Vaudeville is a theatrical genre of variety entertainment born in France at the end of the 18th century. A vaudeville was a comedy without psychological or moral intentions, based on a comical situation: a kind of dramatic composition or light poetry, interspersed with songs or ballets, it became popular in the United States and Canada from the early 1880s until the early 1930s, but the idea of vaudeville's theatre changed radically from its French antecedent. In some ways analogous to music hall from Victorian Britain, a typical American vaudeville performance was made up of a series of separate, unrelated acts grouped together on a common bill. Types of acts have included popular and classical musicians, dancers, trained animals, ventriloquists, strongmen and male impersonators, illustrated songs, one-act plays or scenes from plays, lecturing celebrities and movies. A vaudeville performer is referred to as a "vaudevillian". Vaudeville developed from many sources including the concert saloon, freak shows, dime museums, literary American burlesque.
Called "the heart of American show business", vaudeville was one of the most popular types of entertainment in North America for several decades. The origin of the term is obscure, but is explained as being derived from the French expression voix de ville. A second speculation is that it comes from the 15th-century songs on satire by poet Olivier Basselin, "Vaux de Vire". In his Connections television series, science historian James Burke argues that the term is a corruption of the French "Vau de Vire", an area known for its bawdy drinking songs and where Basselin lived. Some, preferred the earlier term "variety" to what manager Tony Pastor called its "sissy and Frenchified" successor. Thus, vaudeville was marketed as "variety" well into the 20th century. With its first subtle appearances within the early 1860s, vaudeville was not a common form of entertainment; the form evolved from the concert saloon and variety hall into its mature form throughout the 1870s and 1880s. This more gentle form was known as "Polite Vaudeville".
In the years before the American Civil War, entertainment existed on a different scale. Variety theatre existed before 1860 in Europe and elsewhere. In the US, as early as the first decades of the 19th century, theatregoers could enjoy a performance consisting of Shakespeare plays, singing and comedy; as the years progressed, people seeking diversified amusement found an increasing number of ways to be entertained. Vaudeville was characterized by traveling companies touring through towns. A handful of circuses toured the country. In the 1840s, the minstrel show, another type of variety performance, "the first emanation of a pervasive and purely American mass culture", grew to enormous popularity and formed what Nick Tosches called "the heart of 19th-century show business". A significant influence came from Dutch minstrels and comedians. Medicine shows traveled the countryside offering programs of comedy, music and other novelties along with displays of tonics and miracle elixirs, while "Wild West" shows provided romantic vistas of the disappearing frontier, complete with trick riding and drama.
Vaudeville incorporated these various itinerant amusements into a stable, institutionalized form centered in America's growing urban hubs. In the early 1880s, impresario Tony Pastor, a circus ringmaster turned theatre manager, capitalized on middle class sensibilities and spending power when he began to feature "polite" variety programs in several of his New York City theatres; the usual date given for the "birth" of vaudeville is October 24, 1881 at New York's Fourteenth Street Theatre, when Pastor famously staged the first bill of self-proclaimed "clean" vaudeville in New York City. Hoping to draw a potential audience from female and family-based shopping traffic uptown, Pastor barred the sale of liquor in his theatres, eliminated bawdy material from his shows, offered gifts of coal and hams to attendees. Pastor's experiment proved successful, other managers soon followed suit. B. F. Keith took the next step, starting in Boston, where he built an empire of theatres and brought vaudeville to the US and Canada.
