Smith gets a shpritz


From July 21-23, a Parks Department Citywide Monuments Conservation Program crew restored and cleaned the Alfred E. Smith Memorial, at Catherine St., between Cherry and Monroe Sts. Son of an Italian-German father and Irish mother, Smith (1873-1944) grew up in the old Fourth Ward on the Lower East Side, as a child working as a newspaper boy and at the Fulton Fish Market. He rose to become speaker of the Assembly and then governor. As governor, he made notable contributions affecting the Lower East Side, including rent control, tenant protection and low-cost housing. The first Catholic presidential candidate, he lost to Republican Herbert Hoover in 1928.