01.Jul.2017 Albert Place

Albert Place is located between Mayflower Avenue on the north and Coligni on the south, just before Coligni swoops north to meet Mayflower.  It is named after Albert James Girard.  His parents, Dominick and Mary, owned the land that eventually was developed into Albert Place.

1929 Westchester Atlas

Albert Place is in a neighborhood called Huguenot Park — not to be confused with the park, Huguenot Park, which is located just south of the high school.  Huguenot Park was a sprawling planned development, which was bounded by the Pelham border on the west, Washington Avenue on the south, North Avenue on the east, and Eastchester Road on the north.  Massive!

1873 Map (NYPL)

Laid out in the 1870s, it would have been one of the earliest suburban developments in the country.   It appears to have been planned by W.R. Bergholz, a German-born civil engineer familiar with southern railroads who came to assist the Union and settled in New Rochelle after the war.     Huguenot Park did not take off, however — one real estate publication commented in 1887 that it had undergone little change or improvement..

One early map of Huguenot Park reveals a curious feature on the spot that Albert Place now occupies.  The feature variously resembles a volcano, a crater, a mountain, a lake or lakes.

The entry on Albert Place in the Standard Star provides some insight into this mystery, reporting that Albert Place had been sometimes called — like many other streets, apparently — Hillside Ave due to its position at the startling elevation of 80 ft above sea level (this is high for new Rochelle.). So it’s likely that the feature on the map was meant to signify a particularly high point in the landscape.

By the early 1900s, Dominick and Mary Girard acquired land that eventually formed a column stretching between Mayflower Ave and Coligni.

1911 Westchester Atlas

Dominick Girardi was contractor who built roads and eventually become involved with banking.  In the 1920s, the Gerardis began subdividing the land to form Albert Place — first on the south end, but eventually cutting through to Mayflower Avenue in a second stage, destroying what was presumably a beautiful house (seen above and below).

Sanborn Map

The Girardis apparently kept one of the newly constructed houses for themselves and lived on Albert Place for many years thereafter.

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