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Snippet of The History of the Chatwal Hotel (Audio)

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Joining Peter will be historian Elizabeth Bradley, who tells the great story of the lovers and the murder of Stanford White, and the very first “trial of the century.” Kevin Fitzpatrick, author of Dorothy Parker’s New York and Under the Table: A Dorothy Parker Cocktail Guide, reveals how many speakeasies were once on 44th street (whatever number you guess, you’ll be way too low), and talks about special secrets of the neighborhood. If you're visiting New York for historic reasons, make sure to check out the Chatwal Hotel!
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here we are on West 44th Street. And if you just take a look at this may be a three block area here on. We're not even gonna talk about all of Times Square, just a three block area. You've got so much history that you just spend a week, if not longer, just on that three block area right up the street of Sardis, all the Broadway theaters. It's amazing. And joining me now, someone who's been on the show before the greatest story. Elizabeth Bradley. How are you? Very well, I think. I mean, and we're and we're I should say we're in the chat wall. What was this hotel first? It was originally The Lambs Club, which was a theatrical club for some of the most famous actors of American stage history. Everybody, there was a private club. It was a private club. This area is really still a club row for New York City. There are half a dozen at least private clubs, mostly with the university affiliation within a two or three block radius. Harvard, Princeton, Yale Century Club Century Club, of course. And of course, you go back to the Groucho Marx line that he would never join a club him as a member. So I guess I'm off the hook. I don't I don't think he was a member here, but almost everybody else that you can think of Waas. But this was the Lambs Club for how many years, you know, It was the Lambs Club until the seventies, when they sold their building. I believe in 1974 2. And it has. And subsequently it became the hotel on Lee recently the Chat Wall Hotel. And then they put some money into it. They did put some money and the lovely thing about the spaces that they seem to have kept a lot of the original take core and the furnishing. So it has. Yes, and that would work. It's a wonderful warm space, and it has some of that original bows are charm that Stanford White was so famous for, and in fact we're actually broadcasting from the Stanford White Sweet. Yes, you can see the pictures of Evelyn Nesbit all over the room, which are very interesting indeed because because they show you a less savory side of the life of Stanford White. He was, of course, the most famous partner of McKim, Mead and White, the preeminent bazaar firm, which did the second Madison Square Madison Square Building. They did the New York Herald Building, the Century association. They're also responsible for the Boston Public Library, a little further a field and numerous houses in Newport and Long Island. But Stanford White was known as a cereal roue. I guess if that's the polite ist word, I can say like, Hey was very loose. And one of his many conquests was a young woman named Evelyn Evelyn White. Who? Excuse me, Evelyn Nesbit, whose photographs? That's correct. She never married Stanford White and she anybody ever marry Stanford White? No, I he just he just went from was next. Yes, exactly. That's a wonderful way to put it. And Evelyn Nesbit was a young lady who was in the chorus line of many shows, as as is the custom sort of a Ziegfield Follies girl. And she's most famously referred to us the girl in the red velvet swing. Because Stanford White had a lovely apartment right around the corner from Madison Square Garden. He kept one in Madison Square Garden as well kept a few apartment kept a few apartments, and in this one he had a swing in one of his rooms from which his his young accompany accompany ments would dangle. De jure would would dangle from that swing and provide entertainment, and Evelyn was the most famous occupant of the swing. So, ironically, it's interesting. Just her photograph was in here. Any other women in here? No other women that I recognize there and no other women that he would way would claim It's true, right? That's true. Wouldn't it be ironic? Here we are at the chart while hotel in the Stanford White Sweet, A man who never married. I bet they've had a few weddings. They're so small winning, I bet they have. And I'm sure nobody realizes that in this romantic setting is quite a tale of intrigue and heartbreak and murder. In fact, murder. Yes, Evelyn Nesbit did. She herself did get married and her husband, Harry Thaw, who was the scion of a Pittsburgh coal family, a millionaire and a real trouble maker. He he shot Stanford White in a fit of jealous peek at the opening night of a play called Mam Zelle Champagne, or perhaps memes. Al Sham Panya Uh and, uh, exactly. Moms also, I'm fine. And it was considered the very first trial of the century. The first time that he killed him, he killed him. He killed him that night. And he got off on a plea of insanity, which everyone believed, because apparently he had been, ah, pretty messed up guy for most of his his privileged life. Eso sooner or later came back to get him. It did. It did. Which makes this an interesting choice for a room to in which to get married. Unless you have a really good sense of humor, I guess. Or your heavily inebriated right. That too. With champagne with champagne.
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