by Kevin Walsh

Known officially as a Type 24M Twin, this post holds down the southeast corner of 5th Avenue and East 19th Street a few blocks from Union Square. I am using the term “original” loosely; the original form o the 5th Avenue Twin was somewhat more ornate and can best be seen in the collection of retro lamps surrounding City Hall Park, on which I intend to do a photo shoot sooner or later. This particular style arose in the 1920s and is a somewhat streamlined version of the original.

It was mostly used on center medians on wider avenues in the “outer boroughs” such as Queens Boulevard, but found a home on 7th Avenue and in Fulton Street, Brooklyn and other busier streets. The Twins were mostly purged in the zealous destruction of older streetlight stylings in the early 1960s.

A few “originals” can still be seen, though, here on 5th Avenue at 19th, 23rd (a pair of them), and 28th Street. There are a couple in City Hall Park near the Hall itself, but those are mostly inaccessible to the public. There is one at 6th Avenue and Walker Street in Tribeca, and one on a massive base mostly used for important intersections uptown at Hamilton Place and Amsterdam Avenue.

Reproductions can be found surrounding City Hall and Bryant Parks, and also lining Central Park West from Columbus Circle north to West 72nd.


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