Early Closure

The Museum will close at 4:30pm on Thursday, May 5.

Was There Ever a Hotel for Prostitutes, Shaped Like a Giant Elephant?

 While never a brothel, exactly, there really was a tin-skinned elephant-shaped structure on Coney Island. Its proper name was Elephantine Colossus and it stood on a seedy stretch of Surf Avenue near West 12th Street, where the phrase "seeing the elephant" became euphemistic for picking up local prostitutes. Built in 1884, it burned to a cinder on September 27, 1896.

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Creative: Tronvig Group