Due to the temporary shutdown of the federal government,the Library of Congress is closed to the public and researchers beginning October 1, 2013 until further notice. [site] The Library of Congress is my number one source of information for the Bowery Boys, through their newspaper archive and their amazing collection of photographs. Due to the […]
A Wrigley’s Spearmint chewing gum ad from a 1911 New York Tribune advises you to choose gum, not explosives. From the New-York tribune. (New York [N.Y.]), 25 June 1911. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress.
All pictures courtesy New York Public Library, except number three, courtesy the Museum of the City of New York
The 69th Regiment — aka the Fighting Irish — have always led New York’s St. Patrick’s Day parade and have been the heart and soul of New York’s Irish community since the early 19th century. During the Civil War, they were the first to be called, fighting at the battle of Bull Run. The image […]
LOL Dogz: a photographic postcard from the Rotograph Co., from between 1904-1911. Rotograph was located at 684 Broadway, mass producing snappy photos, often heavily manipulated and painted. Their office building is still around; there’s an Au Bon Pain on the ground floor. [source] Here’s a collection of articles about the New York holiday season that I’ve […]
The Williamsburg waterfront was a wall of industry over one hundred years ago and of a most combustible kind. Manhattan had waterfront industry as well, but it was leveraged with rising skyscrapers. For instance, from the Williamsburg Bridge — not a decade old in 1912 — one could see the nearly-completed Woolworth Building emerging from […]
I was going to run this picture alongside my post on bicycle history last week, but decided this needed a post all its own. This picture and the one below were taken by Gordon Parks for Life Magazine in June 1952.
The old Coney Island El Dorado bumper car ride, 2007 (courtesy Flickr/chris trudeau) Whistleblower: A heartfelt tribute to David Durk, the NYPD officer who exposed corruption in the force with the help of Frank Serpico (subject of the 1973 Al Pacino film ‘Serpico’). “Durk then went on to take a mad genius approach to enforcing […]
When I was a teenager, one of many life missions was to one day write for the Weekly World News, the black-and-white supermarket tabloid which specialized in uncovering mutant, fantastical, and mostly unbelievable events being ignored by the mainstream media. It began in 1979 with far less embellished intentions, focusing on celebrity gossip and sensational […]
Singular sensation: Marvin Hamlisch and director Michael Bennett on the set of A Chorus Line, 1975, photo by Martha Swope (courtesy Noh Way) “Like the Yankees, Mr. Hamlisch is a New York institution.” – Pranay Gupte, the New York Sun, 2006 The composer Marvin Hamlisch, who died last night in Los Angeles at age 68, […]
From 1960. Photographed by my favorite Life photographer Leonard McCombe. [source] The journalist and fiction writer was almost as well known for his feuds as for his writing. Here are my five favorite nasty insults that Gore Vidal lobbed at other artist and writers: 1) â€œAndy Warhol is the only genius I’ve ever known with an […]
Mermaidens: Five sisters in bathing suits pose on steps of Astoria Pool, circa 1938. Courtesy the LaGuardia and Wagner Archives FOR YOUR CONSIDERATIONÂ Until May 21st, you can vote every day in theÂ Partners In Preservation initiative, a program that will award grant money to certain New York cultural and historical sites among 40 nominees. Having trouble […]
One of the more ornate features of the West Side Elevated Highway was the bridge constructed over Canal Street and opened to the public in February 1939. In November 1982, the bridge was ripped down and sold for scrap. I’m not sure of the exact date of the photography above (courtesy the Library of Congress) […]
Above: How people used to listen to podcasts in the 1930s. If you’ve been listening to our latest podcasts and want to take a dip into our history, episodes #3-#50 are available on a second podcast RSS feed: NYC History: Bowery Boys Archive. You can subscribe to that feed at the link or go to […]
Tomorrow is Jackson Pollock’s 100th birthday. A trip to MOMA is in order! Also check out this gorgeous collection of ‘behind the scenes’ photos. (Photo by Loomis Dean, Life) I’m just getting back from a trip so the blog’s been a little thin of articles this week. But we’re back to normal here next week, […]