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Guide to the Robert Vadheim Brooklyn neighborhood renewal and development collection 1987.002

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Brooklyn, NY, 11201
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Brooklyn Historical Society

Collection processed by Tiffany Tyau-Wong

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit on March 21, 2015
Finding aid written in English using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

 Finding aid revised and entered into Archivists' Toolkit by Weatherly Stephan.  , March 11, 2011

Descriptive Summary

 
Creator - Compiler: Vadheim, Robert, 1919-2010
Title: Robert Vadheim Brooklyn neighborhood renewal and development collection
Dates [inclusive]: 1962-1987
Abstract: The Brooklyn neighborhood renewal and development collection contains 2.33 linear feet of materials dating from 1962 to 1987, compiled by Dr. Robert H. Vadheim. The collection focuses on revival, renewal, and renovation efforts within Brooklyn's neighborhoods and cultural institutions. Document types in the collection include newspaper clippings, magazine articles, social announcements, invitations, neighborhood tour pamphlets, and other ephemera. In addition to Brooklyn neighborhoods, brownstones, and building restoration, the collection also documents the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, and the Brooklyn Bridge--particularly the 1983 Brooklyn Bridge Centennial. Magazine clippings discussing specific observances or general occasions of change in New York City as a whole are also included.
Quantity: 2.33 linear feet in one manuscript box, one record carton, and one oversize box.
Text [Box]: 1987.002 Box 2 of 2
Text [Box]: 1987.002 Box 1 of 2
Call Phrase: 1987.002
Sponsor: This collection was processed and described as part of the project, "Uncovering the Secrets of Brooklyn's 19th Century Past: Creation to Consolidation," funded by the Council on Library and Information Resources, with additional support from The Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation.

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Biographical note

Dr. Robert Vadheim (1920-2010), a physician, was a longtime resident of Brooklyn. Vadheim and his partner Robert Johnson moved to Brooklyn Heights in 1964. During the 1960s, he became an active member of the Brooklyn community, promoting historic preservation and the revitalization of Brooklyn neighborhoods. Vadheim also volunteered and made philanthropic contributions to local institutions such as the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens and the Brooklyn Museum. His donations led to significant preservation projects in Brooklyn Heights, such as the restoration of stained glass windows at the Church of St. Ann and the Holy Trinity, and the installation of a working timepiece on the clock tower of the Brooklyn Historical Society's building. In 2005, Vadheim received the Brooklyn Heights Association's Award for Extraordinary Community Service. His donations to the Brooklyn Historical Society include works of art and manuscript collections that document changes in Brooklyn and its surroundings during the mid to late 20th century.

Sources

  1. Surratt, Jerl. "Dr. Robert Vadheim, Enthusiast of Heights Preservation, Dies at 90." Brooklyn Daily Eagle, August 11, 2010. http://www.brooklyneagle.com/categories/category.php?category_id=24&id=37348

Historical note

The borough of Brooklyn, N.Y. began experiencing significant surges of change and renewal in the 1960s. Efforts to renovate and preserve Brooklyn's diverse landscapes were sparked by local concern for neighborhoods suffering from neglect or in need of preservation, and by general interests in Brooklyn's history, architecture, and geographic location. Proposals for urban renewal garnered support not only from Brooklynites, but from outside land developers, business investors, and potential home owners attracted by the intact federal and Victorian houses in Brooklyn Heights, Park Slope, Prospect Heights, Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens, Boerum Hill, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Fort Greene, Flatbush, and Crown Heights. The steady renewal of buildings and physical landscapes in the 1970s and 1980s drew new attention and financial interests to Brooklyn as new resident populations and businesses began moving into the borough's neighborhoods. As renewal efforts continued, property values rose and continued to rise as revitalization continued.

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Scope and Contents

The Robert Vadheim Brooklyn neighborhood renewal and development collection contains 2.33 linear feet of materials dating from 1962 to 1987, compiled by Dr. Robert H. Vadheim. The collection focuses on revival, renewal, and renovation efforts within Brooklyn's neighborhoods and cultural institutions. Document types in the collection include newspaper clippings, magazine articles, neighborhood guides, maps, and other ephemera. In addition to Brooklyn neighborhoods, brownstones, and building restoration, the collection also documents the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, and the Brooklyn Bridge--particularly the 1983 Brooklyn Bridge Centennial. Magazine clippings discussing specific observances or general occasions of change in New York City as a whole are also included.

