From Ephemeral NYC blogger….Blogging forward…NY History.
Bar culture is so ingrained here, a tavern functioned as the colony’s makeshift city hall through the end of the 1600s.
But imagine a bar that downplayed its beer and liquor menu and hoped to lure patrons by offering soda, hot chocolate, ice cream sodas—and a dose of religious sermonizing?
That was the idea behind the Subway Tavern, which opened in 1905 in a Federal-style row house on Bleecker and Mulberry Streets near the new subway system’s Bleecker Street stop.
Dubbed by a snickering Newspaper Row as a “moral bar,” the Subway Tavern was the brainchild of Bishop Henry Codman Potter (below), leader of New York’s Protestant archdiocese.
It didn’t help that in the 1890s, reform-minded police…
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