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Jelly Roll Morton
1918 – 1922


Owned by Jelly Roll Morton, a creole musician, lauded as the “father of jazz”, The Jupiter was a black and tan club. During the Pandemic and into the roaring 20’s and speakeasy era, Black and Tan clubs were discreet, and often secret, spaces for interracial people to mingle during a time of segregation.

1936 – 1939


After a short stint on Union Street and before moving to 440 Broadway, the first lesbian bar on the west coast opened. Owned by the bar’s namesake (Mona) and her husband, Jimmy Sargeant, the underground space was a place for authenticity and self-expression, where “girls could be boys”. Women could smoke and drink while wearing waist coats and pants and enjoying frequent drag king performances.

The Purple Onion
1952 – 2012


The Purple Onion put our building on the map for 60 successful years and was considered a launching pad for fame. Performers included; Phyllis Diller, The Kingston Trio, The Smothers Brothers, Lenny Bruce, Maya Angelou, and countless more. Considered “The Beatnik Era”, this critical time in history began challenging societal norms and poets, entertainers, musicians, and comedians were instrumental in rewriting history both politically and artistically.

And also part of our story…..

Columbo & Son, Accordion manufacturer. Notable accordian company that occupied the second floor beginning in 1927.

Caffe Macaroni. Mario Ascione’s restaurant, currently located across the street at 59 Columbus Avenue, was once at 140 Columbus. He continued the tradition of comedy in the cellar and offered his amazing Italian cuisine (best in the city) on the ground level for over 15 years.

Italian Barbershop. Yup, rumor has it.



Located under Columbus Avenue, Lyon & Swan pays homage to the warm, embracing hug of history, as we are reminded of a time when food and entertainment were synonymous with celebration. The menu consists of French inspired shared plates, which may be paired with a bottle of wine or a selection of house and classic cocktails. The entertainment is a nod to the past featuring a calendar of eclectic music, cabaret, drag, and comedy