E. F. Albee, adoptive grandfather of the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Edward Albee, managed the chain to its greatest success. Circuits such as those managed by Keith-Albee provided vaudeville's greatest economic innovation and the principal source of its industrial strength, they enabled a chain of allied vaudeville houses that remedied the chaos of the single-theatre booking system by contracting acts for regional and national tours. These could be lengthened from a few weeks to two years. Albee gave national prominence to vaudeville's trumpeting "polite" entertainment, a commitment to entertainment inoffensive to men and children. Acts that violated this ethos were admonished and threatened with expulsion from the week's remaining performances or were canceled altogether. In spite of such threats, performers flouted this censorship to the delight of the audience members whose sensibilities were supposedly
Thomas W. Lamb
Thomas White Lamb was an American architect, born in Scotland. He is noted as one of the foremost designers of cinemas in the 20th century. Born in Dundee, United Kingdom, Thomas W. Lamb came to the United States at the age of 12, he studied architecture at Cooper Union in New York and worked for the City of New York as an inspector. His architecture firm, Thomas W. Lamb, Inc. was located at 36 West 40th Street in Manhattan, New York. Lamb achieved recognition as one of the leading architects of the boom in movie theater construction of the 1910s and 1920s. Associated with the Fox Theatres, Loew's Theatres and Keith-Albee chains of vaudeville and film theaters, Lamb was instrumental in establishing and developing the design and construction of the large, lavishly decorated theaters, known as "movie palaces", as showcases for the films of the emerging Hollywood studios, his first theater design was the City Theatre, built in New York in 1909 for film mogul William Fox. His designs for the 1914 Mark Strand Theatre, the 1916 Rialto Theatre and the 1917 Rivoli Theatre, all in New York's Times Square, set the template for what would become the American movie palace.
Among his most notable theaters are the 1929 Fox Theatre in San Francisco and the 1919 Capitol Theatre in New York, both now demolished. Among his most noted designs that have been preserved and restored are the B. F. Keith Memorial Theatre in Boston, Warner's Hollywood Theatre in New York, the Hippodrome Theatre in Baltimore, the Loew's Ohio Theatre in Columbus, Ohio. Among Lamb's Canadian theaters that have been preserved are the Pantages Theatre in Toronto, and Elgin and Winter Garden Theatres. The Cinema Treasures website, which documents the history of film theaters, lists 174 theaters designed by Lamb's company. Aside from movie theaters, Lamb is noted for designing New York's Ziegfeld Theatre, a legitimate theater, as well as the third Madison Square Garden and the Paramount Hotel in midtown Manhattan. Lamb died in 1942 in New York City at the age of 71, his architectural archive is held by the Drawings and Archives Department of Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library at Columbia University.
During the last ten years of his practice, Lamb's associate was the architect John J. McNamara. After Lamb's death, McNamara continued as an architect of theaters under his own name. McNamara was responsible for renovating some of Lamb's older New York theaters, among his original designs was one for the 1969 Ziegfeld Theatre in Manhattan, which replaced Lamb's original building. Academy of Music, New York City, 1927 B. F. Keith Memorial Theatre, Massachusetts, 1928 Capitol Theatre, New York City, 1919 Capitol Theatre, Port Chester, New York, 1926 Cort Theatre, New York City, 1912 Eltinge 42nd Street Theatre, New York City, 1912 Fenway Theatre, Boston, 1915 Fox Theatre, San Francisco, California, 1929 Franklin Square Theatre, Massachusetts, 1927 Hippodrome Theatre, Maryland, 1914 Hippodrome, New York City, 1923 redesign Keith-Albee Theatre, Queens, New York, 1928 Keith-Albee Theatre, West Virginia, 1928 Keith-Albee Palace Theatre, Ohio, 1926 Keith-Albee Palace Theatre, Connecticut, 1927 Lincoln Theatre, Miami Beach, Florida, 1936 Loew's 72nd Street Theatre, New York City, 1930 Loew's 175th Street Theater, New York City, 1930 Loew's and United Artists' Ohio Theatre, Ohio, 1928 Loew's Grand Theatre, Georgia, 1932 redesign Loew's Midland Theatre, Kansas City, Missouri, 1927 Loew's Pitkin Theatre, New York, 1928 Loew's State Theatre, Playhouse Square, Ohio, 1920 Loew's State Theatre, Virginia, 1926 Loew's State Theatre, Times Square, New York City, 1924 Loew's State Theatre, New Orleans, Louisiana, 1926 Loew's Theatre, New Rochelle, New York,1925 Loew's State Theatre, New York, 1928 Madison Square Garden, New York City, 1925 Madison Theater, New York, 1929 Mark Strand Theater, New York City, 1914 Maryland Theatre, Maryland, 1915 Municipal Auditorium, Alabama, 1924 Ohio Theatre, Playhouse Square, Ohio, 1921 Orpheum Theatre, Massachusetts, 1915 redesign Palace Theater, Connecticut, 1922 Poli's Majestic Theatre, Connecticut, 1922 Poli's Palace Theatre, Connecticut, 1922 Pythian Temple, Manhattan, 1927, the spacious theater the building once housed is gone.
