During the Gilded Age of the 1880s and 90s, the section of Broadway known as the better part of ‘the Tenderloin’ was lined with fine hotels, theaters and restaurants. Across from this world of “Upper Tens” and pinky up propriety, was the old Haymarket, the most notorious dance hall/brothel in the Tenderloin.
“The Tenderloin was a riotous red light district that flourished for some 40 years in between the Civil War and WWI. The boundaries vary wildly from source to source, and there were viable residential communities within its boundaries.
“A nightclub district in Manhattan during the 1880s, bounded to the north by 42nd Street, to the east by 5th Avenue, to the south by 24th Street, and to the west by 7th Avenue. The name refers to extortion payments made to the police by legitimate and illegitimate businesses in the area during the heyday of Tammany Hall. Known as Satan’s Circus by reformers, the district contained the greatest concentration of saloons, brothels, gambling parlors, dance halls, and “clip joints” in the city. It is now the site of the Empire State Building, the garment district, and Herald Square.” – The Encyclopedia of New York City, Kenneth Jackson