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Museums

The Stunning Wilderness: John James Audubon saves the birds and creates a rare 19th century masterpiece

Happy Easter!  Audubon’s Golden Eagle with its bizarrely depicted bunny prize.  Notice the small man in the background. That’s Audubon himself as ‘an American woodsman’, the only appearance he makes in this series of watercolors.You’d be forgiven for thinking that the latest show at the New-York Historical Society — Audubon’s Aviary: Parts Unknown (Part II) […]

Categories
Museums

Start 2014 by seeing three of the best exhibitions of 2013 — Armory Show, Lewis Hine, the ABCs of children’s books

Did you make a New Year’s resolution this year to go to more museums?  To be more cultured? To know, generally speaking, what’s going on in this great big city in 2014?  Then start with these three terrific history-related exhibitions — some of best shows from last year — either at their half-way points or […]

Notes from the podcast: (#141) New York Beer History

Year-Round Brews: This calendar from 1895 celebrates the Harlem breweries of James Everard. An older Everard brewery building on W. 28th Street was converted into a Turkish bathhouse in 1888. It became the location of a variety of notorious activities during the 20th century. Everard’s breweries became the plaintiff in a Prohibition-era Supreme Court case regarding […]

Museum mania: the refurbished New York Historical Society, and a stunning debut at the Brooklyn Navy Yard

Anchors Aweigh: A museum finally opens in one of Brooklyn’s most restricted outposts The Brooklyn Navy Yard finally got the museum it deserves this past weekend with the opening of BLDG 92: Brooklyn Navy Yard Center, a badly needed introduction to this long-restricted yet important component of New York history. The environmentally-friendly new center is affixed […]

On View: Victor Prevost’s (really) old New York

If all this talk of Jacob Riis has whet your appetite at all for some nostalgic images of Manhattan, you must check out the New York Historical Society‘s display of some really, really, really old photographs, the early work of photography pioneer Victor Prevost. Provost’s early experiments in the 1850s with calotypes (negatives on wax) […]

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Revolutionary History

What’s your favorite Nathan Hale death spot?

Nathan Hale was a 21 year old Connecticut native who volunteered for George Washington’s Continental Army and stayed behind in New York after the Army’s retreat in September 1776 in order to gain intelligence from the British. Hale was unfortunately caught — in Flushing Bay, Queens — brought to Manhattan and hanged, though not before […]

New York salutes America’s favorite Frenchman

The Marquis de Lafayette might be a minor figure of the American Revolution for some people, but the French man takes center stage at the New York Historical Society with “French Founding Father: Lafayette’s Return to Washington’s America.” (Pictured: the Marquis in Union Square) The show opened this Saturday with a host of costumed actors […]

Categories
Revolutionary History

Revolutionary Anger in Bowling Green

Bowling Green is now a small, pleasant fountained park at the foot of the Alexander Hamilton Custom House (now the National Museum of the American Indian). Its blooming flowers and quiet charm completely mask its significance to American history. For in the Colonial era, this area, once the site of the public well, was the meeting […]