Categories
Holidays

Happy New Year! Photographs from over a century of Chinese New Year celebrations in Manhattan

Head over to Chinatown this Sunday afternoon (February 17, starting at 1pm) for the Lunar New Year Parade and Festival, topping off two weeks of celebrations in honor of the Year of the Pig. (Find the parade route here. And get there early for a great spot.) [We also did a podcast episode on the history of New Year’s Eve […]

Categories
Holidays Podcasts

A New Year in Old New York: A history of celebration from Times Square to Chinatown

PODCAST The ultimate history of New Year’s celebrations in New York City. This is the story of the many ways in which New Yorkers have ushered in the coming year, a moment of rebirth, reconciliation, reverence and jubilation. In a mix of the old and new, we present a history of early New Year’s festivities, before […]

Categories
Amusements and Thrills

Digital City: New York and the World of Video Games

PODCAST The history of video games and arcades in New York City. New York has an interesting, complex and downright weird relationship with the video game, from the digital sewers below Manhattan to the neon-lit arcades of Times Square.  It’s not all nostalgia and nerviness; video games in the Big Apple have helped create communities and […]

The deadly history of Doyers Street: new on AOL Video

As part of their ‘What Remains’ series, the AOL On video channel is focusing its attention on Doyers Street in Chinatown, and I make a guest appearance here talking about this mysterious street and its gangster past.  This is a brief but very dramatic history of the street known one hundred years ago as ‘the Bloody Angle’. […]

The deadly history of Doyers Street: new on AOL Video

As part of their ‘What Remains’ series, the AOL On video channel is focusing its attention on Doyers Street in Chinatown, and I make a guest appearance here talking about this mysterious street and its gangster past.  This is a brief but very dramatic history of the street known one hundred years ago as ‘the Bloody Angle’. […]

Categories
Gangs of New York

New Year’s Murder: Return of the Tong Wars 1912

“On New Year’s Day they presented any celebration in Chinatown with fireworks. There have been murders sometimes when the whole joyful populace of the crooked streets of Doyers, Mott and Pell have been patriotically celebrating with gunpowder an historic anniversary.” — New York Times, 1/16/1912 The streets of Chinatown were relatively quiet in 1911, a […]

Park life: The anniversary of a name change in Chinatown

Next week begins ‘ghost stories’ week on the blog, but I need to make one more trip to Chinatown, the topic of the last podcast. As I just wrote about Columbus Day last week, I would be remiss if I skipped this very coincidental date in history. It was exactly one hundred years ago yesterday […]

Opium heaven! Fears of Chinatown, immortalized in print

Reading about Chinatown in classic books like ‘Gangs of New York’, one gets a sense that certain mysteries and legends about the neighborhood were already firmly in place. And nothing of these gauzy preconceptions arose to the public consciousness more than the problem of Chinatown’s opium dens. In fact, no other feature of American Chinatowns […]

Notes from the podcast (#129): Manhattan’s Chinatown

Casual posing at the opening of Doyers Street, circa 1900. (LOC) I’m so relieved that we finally got to cover a proper New York neighborhood on the podcast. Since reviewing the historic shifts and events of a neighborhood are better covered topically, we hope there wasn’t too much confusion regarding the chronology. Manhattan’s Chinatown was […]

Manhattan’s Chinatown: a tribute to the old neighborhood, and to the temptations of rich delicacies and basement vices

Doyers Street or ‘the Bloody Angle’, a street you might not want to find yourself on in the 1900s — unless you were an opera buff. PODCAST Manhattan’s Chinatown is unique among New York neighborhoods as its origins and its provocative history can still be traced in many of the buildings and streets still in […]

New York’s oddest tourists: the Chinese delegation of 1911

Above: Chinese naval officers, with Mayor William Jay Gaynor, mounting the steps of Grant’s Tomb, 9/11/11. Workers at the Hudson waterfront awoke on September 11, 1911, to catch quite a curious sight in the water that day. It wasn’t the size of the ship that struck gathering crowds or its loud, rumbling engines; after all, the Chelsea […]

Where New York’s Chinese food addiction begins

I know that the native cuisine of New York City is officially pizza or hot dogs, but on a daily basis, perhaps nothing is consumed more in this city than Chinese food. There are hundreds of Chinese restaurants in this city; I’ve got four within a block of my apartment. Its probably impossible to identify […]

Jane, stop this crazy thing!

(Jacobs, as seen in Canada) We finally made it over to the Municipal Art Society’s exhibit on the extraordinary Jane Jacobs, community leader and civil planner whose theories on a successful urban landscape are currently fueling community activism today. Jane Jacobs and the Future of New York is part-bio on Jacobs, part inspection of her […]