244 West 65th Street
Black and White NYC Tax Photo of 244 West 65th Street

View of 244 West 65th Street from north east, Courtesy NYC Municipal Archive

244 West 65th Street

by Tom Miller

Louisa Dietz and her husband purchased the two-story frame building at 244 West 65th Street in February 1894.  Included in the $6,000 sale price (about $211,000 in 2024 terms) was a one-story wooden structure in the rear yard.  W. Dietz was in the stable business, so almost assuredly, the main building was a stable.

Because the title to the property was in Louisa’s name, she was listed as the owner of record when the couple hired architect L. A. Goldstone in 1903 to design a replacement stable on the site.  His plans, filed in August, set the construction cost at $7,500—just over a quarter of a million in today’s dollars. 

The substantial two-story brick structure featured a gaping carriage bay on the ground floor.  The four elliptically arched windows on the second floor were connected by a bandcourse executed in bricks laid in a honeycomb pattern. 

1961 Resurfaced Facade

Image source unknown, ca. 1961

Although the stable continued its operation, the post-World War I years saw the automobile overtaking the horse as Manhattan’s preferred means of transportation.  In 1920, a portion of the ground floor of 244 West 65th Street was leased to the Horseshoe Tire Company, Inc.  Nonetheless, as late as 1940, the building continued to balk the inevitable.  Joe Morris ran the business here, his sign over the carriage bay announcing, “Horses to Hire – Stalls to Let.”

In 1949, the ground floor was converted to a small factory space.  But it would not last long.  A significant renovation of the building sometime around 1960 resulted in a bar-restaurant on the ground floor.  The carriage bay was transformed into a large, plate glass window, and sheathing of fake brick was applied to the new façade.  Offices (presumably for the bar) occupied the second floor.

At the time, the massive Lincoln Square Renewal Project had been going on for about five years.  It caught up to 244 West 65th Street and the other buildings on the block in 1972, when they were demolished to become part of the sprawling Amsterdam Houses Annex residential project.   

Tom Miller is a social historian and blogger at daytoninmanhattan.blogspot.com

Let's Keep in Touch!

Let's Keep in Touch!

Want the latest news?
Care to share about something in the neighborhood?
Be the first to hear about upcoming events?

Join the LW! email list!

You're Subscribed!

Share This