Our Building

During the depression we decided to move in the with tenants instead of paying rent. My father owned a building with cold water flats when we moved in. It was in Bay Ridge on 69th Street between Fifth and Fourth Avenues. This was a typical Brooklyn neighborhood. It was a goyish neighborhood.

There was no heating. We had old black stoves with a lid and you put coke inside and that was how you heated and cooked. But later we bought a stove. And my father put in electricity. But before that, they would send me to a grocery store near Fourth Avenue to get the coke; they called the store “The Greek’s” even though the owner was Armenian. My mother would send me to the store and I would get the coke.

The subway was around the corner from us and two trolleys ran on our street in either direction. The boys still played stickball in between the trolleys.