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Podcasts Politics and Protest

Listening to the Silent Parade of 1917: The Forgotten Civil Rights March

Listen to our podcast on the history of the Silent Parade of 1917 here: To get this episode, simply stream on Stitcher or your favorite podcast player Or listen to it straight from here: THE SILENT PARADE OF 1917: BLACK UNITY IN A TIME OF CRISIS “To the beat of muffled drums 8,000 negro men, […]

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Podcasts Politics and Protest

The Pride Collection: Celebrate gay history with these Bowery Boys podcast episodes

This post was originally published on June 27, 2019. This past month in New York City has been a lot. Every shop wears a Rainbow Flag and every corporation and major retailer seems to offer a welcoming message to the LGBTQ community or a line of multi-colored ‘gay apparel’. The message of World Pride blazes so brightly in […]

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Politics and Protest

New York City and the Underground Railroad: Escaping to freedom through a hostile city

PODCAST For thousands of people escaping the bonds of slavery in the South, the journey to freedom wound its way through New York City via the Underground Railroad. The Underground Railroad was a loose, clandestine network of homes, businesses and churches, operated by freed black people and white abolitionists who put it upon themselves — […]

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Politics and Protest

Frederick Douglass and the life saver of Lispenard Street, a stop on the Underground Railroad

In the early and mid-nineteenth century, the Underground Railroad secretly escorted tens of thousands of Southern enslaved people to Northern destinations, where slavery was illegal. The African American publisher David Ruggles was born a freeman in Connecticut and moved to New York to energize the emerging abolitionist move- meant via the New York Vigilance Committee, […]

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Politics and Protest Uncategorized

When Carrie Nation comes to town, saloon owners brace for impact

The passage of the 18th Amendment in 1919 — prohibiting the sale of alcohol in the United States — failed to sober up the country. It merely drove its unquenchable thirst underground. Prohibition came about because of an extraordinary union of disparate groups — religious folks, racists, progressives, nativists — all possessing different motivations for […]

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Politics and Protest

Jimmy Walker vs. the Ku Klux Klan

Jimmy Walker, the man who would become the mayor of New York during one of its most prosperous periods, was famously cavalier about politics. [Listen to our podcast on Mr. Walker for more information.] But in the years before he became mayor, he actually spearheaded two laws that would change New York City and the […]

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Politics and Protest

Duck and Panic: Six 1950s New York atomic panic (and anti-communist) videos

The early 1950s provided residents of New York with ample reasons for doom and gloom, thanks to fears of an atomic attack. America paid the price for using the bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, helping to end World War II, by living with the anxiety of an atomic horror on its own shores for the […]

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Landmarks Podcasts Politics and Protest

Revisiting the Stonewall Riots: The Evolving Legacy of a Violent Night

PODCAST The legacy of the Stonewall Riots and their aftermath, in a podcast history told over nine years apart (May 2008, June 2017). In the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, undercover police officers attempting to raid the Stonewall Inn, a mob-controlled gay bar with darkened windows on Christopher Street, were met with something […]

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Bowery Boys Bookshelf Politics and Protest

‘Fear City’: The unthinkable tale how New York City almost went bankrupt

Fear City: New York’s Fiscal Crisis and the Rise of Austerity Politics, the title of Kim Phillips-Fein’s riveting new book on the 1970s financial catastrophe, isn’t wantonly comparing New York City to the devilish landscape of a horror film. It’s the actual title of a grim pamphlet the New York Police Department distributed to tourists in 1975, […]

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Politics and Protest

Graft and Greed: Boss Tweed and the Glory Days of Tammany Hall

PODCAST REWIND The tale of America’s most infamous political machine and the rise and fall of its flamboyant William ‘Boss’ Tweed. (Episode #86) You cannot understand New York without understanding its most corrupt politician — William ‘Boss’ Tweed, a larger than life personality with lofty ambitions to steal millions of dollars from the city. With the […]