Proctor's 58th Street Theatre, New York City, 1928 Proctor's 86th Street Theatre, New York City, 1927 Proctor's Theatre, New York, 1926 Reade’s State Theatre, New Brunswick, New Jersey, 1921 Regent Theatre, New York City, 1913 Ridgewood Theatre, New York, 1916 Rivoli Theatre, New York City, 1917 Stanley Theatre, New York, 1928 State Theatre, Pennsylvania, 1922 Strand Theatre, New Jersey, 1922 Tivoli Theatre, Washington, DC, 1924 Victoria Theater, New York City, 1917 Warner Theatre, Connecticut, 1931 Warner's Hollywood Theatre, New York City, 1930 Ziegfeld Theatre, New York City, 1927 Elgin and Winter Garden Theatres, Toronto, 1913 The Sanderson Centre, Ontario, 1919. Pantages Theatre, Ontario, 1920 Uptown Theatre, Ontario, 1920.
A theater, theatre or playhouse, is a structure where theatrical works or plays are performed, or other performances such as musical concerts may be produced. While a theater is not required for performance, a theater serves to define the performance and audience spaces; the facility is traditionally organized to provide support areas for performers, the technical crew and the audience members. There are as many types of theaters. Theaters may be built for a certain types of productions, they may serve for more general performance needs or they may be adapted or converted for use as a theater, they may range from open-air amphitheaters to ornate, cathedral-like structures to simple, undecorated rooms or black box theaters. Some theaters may have a fixed acting area, while some theaters, such as black box theaters, may not, allowing the director and designers to construct an acting area suitable for the production; the most important of these areas is the acting space known as the stage. In some theaters proscenium theaters, arena theaters and amphitheaters, this area is permanent part of the structure.
In a blackbox theater the acting area is undefined so that each theater may adapt to a production. In addition to these acting spaces, there may be offstage spaces as well; these include wings on either side of a proscenium stage where props and scenery may be stored as well as a place for actors awaiting an entrance. A Prompter's box may be found backstage. In an amphitheater, an area behind the stage may be designated for such uses while a blackbox theater may have spaces outside of the actual theater designated for such uses. A theater will incorporate other spaces intended for the performers and other personnel. A booth facing the stage may be incorporated into the house where lighting and sound personnel may view the show and run their respective instruments. Other rooms in the building may be used for dressing rooms, rehearsal rooms, spaces for constructing sets and costumes, as well as storage. There are two main entrances: one at the front, used by the audience, that leads into the back of the audience, sometimes first going through a ticket booth.
The second is called the stage door, it is accessible from backstage. This is the means by which the cast and crew enter and exit the theater, fans wait outside it after the show in order to get autographs, called "stage dooring"; this term can be used to refer to going to a lot of shows or living in a big theater city, such as New York or Chicago. All theaters provide a space for an audience; the audience is separated from the performers by the proscenium arch. In proscenium theaters and amphitheaters, the proscenium arch, like the stage, is a permanent feature of the structure; this area is known as the house. Like the stage in a blackbox theater, this area is defined by the production The seating areas can include some or all of the following: Stalls or arena: the lower flat area below or at the same level as the stage; the word parterre is sometimes used to refer to a particular subset of this area. In North American usage this is the rear seating block beneath the gallery whereas in Britain it can mean either the area in front near the orchestra pit, or the whole of the stalls.
The term can refer to the side stalls in some usages. Derived from the gardening term parterre, the usage refers to the sectioned pattern of both the seats of an auditorium and of the planted beds seen in garden construction. Throughout the 18th century the term was used to refer to the theater audience who occupied the parterre. Balconies or galleries: one or more raised seating platforms towards the rear of the auditorium. In larger theaters, multiple levels are stacked vertically behind the stalls; the first level is called the dress circle or grand circle. The next level may be the loge, from the French version of loggia. A second tier inserted beneath the main balcony may be the mezzanine; the highest platform, or upper circle, is sometimes known as the gods in large opera houses, where the seats can be high and a long distance from the stage. Boxes: placed to the front and above the level of the stage, they are separate rooms with an open viewing area which seat up to five people. These seats are considered the most prestigious of the house.
