The renovation of stores on the Coney Island Boardwalk has already uncovered the ghost lettering of an arcade and signage for Club Atlantis. The latest discovery is a remnant of one of the rathskellers that thrived under the Boardwalk in the 1940s and ’50s. The menu for the long-lost bar was found on a basement wall by Maya Haddad of Brooklyn Beach Shop, which will soon begin rehabbing the first-floor space formerly occupied by Coney Island Souvenirs.Decades before the Army Corps of Engineers pumped sand under the Coney Island Boardwalk in the 1990s, rathskellers (council’s cellar in German) were popular with beach goers. ATZ found an ad from 1957 looking to lease an 80-foot Boardwalk frontage with an 80-foot rathskeller below with direct frontage on the beach.
The name of the rathskeller whose menu was rediscovered remains unknown, but its prices appear to date back to the 1940s. Beer and milk were 10 cents, coffee was a nickel. The sandwich menu included hamburger, egg, cream cheese, American cheese, Swiss cheese, Sardine or Salmon, Ham, Salami or Liverwurst, Ham & Egg, and a Western. Could this be the place where the boy in the 1953 movie The Little Fugitive returned soda bottles to collect money to go on the rides?
Brooklyn Beach Shop’s new location next to Ruby’s Bar is in a building that dates back to 1940. The original tenant was Moe’s Fascination, which occupied the upper story until 1965. Brooklyn Beach Shop, a spinoff of Coney Island Beach Shop located behind Nathan’s and in Stillwell Terminal, will feature their own brand of Coney Island-themed clothing and souvenirs. The Boardwalk shop is expected to open in April.
Related posts on ATZ…
January 16, 2012: Photo of the Day: Signs of Coney’s Club Atlantis Resurface
November 15, 2011: Coney Island 2012: What’s New on the Boardwalk
October 27, 2011: Ghost Lettering & End of Season Color in Old Coney Island
October 10, 2011: Photo of the Day: Coney Island’s Famed “Hey Joey!” Doomed