Monthly Archives: June 2010

Exploring An Empty Mansion: Inside Hempstead House

hemp

This is Hempstead House today: In comparison, the below picture was taken in 1940, shortly after Hempstead became a home for refugee children from England, who had been sent to the US because of World World II. The caption reads: “Huntsmen three play safari in the jungle that once composed the formal garden. Pith helmets were produced when children, used ... Read More »

Exploring An Empty Mansion: The Grounds

clock

When you own an enormous castle like the one pictured below, and it’s only used to house your servants and horses… …you’re living in a world few of us can imagine. Castle Gould, based on Kilkenny Castle in Ireland, is located in Sands Point, NY (about 45 minutes from the city), on property once owned by the Gould Family. Howard ... Read More »

Hidden In An Abandoned Orphanage

bird

This is the third-floor hallway of an abandoned orphanage. Opened in 1940 to house English children orphaned because of World War II, it continued operating until the mid-1960′s. Now, bedrooms that once housed dozens of orphans at a time, pictured above and below, are empty and forgotten, and have been for over 40 years. The original green paint is faded ... Read More »

The Forgotten Cemetery at Home Depot

homedepot

The Jericho Turnpike, cutting east-west through Long Island, is pretty much a wasteland of strip malls, corporate office parks, and fast food chains… …and the last place you’d expect to find anything of historical or cultural value is in the parking lot of a Home Depot. I think that’s what makes this place so great. Surrounded on all four sides ... Read More »

Ruins in the Hudson

ruin

Two of my favorite ruins in Manhattan can be found partially submerged in the Hudson River, overshadowed by the nearby West Side Highway and row of ugly, bland Trump apartment high rises. They’re certainly not secrets to anyone who’s ever walked through Riverside Park, but I recently scouted them as backdrops for a film, and was reminded just how great ... Read More »

Scouting The Occult in Brooklyn

skel

On two different movies I’ve scouted for recently, I was asked to find a genuine “occult store.” Of course, by occult, they actually mean cliched movie magic shop ala the curio shop in Gremlins. Sadly, the reality is that such shops SIMPLY DO NOT EXIST. Literally, there is not a single store in New York that bears any resemblance to ... Read More »

A NY Road Sign the DOT Forgot About

nylo

I think this is quite possibly my favorite road sign in New York: You can find this decaying sign on Seagirt Boulevard just before you cross the bridge to Atlantic Beach in south Queens. But the real question is: what the heck does this sign mean? You’re already in the middle of New York when you pass it; that arrow ... Read More »

Forgotten Storefronts in Williamsburg

store

I’m always on the lookout for the remnants of old storefronts. You can pretty much find them in any residential area that has gone through a period of economic decline, and Williamsburg is no exception. One in particular I’ve always wondered about is at the corner of North 5th Street and Berry Street… Now boarded up and most likely part ... Read More »