a blog with cultural bulimia.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

I HEART the West Village

red rum

Bluejake: Day 4 & Day 5

"West Village was (...) settled in the 1700's by Dutch farmers. Residents moving there to flee cholera and yellow fever epidemics downtown in the 19th century swelled the population, but port activity along the Hudson gave the area the rough-and-tumble grit that so appealed to the literati and social marginals it was synonymous with for most of the 20th century. Generations of writers gathered at the White Horse Tavern, founded in 1880 at Hudson and West 11th Streets, including Dylan Thomas, Norman Mailer, Michael Harrington, William Styron, Vance Bourjaily, Pete Hamill and Frank McCourt.

Gays and lesbians remain very much a part of the neighborhood, where Congregation Beth Simchat Torah, based in Westbeth, has 800 dues-paying members. On Christopher Street, Bailey-Holt House was the first permanent residence for formerly homeless people with AIDS. It now has 44 residents and is completing a $1.5 million renovation. The rectory of St. Veronica's Roman Catholic Church on Washington Street is home to the House of Love, a 17-resident hospice for men with AIDS. It is staffed by the Missionaries of Charity, founded by Mother Teresa."

If You're Thinking of Living In | Far West Village: Hipsters, Meatpackers and Families, Too