A "state box" or "royal box" is sometimes provided for dignitaries. House seats: these are "the best seats in the house", giving the best view of the stage. Though each theater's layout is different, these are in the center of the stalls; these seats are traditionally reserved for the cast and crew to invite family members and others. If they are not used, they go on sale on the day of the performance. Greek theater buildings were called a theatron; the theaters were open-air structures constructed on the slopes of hills. They consisted of three principal elements: the orchestra, the skene, the audience; the centerpiece of the theater was the orchestra, or "dancing place", a large circular or rectangular area. The orchestra was the site of the choral performances, the religious rites, the acting. An altar was located in the middle of the orchestra. Behind the orchestra was a large rectangular building called the skene, it was used as a "backstage" area where actors could change their costumes and masks, but also
The Apollo Theater is a music hall located at 253 West 125th Street between Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard and Frederick Douglass Boulevard in the Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City, it is a noted venue for African-American performers, is the home of Showtime at the Apollo, a nationally syndicated television variety show which showcased new talent, from 1987 to 2008, encompassing 1,093 episodes. The theater, which has a capacity of 1,506, opened in 1914 as Hurtig & Seamon's New Burlesque Theater, was designed by George Keister in the neo-Classical style, it became the Apollo in 1934, when it was opened to black patrons – it had been a whites-only venue. In 1983, both the interior and exterior of the building were designated as New York City Landmarks, the building was added to the National Register of Historic Places, it is estimated. The building which became the Apollo Theater was built in 1913-14 and was designed by architect George Keister, who designed the First Baptist Church in the City of New York.
It was Hurtig and Seamon's New Theater, which enforced a strict "Whites Only" policy. The theatre was operated by noted burlesque producers Jules Hurtig and Harry Seamon, who obtained a 30-year lease, it remained in operation until 1928. The song "I May Be Wrong" by Harry Sullivan and Harry Ruskin, written in 1929, became the theme song of the theater.. During the early 1930s, the theatre closed once more. In 1933, it was purchased by Sidney Cohen, who owned other theaters in the area, after lavish renovations it re-opened as the "Apollo Theater" on January 16, 1934, catering to the black community of Harlem. On February 14, 1934, the first major star to appear at the Apollo was jazz singer and Broadway star Adelaide Hall in Clarence Robinson's production Chocolate Soldiers, which featured Sam Wooding's Orchestra; the show ran for a limited engagement and was praised by the press, which helped establish the Apollo's reputation. Managed by Morris Sussman, Cohen's Apollo Theatre had vigorous competition from other venues, such as the Lafayette, managed by Frank Schiffman, which presented acts such as Louis Armstrong, Bill "Bojangles" Robinson and Bessie Smith and Eddie Green.
Leo Brecher's Harlem Opera House was another competing venue. To improve the shows at the Apollo, Cohen hired noted talent scout John Hammond to book his shows. However, the deal fell through when Cohen died, the end result was the merger of the Apollo with the Harlem Opera House; the Opera House became a movie theater, but the Apollo, under the ownership of Brecher and Schiffman, continued to present stage shows. Schiffman hired Clarence Robinson as in-house producer, Originally, a typical show presented at the Apollo was akin to a vaudeville show, including a chorus line of beautiful girls; as the years progressed, such variety shows were presented less often. During the swing era, along with bands such as Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, Chick Webb, Count Basie, Andy Kirk, the Apollo presented dance acts such as Bill Robinson, the Nicholas Brothers, Carmen De Lavallade and Geoffrey Holder, the Berry Brothers, Buck and Bubbles. Comic acts appeared on the Apollo stage, such as Butterbeans and Susie, including some who performed in blackface, much to the horror of the NAACP and the elite of Harlem.
The Apollo featured the performances of old-time vaudeville favorites like Tim Moore, Stepin Fetchit, Moms Mabley, Dewey "Pigmeat" Markham, Clinton "Dusty" Fletcher, John "Spider Bruce" Mason, Johnny Lee, as well as younger comics like Bill Cosby, Godfrey Cambridge, LaWanda Page, Richard Pryor, Rudy Ray Moore, Redd Foxx. Gospel acts which played the Apollo include the Staple Singers, Mahalia Jackson, The Clark Sisters, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Clara Ward and Sam Cooke with the Soul Stirrers. Performers of soul music on the Apollo stage included Ray Charles, Otis Redding and Aretha Franklin, jazz was represented as well, by acts such as Art Blakey and Horace Silver. Although the theatre concentrated on showcasing African American acts, it presented white acts such as swing bandleaders Harry James, Woody Herman and Charlie Barnet during the swing era, jazz greats Dave Brubeck, Stan Getz and Buddy Rich, a particular favorite of the Apollo crowd. During the 1950s, several white rock and roll performers whose musical backgrounds were more country music oriented, such as Buddy Holly and Duane Eddy played the Apollo but scored with their audiences by playing blues-styled material.
