Tour BHS Building Thursday Evening

The Brooklyn Historical Society, 128 Pierrepont Street (corner of Clinton) will present a guided tour of its historic building this Thursday evening, May 3, starting at 7:00 p.m. The building, completed in 1881, is noted for its elaborate terra cotta exterior decoration, but its interior is also dazzling, including elaborately patterned tile floors, carved woodwork, and stained glass windows. The Othmer Library is a spectacular space. The building was designed by George B. Post, among whose notable surviving buildings are the New York Stock Exchange and the Wisconsin State Capitol.

The tour is free for BHS members; for non-members it is $6 for adults, and $4 for seniors over 62, teachers, and students 12 and over (college students must have ID; children under 12 are free). There is more information here.

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  • Wize Old Man

    The Brooklyn Historical Society does indeed have a magnificent facade, as well as exquisite interiors features. Unfortunately, it is essentially just that, namely, a beautiful building with nothing going on from a programming perspective inside. Having visited BHS numerous times, I continue to be amazed by the lack of decent programming and, consequently, the lack of any visitors whatsoever. On any given day, at any time, you can shoot a shotgun across any floor of this building and you wouldn’t hit anyone. About the only time there is a crowd at BHS is when the Board throws self-congratulatory cocktail receptions. Simply shameful. Compare that to the Manhattan counterpart, the NY Historical Society, and the contrast is staggering. Time for this moribund, unused treasure to awaken up from its slumber. Thoughts?

  • Homer Fink

    We’d love a call to help out. Ahem.

  • Julie Golia

    I work at BHS, and I’m sorry that you haven’t had positive experiences at our institution. Just a few corrections, though: we have a varied and fascinating roster of public programming events at our building and at nearby locations several times a week. Recent events have touched on the history of food in Brooklyn, the history of hip hop, stories from literary Brooklyn, Brooklyn trivia nights, and more. Some of our most popular events have been part of an exciting new oral history project, Crossing Borders, Bridging Generations (, which examines the history and experiences of mixed-heritage people and families, cultural hybridity, race, ethnicity, and identity. We have a robust educational program that brings thousands of students from kindergarten age through college into our institution every day. And we’ve recently launched an acclaimed digital exhibition about the Lefferts family and the complex role the family has played in Brooklyn ( We’re a small institution, but we’re working hard to make our building, our collections, and our knowledge available to as many people as possible – whether local or virtual. We hope that Brooklyn Heights Blog readers can come on Thursday’s tour. If not, you can find our calendar of events here:

  • DABpierrepont

    My general impression has been in line with the first post but it does look from your links above like things are picking up—-especially the free event with music. It would be nice to be able to pop in to see the library without paying $6—-maybe a free Friday afternoon?