Charles Feltman introduces the "frankfurter" at Coney Island. * (BTL)

3) Brooklyn Elevated Railroad Co. incorporated; connects Brooklyn and Woodhaven, May 26, 1874.

4) Knickerbocker Yacht Club--Port Washington, L.I., N.Y. organized in 1874. * ( L.I. Sound)

5) The Bond Street Savings Bank at 330 The Bowery, an especially interesting cast-iron building, designed by Henry Engelbert in the elaborate style of the French Second Empire. Upon completion in 1874 it was known as the Bond Street Bank then later became The German Exchange Bank. *(Museums)

6) St. John's Hospital, Atlantic and Albany avs. in Brooklyn, was established in 1874. Capacity, 80. Private. * (Polk's)

7) July 23,1874. Cornerstone of old Thirteenth Regiment Armory laid at Hanson place and Flatbush avenue .

8) H. S. Bindseil, fine furs at 861 Broadway, near 17th street in New York City was established in 1874. * (Brooklyn Eagle)

9) The Lambs' Club: A social club in New York City, composed chiefly of actors, dramatists, and artists. It had its origin in a group of actors, newspaper men, and other Bohemians, who were in the habit of dining together periodically at the United States Hotel in 1873 and 1874. They organized the club in 1874, modeling it after the Lambs' Club of London, founded by John Hare, George Du Maurier, Sir Douglas Straight, and others. *(n.i.e.)

10) The Grand Union Hotel 1874: Simeon Ford, was the proprietor of New York City's Grand Union Hotel, located on Park Avenue, only a walk away from Grand Central Station. The emphasis was on quality at economy prices. The cafe, lunchroom, restaurants and wine rooms offered "the best" but at prices carefully quoted below New York's luxury hotels. * (FTW)

11) Socialist Labor Party in the United States was begun in 1874 when a workingmen's party was formed by NYC Socialists. * (c.e.)

1 8 7 5

1) Maple Grove Cemetery opens. Long Island Railroad Hopedale Station, at Union Avenue (later Turnpike) and Hoffman
Boulevard, Whitepot, opens as mourners flock to new cemetery in Town of Jamaica.

2) The imposing, but ugly, building now occupying the southern end of the Park triangle is the New York post-office. The ground was acquired from the city, and the building was first occupied by the Federal Government on September 1, 1875. Its cost was between $6,000,000 and $7,000,000. *(Bwy)

3) The Manhattan (or Eagle) Theatre stood on the west side of Broadway between Thirty-second and Thirty-third streets. It was opened with a variety show October 18, 1875; later, it became the Standard Theatre, becoming the Manhattan again August 30, 1897. It was the first house in New York to present Gilbert and Sullivan's H.M.S. Pinafore which became so popular that it was played at over half a dozen theatres at the same time; that was before the days of international copyright. * (Bwy)

4) Rockville Centre--The Eureka Hook-Ladder & Bucket Company, organized September 25, 1875, with John R. Sprague as foreman, was the first in the village.

5) Williams J. & J. W., a Carpet and Rug Cleaning Company at 351-353 West 54th street near 9th ave was established in 1875.

6) Wartburg Heimat, (Wartburg Home), in Brooklyn at 2598 Fulton. was established in 1875. Capacity, 85. Private. * (Polk's)

7) The Manhattan (or Eagle) Theatre stood on the west side of Broadway between Thirty-scond and Thirty-third streets. It was opened with a variety show October 18, 1875; later, it became the Standard Theatre, becoming the Manhattan again August 30, 1897. It was the first house in New York to present Gilbert and Sullivan's H.M.S. * (Bwy)

8) Art Students League of New York. An art school founded in 1875 in New York City by a group of art students who wished to establish a self-governing institution. * (c.e.)

9) Theosophical Society founded by Helena Blatavsky in New York. * (toh)

10) John McCloskey was named in 1875 the first American Cardinal by Pope Pius IX. *(docb)


1 8 7 6

1) The first Society for Ethical Culture was formed in New York City in May, 1876, by Prof. Felix Adler and several associates. * (n.i.e.)

2) .National League of Professional Baseball Clubs was formed in New York, February 2, 1876. *(afp.com)

3) Public School 39 at 417 Sixth Avenue in Brooklyn was built in 1876.

4) St. Malachi's Home for Children. Atlantic and Van Siclen avs. in Brooklyn was established in 1876. Capacity, 700. Private. *(Polk's)

5) The first Boy's Club was established in New York City in 1876. * (50s)

6) Among the plays first given here 1876 at the Abbey's Park Theatre was "The Gilded Age" in which John T. Raymond appeared as the protagonist, Colonel Mulberry Sellers. The play was founded on Mark Twain's story of the same name. The house was destroyed by fire, October 30, 1882,several hours before the evening performance, and was not rebuilt. * (Bwy)

7) The Buckingham Hotel 1876: Located at Fifth avenue at the corner of Fiftieth Street. All the bedrooms had open fireplaces and most were in suites, parlor, bedchamber, bathroom and toilet room, these latter entirely separate to guard against "the escape of noxious gases." The most elaborate of the suites began at sixty-five dollars a week. * (FTW)

1 8 7 7

1) The Museum of Natural History first opens in New York City.

