The former caretaker’s son of Bedford-Stuyvesant’s Slave Theater stalled the property’s new owners from turning the historic site into apartments, reported the Brooklyn Eagle.
Omar Hardy, son of Clarence Hardy, the theater’s longtime caretaker told reporters he stopped workers from entering the building to carry out jobs such as collecting soil samples.
The owner, Fulton Halsey Development LLC, who purchased the property at 1215 Fulton Street from Samuel Boykin last year for $2.1 million, has sought permits for the fence to keep out intruders. The purchase also includes 10 Halsey Street, a vacant lot directly behind the property, and neighboring 16-18 Halsey, according to the Eagle.
The theater was the scene of several civil rights rallies and speeches, most notably where the Rev. Al Sharpton held weekly rallies following hate crimes by white teenagers against three black men in Howard Beach in 1986.
Previously the theater was owned by the late retired Civil Court Judge John Phillips, who allowed Clarence Hardy access as caretaker under an oral agreement. It was passed on to Boykin, a distant relative to Phillips, and who sold the property to cover unpaid tax bills just in time to avert an auction.