The theater's audience was mixed: in the 1940s it was estimated that during the week about 40% of the audience was white, which would go up to 75% for weekend shows. Jazz singer Anita O'Day headlined for the week of September 21, 1950, billed as "the Jezebel of Jazz". Schiffman had first introduced an amateur night at the Lafayette Theater, where it was known as "Harlem Amateur Hour", was hosted by Ralph Cooper. At the Apollo, it was called "Audition Night", but became "Amateur Night in Harlem", held every Monday evening and broadcast on the radio over WMCA and eleven affiliate stations. One unique feature of the Apollo during Amateur Nights was "the executioner", a man with a broom who would sweep performers off the stage if the vocal and opinionated audiences began to call for their removal. Vaudeville tap dancer "Sandman" Sims played the role from the 1950s to 2000; the Apol
Loews Cineplex Entertainment
Loews Theatres known as Loews Incorporated, founded on June 23, 1904 by Marcus Loew, was the oldest theater chain operating in North America until it merged with AMC Theatres on January 26, 2006. From 1924 until 1959, it was the parent company of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios; the Loews name was used until 2017, when AMC simplified their branding to focus on three main lines: AMC, AMC Classic and AMC Dine-In after their purchase of Carmike Cinemas. The company was called "Loew's", after the founder, Marcus Loew. In 1969, when the Tisch brothers acquired the company, it became known as "Loews". Loew's Theatres Incorporated was founded in 1904 in Ohio, by entrepreneur Marcus Loew. Loew founded a chain of nickelodeon theaters which showed short silent films in storefront locations. Soon the successful enterprise grew to include deluxe vaudeville houses and lavish movie palaces. Loew's theaters were found in cities from coast-to-coast, but in East Coast and Midwest states. To provide quality films for his theaters, Loew founded Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures in 1924, by merging the earlier firms Metro Pictures, Goldwyn Pictures, Louis B. Mayer Productions.
Loew's Incorporated served as distribution arm and parent company for the studio until the two were forced to separate by the 1948 U. S. Supreme Court ruling United States v. Paramount Pictures, Inc; the two companies split in 1959. In 1985, when federal regulations had been relaxed, Tri-Star Pictures a joint venture co-owned by The Coca-Cola Company CBS, Time Inc.'s HBO, acquired the Loews theater chain from Loews Corporation, the successor company to the original firm founded by Marcus Loew. Loews Corporation by this time was a holding company owned by brothers Robert and Laurence Tisch diversified in non-entertainment business interests ranging from hotels to insurance. CBS left Tri-Star in 1985, HBO left the venture and Tri-Star merged with Columbia Pictures in 1987, resulting in the formation of Columbia Pictures Entertainment. Upon the full acquisition of Tri-Star by Columbia Pictures, when Columbia was bought from Coca-Cola by Sony in 1989, Sony inherited the theaters as well. For a while, Loews operated under the Sony Theaters banner.
In 1994, Sony partnered with Magic Johnson to form Magic Johnson Theaters, a mini-chain of theaters geared toward the inner cities in Los Angeles. A year before, Sony Dynamic Digital Sound was installed in several theaters since the parent company used it to promote Sony's cinema sound division, which shut down in 2002. In 1998, Cineplex Odeon Corporation merged with Loews Theaters to form Loews Cineplex Entertainment; the combined company was one of the largest movie exhibitors in the world, with theaters in the United States, Mexico, South Korea, Spain. In 2001, the company declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy. In 2002, Onex Corporation and Oaktree Capital Management acquired Loews Cineplex. In 2004, they sold Loews to a private group of investors. Onex retained the Canadian Loews Cineplex to form Cineplex Galaxy LP. In 2005, AMC Theatres announced that it would merge with Loews Cineplex Entertainment and that the merged company would adopt the AMC name. At the time of the merger, Loews operated 198 theaters with 2,235 screens.
