Image courtesy of the Buffalo History Museum.
Image courtesy of the Buffalo History Museum.

Looking Backward: Seneca & Swan, circa 1932

by / Jan. 31, 2018 7am EST
LSeneca Street in the Hydraulics was among Buffalo’s most active neighborhood centers—fueled by the streetcar, commuter traffic, and laborers from nearby plants such as the Larkin Company and F. N. Burt. Here, in a photograph dated circa 1932, is a view of Seneca Street looking northeast toward the intersection with Swan Street. In the foreground is the former Sacred Heart church and friary, then used as the Larkin Auditorium and Larkin Men’s Club. Beyond, from upper left to upper right along Swan Street, is St. Matthew’s Evangelical & Reformed Church (built in 1868 and still standing), the Hydraulic Flats with its 10 ground-story shopfronts (now the site of the Larkin Diner), and a corner mixed-use building that at one point housed a notorious house of prostitution (now home to the Hydraulic Hearth). Along Seneca Street in the upper right is the Marine Trust Company Hydraulic Branch (now the resurrected Schaefer Building) and the Wagner and Nauland Block (a parking lot). The St. Patrick’s R. C. Church, the mother church of Irish Buffalo, caps off the image in the upper left.