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Tapestry Brick Dwellings: The Emergence of a Residential Type in Brooklyn

Taylor, Jonathan D.

This thesis defines a previously unstudied type of residential building characteristic of the development of New York City’s outer boroughs in the 1910s and 1920s, the “Tapestry Brick dwelling.” It establishes its significance through two neighborhood case studies in Brooklyn: Windsor Terrace and Northeast Flatbush. The Tapestry Brick dwelling is a two-story brick residence, attached or semidetached, ornamented with patterned brick and small stone details in the façade, and a corniceless, decoratively shaped parapet. The Tapestry Brick dwelling arose in the 1910s as a stylistic innovation in one- and twofamily row houses. In the 1920s, it became a common form in new, more distant neighborhoods such as Northeast Flatbush, developed following the expansion of the subway. Here, immigrant architects of chiefly Russian Jewish origin designed Tapestry Brick dwellings to house two or four families, for developers and residents of this new immigrant enclave. The thesis concludes that, as a significant architectural element of the development of New York City and the history of its immigrant communities, Tapestry Brick dwellings are worthy of preservation. It suggests that, as a neighborhood developed coherently and primarily of Tapestry Brick dwellings, which remains largely intact, Northeast Flatbush is a potential candidate as a historic district.

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More About This Work

Academic Units
Historic Preservation
Thesis Advisors
Dolkart, Andrew S.
Degree
M.S., Columbia University
Published Here
June 11, 2013
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