PRESERVE STATEN ISLAND
April 2008 Newsletter of the Preservation League of Staten Island
TWO EXCITING EVENTS -- COMING THIS MAY
HILLS TO HARBOR The 2008 AWARDS for
The PLSI 2008 House Tour of New Brighton HISTORIC PRESERVATION
This year the annual Preservation Awards program will
& Snug Harbor East
his Spring our first 2008 House Tour will be held in
New Brighton and Snug Harbor East on Sunday, be held at Christ Church New Brighton on Saturday,
May 18, 2008, starting at Christ Church New May 3, 2008 at 1:00PM with a recognition luncheon.
Brighton, 76 Franklin Avenue at 1:00PM. As always the The PLSI Preservation Awards program has a long
Preservation League will publish a guide- book listing history of recognizing the outstanding work done by
the houses with a description of the features of each site building owners who value the legacy of historic
— but for the first time, you will be able to use your preservation on Staten Island. The
cell phone to hear a recorded message about each of list of awardees for 2008
the homes! includes buildings and
We will also have the messages available on our web- houses from all parts of
site as pod-casts. You will also be able to download Staten Island. Come and
and hear the house descriptions on your iPhone or re- join us! Continued on p. 3
The William S. Pendleton House at 1 Pendleton Place is one of the most unique houses in New The house at 134 Franklin Avenue gets dual honors in 2008. In addition to being one of the
York City. It has been restored by its current owners, who have furnished the interior with pe- homes on the tour, its owners will receive a bronze AWARD plaque and certificate. More pic-
riod pieces that match the style and character of the exterior. This house is known as the tures of Award winning houses are on page 3.
“Second” Pendleton house. The “first” house at 22 Pendleton is worth a visit across the street.
Letter from the PLSI President THE COMMON GOOD THE
Exciting innovations in the works for 2008 at PLSI. The RESTORATION oF THE FUTURE...
Preservation League will shortly offer a new self- an OP-ED by PLSI Vice President Linda Eskenas
guiding service using cell phones to visit historic There are questions being asked throughout New York
properties on Staten Island. You will be able to dial a City regarding the future of our quality of life,
number to access the “Staten Island by Cell” neighborhoods, historic buildings and sites. Our
welcome message, which will direct you to enter a neighborhoods have been gouged and many historic
“prompt” number. We will initiate this service at the building and sites have been destroyed and with them
“HILLS TO HARBOR” house tour in Staten Island's New a part of our historic legacy. The Island is experiencing
Brighton section on Sunday, May 18. Using your cell profound environmental changes. There is excessive
phone, you will be able to hear a description of the tear down of old homes and buildings, which are being
house you are about to visit as well as reading about it replaced with overcrowded, unattractive buildings that
in your guidebook. This cell phone guide service is are referred to as “nouveau slums.” Developers are
available at approximately 15 New York museums and involved in unsavory practices often do not pay taxes.
cultural organizations, including the Metropolitan The economy is unstable.
Opera, the New York Botanical Garden and the Asia When New York City was experiencing its terrible
Society. fiscal crisis the Federal Government told New Yorkers
to “drop dead.” That did not become a reality. Instead,
We are also happy to welcome our newest board
the people went to poor neighborhoods and restored
member. Lyle Foxman is employed as the Education
the historic homes. Their response helped to revitalize
and Tour Coordinator for the Snug Harbor Cultural
neighborhoods throughout the City.
Center. He brings an excitement and drive that will
What is preservation? It is a significant and crucial
help the Preservation League develop an historic
grassroots movement. It is the voice of the people
preservation education program. Preservation
expressing pride and protective interest in saving their
organizations in places such as Albany and Saratoga
historic heritage, neighborhoods, economy and quality
Springs have programs that reach out and connect to
of life. The ultimate goals are to protect the historic
both elementary and high school students.
heritage and pass the legacy along to future
In addition, we are proceeding to do more preservation generations.
business on the Internet. You can join (or renew) your Preservation and restoration of homes, historic
membership on-line with Pay Pal or credit card by districts, buildings and sites are essential to establish
visiting our new redesigned website. stable neighborhoods and create a decent quality of
Simply go to: http://preservestatenisland.org/ life. It’s the common good!
HILLS TO HARBOR
Notice of Annual Meeting
The PLSI 2008 Home Tour
Pay on line with credit card or Pay Pal
before Thursday, May 15
The Annual Meeting of the Preservation
at $20, a $5.00 discount!
