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Pictures dated unknown and 2008
Click images to enlarge
Abingdon Road east of Lefferts Boulevard

Click on image to find out more
Kew Gardens Neighbors Meetup
"Calling all Kew Gardens residents! Ever wish you knew more people in your neighborhood, so you could do more things locally, like meet for coffee on a lazy Sunday afternoon... catch a movie after work at our local cinema... or tumble out of bed on the weekend and walk to brunch? Whether you're a newbie to Kew Gardens, or would simply like to meet more of your neighbors, this group is for you! ... " To view the Meetup.com page, click here."
~ Lixandra Urresta

            Click on image to find out more
Kew Gardens Hiking Group
"The Kew Gardens Hiking Group has grown to over 20 people at many recent outings. We meet most Saturdays at 116 th Street and Metropolitan Avenue at 9:45 am for approximately a 90 minute walk. We usually stick to the formal orange, yellow and blue trails in Forest park. We have also ventured to the other side of Woodhaven Blvd and other local attractions. A group of about 8 people often go for an early lunch at a local restaurant. Please RSVP on the meetup site before attending. We all look forward to meeting you. " To view the Meetup.com page, click here. ~ Kevin Abel

If you have pictures of yourself showing any Kew Gardens locale in the background, email me high resolution jpegs and I will post them here as space permits.

To download a copy of the Queens Courier's Sept. 2003 article about Old Kew Gardens.com, click on one of the following links. Turn off your browser's auto-resize if the JPEG text appears too small to read.

[JPEG - 240kb]
[PDF - Hi Resolution, 379kb]
[PDF - Low Resolution, 97kb ]
July to December
2008 Guest Book

Larry Gross on WBAI Radio
December 22, 2008
    I will be on New York's WBAI radio, once again, this Monday, December 22 around 8:15 pm. talking about our recent tenants' rights victories last week.
    You can listen live on the internet by clicking going to: http://stream.wbai.org/ .
    Or go directly to: WBAI 9.5 FM in New York City.
LARRY GROSS, Executive Director
514 Shatto Place, Suite 270
Los Angeles, CA 90020
Tel: 213-252-4411 ext. 201 * Fax: 213-252-4422
Web site: www.CESinAction.org

December 8, 2008
Click on thumbnail to view enlargement.
I will attach the photo I referenced in my note. It was probably taken in 1935 or 36. It was taken while my husband and his parents were living with the Pinks (his mothers parents). The dog is Louis Pink's dog Muffett. And, the address, as you can see is 117-16. My husband lived there until he was about 5. they then moved to across the street into an apartment building.
Alida Millham
[To contact Alida Millham, click here]

[Editor's Note:  That house, known as the "Pink House," was built for Louis Heaton Pink who was responsible for creation of the New York City Housing projects called The Pink Houses, in Brooklyn.]

December 5, 2008
Click on thumbnail to view enlargement.
Dear Joe,
    Found this photo of the local girl scout troop taken about 1948 in Ann Teitler's family room.
    The troop leader is Mrs. Allen, far right. Moving left from her are Linda Haut (partly hidden), Helen Moskowitz, Barbara Korchien, and myself (Betty Davidson). On the other side of the pillar is the leader's daughter, Marylou Allen. Ann Teitler is holding the American flag. The assistant leader, Mrs. Oppenheimer, is to her left. Eva Berg is in front of her. Seated in the center are the Ellenport twins, the daughters of Mr. Ellenport, P.S.99 6th grade teacher and the only male teacher in the school at the time. The other names I don't remember. Anyone out there know some more?
Betty Davidson Gray
Kew Gardens, 1938-1958
P.S.99, class of 1/49
[To contact Betty Davidson Gray, click here]

Jan Levy - Rest in Peace
November 24, 2008
    It is with a broken heart I am informing the Kew Gardens Community of the untimely passing of my cousin, Jan Levy, formerly of Kent Manor, P S 99, Anshe Shalom, and Richmond Hill High School. Jan grew up in Bldg. B with his parents Abe and Sylvia. He became a Dentist, Doctor, Professor and Attorney.
    He leaves behind his wife, Erica Gruen Levy and their beautiful daughter Anna as well as many relatives, colleagues, and lifelong friends.
    Jan fought a brave one year fight against Leukemia. The funeral is tomorrow, Tuesday at Plaza Chapel, 91st and Amsterdam, NYC.
    I have wonderful memories of him playing handball in the park, jogging along the bike path, and ice skating at Flushing Meadows Park.
    I know Erica and Anna would love to hear your recollections as well.
Steven Levine
[To contact Steven Levine, click here]

