143-35 37th Avenue
Flushing, NY 11354
Originally located on Holly Avenue, when threatened by demolition, the historic Lewis Latimer House was moved to its current home in Leavitt Field in 1988. It served as the home of the African-American inventor Lewis Howard Latimer from 1903 to 1928, and is now operated as a museum dedicated to the inventor’s work. In addition, this historic house museum also illuminates the life and achievements of other distinguished African-American scientists.
A group of citizens, led by Tom Lloyd and Rev. Mitchell with assistance from the Queens Historical Society quickly formed the Committee to Save the Latimer House and launched a major campaign in order to preserve the historic house from imminent destruction. Two prominent Preservation Committee members were also Latimer’s grandchildren: Gerald Latimer Norman and Winifred Latimer Norman.
Join Debbie Allen, the project manager in charge of the historic house move, as she recounts the incredible journey, thirty years ago, and the remarkable collaboration between a small group of devoted Flushing advocates, dozens of city agencies and community members.
After the presentation, Ms. Allen will lead the audience for a short, 10 minute walk to the Lewis Latimer House Museum, where self-guided and docent-led tours of the Landmarked site will be offered. Debbie Allen will be available to answer questions at the site.
The event is co-hosted with The Lewis Latimer House Museum.
About the Speaker:
Following her years as Project Manager for Zedlovich Construction, Deb Allen and her family moved to the Catskill High Peaks where she co-founded Black Dome Press, an independent publisher of New York State histories and guidebooks with a special focus on the Adirondacks, Catskills, Capital District and Hudson River Valley. She was the publisher for over twenty years and sold the business in 2011.
Profiled in Publisher’s Weekly, American Bookseller, and The New York Times, her honors include the first-ever Barnes & Noble 2009 “Focus on New York Award for Outstanding Regional Literature,” the Columbia County Historical Society “Preservation Heritage Award,” the Community of Windham Foundation “Leadership in Cultural Heritage Award, The “Vedder Award” for historic preservation from the Greene County Historical Society, the “Distinguished Service Award” by the Greene County Council on the Arts and the “Greene Diamond Award” from Greene County for contributions to the New York State Economy.