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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… Read More

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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… Read More

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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… Read More

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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… Read More

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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,… Read More

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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… Read More