Mendelssohn on the Hudson

Mendelssohn on the Hudson

Episode 2: Bracelet (Opus 62, No. 2)

September 30, 2021

Western entrance to Bennett Park, east of Pinehurst Avenue between 183rd and 185th Street

We are at Bennett Park, which was the site of Fort Washington during the Revolutionary War. A plaque on that large rock outcropping also marks the highest point in Manhattan. If you look west on Pinehurst Avenue, you’ll see Hudson View Gardens. Completed in 1925, this lovely Tudor-style complex is on the National Register of Historic Places. For decades, Jews and other minority groups were discouraged from buying homes here.

On November 9, 1938, in Germany, antisemitism reached a new height on what would become known as Kristallnacht, or the “Night of Broken Glass” - as the Gestapo smashed German Jewish-owned store windows, burned centuries-old synagogues, and arrested Jewish men.

One afternoon, while sitting here in Bennett Park, a neighbor shared her memories of that world-shattering night.