The vintage wooden collectible St. Mark’s in the Bowery Church, in New York, is from the 1995 New York Christmas Series. Since this is a retired piece it is no longer available at the “Official” Cat’s Meow Village website, but it is still available at other web sources. The best value source for this piece is probably ebay, but it can also be found at Appletreedeals or with a google search. Prices range from an ebay auction price starting at .99 to retail sales prices at online sites for around $17.95.
The 1995 New York Christmas Series was retired in 2000. First year issues generally go for slightly more than later issues, but piece condition is always a major factor. Since these pieces are 12 – 22 years old, and were probably in someone’s collection, it is important to try to get as much condition info as possible. This mean pictures, so you can see for yourself what you are buying.
The production process for this series has the piece info and Faline’s stamped signature and date of issue on the bottom left corner of the back side of the piece. And as in all authentic CMV pieces, look for Casper the cat somewhere on the piece. On the St. Mark’s Church piece, Casper is sitting by the front doors, watching all the arrivals.
Occasionally pieces can be found that were in retail inventory and never collected or displayed by anyone, but even then, due to various storage methods, item condition still needs to be seen. Any good source for CMV pieces should be able to provide good clear front and rear view photos. That was the case with the Appletreedeals.com source, plenty of pictures and a good item description.
The St. Mark’s in the Bowery church is located at 131 East 10th Street in New York City, and was originally the family chapel of the Petrus Stuyvesant family. Stuyvesant’s great-grandson, Petrus, donated the chapel property to Episcopal Church in 1793. The new church was completed and consecrated as St. Mark’s Church in 1799 as the first Episcopal Parish independent of Trinity Church in the United States.
In 1828, the church steeple, designed by Martin E. Thomson and Ithiel Towne was erected.
In 1966, several foundations took on the project of preserving St Mark’s landmark exterior.
On July 27, 1978, a fire nearly destroyed St. Mark’s Church. Reconstruction supervised by architects Harold Edleman and restoration was finished in 1986.