Many theaters were rebranded as AMC Loews until the Loews name was phased out in 2017. Loew's Wonder Theaters United States v. Loew's Inc. a 1962 Supreme Court decision on block booking Cineplex Entertainment Robert Sobel, The Entrepreneurs: Explorations Within the American Business Tradition, luca 7, Marcus Loew: An Artist in Spite of Himself ISBN 0-679-40064-8. Official website
Manhattan referred to locally as the City, is the most densely populated of the five boroughs of New York City and its economic and administrative center, cultural identifier, historical birthplace. The borough is coextensive with New York County, one of the original counties of the U. S. state of New York. The borough consists of Manhattan Island, bounded by the Hudson and Harlem rivers. S. mainland, physically connected to the Bronx and separated from the rest of Manhattan by the Harlem River. Manhattan Island is divided into three informally bounded components, each aligned with the borough's long axis: Lower and Upper Manhattan. Manhattan has been described as the cultural, financial and entertainment capital of the world, the borough hosts the United Nations Headquarters. Anchored by Wall Street in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan, New York City has been called both the most economically powerful city and the leading financial center of the world, Manhattan is home to the world's two largest stock exchanges by total market capitalization: the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ.
Many multinational media conglomerates are based in Manhattan, the borough has been the setting for numerous books and television shows. Manhattan real estate has since become among the most expensive in the world, with the value of Manhattan Island, including real estate, estimated to exceed US$3 trillion in 2013. Manhattan traces its origins to a trading post founded by colonists from the Dutch Republic in 1624 on Lower Manhattan. Manhattan is documented to have been purchased by Dutch colonists from Native Americans in 1626 for 60 guilders, which equals $1038 in current terms; the territory and its surroundings came under English control in 1664 and were renamed New York after King Charles II of England granted the lands to his brother, the Duke of York. New York, based in present-day Manhattan, served as the capital of the United States from 1785 until 1790; the Statue of Liberty greeted millions of immigrants as they came to the Americas by ship in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and is a world symbol of the United States and its ideals of liberty and peace.
Manhattan became a borough during the consolidation of New York City in 1898. New York County is the United States' second-smallest county by land area, is the most densely populated U. S. county. It is one of the most densely populated areas in the world, with a census-estimated 2017 population of 1,664,727 living in a land area of 22.83 square miles, or 72,918 residents per square mile, higher than the density of any individual U. S. city. On business days, the influx of commuters increases this number to over 3.9 million, or more than 170,000 people per square mile. Manhattan has the third-largest population of New York City's five boroughs, after Brooklyn and Queens, is the smallest borough in terms of land area. Manhattan Island is informally divided into three areas, each aligned with its long axis: Lower and Upper Manhattan. Many districts and landmarks in Manhattan are well known, as New York City received a record 62.8 million tourists in 2017, Manhattan hosts three of the world's 10 most-visited tourist attractions in 2013: Times Square, Central Park, Grand Central Terminal.
The borough hosts many prominent bridges, such as the Brooklyn Bridge. Chinatown incorporates the highest concentration of Chinese people in the Western Hemisphere, the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village, part of the Stonewall National Monument, is considered the birthplace of the modern gay rights movement; the City of New York was founded at the southern tip of Manhattan, the borough houses New York City Hall, the seat of the city's government. Numerous colleges and universities are located in Manhattan, including Columbia University, New York University, Cornell Tech, Weill Cornell Medical College, Rockefeller University, which have been ranked among the top 40 in the world; the name Manhattan derives from the Munsee dialect of the Lenape language'manaháhtaan'. The Lenape word has been translated as "the place where we get bows" or "place for gathering the bows". According to a Munsee tradition recorded in the 19th century, the island was named so for a grove of hickory trees at the lower end, considered ideal for the making of bows.