Nancy Cataldi - Rest in Peace
October 30, 2008
Click on thumbnail to view enlargement.
Dear Friends,
    We are very distressed to report that the Society's President, Nancy Cataldi, died unexpectedly yesterday at her home in Richmond Hill.
    Her Family will receive friends at Leo F. Kearns Funeral Home, 85-66 115th Street, Richmond Hill (718-441-3300), on Wednesday and Thursday, November 5th - 6th, from 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM and from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM.
    A Funeral Mass for Nancy will be held at The Church of the Holy Child Jesus , 111-11 86th Avenue, Richmond Hill (718-847-1860), on Friday, November 7th, at 10:00 AM. A private cremation will follow.
    Nancy's death leaves a terrible void in our community, our organization, and our personal lives, and we cannot imagine how that void will ever be filled.
The Richmond Hill Historical Society
Richmond Hill, NY 11418

Editor's Note:  Nancy was a good friend and I am devastated by her death. She was too young and too full of life to have passed so soon. I consider myself richer for having known her, but poorer for now having her lost to us.

October 28, 2008
    Thank you, Al, for the memories. I enjoyed reading about your connection to our family. Yes, indeed, my father was all that you wrote.
    I hesitated before posting the picture, thinking it might not be meaningful for anyone besides my family. So I appreciate your feedback.
Joyce Ein Dilman
[To contact Joyce Ein Dilman, click here]

October 24, 2008
    The photo that Joyce Ein Dilman posted of she and her mother in Forest Park certainly brings back memories.
    I lived on 83rd. Avenue between Lefferts and Beverly and, while Ms. Dilman would have been too young to remember me, I certainly recollect her mother walking her in a baby carriage down the hill to the boulevard many times.
    Her brother Danny and I were close friends and I was in and out of the Ein's beautiful home on countless occasions.
    My best memory though, was of her father Max who was so effervescent, outgoing and always cordial - a real gentleman!
    As Bob Hope used to say' "Thanks for the memories".
A. Linsky
[To contact Al Linsky, click here]

October 22, 2008
Click on thumbnails to view enlargements.

Hi Joe!
I found 2 photo's of my dad at the former Pub Restaurant that was located at 124-18 Queens Blvd. - across the street from the court house. Most people knew him as Jimmy Chen. I also found a post WWII photo of him when he was stationed with the Coast Guard in New London, CT with some friends.
Dianne Chen
[To contact Dianne Chen, click here]

October 21, 2008
Click on thumbnails to view enlargements.
Dear Joe,
I have been out of touch for ages. I wanted to send these pictures to you for the longest time. The one of the birthday party, especially, I thought might be of interest. There are some children who I don't recognize. The other one is a typical picture of me walking through Forest Park with my mother. We did that quite often.
Joyce Ein Dilman
[To contact Joyce Ein Dilman, click here]

Kew Forest School turns 90
October 18, 2008
Editor's Note:  The local Queens Ledger newspaper takes a look at the Kew Forest School as it begins its tenth decade.

Click here to read the story

October 14, 2008
Last Thursday night, during the new ABC TV series 'Life On Mars' (which takes place in NYC, and is based on the BBC version of show which aired for two seasons on BBC America), the character of Sam Tyler (portrayed by Jason O'Mara) asks the character of Annie Norris (portrayed by Gretchen Mol) where she lives. She replies, 'I live with my parents in Kew Gardens'! If the show remains on the air long enough (you never know these days), maybe there will be some location shots in Kew Gardens?!
Rob Freundlich
Lived in Kew Gardens from 1954 - 1976
[To contact Rob Freundlich, click here]

October 13, 2008
HI Joe:
    It was good to see you yesterday, brief as it was. Maybe that's why it was so good!
    Anyway, can you post the attached on the website for me?
Thank you,
[To contact Malka Fraenkel, click here]

October 13, 2008
Does anyone recall the late Dr. Lester Ralph, who lived and practiced medicine in Kew Gardens for many years? I was a close friend of his son Neil ( he had another son, Stephen), with whom I attended PS 90 in the '50s. Neil and were considered inseparable and after we completed kindergarten, the school's policy was to keep us separated in subsequent grades, as we were both good students individually but were a bit hard to take in combination. Neil and I used to go to Lipschitz on Jamaica Avenue together (for arts and crafts) and to Frere's ( for lunch: ice cream cake, hamburgers). Neil lived with his family in a corner house on Curzon and 116th, if I recall correctly. His father was married to Florence but was subsequently divorced and remarried. He maintained an office on Lefferts Blvd, I think. Lester Ralph was my grandmother's doctor until her death in 1966. I write this now because of a sad discovery I made today. Out of curiosity, I visited a website which includes death records. I inputted some names of people from my parents' and my past, and I keyed in "Neil Ralph," whom I had not seen or spoken to since 1959. I was shocked to see a listing of a "Neil Ralph," deceased on Connecticut on April 14 of 2008. I then looked up "Lester Ralph", his father, and noted the same date, April 14, 2008, as the date of death. His last known address was in Fresh Meadows, Queens. Does anyone have any details about their lives in recent decades and the circumstances of their coincidental demise on the same day ( assuming the listing is accurate.)
Thank you.
Ron Isaac
[To contact Ron Isaac, click here]

Kew Gardens Flea Market
Saturday, October 18th

Weather date:  Saturday, October 25th
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
LIRR North Parking Lot
82-60 Austin Street
A portion of the proceeds to benefit Jamaica Hospital Medical Center Pediatrics

Music, Music, Music
October 9, 2008
Hi Joe
This is to let you know that the next music show will be held at Austin Steak and Ale House, 82-72 Austin Street, Kew Gardens, on Wednesday, October 22nd, from 7 to 10 P.M.
[To contact Aaron Adler, click here]

October 7, 2008
Just came across your web site. I lived in Kew Gardens from 1944 to 1956 when I went into the Navy. Lived in an apt. on Union Tpke.next to the LIRR tracks where they went under the tpke. a block from the end of Forest Park, two blocks from Queens Blvd. Kew Gardens school? was block away off Austin St. Went to Our Lady Queen of Martyrs and Forest Hills HS. Mostly hung out down Austin St. at a bowling alley, Midway & Forest hills movies.
George Del Gaudio
[To contact George Del Gaudio, click here]

Pumpkin Carving Contest - Oct. 18th
October 2, 2008
Friends of Maple Grove Cemetery will hold a pumpkin carving contest at Kew Gardens Cinema Park on October 18th beginning at 6:30 PM. There will prizes and other events, too. Be there!
Click here to find out more
Carol Lacks
[To contact Carol Lacks, click here]

September 30, 2008
    Lived in Kew Gardens from 1954-1972, California from 1973 - 1981 and now residing in Rockland County, New York. My husband and I travel to Queens College to attend fabulous shows at the Queens College Kupferberg Center for the Performing Arts. It was surreal being in that auditorium the 1st time because the Russell Sage Junior High School Graduation of 1969 was held there. More recently concerts at the Lafayette Theater in Suffern, NY, which is closer to home have been added, but if you live out on Long Island, you're in for a real treat because many of the events are there. We also went on our 1st doo wop oldies cruise this past May, which left out of New York (an added bonus). We had a phenomenal time. If you enjoy music from the 50's and 60's I encourage you to log on to:
or call Norman Wasserman at (631) 698-9696 for more info.
    Back in the day we would be glued to the tube to see exciting performers on the Ed Sullivan show or American Bandstand, but now you can see legendary performers live at a fraction of the cost of going to Manhattan or Atlantic City to catch just 1 performer. I guarantee you will not be disappointed. These concerts are as addictive as the Kew Gardens website is and will enhance your trip down memory lane.
    Joe keep this wonderful website alive!
D. Freiberg
[To contact D. Freiberg, click here]

Bull Run
September 30, 2008
Pamplona has nothing on us. Read about the bull (as in male bovine) that ran wild through Kew Gardens along 84th Avenue on September 17th. He was finally lassoed at 116th Street by a police officer atop the hood of a patrol car.

