Museums Podcasts Politics and Protest

The Guarded Smile: Mona Lisa at the Metropolitan Museum

The Mona Lisa, Leonardo da Vinci’s stoic portrait and one of the most valuable paintings on earth, came to America during the winter of 1963, a single-picture loan that was both a special favor to Jackie Kennedy and a symbolic tool during tense conversations between the United States and France about nuclear arms. The first stop… Read More

Long Island Podcasts

Long Island Gothic: A Journey to Grey Gardens

PODCAST The historical backstory of one of the most famous documentaries ever made – Grey Gardens. The classic film Grey Gardens, made by brother directing team Albert and David Maysles, looks at the lives of two former society women leading a life of seclusion in a rundown old mansion in the Hamptons. Those of you who have seen the… Read More

Planes Trains and Automobiles

The story of how Idlewild Airport was renamed for John F. Kennedy

John F. Kennedy, the 35th president of the United States, was memorialized in dozens of ways following his assassination on November 22, 1963. None of these are more vital to the daily lives of New Yorkers than John F. Kennedy International Airport — or Kennedy Airport or simply JFK — the business airport in the… Read More

Pop Culture

Jackie and Loving: History on Film 2016

The end of the year usually means a higher quality selection at the movie theater– and more films based on historical events, a popular theme for those seeking glory on awards shows. It always seems each year’s batch accidentally gathers around a certain place or era.  Last year it was New York City history of the 1950s… Read More

Another art anniversary: Mona Lisa comes to New York! And she’s almost drowned in a sprinkler malfunction

Mona mania: New Yorkers line up outside the Met for the hottest ticket in town in 1963 While many artistic institutions will be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Armory Show next month, New York lovers of more classical paintings will be celebrating another milestone — the 50th anniversary of the Mona Lisa‘s visit to… Read More

Snug Harbor: a port in the storm (Part 2)

(The imposing Front Five, a wall of Greek revival madness, faces the Kill van Kull and Richmond Terrace almost like a fort.) Although the sailors home that eventually became Snug Harbor was not in the location its founder Robert Richard Randall would have preferred, it quickly became as tranquil and as restful a place as… Read More

FRIDAY NIGHT FEVER: Peppermint Lounge

pictured: Joey Dee and the Starliters, who turned a small midtown gay hustler bar into a dance hit in 1961 To get you in the mood for the weekend, every Friday we’ll be celebrating ‘FRIDAY NIGHT FEVER’, featuring an old New York nightlife haunt, from the dance halls of 19th Century Bowery, to the massive… Read More