The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

brotherly piety

with 3 comments

“follow” me on Twitter at @newtownpentacle

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The back situation seems to be ameliorating itself, thankfully- and as this post is being written- has transmogrified from a crippling stiffness and intermittent sword blade of pain to a dull and omnipresent ache. Ultimately, this is a good thing, as I have actually managed to sleep without interruption for two days in a row and am able to move about in fine fettle. With luck, I will be able to resume my wanderings in a day or two, but for now- here’s another “Then and Now” shot, this time of the Paragon Oil building on Hunters Point Avenue in venerable Long Island City’s industrial quarter. It should be mentioned that I am fascinated by this building.

This edifice- known sometimes as “the Subway Building” and others as the “Paragon Oil building”- was, in fact, Queens Borough Hall. Check out the January 2012 posting “high doors” for more on the structure.

– photo by, August 7, 1936

The shot pictured above emanates from the awesome collection of historic photographs made available by the NYC Municipal Archives, and was captured by a now anonymous municipal photographer in August of 1936. The center of Queens during the 1930’s, this was Borough Hall. Back then, the power brokers of the borough located themselves nearby the Newtown Creek and perched high above the southern extant of the Sunnyside Yard and alongside the Long Island Railroad tracks. Prior to this, the unofficial Borough Hall of Battleaxe Gleason was located at the Miller hotel (which would become the LIC Crab House) and the official one was on Jackson Avenue nearby modern day Court Square.

3 Responses

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  1. Man, I lu-u-u-v those old cars parked on the right of the BW 1936 photo. When I was a kid growing up in Astoria in the ’50’s, some drivers still had those old cars on the road. Check out the running boards on them. The newer cars of the ’50’s (I like Ike) no longer had them, but the old ones still in service did. The running boards were great places to sit and have an ice cream cone or a popsicle in the heat of the summer, after ring-a-levio or stoopball. Instant park bench.


    November 27, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    • You’ve got a few years on me, but the running boards and the “powerful black sedans” hit me right where I live. In my case it was 60’s and 70’s muscle cars which lined the street.

      Mitch Waxman

      November 27, 2012 at 2:20 pm

  2. wow, i wait for the q67 in front of this building


    November 27, 2012 at 11:22 pm

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