Officially releasing on July 15th, the book Secret Brooklyn: An Unusual Guide is written and photographed by Untapped Cities founder Michelle Young and co-founder Augustin Pasquet. In anticipation, they’ve selected ten of the weirdest locations they came across in Brooklyn which highlight the diversity of places to discover, the people who make the borough great, and the architecture and infrastructure that keep things fascinating.
You can get an autographed copy directly from Untapped Cities (shipped to you or picked up from our Brooklyn office) or a non-autographed copy on Amazon.
10. The Puppet Library
Located in a very tucked away spot in the Roosevelt House at Brooklyn College, The Puppet Library features over 100 puppets, some as large as 20 feet tall, that sit on the bleachers of a gymnasium. The sight alone is rather astounding and worth the trip. These large-scale puppets have appeared in parades, in movies, even birthday parties. You can crawl into the puppets, or even take one out on a loan.
The Puppet Library has been located here since 2008, in a space run by the Brooklyn College Community Partnership, an after school program but the Puppet Library itself does not have a website or a phone number. And it seems that no matter where it has been, The Puppet Library always finds itself in a rather hidden spot. Until 2008, the museum was housed inside the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Arch at Grand Army Plaza, a place the Puppet Museum librarian Theresa Linnihan says was “a mysterious place. People never knew you could go inside.” There was a spiral staircase inside and visitors could wander freely to take in the museum. Puppet shows would take place at the top of the arch interior. But when the arch started leaking and the roof fell in, the museum needed to find a new home – one big enough to house the collection.
The Puppet Library began in Boston, where it “sort of drifted into experience,” says founder Sara Peattie, a puppeteer by training. Her partner George was living in New York City so the collection started to take hold there. When George died, Linnihan took over the library. She happened on the arch and fought to get the library in there.