by Kevin Walsh

Angry clouds set off the Church of the Immaculate Conception, East Gun Hill Road and Holland Avenue. The church was founded in 1902, with the original building on Briggs Avenue (today’s Tilden Street). The present Italianate – Neo-Romanesque brick twin-towered church was completed in 1925. It’s the second of two Churches of the Immaculate Conception in the Bronx: the first was founded in Melrose, at Melrose Avenue and East 150th Street, in 1853, with the present building there dedicated in 1889.

The Catholic concept of the Immaculate Conception was that Mary, Jesus’ mother, was conceived without original sin.

Adjoining Wallace Avenue between Bartholdi Street and Gun Hill Road was renamed Capuchin Way in 1977 for the Capuchin Friars, the prelates who serve the parish. (It’s one of the few streets in New York City called a way.)

The Order arose in 1520 when Matteo da Bascio, an Observant Franciscan friar native to the Italian region of the Marches, said he had been inspired by God with the idea that the manner of life led by the friars of his day was not the one which their founder, St. Francis of Assisi, had envisaged. He sought to return to the primitive way of life of solitude and penance as practiced by the founder of their Order. wikipedia

The Order is named for the cappuccio, or hooded robe worn by members. For most people, monkeys come to mind when they hear the word “capuchin,” it’s likely that the monkeys, associated with street organ grinders, acquired the name because they resembled hooded monks.

More from Gun Hill Road on this FNY page.

Check out the ForgottenBook, take a look at the gift shop, and as always, “comment…as you see fit.”



Peter March 27, 2020 - 2:22 pm

From the guide to capuchin monkeys:
“The dominant male of the group is the only one that will be able to mate with the mature females. ”

And that’s different from humans, how?

Tal Barzilai March 27, 2020 - 4:48 pm

I notice this church every time I go to that little shopping plaza further down on Gun Hill Road that has a Checkers.

redstaterefugee March 31, 2020 - 10:07 am

Kevin – Apropos of nothing I thought that you might appreciate this:


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