1969-1985: 200 Claremont Avenue

When Sheila first moved to New York in the summer of 1968, she shared an apartment with another young woman in the movement, but several months later she moved in with George.

George had been sharing an apartment at 200 Claremont with a few other Columbia students for several years, and then some LNS folks, but in the years that followed, the roommates left and the apartment was filled up with Sheila and George’s children instead.

During the 1970s, in response to the abusive behavior and neglect of the building by the landlord, Sheila worked to organize the tenants, and helped lead them to cooperate on rent strikes, to take legal action against the landlord, and eventually to take control of the building themselves when the landlord was forced to abandon it to City ownership.

Eventually the building at 200 Claremont completed the Urban Homesteading Assistance Board’s Tenant Interim Lease Program and became an HDFC cooperative, allowing the tenants to buy their apartments for a nominal sum.


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