Almost 45 years ago a radicalized leftist group protesting the Vietnam War had a “work accident” in the basement of 18 West 11th Street. Three members of the group were killed when a homemade “nail bomb” blew up prematurely. The bomb was meant to explode at a dance event for non-commissioned officers at Fort Dix in New Jersey. This incident helped make the Greenwich Village address somewhat notorious.
Fast forward to 1978, when Norma Langworthy and her husband David bought the empty plot of land and built a redesigned home there for $80,000. Langworthy was a philanthropist and theater aficionado who also had a soft part in her heart for Paddington Bear.
After the Langworthy’s moved into their new digs on West 11th Street, Norma began to put her Paddington into the front window, always appropriately dressed. On rainy days Paddington was turned out in raingear; on sunny, warm, spring days-a lovely sun hat; holiday season- a Santa cap. In 2012, when Norma died, Paddington wore a black funeral suit. A few weeks later, when the house went up for sale, Paddington could be seen sporting a Corcoran tee shirt.
We mention here this interesting tidbit because Paddington Bear is about to embark on his very own rise to stardom as a result of the recently released eponymous movie. We wouldn’t want Paddington’s Greenwich Village connection to go unnoticed.
Just as an aside, the house was recently purchased by Justin Korsant of Long Light Capital for a cool $9.25 million.