2) The Socialist Labor party is founded in New York.

3) The first licenses to operate Alexander Graham Bell's telephone in New York City, the first device to transmit speech over electric wires, are granted by the American Bell Telephone Company. The following year the first central switchboard in NYC is opened. *nyca

4) 1877 -Manhattan Hotel, the first luxury hotel, opens at Coney's far eastern end .

5) Lambert Bros., Jewelers on Lexington avenue at 60th street, New York was established in 1877.

6) July 30,1877. Mozart Garden opens at Smith and Fulton streets.

7) FAR ROCKAWAY: Sanitarium for Hebrew Children of the City of New York. It was established in 1877. Capacity, 420. * (Polk's)

8) The Society of American Artists: An organization of painters and sculptors, representing rather advanced and radical ideas in art, as opposed to the more conservative tendencies of the National Academy of Design (q.v.) It was founded in 1877 by some of the younger American artists who had been trained abroad.* (n.i.e.)

9) The Telephone Co. of New York was incorporated in August, 1877, but it failed. In the autumn of 1878 the Bell Telephone Co. of N.Y. was organized. * (epic)

10) William Gillette American actor and dramatist. His New York debut in Mark Twain's Gilded Age (1877) was shortly followed by his own first play, "The Professor" (1881). * (c.e.)

11) The first high-wheeled bicycle appears in New York. The first tenement building with a central court is built. * (berea)

12) New York and Putnam Bridge: The bridge of the N.Y. & Putnam R.R., which crosses the river about a quarter of a mile above the Seventh Avenue Bridge, was built about 1877. it is provided with a steel draw 300 feet long and 28 feet above high water, with openings 128 feet wide. it carries two railroad tracks, and a foot path for free public use. This cost of this bridge was about $200,000. *(borobx)


1 8 7 8

1) On April 21, 1878, the nation's first firehouse pole was installed in New York City.

2) The Edison Electric Light Company was founded at 65 Fifth Avenue, NewYork, October 15, 1878. *(afp.com)

3) The first telephone is installed on the New York Stock Exchange floor. *nyca

4) New York Symphony Society, was founded in 1878 by Dr. Leopold Damrosch.

5) Electric light first used in Brooklyn in Loeser's store on Fulton Street, December 14, 1878.

6) The Brighton Beach Hotel built in 1878 had accomodations for nearly 5000 and could feed 20,000 people per day. -

7) Brooklyn Home for Aged Men. 745 Classon av. Est'd. 1878. Capacity, 150. * (Polks)

8) Faith Home for Incurable Women, in Brooklyn at 546 Park pl. It was incorporated in 1878. Capacity, 56. Public. * (Polk)

9 ) The Reform Club has for its object the promotion of good government and the abolition of the protective tariff. It was organized in 1878.

10) The Brighton theatre at 1239 Broadway opened with a variety show on August 26, 1878; and after many changes of names, became the Bijou Theatre, December 1, 1883. * (Bwy)

11) April 9, 1878. First train of Manhattan Beach Railroad Company runs.

12) The Women's Hotel 1878: It was located at Fourth avenue., 32d & 33d Sts. The building erected by Mr. Stewart has been completed in accordance with his plans and purposes as a home for women who support themselves by daily labor. It was opened on April 3, 1878. It had eight large reception rooms, steam elevators, and sleeping rooms, over Five hundred in number. Board and
Lodging for each person was at the rate of six dollars a week. * (FTW)

13) J. Lehrenkrauss & Sons, Brooklyn Official Ticket Agents at 379 Fulton street, opp. City Hall in Brooklyn, was established in 1878. * (Brooklyn Eagle)

14) 1878 Opening of " el " on Sixth Avenue.

15) The Park Avenue Hotel 1878: It was located on Park avenue between Thirty-second and Thirty-third streets. It opened on April 2, 1878. The proprietors were Wm. H. Earle & Son. * (FTW)

16) Anna Katherine Green, American detective story writer born in Brooklyn, N.Y. Of her many thrillers characterized by logicality and a knowledge of criminal law. "The Leavenworth Case (1878) Q) The New York Museum of Natural History is opened. The first directory of telephones in New York is issued.

