A bit of lost NYC history referenced in “Annie”

radiorow I was lucky enough last week to attend the opening night performance of “Annie“, presented by Theatre Under The Stars in Stanley Park. And (as it seems happens with most shows), there was a small detail that led to an interesting nugget of info. At one point, ad banners for period films and companies hang at the top of the stage – one touts the film “Something to Sing About” with James Cagney, another the Ziegfeld Follies. And one says “Heins & Bolet”. What’s that, I wondered? A web search did not disappoint, and turned up an entire lost neighbourhood of New York – “Radio Row”. It’s the area which was leveled in the mid-60’s to make room for the World Trade Center. For decades before then, though, it was the radio and electronics hub of the city, featuring “a thriving, 13-block warren of mom-and-pop electronics shops, restaurants, furniture stores, florists, jewelers, printers and other commercial enterprises.” As well as radio sales, service and repair from Heins & Bolet, a trusted name in retail electronics. Here’s the full article on the demise of Radio Row – or as the author, Syd Steinhardt calls it, “the story of the ruthless takeover of an entire area by big business, which devastated the shopkeepers of Radio Row. They were not killed, but they were the first victims of the World Trade Center.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *