100 year old ad for apartments in Prospect Heights (Underhill and Vanderbilt) — Brooklynian

100 year old ad for apartments in Prospect Heights (Underhill and Vanderbilt)

edited December 2016 in Prospect Heights

Affordable housing in Prospect Heights, ad in the Brooklyn Eagle, October 1916. Note those rents are ANNUAL amounts.

So, a one-bedroom apartment on Underhill and St. John rents for $30 a month (about $712 in 2016 dollars).

Present rates in the building are 1 BR: $2,375.   203 - 209 Underhill

The three-bedroom, two bath apartments on Sterling and Butler rent for $75 a month (about $1,663 today's dollars, but I am too lazy to pull up a recent listing).

Screen Shot 2016-12-24 at 5.52.47 PM und


  • Wow. Great unearthing. I get the sense this area was expensive then -- $712 (in 2016 dollars) seems like a lot!
  • They sound as if they were fancy, and in an area with lots of neighborhood amenities
  • Funny to see how much 'luxury amenities' have changed! But also how little.

    You can almost do a comparison...
    1916 => 2016

    Burglar proof wall safes => doorman
    Electric lights => central AC and heat
    Shower baths => this can go a number of ways. Either the latest and greatest in home bathrooms (rainfall shower head?) or pool/sauna in the building
    Elevator => same (though not sure how an elevator operator would play out in today's mindset)
    Telephone service => whatever cable hookup is hot these days. Or maybe free, secured wifi for everyone.
    Near subway => same. Though I like the idea of it being 'new'!
  • If you find this kind of thing interesting, Columbia has a slew of great documents stored in their online archives:

This discussion has been closed.