17) The Metropolitan Elevated Railways: The first of the new roads from the Battery to Central Park and beyond, was opened June 5, 1878, and on the first day 25,000 persons availed themselves of this novel means of travel. Running through some of the side streets on the west side of the city till it reached the broad Sixth avenue, thence to Central Park, five miles from the starting point, it was pushed as rapidly as it could be built to the Harlem river. Very soon afterwards, the same corporation built another road on the east side of the city, also extending from the Battery, till it reached the Bowery, and then through Third avenue to Harlem. And as soon as the immense advantage of these up-in-the-air roads was seen, still other branches shot upward, till now the main thoroughfares are fairly gridironed with these elevated iron roads. It is as if the lower part of the city were the palm of a great hand with gigantic iron fingers stretched out to grasp Westchester county.* (wonders)

1 8 7 9

1 The American Hebrew, Weekly journal, the first number of which was published in New York, Nov. 21, 1879. *EOJK

2) 1879 - The island's first horse racing track opens at Coney Island.

3) The Woolworth five and ten cent stores began in 1879. * (NYS History) Vol: V

4) A fire company in Lynbrook was organized in 1879, the Rescue Hook, Ladder and Bucket Company No. 1.

5) In 1879 a publication called "The Snares of New York, or Tricks and Traps of the Great Metropolis" was issued. *( Fifth).

6) The Calumet, a purely social organization, was established in 1879. Its membership is limited to 500..* (epic)

7) Steele MacKaye, He opened the Madison Square Theatre in 1879, where his most successful melodrama, Hazel Kirke, was presented (1880). He established the first school of acting in New York City, later known as the American Academy of Dramatic Art. * (Bartleby)

8) The NYSE got its first telephone in 1879. * (epic)

9) The year 1879 marked the first use of the name Madison Square Garden. * (epic)

10) In December of 1879 the first brush arc lights were installed in New York on Broadway from 14th to 26th Street.

11) February 12, 1879 - The first artificial ice rink in North America opened at the Garden.

1 8 8 0

1) .The Brush Electric Light Company erects the first electric arc streetlights along Broadway between 14th and 34th streets. The company also operates the first central electric station on West 25th Street. *nyca

2) Capt. William Baldwin, the first member of the Brooklyn Fire Department to be killed in the line of duty. Capt. Baldwin was killed by the falling walls of the Otto Huber Brewery on Jan. 14, 1880. A striking monument stands over the grave where Captain Baldwin was laid to rest in Evergreen Cemetary in Bushwick, Brooklyn.

3) Sarah Bernhardt, the celebrated French actress, made her American debut at Booth's Theater in New York City, 1880. *(afp.com)

4) Crystal Palace exhibition opens in New York City, 14 July.* (tt.net)

5) 1880 Mary Ewing Outerbridge introduces tennis to the United States. After seeing the game played in Bermuda she sets up the first US tennis court on Staten Island.

6) The Society of Old Brooklynites is founded. 1880. * (BTL)

7) July 18, 1880 - First Mass at Guardian Angel church, Brighton Beach.

8) 1880 - The New Iron Pier at Coney Island is built to handle arriving steamships from Manhattan .

9) The Dakota Apartments at 1 West 72nd Street. Architect Henry Janeway Hardenbergh designed this first luxury apartment building in New York. It was begin in 1880. This imposing structure of eight stories reflects the romanticism of the German Renaissance style. * (Museums)

10) Lutherisches Hospital, in Brooklyn at E. New York av. and Powell. was established in 1880. Capacity, 40. Private. * (Polk's)

11) Wayside Home, in Brooklyn at 356 Bridge., was established in 1880. * Polk's)

12) April 29, 1880. Society of Old Brooklynites organized.

13) Academy of Political Science at 475 Riverside Dr. in New York City, was established in 1880.

14) William Russell Grace in 1880 he was elected the first catholic mayor of New York City. * (docb)

15) In 1879 New York's first commercial telephone exchange at 82 Nassau Street was established. * (epic)

16) Bullfights were held in New York City in 1880. * (epic)

17) In 1880 Achille Luigi Carlo LaGuardia brought his bride to New York City, the parents of Fiorello H. LaGuardia. * (epic)

18) Charles Barsotti, Italian-American editor. He came in 1872 to NYC where in 1880 he established the Progresso, the first Italian daily newspaper in the United States.* (c.e.)

19) Lillian Russell, american singer and actress. In the early 1880 she was introduced by Tony Pastor at his casino in NYC and her career as "The American Beauty" was launched. * (c.e.)

20) Catherine Fitzgibbon founded the St. Ann's Maternity Hospital for homeless mothers in 1880. *(docb)

Continue on Page 11:  (1881-1885)                                                                            Return to Table of Contents 1800s

 

 

Home | About This Site | Message Boards | Other Great Links | Contact Us | e-Post Cards

 
 

All Right Reserved

 

Privacy statement | Terms of use