Buffalo Takes on the Ku Klux Klan

On the evening on August 31, 1924, shots rang out in front of 128 Durham Street, near Delavan and Grider in Buffalo. Moments later, Special Officer Edward C. Obertean lay mortally wounded; Klansman Thomas Austin was dead; and Ku Klux Klan recruiter, or Kleagle, had a gunshot in the groin. Armed warfare had broken outContinue reading “Buffalo Takes on the Ku Klux Klan”

Build the Larkin Rowhouses

Originally published in Buffalo Spree, July-August 2006, p. 150 Most architecturally-aware Buffalonians know how the Darwin Martin-Frank Lloyd Wright friendship led to commissions for the now-demolished Larkin Administration building and homes for the top Larkin Company officers. Demolished portions of the Martin House complex are being rebuilt as the site undergoes a complete restoration. Martin alsoContinue reading “Build the Larkin Rowhouses”

The Old Curiosity Shop: McDonnell and Sons Monument Company

Parks officials were mortified at the malfeasance. The Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument in Lafayette Square was cracking and crumbling only six years after its erection in 1882 during the city’s semi-centennial year. A structural review was undertaken, revealing careless workmanship throughout the foundation of the monument. The core of rubble and mortar was inadequate to the taskContinue reading “The Old Curiosity Shop: McDonnell and Sons Monument Company”

Top Ten Urban Legends in Buffalo

In the old David Letterman format, these are the ten most bogus urban legends about Buffalo & its history: 10.  Buffalo has the longest, coldest, snowiest, harshest, worst winters in America. 9.   Every house in Buffalo was photographed during the Pan-American Exposition and the Buffalo History Museum has the pictures. 8.  The “Historical Society” (alternately, the “Preservation Society”)Continue reading “Top Ten Urban Legends in Buffalo”