Sunday, February 08, 2009

Wilkens on First Avenue

Sometimes, I look up. And usually, when I can remember to look up I see something I don't remember seeing before. Today, I looked up and saw this sign on top of the building on 14th Street and 1st Avenue that says "Wilken." It's a pretty little building, likely with tiny little ramshackle apartments, and the Salt & Pepper restaurant downstairs and the foreign writing on the sign, which must be some kind of Indian or East Asian language given the type of food they serve. (Note: can somebody tell me what language that is, it's quite beautiful and poetic looking.)

But who was Wilken? Turns out, it's "G Wilkens" and there are pigeons blocking the letters in my photos. Gustav Wilkens was a guy who lived in the entire building with his family and had a jewelry store in the ground floor in the late 1800's. The jewelry store was open until the mid-1940's.

The link that gave me the above information on Wilkens also has information about the Bicycles sign that used to be on the side of that building, and mentions the President of Metro Bicycles as being named Bob. But I thought it was Jim.

Nanci: are you reading, care to elaborate on who is Bob? Are Bob and Jim the same person? Does Jim have a partner named Bob? I am confused.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That is a great building. I have actually noticed it while waiting for the bus on 1st Avenue. I have a feeling it is currently unoccupied, and have had thoughts of squatting it many times. By the way, I think the writing on the sign is Arabic.