Tudor – Where Did The Name Come From?

This sign is real and still visible in New York City near the United Nations. And it’s where the name “Tudor” came from.

Electric football games were first sold by Tudor in 1949. By that point the company had already been in business for over two decades, having been founded by Elmer Sas — Norman’s father — in 1928.  So where did the name “Tudor” come from?

Elmer founded the company as Tudor Mechanical Laboratories in 1928. The original Tudor address was 67 West 44th Street in Manhattan, a location that was just off of Sixth Avenue near Times Square. 

At the time, just four blocks to the East, something unique and inspiring was going on in a neighborhood that had previously been known for its tenements, stockyards, and breweries. Real estate developer Fred F. French was building a new high-rise residential complex of 12 apartment buildings. French envisioned his new development as an idyllic community where the average New York office worker could live close to their job without enduring substandard housing. 

An early Tudor Metal Products company logo.

With its distinctive neo-Gothic towers and utopian ideal, the new neighborhood tapped into the pre-Depression optimism of the time. Beyond affordable housing for the middle class, the new neighborhood was paving a road into something even bigger — the future.

And the name of Fred F. French’s development was…Tudor City

For Elmer and other New Yorkers of the time, “Tudor” embodied a grand and new vision for the future. And this is exactly what Elmer hoped his new venture would be. 

But he probably never dreamed that Tudor would still be around 85 years later.


Earl & Roddy

Read more about Tudor City in The New York Times.

A 1928 magazine depiction of Tudor City on the East side of Manhattan.


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