On April 30th, 1939, President Franklin Roosevelt opened New York’s World’s Fair with an address in which he praised the commercial festival as a “symbol of peace.” An idea dreamed up at the height of the depression, the theme of the Fair was “The World of Tomorrow.” Its opening slogan was an inspiring “Dawn of New Day.” [Read more…] about Arthur Szyk: The Artist As Soldier
In 1824, the French aristocrat Lafayette (Marie-Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de La Fayette), who had played a key role in securing victory over the British during the American Revolution, was invited by President James Monroe to visit the United States, then about to celebrate its 50th anniversary.
As an advocate for democracy in both the American colonies and in France, and a proponent of abolition, the Frenchman was warmly welcomed on a thirteen-month tour of the United States. His visit spanned a highly controversial 1824 presidential election season in which the House of Representatives selected John Quincy Adams over the highest vote-getter, Andrew Jackson. Lafayette has been seen by historians as a uniting force, whose presence served to remind Americans of their mutual bonds. [Read more…] about Lafayette’s 1824-25 Farewell Tour Commemoration (A Virtual Talk)
The online project New York 1920s, 100 Years Ago Today (When We Became Modern), sponsored by New York Tech (the New York Institute of Technology), features near-daily posts based on events of the day that occurred 100 years ago in the city of New York. The posts highlighting the culture and zeitgeist of 1920s in the city. [Read more…] about New Project Highlights New York City in the 1920s
In the latest episode of Empire State Engagements Dr. Alyssa Maldonado-Estrada talks about her ethnographic study of Italian-American men’s Catholic devotion, Lifeblood of the Parish; Men and Catholic Devotion in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (NYU Press, 2020). She discussed her experiences over six years of work engaging the parish community; reading tattoos as devotional texts; playfulness and devotion in masculine spaces; the rich history of Italian-American Catholicism in Williamsburg; and the endurance of this parish, tradition, and community – despite decades of challenges ranging from reactionary clergymen to Robert Moses to gentrifying hipsters. [Read more…] about Parish Lifeblood: Italian-Americans In Williamsburg (Podcast)
The Columbia County Historical Society (CCHS) has announced the release of its Spring 2021 issue of Columbia County History & Heritage magazine. Titled “Dutch Culture in the Hudson Valley,” the issue explores the varied ways Dutch colonists shaped the culture and landscapes of the Hudson Valley — including Columbia County — beginning in the early 1600s. [Read more…] about Latest Columbia County History & Heritage Magazine Published
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In 1844 America was in a state of deep unrest, grappling with xenophobia, racial, and ethnic tension on a national scale that feels singular to our time, but echoes the earliest anti-immigrant sentiments of the country.
In that year Philadelphia was set aflame by a group of Protestant ideologues — avowed nativists — who were seeking social and political power rallied by charisma and fear of the Irish immigrant menace. [Read more…] about Fires of Philadelphia: A New Book On The 1844 Nativist Riots
The Columbia County Historical Society (CCHS) has been awarded a matching Historic Preservation Grant from the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, which will fund the restoration of two historically significant portraits in the CCHS Permanent Collection.
The portraits, which date to the early and mid 19th century, feature members of one of Columbia County’s most important and influential families: the Livingstons. [Read more…] about Conservation of Livingston Family Portraits Underway
Defrocked priest and poet Lorenzo Da Ponte wrote the words for Mozart’s three celebrated operas Don Giovanni, Le nozze di Figaro, and Così fan tutte. As the librettist’s ultimate challenge is creating character whilst thinking music, few could match Lorenzo’s achievement. [Read more…] about A Rascal in Venice, Hero in Vienna, Opera Buff in Manhattan
The May 2021 episode of “Crossroads of Rockland History,” remembers Helen Hayes. Joyce Bulifant, daughter-in-law of Hayes, shared fond memories of her mother-in-law; of her father-in-law, the playwright Charles MacArthur; and of their famous house in Nyack, Pretty Penny. Then we learned about an effort to establish Pretty Penny as a literary landmark from actor/writer/director Joel Vig. [Read more…] about Helen Hayes Subject of Rockland History Podcast
The Reverend Charles Preston arrived at the port of Hong Kong on May 12th, 1854 after a voyage of 160 days from the city of New York. His final destination was the city of Canton, China – where the Presbyterian Missionary Board had established a base of operation that included a school, hospital and chapel. There he would engage in his life’s work: trying to convert the people of China to Christianity. [Read more…] about A Saratoga County Missionary To Canton, China