Cool Streets

Henderson Place

Henderson Place, located on 87th Street between East End Avenue and York Avenue, is a Historic District – and one that’s only one block long. Henderson Place is a private road, clearly noted with a permanent sign and three road blocks (which also request no dogs). The Queen Anne style homes were once part of a larger development of 32 houses– eight of which have since been demolished.

The Landmarks Preservation Commission designation for historical landmark included the following:

“[The Queen Anne style] was a very personal style and depended largely on individual taste. Because it had such quaint and picturesque qualities, full freedom was permitted in the juxtaposition of otherwise disparate elements. This appealed to people who were looking for something both fanciful and novel. John C. Henderson was one of these. In 1880 he selected the architectural firm of Lamb & Rich (Charles A. Rich, 1855-1943 and Hugo Lamb, 1848-1903) to design this intimate group of residences. The project was virtually completed by 1382. The houses were intended to be sold to ‘persons of moderate means,’… What is even more remarkable than the general overall effect of uniformity is the charm and variety achieved, within the framework of moderate, cost. Using elements of “Queen Anne” design, each house, with its minor variations, might be said to be freely improvising on a stylistic theme. The resulting effect is one of overall coherence with picturesque overtones.”

The houses along East End Avenue are also included in the historic district. Some famous residents have included the Duke and Duchess of Richelieu and editor at the then New York Evening Post and war correspondent Horace Green.

Bird House Row

On 83rd Street between York Avenue and East End Avenue, 22 unique and colorful birdhouses mysteriously popped up on the Upper East Side in 2016. Like the dramatic birdhouses in Greenwich Village, the ones here feature many fun architectural and ornamental details. Many of the birdhouses have addresses, names or phrases included on them. Some say “Home Sweet Home,” or “Peace Understanding,” others say “East 83rd Street” or specific addresses on 83rd Street or “Uptown.”

The bird house creator, known to be a man with the code name “Woody,” is keeping his identity anonymous but the lucky gift recipients of the birdhouses spoke to the media in the wake of their appearance. Many of them include natural and knotted bark.  “Woody” also takes care of the birdhouses, tending “to the block’s tree pits, keeping them tidy and fixing them when they need it.” As he told CBS back in 2016, he sees his role here as a “Good Samaritan.”

For a complete look at all the birdhouses, check out our previous article.