Click here to read the story

September 30, 2008
There was a Chinese Restaurant in the 309's and 40's on Lefferts Blvd at the corner or one or two doors down at Beverly Road, but none of the photos show it.
Bill Breeze
[To contact Bill Breeze, click here]

September 28, 2008
    The photo of Lefferts Boulevard that I submitted and that you were so kind as to post dates from about 1940 and was taken by the Wurts Brothers Company - a nationally recognized commercial photographer with an impressive portfolio including many memorable 39/40 New York World's Fair scenes.
    The snapshot, from Beverly Road looking northeast toward the Five Corners, certainly brings back memories for me.
    The left of the frame shows a candy store/soda fountain featuring Louis Sherry ice cream (the finest in its day) run by a couple by the name of Lucas, and was a favorite hangout of mine (I must have consumed thousands of egg creams there over the years!).
    Next door was the original Andre's Beauty Shop that I had mentioned earlier in this thread as being their original location before moving to the bridge.
    The late thirties 'White' truck (not the color, but the make) is from the Queensboro Dairy delivering to Mr. Winkler's market a couple of doors down - I remember Mr. Winkler's phone number as being Cleveland 3 2410 because I heard my mother call it forty times a day - we didn't have dial service yet.
    And, on another subject, many thanks to Ms. Mittlemen (letter above) for her marvelous memories of PS 99 which brought back teacher's names that I had long since forgotten except for Henrietta A. Oliver, Gertrude Goldberg and Rose Oshman!
Good old Days!
A. Linsky
[To contact Al Linsky, click here]

September 27, 2008
Click on thumbnail to view enlargement.
Editor's Note:  Thanks to Al Linsky for finding this 1930's picture of Lefferts Boulevard from the New York Public Library's online Digital Collection. You will see that there are six other low resolution images of Kew Gardens, but they are images I already have here in higher resolution.

Our Lady Queen of Martyrs School Reunion September 27, 2008
[View a photograph of the School on Flickr.com]
    A dinner dance for all graduating classes will be held in the school auditorium.
    Saturday, October 11, 2008 from 6:00-10:00PM. All are welcome to attend.
    $80 per person to be paid by October 7, 2008 to Tierra Sana Restaurant attention Jessica (718) 830-0544 or (347) 288-4535.
    Please extend our invitation to all OLQM alumni. This is your party. Make sure all your friends are there!
Stephanie Bucalo
class of 1971 ~ (631) 749-2681

September 21, 2008
Dear Joe,
    My name is Patricia Norton Mittleman, and I lived in Kew Gardens from 1940 to 1948. To my mother, a strong-willed advocate of upward mobility, Kew Gardens promised more than Baisley Park, my beloved neighborhood of early childhood. Kew Gardens schools would provide better public education for her two daughters (born in 1929 and 1933). Moreover, my father would have only a short walk from our house to the subway system that would deliver him to Wall Street, where he tended the ticker-tape machines that preceded computers at the Quotation Exchange.
    We moved to 123-42 83rd Avenue on July 7, 1940. The following September my sister and I were enrolled in P.S.99, the school across the street and up the hill from our "modest house" (per Doris Schaffer's description in her wonderful 2005 guest note) on 83rd Avenue. I spent time with three different groups at P.S.99 but graduated with the class of 1946. I attended Forest Hills High School for two years (Mr. Herman Gillary was my homeroom teacher) and then moved to Blauvelt, NY (my father lusted for a home "in the country") and graduated from Nyack High School with enough honors to get me a full scholarship to Barnard College, where I could renew contact with some of my Kew Gardens-Forest Hills friends. Erika Graf Tauber, Beatrice Spencer Kleppner, Patricia Kirwan Alpers, and Shirley Henschel keep in fairly close touch.
    I have vivid memories of P.S.99, its principal (Mrs.Oliver), and my teachers - Mrs. Kesney, Mrs.Sochuret (sp.?), Mrs. Wieman (sp.?)Miss Wohl, Mrs.Levenis, Miss Banta (who married shortly after I had her), Mrs. Smith, Miss Oshman, Miss Seabury, and Miss Goldberg (my favorite). I remember being introduced to classical music in class and at various school assemblies including one where Harry Stockwell (the father of students/actors Guy and Dean) gave a glorious performance. Dick and Joyce Van Patten also attended P.S.99. Their mother supervised the summer playground program. Also, when I was in eighth grade, we put on Gilbert and Sullivan's "HMS Pinafore" with Charlotte Bialo assuming the coveted role of Josephine. Charlotte had an exquisite voice. I was relegated to being being one of the "cousins by the dozens".
    I also remember Phil's candy (and newspapers, perhaps) store on Lefferts Blvd about a block south of Austin Street, the tennis courts that got flooded and frozen for ice-skating, and the delicatessen not far from the Shellball apartmentswhere my sister and I were shopping after church on December 7, 1941. Am I correct in recalling that Rev.William Mallory's church at Kew Gardens Road and Lefferts Blvd. was Dutch Reformed? Our family attended mass at Our Lady Queen of Martyrs in Forest Hills on most Sundays, but my sister was allowed to join the youth fellowship group at Rev. Mallory's church. My parents liked Rev. Mallory better than the clergy in Forest Hills. What group occupies the Mallory church now?
    Shortly after my 70th birthday a friend and I visited Kew Gardens. The main door to P.S.99 was locked, but I came upon some teachers who were eating lunch on school steps facing 83rd Avenue. They invited me in for a quick tour of one wing of the school. As I attempted to find a visual connection with the past, I spotted a boy who was sitting outside the principal's office. He was handsome, Hispanic, highly verbal, and about 12 years old. I chatted with him briefly and learned that he was hoping to become an actor. It pleased me to know that "my school' had not ceased to inspire its students to great achievement - even though the houses on 83rd Avenue had been supplanted by high risers.
    Joe, I came upon your website when I was frivolously googling to find out many ways there were to spell "Schaefer" ( the name of our former governor and mayor here in Baltimore). I succeeded in finding several spelling variations, most significantly the two "Schaffers" from Kew Gardens - Howard Schaffer and Doris Schaffer O'Brien. Thank you so much for developing the "kewgardenshistory.com" website. It is rich in detail, nostalgia, and wonderful things I never noticed years ago. How fortunate I've been to discover your gift!
Patricia Norton Mittleman
[To contact Patricia Norton Mittleman, click here]

