Harlem Bespoke: In celebration of Pride Month, HB will be revisiting some of the great history of uptown’s LGBT legacy that goes back to the Renaissance years. This article was previously published back in 2015 and reveals the range of diversity in Harlem seldom covered by the mainstream media. Since the article was written, St. Nick’s Pub was gutted and demolished soon after a fire destroyed most of the townhouse building 4 years ago.
Before it was known as St. Nick’s Pub, the storefront at Number 773 St. Nicholas Avenue was formerly called the Pink Angel in the 1950s. This fanciful name change from the original Lucky’s Rendezvous might have happened because the jazz establishment by 148th Street was a major LGBT hangout during the post Renaissance years. Harlem gay icon James Baldwin was known to frequent the joint on Sugar Hill and local papers mentioned that male couples would often be seen together inside.
By the time the 60s rolled around the legendary establishment would become St. Nick’s Pub but would once again close again once the aughts finished up in the next century. Word on the street is that the owner of the building and club does not want to sell so it might be some time before St. Nick’s opens again. More on Lucky’s can be found in our past post: LINK