From the Encyclopedia of New York City, pg. 650: "The name retrospectively applied to a shopping district along Broadway and 6th Avenue that took form in the mid nineteenth century, as wealthy residents of lower Manhattan moved north."
Wikipedia: Ladies' Mile Historic District
The Ladies' Mile Historic District was designated in May 1989, by the New York City Landmark Preservation Commission to preserve an irregular district of 440 buildings on 28 blocks and parts of blocks in Manhattan, from roughly 18th Street to 24th Street and from the Avenue of the Americas to Park Avenue South. Community groups such as the Drive to Protect the Ladies' Mile District and the Historic Districts Council campaigned heavily for the status.
Between the Civil War and World War I, the district was the location of some of New York's most famous department stores, including Lord & Taylor, B. Altman, W. & J. Sloane, Arnold Constable, Best & Co., and Bergdorf Goodman. Also included is Daniel H. Burnham's Flatiron Building, at Fifth Avenue and 23rd Street, and the bulk of the Ladies' Mile Historic District lies within the Manhattan neighborhood named after that building, the Flatiron District.
24 November 1912, New York (NY) Times, pg. SM12:
Search for New York's "Soul."
Mr. (James - ed.) Milne realized that the job of a transcriber of travel impressions carries with it stern duties, so he rushed forth bent on finding the "soul" of New York. He didn't have an easy time. New York, judging from what he says, doesn't wear its soul on its sleeve.
First he tackled Fifth Avenue on his quest. But his call of "Soul, Soul!" was answered by groups, bevies, swarms of delightful American girls. The "ladies' mile" is the neat name he applied to our finest avenue's business section.
16 July 1956, Hammond (IN) Times, pg. 11, col. 6:
The mercantile palace was built in 1862 on Broadway's then fashionable "Ladies' Mile." The Wanamakers took it over in 1896 and abandoned it in 1954 to move to the suburbs.
New York City • Neighborhoods • (0) Comments • Tuesday, October 12, 2004 • Permalink