Click on thumbnails to view enlargements.
Editor's Note:  Patricia, you are very welcome. Your message mentions Joyce Van Patten. That gives me a perfect excuse to post two 1943 press clippings of her from an unknown newspaper.

A Tower Rises, and Old Friendships Grow Cold September 20, 2008
Editor's Note:  Page CY6 of the New York edition of the September 21st edition of the New York Times carries a story about the controversy surrounding construction of a 20 story hotel and apartment house in back of the Pasta Lover's Restaurant.

Click here to read the story

We're No. 4!
September 20, 2008
Editor's Note:  Thanks to Peter Schiftan for a heads up about an article in "Time Out New York" that finds Kew Gardens is no. 4 on the list of most affordable neighborhoods, and no. 5 on the list of "ideal 'hoods."

Click here to read the story (1 of 2)
Click here to read the story (2 of 2)

September 16, 2008
Dear Joe,
The people next door to me on 81st Avenue are redoing their house and are replacing their front door. The original door of the house will be thrown out so I thought you might know someone who is restoring a house who can use it. It measures 40-inch by 78-inch and is the thick solid oak with the original door knocker and mailbox that these houses were built with in 1915. Know someone who can give it a good home? The contractor said he is removing it on 9/20.
[Diana Shaman]
[To contact Diana Shaman, click here]

Art Feigl
September 11, 2008
Editor's Note:  Does anyone have information about a man named Art Feigl who was a photographer to the stars in the 1940's and did murals and other paintings for famous restaurants. I'm told he might have lived in Kew Gardens.

Contact me

New York Real Estate: Kew Gardens, Queens
August 27, 2008
Editor's Note:  The AM New York local newspaper features a profile of Kew Gardens. My only criticism of the article is its incorrect report that Charles Chaplin and Dorothy Parker lived here in the 1920's. It also reports that George Gershwin lived here. I strongly suspect he didn't, either.

Click here to read the AM New York article
See also:
   •  Chaplin's Califormia Homes
   •  Apartments and homes of Dorothy Parker

Fall Festival Show
August 15, 2008
Hi Joe and Murray....we're going to have a fall music show in Kew Gardens Cinemas park, next to the post office on Austin St. It'll be held on Sunday, Sep. 7th from 1 to 6. We're calling it a Fall Festival show although it won't quite be fall.
[To contact Aaron Adler, click here]

August 7, 2008
Thank you for adding Forest Hills Club's website ( foresthillclub.org ) to your "Other Websites of Interest" column. As a native Forest Hillian, club co founder, and Kew-Forest School grad of 1959 I know that there was much intercommunity activity - both shopping and social . Many of us have fond memories of meals and brews at the Kew Gardens Hofbrau, dances and parties at the Old Homestead Hotel, high level three man roundball at Overlook Park and much more back "in the day". Undoubtedly, many visitors to your fine website know Forest Hills as well. I would like to personally invite them to "visit" us on the web. We have amassed a very intriguing list of Famous Forest Hillians which might be of interest to many. I would love to hear from anyone interested in any information we could provide about our members and our activities.
Jeff McGann
[To contact Jeff McGann, click here]

