19th Century ‘Stench Map’

Fascinating map from the 1870s showing the sources of smell pollution in midtown Manhattan. A big culprit was industry in Williamsburg and Greenpoint – Pratt’s Astral Oil Works at Bushwick Inlet, and the adjacent Williamsburg Gas Works at 50 Kent (although the map locates the gas works a block to the south, at what is now the southern CitiStorage building), as well as two of Standard Oil’s refineries on Newtown Creek, a fat rendering plant and a phosphate works.

50 Kent is just now completing remediation – it is on schedule to be finished and the lot turned over to Parks in early May.