New Yorkers may have just ringed out the old and rang in the new but, thankfully, that’s the last thing The City Reliquary would ever do. Quite unassumingly situated at 370 Metropolitan Avenue in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, this little storefront museum is a cornucopia of New York City memorabilia; engaging bits and curious fragments of this city’s cultural and infrastructural history crammed into two small rooms.
Visitors to the Reliquary will find an eclectic assortment of literally everything and anything related to NYC; from the expected to the unexpected. Old subway tokens to pieces of the subway itself, old maps and postcards, mementos of both New York World’s Fairs (1939 and 1964), and a miscellanea so on and so forth of such artifacts…including honest to goodness junk.
The biggest piece of junk was so bad it was funny and bears mentioning. There was an old birthday cake with a scantily clad hula girl sitting on top. The cake was real and was obviously at least a couple years old, the frosting was brown, cracked, and falling apart. It was sitting on top of a display case with no plaque to it. I just had to ask, so I asked the girl up front what the deal was. Apparently the bakery down the street that’s been there for many years makes cakes for their display window in the front and keeps them there for an obscene amount of time before they make new ones. This is one of the cakes they were getting rid of a year or so ago.
Nevertheless, be it a piece of history or a piece of junk, if it’s NYC-related, you’ll probably find what you were looking for (or even not looking for) at the City Reliquary; if not, you’ll stumble upon something just as good if not better. Check out their website here.
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