August 7, 2008
I lived at 118-40 Metropolitan Avenue apt. 2J from 1952 to 1970. My parents lived there until 1982. I went to Holy Child Jesus School. I do have old photos which I will search for and send. A friend who grew up in Richmond Hill told me about the RH historical site and I just searched from there. My name is Aurelia Santolla Kieffer.
Thank you,
Aurelia Kieffer
Midland, Texas
[To contact Aurelia Santolla Kieffer, click here]

August 6, 2008
    'Kew Gardens History' is a great re-name for the site and zeroes in more precisely on exactly what it's all about!
    As far as the job you have done, I'm afraid that Mr. Roubin understates the yeoman's service that you have performed in creating this marvelous link to those of us who have called Kew Gardens our home at one time or another.
    There certainly will be a riot if you should decide to retire, and you can bet that I'll be spearheading it!
    I look forward to many more years of peering back through time with you to the Kew Gardens I once knew.
A, Linsky
[To contact Al Linsky, click here]

Editor's Note:  Al and Ben, thank you.

August 4, 2008
A popular website is the price you pay for doing such a great job. If you ever retire, you may have a major riot on your hands.
Ben Roubin
[To contact Ben Roubin, click here]

A New Domain Name
August 3, 2008
Editor's Note:  For almost 7 years, the domain name for this web site has been oldkewgardens.com. I've now added another domain name:

For now, both domain names work. However, at some point in the future, the oldkewgardens.com domain name will be retired, and the site will become just kewgardenshistory.com. I was never entirely happy with the oldkewgardens.com name and chose it only because all the other domain names I thought of had been taken. I had no idea in 2001 that I'd still be doing this or that the site would grow to the size it has.

July 29, 2008
Click on thumbnail to view enlargement.
Dear Joe,
     Here's a photo of me with my twin grandsons taken in 2003. Thanks,
Betty Davidson Gray
[To contact Betty Davidson Gray, click here]

The Wildman comes to Forest Park
July 27, 2008
Editor's Note:  Naturalist and author, "Wildman" Steve Brill (Kew Gardens' answer to Euell Gibbons), will lead one of his patented Wild Food and Ecology Tours of Forest Park in Kew Gardens on Saturday, August 9th at 11:45 AM. For those who do not remember him, Steve attracted worldwide news coverage in 1986 when he was targeted by a police sting operation and arrested for eating a dandelion in Central Park.

Read about and sign up for the tour
Steve's 1986 arrest
Steve doing a tour of Central Park [On YouTube]
Steve's web site

Notice and Invitation
July 25, 2008
    The A.D.A. Elevators at the Kew Gardens/Union Turnpike Subway Station will be dedicated at a ribbon-cutting on Thursday, July 31 at 10:00 A.M. by Lee Sander, Executive Director and CEO, MTA, and Howard Roberts, President, MTA/NYC Transit.
    All our Kew Gardens elected officials have been invited.
Murray Berger
Executive Chairman
Kew Gardens Civic Ass'n
[To contact Murray Berger, click here]

July 23, 2008
    Betty Davidson Gray has just sent in the latest PS 99 photo; Class 7A, May 1947. Thanks Betty. Don't miss it if you, or your siblings, or your grandparents for that matter, are in it. The custom was to put the smallest kid in the class closest to the camera. And there I am. The biggest kid was furthest from the camera.
    Two stories come to mind about signs of the times at PS 99 some 61 years ago. Note that every boy in the picture is wearing a shirt and tie. Save one. A shirt and tie was de riguer for boys on "Picture Day". Period. No exceptions. A shirt meant "with buttons". T shirts were still considered to be underware, at least as far as school was concerned. There were also polo shirts and that's what Michael Nussbaum is wearing. Mike came to school that morning without a tie. The teachers were furious and (most of us went home for lunch) after lunch time demanded that he be wearing a tie. After lunch he came back wearing a tie alright, but over his polo shirt. He claimed they didn't tell him to change his shirt. They wouldn't take a picture of him in the tie and polo. No imagination. That's what passed for exitement.
    You can't see them in the photo, but in the back right corner of each desk there was an inkwell. The inkwells were filled with ink each morning. (That's what the holes are for in antique school desks. Inkwells) See Antoinette with the white ribbons in her hair? She had an affinity for that ink. She managed to empty it most every day, mostly on herself. Inkwells for school children were the forerunners of early exploding ballpoint pens. The teacher took away her inkwell.
Jay Rogers
[To contact Jay Rogers, click here]

