Cobble Hill News

PJ Hanleys, the oldest bar in Brooklyn?

According to a new york real estate blog running a contest on the oldest operating tavern in Brooklyn, PJ Hanleys claims to be open since 1874… but only by taking over another bar in 1958. Does anyone have clarification on this? I wonder if the folks of the late 1800s could imagine a gay dance scene right next door…

I’ll have to take it on its word. PJ Hanley’s in Carroll Gardens (449 Court St.) proclaims itself to be the oldest bar in the borough, opening in 1874. In fact, this is where a little fudging comes in. There has been a bar at this location since 1874, originally a saloon for Norwegian customers. During Prohibition it was called Ryan’s, where Al Capone purportedly brewed beer in its basement. However, the Hanley family have only owned it since 1958. They sold the bar in 2005 but it retains its name and its charm, freshly renovated and reopened a couple years ago.

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Kennedy william

kennedy is the co-founder of He is a top-notch writer in Space science section of this website. He is one of the main staff writers of The cobblehillblog. He always suggests his readers follow his words, not his actions. Moreover, he is a good father and loves cappuccino. Contact him at

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