A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006. Now a Popeye's fast food restaurant on Google Maps.

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Entry from November 29, 2021
Big Apple (city ornament of Columbia, SC, 2021)

The Big Apple dance craze of 1937 popularized the “Big Apple” term, but didn’t originate it.

New York (NY) Morning Telegraph track writer John J. Fitz Gerald (1893-1963) had been calling the New York racetracks (and New York City, by extension) the “Big Apple” in his newspaper columns since 1921. A nightclub called “Big Apple” opened in Harlem in 1934, at the northwest corner of West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue (now Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard). The nightclub, opposite the popular Smalls Paradise, spread the “Big Apple” term to Harlem in the 1930s.

The 1934 “Big Apple” night club in Harlem probably inspired the name of the 1936 “Big Apple Night Club” in Columbia, South Carolina—where the “Big Apple” dance originated. An August 1937 article provides a different origin of the Columbia night club’s name, but it is very difficult to believe that Columbia wasn’t heavily influenced by the Harlem night club of the same name.

“The Big Apple” of Columbia, South Carolina, was featured on the city ornament in 2021.


Historic Columbia (Columbia, SC)
Big Apple
In 1915, the House of Peace Synagogue constructed this house of worship at 1318 Park Street after the previous structure was destroyed by fire earlier that year. Its worshippers were primarily immigrants from Eastern Europe who lived within walking distance.

In 1936, the synagogue sold it to H.W. DesPortes, who rented it out as a “colored dance hall and beer garden, practically furnished.” Under the proprietorship of “Fat” Sam Boyd and “Big” Elliot Wright, Columbia’s black youth created the “Big Apple” dance.

Babcock Center (Columbia, SC)
2021 CHRISTMAS IN COLUMBIA ORNAMENT OF OPPORTUNITY – THE BIG APPLE
$18.50
In keeping with the spirit of the season, the Babcock Center Foundation proudly presents the 2021 “Official City Ornament”. This year’s ornament depicts The Big Apple.

City of Columbia, SC
Mayor Steve Benjamin and Babcock Center Unveils 2021 Babcock Center Christmas Ornament
November 29, 2021
Mayor Steve Benjamin and representatives from the Babcock Center unveiled this year’s “Official City Ornament” at a press conference on November 29th.  This year’s ornament depicts The Big Apple.

This is the 29th ornament in the collectors’ series. Each ornament is 24-karat gold on brass and comes in a felt case. All proceeds from the sales of the ornament benefit the Babcock Center Foundation, a private, non-profit organization that supports more than 800 individuals with lifelong disabilities in Richland and Lexington counties.

YouTube
Unveiling of 2021 City Holiday Ornament
Nov 29, 2021
City of Columbia
Mayor Steve Benjamin and representatives from the Babcock Center unveiled this year’s “Official City Ornament” at a press conference on November 29th.  This year’s ornament depicts The Big Apple.

This is the 29th ornament in the collectors’ series. Each ornament is 24-karat gold on brass and comes in a felt case. All proceeds from the sales of the ornament benefit the Babcock Center Foundation, a private, non-profit organization that supports more than 800 individuals with lifelong disabilities in Richland and Lexington counties.

Ornaments cost $18 and may be purchased at the Babcock Center Foundation Office at 2725 Banny Jones Avenue, West Columbia and the Columbia Visitor’s Center. Ornaments may be ordered by phone by calling the Babcock Center Foundation at 803-799-1970 or ordered online at http://www.babcockcenter.org.

The State (Columbia, SC)
Columbia unveils official city ornament showcasing SC history for 2021 holiday season
BY CHRIS TRAINOR NOVEMBER 29, 2021 4:26 PM
Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin on Monday unveiled the official city ornament for the 2021 holiday season. Each year, the city and the Babcock Center unveil a holiday ornament. This year’s decoration depicts The Big Apple.

The building known as The Big Apple, now located at 1000 Hampton St. in downtown Columbia, was originally built on Park Street in the early 20th century as a synagogue, per Historic Columbia. It was sold in 1936, and was operated as an African American nightclub, where youth created a dance called the “Big Apple.”

News19 WLTX (Columbia, SC)
Columbia unveils official city ornament for 2021
The 2021 ornament, which features the Big Apple in downtown Columbia, is the 29th ornament in the collectors’ series.

Author: WLTX
Published: 7:28 PM EST November 29, 2021
Updated: 7:29 PM EST November 29, 2021
COLUMBIA, S.C. — Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin and officials with the Babcock Center Foundation unveiled the city’s official city ornament for 2021 Monday at City Hall.

This year’s ornament depicts the Big Apple in downtown Columbia.

The Big Apple, built in 1915, was originally the House of Peace (Beth Shalom) Synagogue. Its worshipers were primarily immigrants from Eastern Europe who lived within walking distance. Its interior architecture, including a notable recessed dome and a balcony, reflect its original function.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityThe Big Apple1980s-present: Big Apple work by Gerald Cohen, Barry Popik • Monday, November 29, 2021 • Permalink