Stuart Strickland remembered his father's stories about the most harrowing moment in his life, when William R. Strickland saw the out-of-control freighter Michael K. Tewksbury topple the Michigan Avenue lift bridge into the ice-choked Buffalo River just before midnight on Jan. 21, 1959. This weekend, Stuart Strickland plans to travel from his home in Pittsburgh to j…

CNN's "The Oath," a mini-documentary about the presidential oath of office, takes the viewer to a handful of historic places. Wall Street, where George Washington was sworn in. The United States Capitol. And Buffalo's Founding Fathers Pub. Reporters from CNN filmed the December trivia night at the popular political watering hole, located at 75 Edward St. Starti…

In 1892, Buffalo’s skyline was filled with church steeples and old city hall — the building we now call old County Hall on Franklin Street. Those structures weren’t yet competing with office towers and apartment buildings for airspace above the city. Having been in Buffalo for about five years, M.F. Wright, manager for the Union Central Life Insurance Company,…

What a difference a year makes. Buffalo spent years getting ready for 1901’s Pan American Exposition, but after a presidential assassination and financial ruin, there was little thought of trying to preserve what was promised to be a temporary wonderland built mostly on property owned by the Rumsey family. [Gallery: The Pan-Am Exposition: Then and Now] The v…

Between the world wars, there was no greater unifier of Buffalo’s growing black population than the Michigan Avenue YMCA. As late as 1920, unique circumstances made gathering as a community in a single space difficult. Overt racism made many civic gathering places, and most private ones, off limits. In other marginalized and immigrant communities within Buffalo, a pla…

The 163-foot-tall church tower that has stood like a beacon over the Symphony Circle neighborhood for more than a century has been sorely in need of repair. Now it's going to get it. A state grant will provide the part of the money to restore and repoint the First Presbyterian Church of Buffalo, which is a National Historic Landmark.. Architect E.B. Green designe…

Lines at the Peace Bridge are nothing new, but the scenery has changed through the years. Even when the toll was a quarter and the most evasive question you’d be asked was “Where do you live?,” the backups still felt like forever after a weekend of fun at the cottage or on the Comet. While the cars were queued up in the 1950s, they were bathed in the g…

One hundred twenty years ago today in the brand-new Ellicott Square Building, 400 of Buffalo’s elite gathered to fete an extraordinary event – the transmission of electricity from Niagara Falls to Buffalo. “Electric Buffalo’s” Banquet – Predictions of its Great Future” read the front-page headline in the Buffalo Courier about the gala celebration. Two m…

Reconstruction of the Elmwood Avenue bridge over Route 198 is nearing completion after several years of work. Elmwood Avenue looked a bit different in 1895 when the bridge was first built over Scajaquada Creek. The Buffalo State campus was farmland behind the “State Insane Asylum,” and none of the museums surrounding the bridge had been built yet. This vi…

Time and circumstance has nearly eliminated knowledge and memory of one of the city’s great institutions. In 1904, the Elk Street Market was “the largest fruit and garden truck market in the United States.” The traffic in commodities sold rivaled any similar market on the continent. The market’s size and success was attributed to so many of Buffalo’…

The 1965 American Football League All-Star game was scheduled for 52 years ago this week in New Orleans, but it never happened. Dave Dixon, who had been trying to bring the AFL to New Orleans, organized the game with promises that there wouldn't be any problems in the still-segregated city. Players were promised testimonial dinners and golf tournaments, and even told to…

BN Chronicles takes postcards of several parts of Main Street from the past and compares them with current street views. Two views of Shelton Square, Main at Niagara.   Main no longer intersects with Niagara Street. That portion of Niagara Street was gobbled up by the Main Place complex.   Main at Court The corner once famous as…

If you were living in Western New York on Jan. 28, 1977, you may never tire of answering this question: Where were you? Forty years later, the Blizzard of ’77 remains the signature weather event in our region’s history, worse than the October Storm in 2006, worse than the Wall of Snow in 2014. Businesses and schools shut down for days to recover, and a federal state…

There’s $1 million in state money on the table to study the feasibility of a new train station for Buffalo and answer some key questions—chief among them, where it should go. Since problems at the Exchange Street Amtrak station last year helped ignite talk of the need for a new train station in the city, two potential locations received the most buzz: Canalside at B…