Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tenement Museum

One of the great things about living in an "Active Adult Community" is the activities. Yes, the adults are definitely active. Last week I was on a bus trip to the Lower East Side of New York City to see the Tenement Museum at 97 Orchard Street and take a walking tour of the neighborhood.

How fitting that there is a fabric store on the corner. But this was the heart of the garment factory area at one time and there are still a lot of small factories in the neighborhood.

It was a step back in time. The building has apartments set up from various eras, 1863, 1930 and others. The docents are very knowledgeable about some of the tenants and the area. The best thing was the apartment set up for 1863. The museum has been able to develop factual information about the tenants who were German immigrants who met and married in the US. The husband disappeared some years later, leaving four children and his wife. Can you say single mother? Census records show that the youngest child died, but the wife became a seamstress and was able to provide for her family. The parlor had a treadle sewing machine and garments and laces from the period.

After the tours we walked up to Katz' Deli. Great food. The deli scene from "When Harry met Sally" was filmed there. We also stoped at a Knish Bakery and Russ and Daughters which specializes in dried fish and fruit. Then we went to Economy Candy, a little store filled with candy from our childhoods (for those of us of a certain age).

The entire day was wonderful, albeit cold, and I got to know some of the "active adults" here a little better.

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