Events & News

In Memoriam

Mary Ann DiNapoli speaks passionately about landmarking sites in Manhattan’s former Little Syria at the 2018 Preservation Film Festival. Courtesy of the Archive Project

Longtime preservation activist, writer, historian and genealogist Mary Ann DiNapoli, a champion of recognizing and landmarking remnants of Little Syria in lower Manhattan, died in October after a battle with cancer, as reported to the Archive Project by longtime Friends of the Lower West Side colleague Joe Svehlak. DiNapoli presented at the 2018 Preservation Film Festival and helped lead efforts that resulted in landmark designation for the former St. George Syrian Melkite Church in Little Syria. At the time of her death, DiNapoli was still actively working to secure designation of the Downtown Community House at 105-107 Washington Street and the adjoining tenement at 109 Washington Street, structures that were part of Little Syria. Eternally kind and congenial, DiNapoli also helped illuminate the history of the South Ferry Arab American cultural hub on Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn as a tour guide, and historian.