in the Public Realm
Blumstein's Department Store
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Blumstein's Department Store
Abby Suckle
Sites at this Tour Stop...

Blumstein's Department Store Building

About this Tour Stop...

Across the street is the site of the former Blumstein's Department Store at 230 West 125th Street. Designed by architects Charles Kohn and Charles Butler in 1923, it was an amalgam of late Art Nouveau and Early Art Deco styles. In its day, it was one of the most elegant department stores uptown. In 1958, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was stabbed there while signing copies of his new book, Stride Toward Freedom. He was taken to nearby Harlem Hospital for surgery. Years before, in 1934, Reverend Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. led an eight week "Don't Buy Where You Can't Work" campaign, in protest of racially segregated hiring practices. On July 26, Blumstein's promised to hire 35 African-American women as a result. On that day, 1,500 people marked the victory in a parade, despite a heavy rain. As you walk east from the Loew's Victoria Theater, take note of the Seventh Avenue and 125th Street intersection. It was here that Malcolm X gave many speeches.