2726 Broadway

View of 2726 Broadway from south west; Courtesy NYC Municipal Archive

2726 Broadway

by Tom Miller

Until 1924, a single-story restaurant stood at 2726 Broadway, midblock between 104th and 105th Streets.  That year John McCormick hired architect J. Charles Hankinson to design a replacement building.  His plans, filed in March, called for a “three story brick store and office building” that would cost $30,000 to construct (about $475,000 in 2023).

Completed the following year, Hankinson’s design drew on the waning Arts and Crafts style.  At the second and third floors, vast show windows that rotated on centered pins flooded the interiors with natural light.  A long panel within a brick parapet crowned the structure and reflected the geometric motifs of the Arts and Crafts style.

A restaurant occupied the ground floor; an office and showroom on occupied the second, and the third floor housed the C & D Studios, Inc.  An advertisement for the latter touted, “A family School of Dignity and Distinction.  Technical and Social Dancing Courses for Children and Adults.”

 The club space was leased to the Friendly Sons of Brian Boru in the fall of 1937.

The building was renovated in 1933, resulting in a restaurant and club on the first and second floor, and a golf school on the third.  The club space was leased to the Friendly Sons of Brian Boru in the fall of 1937.  At the time, the Irish social club was planning its “first grand annual ball” to be held in the Hotel Martinique that December.  In reporting on the preparations, The Advocate noted, “The meeting will take place at the new headquarters, 2726 Broadway.”

Another men’s social club, the oddly-named Kilder’s Business Center, shared the space.  On the night of December 5, 1938, patrolmen Walter Walsh and Vincent Ryan raided the club after neighbors complained of noise.  Not surprisingly, the group inside was either playing cards or watching the games.  They were all arrested and jailed overnight on disorderly conduct charges.

Jack & Co. Advertisement

Image courtesy The Advocate, ca. 25 June, 1949.

When the group appeared in court the following day, Magistrate Bernard Mogilesky was enraged, telling the officers that they had subjected the men to an indignity.  The New York Sun reported, “He rebuked the police for the raid and said it would not be a bad idea if the defendants wrote a letter of complaint to Police Commissioner Valentine.”  As he dismissed 39 of the 41 members, he told Walsh and Ryan, “if you’re looking for gamblers go out and arrest gamblers.”  Two men, however, did not get off so easily.  Herman Mandell and Ludwig Hirlickek were held awaiting a hearing “on charges of maintaining a place for gambling.”

By 1941 the restaurant had expanded into the second floor.  It survived until around 1949, when Jack & Co. opened a men’s formal wear store in the space.  “Mr. Jack,” as the proprietor was known, had entered business around 1925 and operated a second store at 171 East 86th Street.  The Irish-American newspaper The Advocate noted on October 6, 1956, “he has supplied formal wear for the Irish functions.”

Magistrate Bernard Mogilesky was enraged, telling the officers that they had subjected the men to an indignity.

Jack & Co. was still at street level when the St. Nicolas Council of the Knights of Columbus moved into an upper floor (presumably the third) around 1959.  The annual party of the Bishop Ford Mission Guild was held here the following December.  The Advocate promised, “To start the evening, a Maryknoll Father will show two interesting mission movies.”  The entertainment included Bill O’Doud’s Barbershop Quartet, the Mayfair Dance Group, and the Highbridge Trio, “an Irish dance team.”

The building was renovated again in 2007.  The performance space Bridge for Dance had been on the third floor since 2000 and would remain at least through 2011.  Today a McDonald’s restaurant occupies the ground floor, a fitness club is on the second, and offices occupy the third.

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


Keep Exploring

Be a part of history!

Think Local First to support the businesses currently at 2726 Broadway:

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