Who: Steve Stollman MeetMe@TheAutomat.com 212 431 0600
What: Celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the opening of
the first Horn and Hardart Automat in New York City
Where: In front of 1557 Broadway, the site of the first
When: From 1PM to 3PM, Monday July 2, 2012
On July 2nd 1912, at 1557 Broadway in Times Square, the
first of New York City's remarkable chain of low-priced but
high quality restaurants opened. For nearly a century the 40
Horn and Hardart Automats scattered around NYC became some
of the most well-known and well-loved elements of this
place, extremely popular among tourists and residents alike.
It is worth reflecting on its unique character and its
influence on many aspects of our lives.
Steve Stollman, who for twenty years has been the only
source and conservator of the last of these handsome and
unique vending machines, that once were the primary symbol
of this phenomenon, will provide information to those
members of the press interested in giving the public a
better picture of this New York City icon. He will provide
copies of the book “The Automat” by Lorraine Diehl and
Marianne Hardart, the best book available on this subject,
to help them understand this issue better.
Some may wish to visit the recently-opened show at the New
York Public Library on the history of lunch in NYC a few
blocks away on 42nd street and 5th Avenue. The restored
Automat fixtures on display there are strong evidence of the
beauty and charm of these restaurants as well as the ability
of some businesses and institutions to serve the real needs
of the entire population, regardless of social station, with
class and distinction. The library itself, as well as the
Automat, is an excellent example of the important benefits
that accrue to a society when its gifts can be made
available to all rather than just the few.
Said the Technocrat, to the Plutocrat To the Autocrat, and
the Democrat --- "Let's all go eat at the Automat!"