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Bowery Boys Bookshelf

How to make a mermaid: A chat with Mark Siegel, the creator of ‘Sailor Twain, or The Mermaid in the Hudson’

A passenger steamer passes along the Hudson, early 1900s. (Courtesy LOC)As a kick-off to the Bowery Boys Book of the Month section, I thought I’d ask Mark Siegel, the author of “Sailor Twain or The Mermaid in the Hudson,” a few questions on his inspiration for the graphic novel.  I was especially interested in the […]

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Bowery Boys Bookshelf

‘Sailor Twain’ : A mystery at the bottom of a haunted river (Bowery Boys Book of the Month)

We’re trying out a new feature here on the blog by debuting our very first ever Bowery Boys Book of the Month selection!  Each month I’ll pick a book — either brand new or old, fiction or non-fiction — that offers an intriguing take on New York City history, something that uses history in a […]

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Bowery Boys Bookshelf

‘The Irish Way’ to becoming American: a hard-fought history of the dockworkers, the vaudevillians and the chambermaids

The Irish Way: Becoming American in the Multi-Ethnic Citypart of the Penguin History of American Life seriesBy James R. BarrettPenguin Group The Irish were the first to immigrate to this country en masse in the 1840s, only to find themselves near the bottom of almost every aspect of American life. In James R. Burnett‘s tidy and studied […]

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Bowery Boys Bookshelf

‘The Greatest Grid’ and an even greater book

Reason to love New York No. 12,306: A museum honoring the city’s history has a hit on its hands with an elaborate show about surveying and real estate. ‘The Greatest Grid: The Master Plan of Manhattan 1811-2011‘, the smash-hit exhibition at the Museum of the City of New York, is the most fully realized and in-depth […]

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Bowery Boys Bookshelf

Langston Hughes: A few Harlem stops on his birthday

Dapper gentlemen: At a 1924 celebration in Langston’s honor, at the home of Regina Andrews on 580 St. Nicholas Avenue. The author is to the far left, followed by future sociologists Charles S. Johnson and E. Franklin Frazier; novelist and future doctor Rudolph Fisher; and Hubert T. Delany, who would become a New York justice […]

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Bowery Boys Bookshelf Gilded Age New York

Mark Twain was here: Mapping a trail of his misadventures

Last year at this time, I did a podcast on Mark Twain in New York and featured this map of notable places Twain worked, lectured, lived and played. Today is the author’s birthday — he was born 176 years ago — so I thought I’d reprint the map in case you wanted to revisit a […]