July 21, 2008
    What a treasure trove! Found online by my husband, Walter Gray.
    I am Betty Davidson Gray (formerly Betty Suzanne Davidson).
    Lived in K.G. from 1938 (moved in the day after a hurricane when I was three. There was a huge tree blocking our front door on Lefferts Blvd. near Kew Gardens Road. Moved to a house on Park Lane South in 1944 and lived there until my marriage in 1958. My mother continued to live in the house until her death in 1982. My aunt and uncle and their sons, Richard and Edward, lived in the Kent Manor apartment building across the street.
    Graduated P.S. 99 in January 1949( last of the 8B classes graduating in what is now mid-year). I have class photos that I'll send to the school website soon. My brother, Robert, graduated from P. S. 99 in 1942. My cousin, Richard Davidson, graduated in 1951 and his brother, Edward, in 1953.
    I'd be happy to hear from any former classmates.
[To contact Betty Davidson Gray, click here]

Kew Gdns. biz owner plans 21-story hotel
July 12, 2008
Editor's Note:  Thanks to Mel Gagarin for the following link to a Richmond Hill Times article about the proposed 21 story Queens Savoy Hotel to be built on the site of the Pasta Lovers Trattoria parking lot.

Click here to read the story

July 10, 2008
    If I didn't see the word Queens with reference to the New York Times piece on MacMansions, I would have sworn that I was reading a like article that appeared recently in the Los Angeles Times with Beverly Hills as the prime target of these out of place edifices.
    Now, Beverly Hills is no slouch when it comes to opulent residences with virtually every street in that upscale city lined with well appointed Spanish style haciendas, but when saddled with what can only be described as ornate looking columned structures that tower over all they surround, the charm of the area begins to diminish.
    One particular architect has been responsible for most of these inappropriate structures that serve only to block both air flow and light to neighboring properties and has been called to task by the home owner's association and the city government.
    In an effort to maintain the very southwestern character of the area, the city counsel has placed a moratorium on the construction of any further such mini palaces of Middle Eastern flavor in Beverly Hills.
    Perhaps New York City should follow suit!
A. Linsky
[To contact Al Linsky, click here]

July 9, 2008
Hi. My name is Joel Maimon. I lived in Kew Garden Hills (sort of of Kew Gardens) from 1944 to 1953. I graduated PS 170 in 1951 and Forest Hills High School in 1955. Went on to the University of Alabama and the served 26 years in the US Army. I was a Boy Scout at Troop 39 at the temple just off Metropolitan Avenue. My last duty station was in Honolulu and then stayed here after retirement from the Army in 1985. My wife and I relocated to Port Ludlow WA in 1998 and returned "home" this past January. Nice to be back in the land of Aloha. I'd love to hear from any of you folks who remember me and are planning a trip to Hawaii (Oahu). Just email me at:
and I'll be sure to get back to you.

'Triumph of Civic Virtue'
July 9, 2008
Editor's Note:  Monday's edition of the New York Daily News newspaper carried a story about efforts to preserve the deteriorating statue on Queens Boulevard at Union Turnpike.

Click here to read the article

The Dreaded MacMansions
July 9, 2008
Editor's Note:  Two news outlets report on the controversy surrounding the building of "MacMansions" in Queens neighborhoods like Kew Gardens.

Click here to read a New York Times article
Click here to view a local CBS news report with video

July 6, 2008
    I think the architects and original owners of the former Chatillon Scale Factory building would turn over in their graves (if they happen to be across the street!) if they could see what their beautiful Tudor Revival edifice has now become!
    Built in the 1920's as a community garage and quoted by Barry Lewis in Kew Gardens: Urban Village in the Big City as being "an especially interesting commercial building" the structure was carefully designed to appear as a residence so as to blend in with the character of the neighborhood.
    It is interesting to note that through the forties and fifties the building became the home of the Sylvania Corporation for the manufacture of radio and television tubes (rumor had it that some highly classified military projects were also carried out by Sylvania at the plant during the war years).
    It's too bad that the Landmarks Preservation Commission didn't step in to save this wonderful piece of Old Kew Gardens history.
    By the way; I wouldn't mind living in a condo across from a cemetery - it sure would be a guarantee of peace and quiet!
A. Linsky
[To contact Al Linsky, click here]

The Chatillon Scale Factory - Now a Condo
July 5, 2009
Editor's Note:  The Real Estate section of tomorrow's New York Times has an article about a new Kew Gardens condominium called Classic Kew Gardens. The building used to be the Chatillon Scale Factory but has now been greatly modified. The article also talks about the condo's neighbor, Maple Grove Cemetery.

