The area south of Union Square, where Greenwich Village meets the East Village, is a unique and dramatic confluence of history and heterodoxy; commerce and culture; art, architecture, and activism. It’s where great leaps forward in social movements, literature, music, and industry took place, in buildings displaying a smorgasbord of 19th and early 20th century styles. The course of the African-American and LGBTQ civil rights movements changed here; the “New York School” of artists, which shifted the center of the art world from Paris to New York, were concentrated here; and countless publishers, including a trailblazer who changed the course of literary and legal history, were found in the buildings still standing on these blocks today.
But unlike much of its surroundings, this area is almost entirely lacking in landmark and zoning protections, and thus its history, and great historic buildings, are being lost every day. This project seeks to highlight the incredible concentration of New York and American history found in these blocks of Greenwich Village and the East Village below Union Square, and call for their preservation through landmark and/or zoning protections. To start exploring, scroll down to see our tours or click on any of the color-shaded buildings on the map.