League of Staten Island will take place on
THE 2008 AWARDS for
Friday, April 18, 7:30PM
Luncheon tickets are $35 each.
Third County Courthouse, Historic Richmond Town Sign up for both events at:
also given to honor leaders in the cause of
Historic Preservation Awards -continued from page 1. preservation.
Fourteen individuals will receive awards this year.
For 23 years the League has presented the awards.
Plaques, intended for outdoor display, are given for
each award along with a framed certificate. The
awards honor preservationist owners and encourage
other to follow their example. At the preservation
awards ceremony we have a Power Point presentation
that gives the description of the restoration work done
on the project.
The types of work recognized by the awards include
removal of synthetic siding, restoration of original
clapboards, reconstruction of appropriate window and
door frames, and use of historically appropriate paint The houses at 72 Clinton Avenue in New Brighton and 92 Hopping Avenue in
colors. Stewardship awards recognize exemplary Tottenville are both AWARD winners for 2008. The Preservation league is a
building maintenance over many years. Awards are borough-wide organization serving all of Staten Island.
The Ceramic Murals at Sea View
The staff at Sea View Hospital have
been attempting to save the historic
ceramic murals before (and after) they
spall off the wall and break. Three of
the mural figures have been mounted
on board and installed in the lobby of
the Robitzek Building. This is a good
installation of these powerful works of
art. We all hope to see them reinstalled
in the abandoned Patient Pavilions at
some future date, after restoration.
The photo on the left is from 2001.
Note the the cracks in the tile pieces of
the nurse’s apron on the right where
they had fallen and broken.
What's Wrong with this Picture? A new Cul-de-sac on Bard Avenue
What has always amazed me about the NYC zoning code is that you can as of right build as many buildings as
the lot will legally hold without doing any kind of subdivision of the building lot. Every other place where I
have lived or had property, we had to do a survey and have the town approve a subdivision. The towns often
did not let you build up to the maximum under the zoning code. David Goldfarb
The PLSI Friday Night Lectues
Friday, April 18, 7:30PM Third County WELLS FARGO
Courthouse, Historic Richmond Town HOME MORTGAGE
Thomas Matteo, SI Borough Historian Oﬀers
STATEN ISLAND - THEN AND NOW e AFFINITY PROGRAM
Dr. Matteo, the Borough Historian, expands on
ST. PETERS CHURCH
to PLSI Members!
his popular book, Staten Island Then and Now,
one of three he has written about our Island. He
will talk about some of his interesting and funny
• A $300 Sharing Advantage
experiences in researching the book as well as his plans for his next book. Building
donation to PLSI if you so
on the success of the Channel 13 Walking Tour of Staten Island, Tom hopes to bring
designate, or up to $350 closing
more of our Island treasures to the public airwaves. For the first time publicly, Tom
will discuss the plans and activities surrounding several documentaries he is
• A Discount on NY Bank
developing. The PLSI annual meeting will proceed the talk.
• A Title Company Fee
Friday,May 16, 7:30PM Third County Discount if you use one of the
Courthouse, Historic Richmond Town Wells Fargo business partners.
Russell Powell, Preservation Contractor • A Free moving services
RESTORING EXTERIOR WOODWORK program for home buyers.
Sometime in the late 1970’s a new appreciation • Plus other beneﬁts including a
for older homes grew out of nostalgia for more ﬁrst time home buyer program
craft driven and ornate building styles. People purchased older houses and did their
best to restore them. The proliferation of big box home centers and DIY cable home
shows did little to address the problems these homeowners were encountering while
attempting to restore and maintain their treasures.
Jay Sullivan, Branch Manager
I have been fortunate to have the opportunity to work on a wide variety of wood
frame and wood clad houses over the last 30 years. My training has been reaching
out to other (sometimes older) carpenters, conducting research into old and new
methods and at times, trial and error.
I would like to share this information with the members of the PLSI and any other
interested homeowners. I will speak on subjects ranging from reasons for wood rot,
to the correct wood species for replacement, to modern epoxy repair methods, to
painting and waterproofing. I would particularly like to focus on a number of dos
and don’ts, including tips that will encourage success while limiting pitfalls or
failures. ~ R U S S E L L P O W E L L
Non Profit Org.
PRESERVE STATEN ISLAND
Preservation League of Staten Island
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54 Port Richmond Avenue
Staten Island, NY 10314
Staten Island, NY 10302
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PHOTO: COLONY HALL, SEA VIEW HOSPITAL