Historic S.W. Bowne Grain Storehouse

What had remained from the continuing demolition with the BQE highway in the background.


Consisting of a two-block complex this four-story 200 by 80-foot brick building featured end-gabled structures with a central transverse firewall and eight round-arched window bay openings. This storehouse was accompanied by a feed mill removed in 1904-1915 and a feed storage building also on the lot.

A warehouse that once fueled New York City's four-legged transports throughout the area. The warehouse was established in 1886 as a storehouse for grain, feed, and hay processing which also included a feed mill. The large property owner and independent operator Samuel Winter Bowne became noted on the New York Produce Exchange as having the commercial capacity to store 600,000 bushels onsite. 

Eventually, the storehouse complex no longer became a major economic engine for the City once in the 1930s the city moved away from horses to cars and trucks as canal grain traffic started to dry up as grain processing started to shift away from canals to containerization, large capacity grain floating elevators, and bulk railroad cars. For a time the property was being used for cargo and stevedoring companies but became abandoned by 1960.

In 2018, a fire broke out on the property causing severe damage to the storehouse. Unbeknownst to the city and preservationists, the building was demolished over the Labor Day weekend without a permit or demolition order from the city. 

Today the property is owned by the Chetrit Group which has developed several projects throughout Brooklyn including Hotel Bossert in Brooklyn Heights, 9 Dekalb in Downtown Brooklyn, and M500 Hotel in Williamsburg. 

Location: 595-611 Smith Street, Brooklyn, NY

Status: Demolished during the summer of 2018


1. Corcoran, Cate, "Owner Demolishes Red Hook's Historic Bowne Warehouse After Arson Fire", October 11, 2019, Brownstoner

2. History of S.W. Bowne Store House, Red Hook Water Stories

3. Kensinger, Nathan, "In Gowanus, one last vestige of Brooklyn's industrial waterfront", March 16, 2017, NY Curbed

4. Kensinger, Nathan, "As Red Hook's industrial history is demolished, what comes next for the neighborhood?", June 27, 2019, NY Curbed

5. Wong, Pamela, "Fire Tore Through Historic S.W. Bowne Grain Storehouse Thursday Night", June 15, 2018, Bklyner

6. Corcoran, Cate, "Is Red Hook's Historic S.W. Bowne Grain Storehouse Being Demolished without a Permit?",  June 24, 2019, Brownstoner

7. Croghan, Lore, "Red Hook's S.W. Bown Grain Storehouse has been torn down", September 4, 2019, Brooklyn Daily Eagle

#redhook #redhookbrooklyn #brooklyn #bownegrain #historicredhook  #historicbrooklyn #gentricification #housing #redhookhousing #goomba #brooklyngraffiti


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