Your coverage of Pier 55 is thoughtful and informative as are all your articles on the Village, and I thank you for that.
What I take exception to is a contributor listed on your masthead who doesn’t do his homework. Page 5, Barry Benepe; Pier55: An Island Rises
The Titanic lost over 1500 souls in the sinking, not 1,000 and had Captain Smith been “within view of the coast” as written by Benepe, he would certainly have grounded the ship.
In fact the Titanic was 375 miles away from Newfoundland. It takes less than a minute to get these two facts online.
On another subject you likely know about the #12 bus now running from Hudson and West 12th Street to 59th Street. It should be mentioned to increase ridership since it goes up the West Side highway from 15th Street to 23rd Street and then to Columbus Circle. On return it comes down 11th Avenue to 23rd and then again the West Side Highway to about 18th Street I believe; then to Abingdon Square. So it is, in a sense an Express Bus since there are no pick-ups on the highway and few on the north and south bound routes.
After 14 years I did not run for re-election as the Westbeth Gallery Director you might well know. I am sorry that I was never able to convince our residents’ council to place ads with you.
Happy New Year, George
— Jack Dowling
West Village resident since 1951
Response from Barry Benepe:
The facts concerning the sinking of the Titanic come from The Only Way to Cross by John Maxtone-Graham. In Chapter 3, Olympic-Titanic, he states that «Even though within sight of land, a thousand lives were lost.» I should have more thoroughly scanned the context. He was speaking of the Empress of Ireland. I thank Jack Dowling for picking this out. John Maxtone-Graham’s most recent book is SS United States: Red, White and Blue Riband, Forever. There has been interest by its owner, Susan Gibbs, descendant of William Francis Gibbs, the naval architect who designed that ship, in bringing her to NYC.