It was first recorded in writing as Manna-hata, in the 1609 logbook of Robert Juet, an officer on Henry Hudson's yacht Halve Maen. A 1610 map depicts the name as Manna-hata, twice, on both the west and east sides of the Mauritius River. Alternative folk etymologies include "island of many hills", "the island where we all became intoxicated" and "island", as well as a phrase descriptive of the whirlpool at Hell Gate; the area, now Manhattan was long inhabited by the Lenape Native Americans. In 1524, Florentine explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano – sailing in service of King Francis I of France – became the first documented European to visit the area that would become New York City, he entered the tidal strait now known as The Narrows and named the land around Upper New York
125th Street (Manhattan)
125th Street is a two-way street that runs east–west in the New York City borough of Manhattan, from First Avenue on the east to Marginal Street, a service road for the Henry Hudson Parkway along the Hudson River in the west. It is considered to be the "Main Street" of Harlem, is co-named Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. Notable buildings along 125th Street include the Adam Clayton Powell Jr.. State Office Building, the Hotel Theresa, the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Mount Morris Bank Building, the Harlem Children's Zone, the Church of St. Joseph of the Holy Family, the former West End Theatre, now home to the La Gree Baptist Church; the street was designated by the Commissioners' Plan of 1811 that established the Manhattan street grid as one of 15 east–west streets that would be 100 feet in width. The western part of the street runs diagonally between the neighborhoods of Manhattanville and Morningside Heights from the northwest from an interchange with the Henry Hudson Parkway at 130th Street.
East of Morningside Avenue it runs east–west through central Harlem to Second Avenue, where a ramp connects it to the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge. However, 125th Street continues to First Avenue, where it connects to the southbound FDR Drive and the Willis Avenue Bridge. West of Convent Avenue, 125th Street was rerouted onto what was, prior to 1920, called Manhattan Street. What remains of the original alignment of 125th Street was renamed La Salle Street at that time; the remaining blocks run between Claremont Avenue. The New York Times lamented the name changes, noting that the new names had "somewhat doubtful nomenclature," and that the City's "Aldermen like French names" but gave no rationale for the moves otherwise. A block of the original 125th Street in this area was de-mapped to make the super-blocks where the Grant Houses projects now exist. A proposal to convert the street into a Trans-Harlem Expressway died when funds were diverted from the proposed 125th Street Hudson River bridge at the street's western end.
Beginning in the late 1990s, many sections of 125th Street have been gentrified and developed with such stores as MAC Cosmetics, Old Navy, H&M, CVS/pharmacy, Magic Johnson Theaters. In collaboration with the community, the city has developed a plan for the 125th Street corridor focusing on reinforcing and building upon its strengths as an arts and cultural corridor. A rift in the crust runs along underneath this street from the East River to New Jersey and is known as the 125th Street Fault or the Manhattanville Fault, it is suspected to have caused a magnitude-5.2 earthquake in 1737, two smaller ones in 1981, a 2.4 magnitude quake in 2001. The fault line runs to Roosevelt Island to the southeast, it creates a fault valley deep enough to require the IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line to use a trestle between 122nd and 135th Streets though the line goes underground at either end and remains at the same elevation above sea level throughout. Riverside Drive crosses over the fault valley on a high viaduct.
The following New York City Subway stations are located at 125th Street: 125th Street at Broadway serving the 1 train 125th Street at St. Nicholas Avenue serving the A, B, C, D trains 125th Street at Lenox Avenue serving the 2 and 3 trains 125th Street at Lexington Avenue serving the 4, 5, 6, <6> trainsThe following NYC Bus lines serve 125th Street: Bx15, M100, M101 and M60 SBS all serve 125th as crosstown lines. M5 at Riverside Drive M4, M104, at Broadway M3 at St. Nicholas Avenue M10 at Frederick Douglass Boulevard M2 at Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard M7 and M102 at Lenox Avenue M1 at Madison Avenue and Fifth Avenue M98 at Park Avenue and Third Avenue M103 at Lexington Avenue and Third Avenue M35 at Lexington Avenue M15 and M15 SBS at Second Avenue and First Avenue Metro-North Railroad's Harlem–125th Street station is located at the street's intersection with Park Avenue; the planned second phase of the Second Avenue Subway, continuing north from the 116th Street station, will turn westward onto 125th Street, terminating at a station at Lexington Avenue.
The new station would connect to the Metro-North and preexisting Lexington Avenue subway stations there. As of 2011, former president Bill Clinton maintains an office on 125th Street; the intersection of 125th and Lexington Avenue is the location where Lou Reed buys heroin on the Velvet Underground's "I'm Waiting for the Man" from their seminal 1967 debut album, The Velvet Underground & Nico. Notes Media related to 125th Street at Wikimedia Commons