A past version of the neighborhood around 50 Hudson Ave

Check out this photo of 50 Hudson Ave in downtown Albany from the early 1950s. It was posted by the Capital City Rescue Mission earlier this summer -- the location formerly housed the org. (See Tanja Rekhi's piece Tuesday talking with Perry Jones, the rescue mission's executive director, about the org's time in the building. Also: That time Jones found a 1920s suitcase of morphine stashed in a crawlspace.)

Attention has been back on 50 Hudson this week again, of course, because it partially collapsed and will be coming down. It's another old building lost -- Historic Albany Foundation figures it dates to the early 19th century. And there's special concern because it's the neighbor of Albany's oldest building, 48 Hudson -- the Van Ostrande-Radliff House -- which dates to 1728.

But back to that 1950s photo of 50 Hudson -- look at not just the building but the streetscape in which it stands. (See also this view from 50 Hudson in the 1930s that Albany Archives turned up.) Here's the Google Streetview of roughly the same angle in recent years.

The difference is huge. And there's now little to suggest that area once had so much architectural texture and activity. (Among its many past lives: That part of the city was home to cabaret and jazz clubs in the 1940s and 50s.)

That whole section of downtown Albany has since been hollowed out. And now it basically serves as a giant parking lot, waiting to become... well, not the convention center, but... something.

(Thanks, Audrey! Thanks, Eric!)

Find It

50 Hudson Ave
50 Hudson Ave
Albany, NY 12207


"Luggage, Furs, Guns". Ahh, the good old days...

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