New York World Building

Constructed, 1860

Potter erected a five-story Italianate stone building on the lot for $350,000 (equivalent to $10 million in 2020); it became the first headquarters of the New York World, which was established in 1860. Potter purchased the building outright in 1867.

Burned, Jan 31, 1882
Constructed, 1890

As evidence of just how important Newspaper Row was at the time, The New York World Building was the first building in the city to surpass the height of Trinity Church. Furthermore, it was the world’s tallest building from 1890 to 1894. The 309-foot, 16-story building at 99 Park Row was capped by a copper dome and inside Joseph Pulitzer had his office. The semi-circular office had three windows with unobstructed views out to Brooklyn, Governor’s Island, and Long Island, ceiling frescoes and embossed leather lining the walls. Also in the dome was another office for Pulitzer’s brother-in-law, a library and a conference room. Unsurprisingly, The New York World heralded its own building as “The Greatest Newspaper Building in the World.” The New York World Building would be demolished in 1955 to accommodate ramp expansion at the Brooklyn Bridge. The stained glass window which was once above the entrance is now in the Columbia University School of Journalism. The New York Sun was next door and was dwarfed by the new building. Charles Dana, head of the Sun who had lost public favor due to his conservatism and anti-Semitism, criticized The New York World Building for looking like a large brass head tack. A 1904 guidebook notes the Sun Building as being the former home of the Tammany Society and was a building “of no architectural pretensions.” George B. Post designed the steel-frame building, with an exterior of sandstone, brick and terra-cotta. The entire thing was paid for in cash. The newspapers were printed in the basement printing press, with retail on the first and mezzanine floors. The news offices were on the top six floors, with commercial office space rented to other tenants below. According to the book Pulitzer: A Life by Denis Brian, Pulitzer furnished bedrooms on the 11th floor for editors and reporters who worked late and couldn’t get home. At the opening celebration, an explosion caused by a photographer’s flash powder caused a big stone to fall from City Hall and broke around fifty windows in city’s political home.

Destroyed, 1956

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