A Harlem Townhouse, a Sentimental Journey | NY Times


David Daniels - Harlem Townhouse

David Daniels, an associate broker with the Corcoran Group, with a photograph of his great-grandmother in front of the Harlem property that was once her home and business. (Photo: Emon Hassan | NY Times)

It may not seem so to outsiders, but New York City is really a collection of small towns with residents and businesses connected in the most surprising ways. Just ask David Daniels.

Late last summer, Mr. Daniels, an associate broker with the Corcoran Group in the West Side office, got a call from colleagues in the company’s Brooklyn Heights branch. They were in the process of securing a listing for the estate sale of a townhouse in Harlem, and realized that showing a property so far uptown would be difficult for them.

“They were looking for someone within the company to list it with, someone who knew Harlem, had experience selling townhouses and experience with estate sales, and my name came up when they were canvassing managers in our branch offices,” said Mr. Daniels, 51, who had reason to believe he was the man for the job. A longtime Harlem resident and a student of Harlem history, he was a 15-year veteran of the business who had rented and sold countless properties in the area.

With that résumé, the Brooklyn Heights brokers wanted him aboard. And that’s when they gave him the particulars of the property. It was the Marion Daniels & Sons Funeral Home, three contiguous townhouses at 164 West 136th Street.

There was a moment of silence, Mr. Daniels said, while he absorbed the information. “Then,” he said, “I told them, ‘Marion Daniels was my great-grandmother.’ ”

Read more: A Harlem Townhouse, a Sentimental Journey | NY Times


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