Click here to read the article
View the new condominium's web site
See a 2005 picture of the Chatillon Scale Factory

John Stewart Service
July 3, 2008
My name is Diane, and I was looking up John Stewart Service as I was reading "Blacklisted by History" . This book is a remarkable study of the Cold War and John Service was NOT an innocent bystander in China. He, along with Solomon Adler, worked to sabotage Chiang's efforts to defeat the communists. By the way, Mao's forces did little fighting of the Japanese, they left it up to Chiang. Do your research!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
[To contact Diane Ewertz, click here]

[Ed.'s Note: The writer's comments are addressed to a page about John Stewart Service on this web site. See a product description of "Blacklisted by History" on the Barnes and Noble and Amazon web sites.]

Protest Scheduled for Tuesday, July 8th at 12:30pm

July 3, 2008
    Kew Gardens, NY (Jul 2, 2008) - Residents of the co-operative building, Hampton House, located on 82nd Road and from various buildings in the surrounding area are in protest of a new real estate development project that broke ground on Monday June 30th. The building managed by Rachlin Management currently stands directly behind the construction site where workers reported for duty early that morning.
    The developer, Constantine Fotos, is part owner of the restaurant Pasta Lover's located on the corner of 82nd Avenue and Queens Blvd, intends to construct a 20-story hotel and rental apartment building in the parking lot adjacent to the restaurant. This building will be part of the Savoy chain of hotels.
    The Hampton House residents have reached out to Congressman Anthony Weiner to voice their concerns about the construction such as construction cranes and other heavy machinery that will be operating dangerously close to their 8-story building. Residents believe that there is a possibility that their building's foundation will suffer irreparable damage from the construction. Additionally, the building will bring much more vehicular traffic to the streets of Kew Gardens. The building entrance will be on 82nd Avenue which is a small one-way street that is already used by the Q10 bus line. Mr. Fotos only plans on creating 41 parking spaces to accompany the building. Kew Gardens residents feel that parking is a consistent challenge in the neighborhood and a new construction will just escalate the problem. Although Fotos has seemly obtained the proper permits to fence the area of the construction, the residents of adjacent buildings are concerned. To date they have not received permits to break ground yet the crews broke ground on June 30th.
    A spokesperson for the Hampton House says, "A 210-ft. edifice in a family-oriented residential neighborhood is inappropriate. The building will not be a healthy or productive contribution to the area. We are terrified of when they bring a crane in and if it will come down on us."
    The construction is underway. However, the neighborhood dwellers will not be silenced easily. A peaceful protest is scheduled for Tuesday July 8th at 12:30pm to call attention to the dangers of the project.
For additional information, please contact:
  Ron Rachlin of Rachlin Management
  Representing Courtview Owners Corp
  123-35 82nd Road, Kew Gardens, NY 11415
  (718) 575-9292

Another 2008 Guest Book Page
July 1, 2008
Editor's Note:  Due to the number of messages for the first half of this year, I have had to go to another Guest Book page for the second half of this year. To see Guest Book messages from January to June of 2008, simply click on the January - June links at the top or bottom of this page.

Posting Messages Here
July 1, 2008
[Ed.'s Note: The reason each guest book posting does not appear here immediately is that I review each message individually before posting to eliminate spam or unwanted adult content. Email me if you want to make a correction to a message you have already posted or if you would like a message removed.]

How to contact Guestbook signers

Some Guestbook signers choose not to publish their email addresses. If you wish to contact one of them, send me an email identifying the guestbook signer you wish to contact and giving me the date his or her message was posted. Your email to me must contain your full name, and may also include anything else you wish to tell the signer. I will forward your email to the Guestbook signer you wish to contact, but with no cc or bcc to you. It will be the signer's decision whether or not to make contact with you. Any emails which contain spam, adult content, or appear suspect for any other reason will not be forwarded. ~The Editor..

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