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Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, the opulent Iroquois Hotel was built at the site of the former Richmond Hotel, which burned to the ground on May 18, 1887, tragically killing 15 people. After that, fireproof building materials were used to construct the Iroquois Hotel at the intersection of Main, Eagle and Washington streets. When completed in 1889, the hotel adv…

It was a scene sure to catch anyone’s attention: a cavalcade of cadavers, coffins in tow, parading down Delaware Avenue in the dead of night. Of course, this was a thing of imagination, but it was from the imagination of author Mark Twain. They were escaping — as one skeleton described it — their dismal resting place one or two blocks north of the author’s resid…

Thirty-nine-year-old Steve Solecki and his wife, Stella, always worked late on weekends. The industrious butcher was known to stay at his store – the Cleveland Meat Market at Main Street and Center Road in Angola – until well past midnight on Saturdays, tallying the prior week’s receipts and preparing meat for the week ahead. After finishing up one such late-night…

Seven original art glass window panels are coming home to the Martin House Complex. Their return –  scheduled to happen in October – will come nearly a half century after the University of Victoria purchased them in a public sale, when the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed estate was vacant and in decline. "We are doing the 'Wright' thing by reuniting these stunning…

Last week, Chronicles provided a whirlwind tour of some of the city’s most recent additions to its burgeoning hospitality market. Our tour, as expected, mentioned nothing of those hotels’ amenities – laudable as they may be – but explored the sites where they now stand. These sites – once the place of homes, businesses and, in one instance, a canal blamed for…

A cursory glance along Fargo Avenue shows little evidence of the express mail magnate whose name not only adorns the street signs of this neighborhood but also once adorned the iconic stagecoaches of the Wells Fargo. In 1872, William Fargo, one of two founders of Wells Fargo & Co., built a lavish mansion on five acres of land bounded by Fargo and West avenues an…

The Graycliff Conservancy is setting its sights on a new visitor and interpretive center with restoration of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Graycliff Estate in Derby now assured. On Monday, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul confirmed in a ceremony on the grounds what was reported six months ago: The State of New York, through the Buffalo Billion II program, will provide $3.7 milli…

Our ships have come in. The USS The Sullivans, the USS Little Rock and whimsically christened USS Croaker have been watching over Western New York since Independence Day 1979. These warships, the cornerstone of the Buffalo and Erie County Naval and Military Park, led the resurgence of Buffalo's waterfront. "The anchor tenant," quipped Terry McGuire, who is on the pa…

The Women's Transportation Hall of Fame welcomes four new members Saturday. Hamburg native Dianne Craig, U.S. director of sales for Ford Motor Company, will be honored. Also being inducted are Clarice Burgwardt, co-founder of the Pedaling History Museum in Orchard Park; the late Melinda Burgwardt Gibson, Clarice's daughter, who captained the NYS Wheelmen; and Joann V…

It was around 10:20 a.m. on the unseasonably temperate morning of Dec. 9, 1952, and Buffalo’s Main Street was bustling with activity: Christmas shoppers hurried past elaborately decorated store windows, while men and women weaved their way through the crowded sidewalks en route to work. In a city boasting a population nearly double what it is today, nobody noticed as…

When it was announced that a Wyndham Hotel would occupy the long-dormant AM&A’s flagship department store, it was the most recent of several upscale hotel chains to enter into the city’s burgeoning hospitality market. Over the last four years, the Hilton, Marriott and Westin brands have planted their flags alongside such stalwarts as the Hyatt Regency and, more rec…

Buffalo now has a touch of London's Piccadilly Circus. On Tuesday, pedestrians and bicyclists gawked at the sight of a red double-decker bus making its inaugural trip from the Outer Harbor. "Buffalo Double Decker Bus Tours" was written on the sides in black and white striping, with "Sightseeing Tours, Murder Mysteries and Tavern Tours" in smaller letters. "The bus…

Buffalo’s most famous – or infamous – season has long been the butt of jokes, largely on account of that pesky Blizzard of ’77. Of course, one season of falling snow, frigid temperatures and high winds should not define a city – Buffalo has a lifetime of that season, to her credit – but winter did contribute to one of the costliest disasters in the city’s hi…

A lot of people had high expectations Friday for the release of a report on the rebirth of the Central Terminal. Then came the recommendations. “This was sorely, sorely disappointing,” said Elizabeth Giles, a board member with Citizens for Regional Transit. “What a waste of time.” “There was nothing new,” said Eddy Dobosiewicz of Forgotten Buffalo, an …