December 17, 2015

#ThrowbackThursday Alpha Xi and Brooklyn. They're Historic

Written by Star & Lamp

The Alpha Xi Chapter House in Brooklyn will forever be a part of American history. 

The chapter house is one of a thousand residences in the Brooklyn Heights section of New York City recently designated as a National District Landmark. All buildings in the historic district come under a preservation law, and exterior or construction of new buildings must be approved by a special historic commission.

William Sturtz, an Alpha Xi brother, wrote of the national landmark designation for the Brooklyn Poly Chapter's publication, The Woodbird. Here is his report on 33 Sidney Place and other historic buildings and things:

It was just a matter of time, but at last the federal government has passed a bill recognizing Alpha Xi at 33 Sidney Place as a National Landmark. However, by means of political chicanery, the rest of the Brooklyn Heights area has also been included in the bill. 

For the full story, however, we must go back to January 12, 1965. At that time, Secretary of the Interior Stewart Udall, acting on the recommendation of the Advisory Board of National Parks, Historic Sites, Buildings and Monuments, declared the entire 50 block area defined as Brooklyn Heights a National Landmark. The reason for this is obvious to anyone who has taken the time to walk around the district and observe the characteristic architecture.

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