The Educational Building

STATUS Designated Individual Landmark

70 Fifth Avenue, NY, NY (AKA 2-6 West 13th Street)

CLIENT: Ginn & Company

ARCHITECT: Charles Lamb

DATE: c. 1914

STYLE: Beaux Arts

Designated: May 18, 2021

70 Fifth Avenue is an example of this area’s characteristic intersection of architectural excellence and cultural significance. Built in 1914 and designed by architect Charles Lamb in what the LPC’s materials rightly call an “understated and refined example of the Beaux Arts style”, this commercial building housed a remarkable roster of tenants involved with the furtherance of civic and human rights. No less a historic figure than W.E.B. Du Bois worked here, decades before he lived in the landmarked Dunbar Apartments, 409 Edgecombe Avenue, or in the Addisleigh Park Historic District at 173-19 113rd Avenue, all of which claim historic significance due in part to his association with them.

In fact, this might be the earliest Du Bois-associated site to be designated in New York City, and among the most-significant in that it represents his influential leadership of ‘The Crisis’, a magazine published by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Both the magazine and the organization were housed in this building. Interestingly, by the time 70 Fifth Avenue opened, Du Bois had been at the helm of ‘The Crisis’ for at least 4 years, monumentally expanding its circulation (reportedly from an initial 1,000 subscribers in 1908 to over 100,00 by 1918) and greatly expanded its content.

STATUS Designated Individual Landmark

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Landmark Activity

Mar 22, 2021

The Educational Building, 70 Fifth Avenue – 70 Fifth Avenue (AKA 2-6 West 13th Street)

Review the Testimony

Local Voices

“I don’t know what the City would be without HDC. [They] testified before LPC time after time and helped us focus on the right issues. We would not be an historic district without HDC! ”

Doreen Gallo: DUMBO Neighborhood Alliance

Local Voices

“Use HDC as a resource because they know what they are doing and can offer advice on how to go about creating a district from every front: architectural, political, LPC, and the media. I had floundered prior to my involvement with this invaluable organization.”

Fern Luskin: Lamartine Place Historic District; Friends of Lamartine Place & Gibbons Underground Railroad Site

Local Voices

“HDC provided guidance and shared information during that process—we knew which Council members were going one way or another and we changed a few minds. I don’t think NoHo would have had as cohesive a district had it not been for HDC’s aid.”

Zella Jones: NoHo Historic District; NoHo East; and NoHo Extension

Local Voices

“I remember Richard saying at a meeting, we have someone here from HDC, Nadezhda Williams, Director of Preservation and Research, to help us. She said to us, ‘You are not the only ones going through this.’ HDC included us in an enormous community”

Erika Petersen: West End Preservation Society

Local Voices

"HDC has begun a series of projects to highlight the Bronx's architectural and cultural history. From booklet's and research highlighting specific sites and historic districts to the HDC's symposium in October 2018 to the latest community-based committee to look into further possible sites to qualify for landmarking, the HDC has established projects that will serve the Bronx community well."

Elena Martinez
City Lore, Folklorist
Bronx Music Heritage Center, Co-Artistic Director

Local Voices

"Welcome2TheBronx is grateful for the advocacy done by the Historic Districts Council on behalf of the people of The Bronx. Through their deep connections and understanding of the importance of preserving our local histories, The Bronx has been able to have several spotlights shown on endangered communities as gentrification creeps into the borough."

Ed García Conde,
founder and Executive Director,
Welcome2TheBronx