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Brownstone is a brown Triassic sandstone which was once a popular building material. The term is also understood to be a terrace or rowhouse clad in this material.
In Boston and New York City, a "brownstone" is understood to be a terrace or rowhouse clad in brownstone. These brownstone apartments typically have stairways which lead from the sidewalk to a second-floor apartment entrance, a design originally intended to avoid bringing in the mud and horse droppings commonly found at street level, a problem that existed when these apartments were built and horses roamed the streets. New York City brownstones tend to be found in certain older neighborhoods, which are perhaps most common in Brooklyn. For example, the neighborhood of Bedford Stuyvesant has the largest inventory of brownstones in the entire City of New York, followed closely by Park Slope. Many brownstones have been renovated in recent years, leading to (and/or as a result of) gentrification in areas like Park Slope, Bedford Stuyvesant and Fort Greene. On the popular 1980s-'90s American television program The Cosby Show, the affluent Huxtable family, the show's central characters, lived in a Brooklyn brownstone, whereas more recently, Sex and The City's protagonist, Carrie Bradshaw resided in a brownstone at a fictitious Upper East Side address in New York City. Philadelphia has an abundant number of brownstones, and due to urban renewal brownstones are developing in Detroit as well.
The term Brownstone may also be used as slang for heroin, particularly in the United States; "Mr. Brownstone" is a Guns N' Roses song about heroin use.
Hummelstown brownstone is extremely popular along the East Coast of the United States of America, with numerous government buildings from West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland, and Delaware being faced entirely with the stone. The stone comes from the Hummelstown Quarry in Hummelstown, Pennsylvania, a small town outside of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The Hummelstown Quarry is the largest provider of brownstone in along the east coast. Typically the stone was transported out of Hummelstown through the Brownstone and Middletown Railroad or taken by truck up to the Erie Canal.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Brownstone". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|