Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation
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Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation
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Aug 2, 2021

In This Issue

Mapping Women's History in Greenwich Village, the East Village, and NoHo


March is Women’s History Month, and GVSHP is marking it with our expanded Civil Rights and Social Justice Map -- now with even more women’s history.  The map includes sites connected to seminal feminists including Margaret Sanger, Louisa May Alcott, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Emma Goldman, as well as more recent trailblazers such as Bella Abzug, Hettie Jones, and Lorraine Hansberry.  The newly expanded map now includes sites connected to Helen Keller (who wrote for The Masses, located at 91 Greenwich Avenue and was a featured speaker at the Heterodoxy Club at 137 MacDougal Street), Sojourner Truth (AME Zion Church) and Clara Lemlich, who lead transformative strikes for female garment workers resulting in historic labor reforms and the establishment of Women’s History Month.

The Village, East Village, and NoHo are rich with history connected to the struggle for women’s equality, as well as women who simply made a difference.  Find out more about Mine Okubo, who exposed the cruelty and hardships resulting from the forced internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II;  Edie Windsor, whose legal battles helped lead to the Supreme Court’s ruling recognizing gay marriage; Dorothy Day, who founded the Catholic Worker’s Movement; and Emma Lazarus, whose poem The New Colossus appears on the Statue of Liberty and embodies America’s welcoming of immigrants; among many others.

GVSHP’s Civil Rights and Social Justice Map documents sites of importance to various civil rights and social justice movements found in our neighborhoods, including those working towards equality for African-Americans, the LGBT community, women, immigrants, and Latino Americans – explore them all here

Goodnight Moon House, 121 Charles Street, Celebrates 50 Years in Greenwich Village

121 Charles Street, sometimes also known as "Cobble Court," "The Goodnight Moon House," and "The Margaret Wise Brown House."

Fifty years ago this week, a two-hundred-year-old farmhouse was saved from demolition by being moved from Yorkville to a permanent home at 121 Charles Street (at Greenwich Street).  Just over two years later, the home was included in the Greenwich Village Historic District, and it has remained on this spot ever since, charming and amazing countless passersby and neighbors.

The story of how this came to be is as incredible as the house itself, in which Margaret Wise Brown once lived and wrote “Goodnight Moon” and “Mister Dog” (in which the house is featured prominently).  Through painstaking research and first-person interviews, GVSHP has documented the history of this house and how a loving couple saved it from the wrecking ball in 1967 to become a beloved part of the West Village.

Documenting this history and the building’s significance is more than an academic exercise.  In 2014 the house was put up for sale, with a realtor advertising it as a “potential development site” which could be viewed as a “blank canvas.” Because the house is located within the Greenwich Village Historic District, any changes to the house would have to go through a public hearing process and require the approval of the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC).  But given some of the recent highly questionable decisions by the LPC, we take nothing for granted, and have been working diligently to ensure that the house’s history and significance, as well as its importance to this community, are well-known and well-documented.

Read GVSHP’s history of the house here.  Explore our oral history with Ingrid Bernhard, who along with her husband Sven bought and moved the house to the Village fifty years ago here.  Find out more here.

Annual House Tour Benefit Tour Sponsorship and Tickets Available


Tickets as well as sponsorships are now available for GVSHP’s 19th Annual Spring Benefit House Tour, which will take place on Sunday, May 7th.  The tour is an unparalleled opportunity to see some of the most stunning and amazing homes in Greenwich Village, showcasing hidden gardens, unrivalled art collections, and incredible charm and ingenuity.  The tour is GVSHP’s main annual fundraiser, and all proceeds support GVSHP’s education and preservation efforts.

If you are interested in becoming a corporate sponsor for the event, click here; sponsorship includes listing in the tour program, on our website, and in e-communications.  The deadline is March 31 for all artwork to appear in the tour program.

If you are interested in purchasing tickets or personally sponsoring the tour, click here.  Tickets are limited, so you may purchase them today while they are still available.

Comedy Night Benefit, April 25th

Join GVSHP on our 3rd Annual Comedy Night to raise funds for the Society and the Rebecca Ritter Daniels Scholarship for our Continuing Education program.  Enjoy some of the funniest voices in comedy at the Village Underground, one of the Village’s oldest, independently-owned comedy clubs.  Performers hail from Comedy Central, FX, Louie, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, and beyond.

To find out more, click here. To purchase tickets here.

GVSHP’s Comedy Night Fundraiser is presented by the GVSHP Brokers Partnership, comprised of downtown residential real estate brokers and professionals in the field of real estate.  The Partnership was founded in 2006 to help promote understanding about historic preservation, raise awareness of GVSHP's contribution to the Village, and develop membership of the GVSHP. The Brokers Partnership informs the NYC broker community about the Greenwich Village Society’s preservation work by hosting events and offering a popular continuing education program.

Thank you to Village Underground for hosting this event and to the comedians for generously donating their time and talent.


The GVSHP Blog

Check out the latest posts from Off the Grid, featuring news, research, milestones, opinions and historic information about Greenwich Village, the East Village, and NoHo.

Take Action Today!

We need your help to take action in our communities! Preservation leadership is GVSHP's most important function. Visit our Advocacy page to see the full list of actions you can take today.




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