On the evening of Saturday, July 14, 1962—just days after the first South Mall demolition—WRGB TV, Channel Six, aired a half-hour documentary called The South Mall Project: Hoax or Hope? We found what we think is the only extant copy of the documentary in the papers of Grant Van Patten at University of Albany’s Special Collections department.
In the mid-1940s, my family and I lived in an apartment at 273 Hudson Ave., across from the Melody Inn, during an era of live music and lively crowds, described in William Kennedy’s O Albany!
The Radrizzi and Strong family stories have been intertwined for almost a century—beginning before they became neighbors and lasting long after their block of Jay St. was demolished.
The first part of our story emphasized continuity: Over several decades, William F. Ryan Sr. built a produce business that his son, daughter-in-law, and grandchildren have carried on to this day. The second part of this story is about change.
While searching for a photograph of The Point Grill, we discovered something unexpected. We had been looking for a four-story, mixed-use building with an impressive mansard roof on the corner of Eagle and Daniel streets, kitty corner from the Catholic Union. Instead, we found a single-story, flat-roofed commercial structure. But looking closely, we noticed that…
Many knew Mae Carlson as Albany’s rooming house queen, but I called her Mamay— Mother Mae, as I grew older. Bill Costigan, I called Dad.
Beginning with missionary Charlotte (Neely) Resper’s 1927 revival meeting at Union Missionary Baptist Church, Albany’s First Church of God in Christ is rooted in Mississippi and the Great Migration, when millions of African Americans left the rural South for Northern cities.
On April 5, 1962 Elinor and Leo Mullen sat down to write a letter to Albany Mayor Erastus Corning 2d.
On March 27, 1962—the day news of the state appropriation became public—Knick News reporters Kurt Wachenheim and Edward Swietnicki walked the streets of Albany’s 98 acres to gauge public opinion. What they found was a mix of “elation, indifference, disappointment, and hope.” As a group, small business owners were particularly upset by the news. The…
In July 1963—a year after South Mall demolitions began—Times Union reporter William Kennedy stopped in Charlie Milham’s Grill, on the corner of Madison and Mosher, to hear what area residents and business owners had to say about the State’s redevelopment plan. Phil Milham, a brother of the owner, was tending bar that day. Behind him…
Reading in the New York Times yesterday about exploitative contracts for deeds to dilapidated houses in places like Akron, Ohio, we were reminded of a similar practice once prevalent in Albany.
In May 1962—as Democrats scrambled to find a candidate to run against him in November—New York State Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller arrived in the Capital District for a whirlwind pre-election tour.