The collection is arranged in five series:

  1. Brooklyn neighborhoods;
  2. Brooklyn renewal;
  3. Brooklyn institutions;
  4. Brooklyn newspapers; and
  5. New York City interests.

Series One contains clippings on Brownstone Brooklyn neighborhoods that document renewed interest in the area and revival of buildings and homes. Series Two includes clippings on the general work of renewal in Brooklyn, mostly focusing on real estate issues and the brownstone movement. Series Three documents the activities of Brooklyn cultural institutions. Series Four contains local newspapers which provide commentary on the impact of renewal in individual neighborhoods and the borough. Finally, Series Five contains clippings and ephemera on discussions of renewal and cultural events in New York City.

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Access Points

Document Type

  • Clippings (information artifacts)
  • Magazines (periodicals)
  • Maps
  • Printed ephemera
  • Publications

Subject Organizations

  • Brooklyn Botanic Garden.
  • Brooklyn Museum.

Subject Topics

  • Brownstone buildings -- New York (State) -- New York
  • City planning -- New York (State) -- New York
  • Community development -- New York (State) -- New York
  • Urban renewal -- New York (State) -- New York

Subject Places

  • Brooklyn (New York, N.Y.)
  • Brooklyn Bridge (New York, N.Y.)
  • Kings County (N.Y.) |v Newspapers

Subject Uniform Title(s)

  • Brooklyn Heights press & Cobble Hill news
  • Phoenix (Brooklyn, New York, N.Y.)

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Administrative Information

Conditions Governing Access

Open to researchers without restriction.

Preferred Citation

Identification of item, date (if known); Robert Vadheim Brooklyn neighborhood renewal and development collection, 1987.002, Box and Folder number; Brooklyn Historical Society.

Related Archival Materials note

The Brooklyn Historical Society also holds the H. Dickson McKenna collection (ARC.060), which contains materials on the brownstone movement and the renewal of Brooklyn neighborhoods.

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

Gift of Dr. Robert Vadheim, 1987.

Processing Information note

Fully processed to the folder level.

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Container List

Series 1: Brooklyn neighborhoods, 1962-1987. 0.5 linear feet in 27 folders.

Scope and Contents

This series contains news clippings, articles, and printed ephemera that discuss changes to, renovation of, and restoration within specific Brooklyn neighborhoods. Many printed items in the series originate from local philanthropic organizations throughout Brooklyn, such as The Annual Fort Greene House Tour announcements, Magnolia Tree Earth Center materials, and a booklet produced by The Society for the Preservation of Weeksville and Bedford-Stuyvesant History, titled Weeksville: Then & Now. The series primarily covers Williamsburg, Greenpoint, and neighborhoods in Brownstone Brooklyn.

Series 2: Brooklyn renewal, 1969-1987. 0.33 linear feet in nine folders.

Scope and Contents

This series consists of materials documenting renewal activities, challenges, and generations of “renewed” awareness of and in Brooklyn. Specific subjects include surging interests in Brooklyn brownstone properties, including the Brooklyn Brownstone Conference and redlining. Document types in the series include newspaper clippings, foldable maps and guides, magazine articles, and promotional buttons.

Series 3: Brooklyn institutions, 1966-1987. 0.25 linear feet in nine folders.

Scope and Contents

This series consists of news clippings and ephemera regarding events at the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, and Brooklyn Bridge, including numerous articles regarding the 1983 Brooklyn Bridge Centennial.

Series 4: Brooklyn newspapers, 1973-1983. 0.92 linear feet in one oversize box.

Scope and Contents

This series consists of twelve editions of local Brooklyn newspaper The Phoenix and five editions of  Brooklyn Heights Press & Cobble Hill News. Articles in these issues include news regarding renewal and renovation.

Series 5: New York City interests, 1974-1986. 0.1 linear feet in two folders.

Scope and Contents

This series consists largely of New York City-published magazines and printed matter. Topics in these materials include redevelopment, social events such as gallery openings and parties, and the Statue of Liberty centennial.

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