By 2007, Lorcan Otway began the restoration of Theatre 80 and began projects to support the theater and illustrate the history of the building. As part of this restoration, he opened the Museum of the American Gangster and William Barnacle Tavern. William Barnacle Tavern is named after William “Barnacle Bill” Scott, a merchant sailor who was often called the “mayor” of Tompkins Square Park. Bill worked for a few months at a time so that he could spend the majority of his time in the park sharing his time and money with many people who lived on the streets. He bought meals for the young people who called themselves, “Gutter Pirates” or “Crusties.” Bill and Lorcan had the sea in common. Lorcan had been a boat builder and a sailor in Ireland and the U.S. In keeping alive the history of the neighborhood, Lorcan named the tavern after his old friend. Most of the replica boats in the tavern were built by Lorcan Otway and are an authentic reflection of his life at sea.
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