The Real Deal New York

Remember me to Harlem: Artists campaign to save Langston Hughes’ former home

They're trying to raise $150K to rent the townhouse

August 23, 2016 10:24AM

20 East 127th Street and Langston Hughes

20 East 127th Street and Langston Hughes

A group of artists is campaigning to save the one-time Harlem home of late poet Langston Hughes.

The group launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise $150,000 to rent 20 East 127th Street and turn it into a cultural center, CNNMoney reported. The East Harlem home is vacant and was listed a few years ago for $1 million, though it’s estimated to be worth more than $3 million. Now, having raised more than $50,000 so far, the group is trying to beat what they see as the neighborhood’s rapidly ticking gentrification clock.

“We the community must hold on to the space,” Renee Watson, who started the campaign, told CNNMoney. “I feel a sense of urgency.”

Hughes, a star of the Harlem Renaissance and early innovator in jazz poetry, lived in the home for much of the 1950s and 1960s until his death in 1967. His typewriter is still in the home and a small plaque outside commemorates the poet.

In July, legendary poet Maya Angelou’s former Harlem brownstone at 58 West 120th Street sold for $4 million. [CNNMoney] — Kathryn Brenzel 

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