multi-million dollars sale to actor Neil Patrick Harris of a home at 2036 Fifth Avenue, to cash starved recent college graduates looking for an apartment in the historic community to Europeans searching for glimpses of Harlem’s long lost Renaissance period. Yet, Harlem lacks an identity. Not an identity of culture but rather an identity of its history: Who did what
where? Who lived there? It begs the question: Where are the historic markers. Yes, there are a few in the form of statutes to Harriet Tubman, Duke Ellington, Frederick Douglass, the 369th regiment better known as Harlem Hell Fighters and the preservation of Alexander Hamilton’s home at W. 141st and St. Nicholas Avenue and Jumel Mansion overlooking the Polo Grounds houses (Where the football and baseball Giants once played and the elite played polo) off of Amsterdam Avenue at West 162nd Street. Both the British and George Washington used the home as Revolutionary War headquarters.
|Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) Parade, Harlem, 1924, cnr. W 135th & Lenox Ave|