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Where Elsie Met Her End

Where Elsie Met Her End

"House in which Miss Sigel was killed." The building at 782 Eighth Avenue in New York where the body of Elsie Sigel was found in a trunk. Click here for another view (of different buildings?) and more information on a very cold case from 1909. View full size. George Grantham Bain Collection.


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The lack of trolley tracks in front of the 'mission' picture is a pretty large clue they are different locations (although the picture just might not be of a wide enough view). The copious amount of ironwork lacking in the murder location photo, the wider sidewalks, and the taller buildings are other clues not yet mentioned that they are different sites.

Some early Curtiss motorcycles can be seen here. Some Curtiss motorcycles can bring upwards of $200,000 when sold.

There is also a Glenn H. Curtiss Museum.

FDNY still there

I think it's pretty cool that FDNY's Ladder 4 (along with Engine 54) is still occupying the far left corner building 98 years later. (Perhaps that's Miss Sigel's ghost standing in the middle of the street, staring right at the photographer - good way to start a ghost legend!)

I think k2 is right- 'where

I think k2 is right- 'where she met her killer" isn't necessarily where she was killed. This story probably ran for a few days in the papers, and they delved into the backstory, including different places she was, leading up to the murder.

I'm not very familiar with tenement buildings

but is it possible that the two photos show opposite sides of the same building?

Let's play semantic variables

Thinking at first that the same hand marking both photos called into question the accuracy of the reporter, I looked again at what the text actually said. This photo is captioned "the house where Miss Sigel was killed"; the other photo is labeled where "she met her killer." Not only does this indicate these are separate locations, but that there may have been a length of time between meeting her killer and the event of her murder... and that I'm expending too much time thinking about this.

The bigger difference

I think these are two different locations, how more different can they get?
I do see a resemblance, there's 'chop suey' in both pics.

In memory of Elsie Sigel....

Putting aside in the moment the mobid reason for which the photo was originally taken, the photo is a fascinating study ---- it seems to resemble the backdrop of a theatical backdrop, what a mix of interaction and artistry ---- quality of workmanship and pride is reflected in the delicate delivery wagon's commercial script "Fruits and Vegetables", what elegance rarely seen nowadays it seems....if it wasn't for poor Elsie's demise, this photo may never have been taken, a toast to her memory....

Worst shingle location ever

Look at the cornice of #784. The pawnbroker has hung out his symbol (the three balls) 5 stories up.

One more thing

The Hell's Kitchen building has 3 windows across. This building has 2 windows across. Yep, totally different buildings.

Unless I'm mistaken,

street levels didn't change a whole 1/2 floor between these two photographs. The first photograph of the "mission" has stairs to enter from street level, and the ground floor levels of the neighboring buildings vary. In the second photograph, all the buildings have ground floors at the same level. And since the surrounding buildings are different in each photo, it makes no sense that everything except this one building would have been torn down, re-built (in similar mish-mash style) and the street level raised. Much more likely that they are simply 2 different buildings.

Dave said..."There's a

Dave said..."There's a bigger difference. Who can spot it?"

Not sure what you are referring to or what the difference is, but curious to hear more.


the sun can really heat up a room in the summer, the awnings would block the sun when needed

Nice catch...

...of the policeman in the window.

As far as the awnings, it looks like (at least in the building on the left, #784) that the awnings folded in which would allow more light in.

You can see a policeman in

You can see a policeman in the right window, top floor.

I'm always wondering about the awnings people used to have commonly in NYC.
I always think of how sooty and filthy they must have become. Why were they so omnipresent? Weren't tenements usually pretty light-challenged already?

I don't think the two photos are the same buildings...

The descriptions don't necessarily jibe with each other ("house in which [she] was killed" and "mission where [she] met her slayer"), plus the addresses don't match in the photos. The block in this photo is still numbered in the 780s. The fire station at the left in this photo (at 786?) is now at the address 782 Eighth Ave. in an ugly 1970s building (see Google street view) which leads me to guess that the street numbers didn't change. The addresses in the other photo seem to be #10 & #12 of whatever street.

[Address numbers can change. There's a bigger difference. Who can spot it? - Dave]

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