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James Baldwin’s home one of four NYC sites up for national landmarking

Gov. Andrew Cuomo nominated 18 sites across New York state for historic designation

Dorrance Brooks Square Historic District
US Department of the Interior/National Parks Service

Four New York City sites are on track to be added to the State and National Registers of Historic Places, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced last week.

Cuomo nominated 18 sites in New York state, which include James Baldwin’s Upper West Side residence; Harlem’s Dorrance Brooks Square Historic District; Sunset Park’s Fourth Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church; and Harlem’s 32nd Precinct Station House complex.

“These historic locations highlight so much of what it is exceptional and exciting about New York’s history and honor the legacy of some of the state’s most distinguished leaders,” Gov. Cuomo said in a statement. “By placing these landmarks on the State and National Registers of Historic Places, we are helping to ensure these places and their caretakers have the funding needed to preserve, improve and promote the best of the Empire State.”

Below, find more details on the nominated New York City sites:

  • James Baldwin’s residence, located at 137 West 71st Street, was nominated because of its significance having served as the home of prominent black author and civil rights activist from 1965 to 1987. “Baldwin transformed and continues to transform discussions about race and sexuality in America and abroad,” reads a statement from Cuomo’s office.
  • Harlem’s Dorrance Brooks Square Historic District, located at Edgecombe Avenue West between 136th and 140th Streets, is being considered because of its association to the Harlem Renaissance, between the late 1910s to early 1930s and its “richly detailed rowhouse architecture.”
  • The 32nd Precinct Station House complex, located at 1850-1854 Amsterdam Avenue and also known as the 40th and 30th Precincts, is a French Second Empire house built between 1871 and 1872, and according to the Cuomo’s office, “reflects the increasing investment that the city made in erecting handsome, well-planned and well-equipped police stations.”
  • Sunset Park’s Fourth Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church, located at 4616 Fourth Avenue and built between 1893 and 1894, is a “significant example” of an Akron Plan Combination Church, designed by George W. Kramer.

There are more than 120,000 historic New York state sites listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Both State and National Registers can assist owners in revitalizing and preserving their buildings or properties.