All posts by Lucie Levine

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Features, History

10 offbeat haunted spots in New York City

By Lucie Levine, Mon, October 25, 2021

St. Paul’s Chapel via Flickr cc

‘Tis the season to voluntarily spook yourself! But if haunted houses and tourist-friendly ghost tours are not for you, New York’s bustling burrows are home to a slew of the more naturally born spirits. You’ll find Dracula’s extended family on 23rd Street, a host of oracles on Orchard Street, and the site of the cruel crime that led to the nation’s first recorded murder trial on Spring Street. If you’re searching for a necropolis in the metropolis, here are ten of the best sites in New York to spot specters.

See all the haunted haunts here!

Featured Story

Features, History, immigration

Latin in Manhattan: A look at early Hispanic New York

By Lucie Levine, Thu, September 16, 2021

New Amsterdam in 1671, via Wiki Commons

Every year starting on September 15, we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month to recognize the contributions and accomplishments of Hispanic Americans. Over 2.4 million New Yorkers, or nearly one-third of the city’s population, identify as Hispanic or Latino. The city’s thriving Latin community marks the most recent chapter in the history of Latin New York, which stretches over 400 years. Ahead, learn about early Hispanic New York, starting with the arrival of Juan Rodriguez, the first non-Native American person to live in New York City.

Learn more about Early Latin NY!

Featured Story

Features, Greenwich Village, History

“Mourners from the Ladies Waist and Dressmakers Union Local 25 and the United Hebrew Trades of New York march in the streets after the Triangle fire” 1911. Reproduction. The National Archives, via Wikimedia Commons

Around 4:30 p.m. on March 25, 1911, a fire broke out on the eighth floor of the Asch Building at Washington Place and Greene Streets, just as the young employees of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, who occupied the building’s top three floors, were preparing to leave for the day. The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire killed 146 people, nearly all of them Jewish and Italian immigrant women and girls who toiled in the city’s garment industry. Triangle stood out as the deadliest workplace tragedy in New York City before 9/11. It served as a bellwether in the American labor movement, galvanizing Americans in all walks of life to join the fight for industrial reform. It also highlighted the extraordinary grit and bravery of the women workers and reformers – members of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union, and the Women’s Trade Union League – who fought and died for fairer and safer working conditions in New York and around the country.

Find out the whole history

Featured Story

Features, Financial District, History, holidays

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Picture Collection, The New York Public Library. (1878). New-Year’S-Day In New Amsterdam. Courtesy of NYPL Digital Collections

Every year on December 31, the eyes of the world turn to Times Square. New Yorkers and revelers worldwide have been ringing in the New Year from 42nd Street since 1904 when Adolf Ochs christened the opening of the New York Times building on what was then Longacre Square with a New Year’s celebration complete with midnight fireworks. In 1907, Ochs began dropping a ball from the flagpole of the Times Tower, and a tradition for the ages was set in motion. But long before Ochs and his proclivity for pyrotechnics, New Yorkers had been ringing in the New Year with traditions both dignified and debauched. From the George Washington and the old Dutch custom of “Calling,” to the rancorous tooting of tin horns, one thing is clear, New York has always gone to town for the New Year.

Learn more

Featured Story

Features, Harlem, History

New York’s famous 369th (Old 15th) Infantry Regiment arrives home from France. From the National Archives via Wikimedia Commons

By the end of World War II, the Croix de Guerre, France’s highest military honor, would be awarded to the 369th Infantry Regiment. Better known as the Harlem Hellfighters, the regiment was an all-black American unit serving under French command in World War I, and they spent a stunning 191 days at the Front, more than any other American unit. In that time, they never lost a trench to the enemy or a man to capture. Instead, they earned the respect of both allies and enemies, helped introduce Jazz to France, and returned home to a grateful city where hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers turned out to welcome home 3,000 Hellfighter heroes in a victory parade that stretched from 23rd Street and 5th Avenue to 145th Street and Lenox.

The whole history

Featured Story

Features, History

“New York, View From South, Man-of-war at Left,” 1793, via NYPL Digital Collections

A spot of hope amidst the chaos of our current moment is that we will come out stronger, safer, and more prepared than we were before. Historically, that has actually been the case. For example, New York’s 1795 Yellow Fever Pandemic led to the creation of the New York City Board of Health, which in turn became the Metropolitan Board of Health, then the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, which helps keep the city healthy to this day. Ahead, we take a closer look at this pandemic, which ebbed and flowed from 1793 to 1805, from quarantines to new hospitals to public data.

Read more

Featured Story

Features, History

Squatters Colony, Red Hook Recreation Area, September 12, 1934, Courtesy of NYC Parks

Today, New York City’s rising cost of living has made affordable housing one of the most pressing issues of our time. But long before our current housing crisis–and even before the advent of “affordable housing” itself–Depression-era New Yorkers created not only their own homes, but also their own functioning communities, on the city’s parkland. From Central Park to City Island, Redhook to Riverside Park, these tent cities, hard-luck towns, Hoovervilles, and boxcar colonies proliferated throughout New York. Ahead, see some amazing archival photos of these communities and learn the human side of their existence.

Lots more history and photos

Featured Story

Features, History, Upstate

Photo (cropped) by H.L.I.T via Flickr cc

Have you ever noticed a castle in the middle of the water about 50 miles north of New York City? That’s Bannerman Castle, a long-abandoned arsenal turned adventurer’s hotspot. Stationed on Pollepel Island, the early 20th-century structure sat as an abandoned ruin from the time it caught fire in 1969 until 1992 when a resident from nearby Beacon, NY started the Bannerman Castle Trust and subsequently stabilized the structure and opened the island its famous relic up for tours. Ahead, we uncover the sensational history of Bannerman Caste and fill you in on how you can visit.

Catch up on the Castle

Featured Story

Features, History

Travel back to the Roaring Twenties at these 10 NYC spots

By Lucie Levine, Mon, January 27, 2020

Recently, 6sqft brought you 20 fascinating photos of New York in the ’20s, and now, we invite you to celebrate the new decade by following in the footsteps of the fanciest flappers in the five boroughs. Ahead, check out 10 places in NYC today to relive the Roaring Twenties. On this list, you’ll find theaters, bars, and hotels; Art Deco masterpieces; addresses favored by the Follies and Fitzgerald; and at least one spot where New York offers up “its first wild promise of all the mystery and the beauty in the world.”

Roar right here

Featured Story

Features, History

20 fascinating photos of New York City in the 1920s

By Lucie Levine, Tue, January 14, 2020

Welcome back to the Roaring ’20s, New York! Now that the new decade has officially dawned, we’re turning the clock back 100 years to see what the city was like the last time the calendar struck 20. If you’re looking for a little inspiration for your next Great Gatsby-themed bash, ahead find 20 fantastic photos of New York during the Jazz Age, depicting everything from old Ebbets Field to the height of Prohibition.

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