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New York City history is America's history. It's the hometown of the world, and most people knows its familiar landmarks, buildings and streets. Why not look a little closer and have fun while doing it? The Bowery Boys, Greg Young and Tom Meyers, have lived in New York for the last fifteen years and have been curious about the city since the day they arrived. Join them for a fun take on history, a "romp down the back alleys of New York City." Every other week, they look into another fascinating aspect of the Big Apple -- the people, the places, its beginnings and effects on American culture.

New York City history is America's history. It's the hometown of the world, and most people knows its familiar landmarks, buildings and streets. Why not look a little closer and have fun while doing it? The Bowery Boys, Greg Young and Tom Meyers, have lived in New York for the last fifteen years and have been curious about the city since the day they arrived. Join them for a fun take on history, a "romp down the back alleys of New York City." Every other week, they look into another fascinating aspect of the Big Apple -- the people, the places, its beginnings and effects on American culture.
More Information

Location:

New York, NY

Description:

New York City history is America's history. It's the hometown of the world, and most people knows its familiar landmarks, buildings and streets. Why not look a little closer and have fun while doing it? The Bowery Boys, Greg Young and Tom Meyers, have lived in New York for the last fifteen years and have been curious about the city since the day they arrived. Join them for a fun take on history, a "romp down the back alleys of New York City." Every other week, they look into another fascinating aspect of the Big Apple -- the people, the places, its beginnings and effects on American culture.

Language:

English


Episodes

#276 Murder on Bond Street: Who Killed Dr. Burdell?

11/15/2018
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On January 31, 1857, a prominent dentist named Harvey Burdell was found brutally murdered -- strangled, then stabbed 15 times -- in his office and home and Bond Street, a once-trendy street between Broadway and the Bowery. The suspects for this horrific crime populated the rooms of 31 Bond Street including Emma Cunningham, the former lover of Dr. Burdell and a woman with many secrets to hide; the boarder John Eckel who had a curious fondness for canaries; and the banjo-playing George...

Duration:01:01:42

#275 Return to Tin Pan Alley: Saving American Music History

11/1/2018
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The beat goes on! In 2009 we recorded a podcast about the history of Tin Pan Alley, the cluster of buildings on West 28th Street where the American popular music industry was born. It was from these loud, bustling offices and parlors that some of the world's greatest songs were written and sold, launching and igniting the careers of songwriters like George Gershwin, Cole Porter and Irving Berlin. But nine years later, Tin Pan Alley finds itself in peril as the neighborhood surrounding it...

Duration:01:01:02

#274 Ghost Stories of Hell's Kitchen

10/19/2018
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The Manhattan neighborhood of Hell's Kitchen has a mysterious, troubling past. So what happens when you throw a few ghosts into the mix? Greg and Tom find out the hard way in this year's ghost stories podcast, featuring tales of mystery and mayhem situated in the townhouses, courtyards and taverns of this trendy area of Midtown West. This years Ghost Stories of Old New York show features: -- The troubling tale of a 1970s motion picture classic that may have left a sinister mark on West...

Duration:01:01:11

#273 Peter Stuyvesant and the Fall of New Amsterdam

10/4/2018
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There would be no New York City without Peter Stuyvesant, the stern, autocratic director-general of New Amsterdam, the Dutch port town that predates the Big Apple. The willpower of this complicated leader took an endangered ramshackle settlement and transformed it into a functioning city. But Mr. Stuyvesant was no angel. In part two in the Bowery Boys' look into the history of New Amsterdam, we launch into the tale of Stuyvesant from the moment he steps foot (or peg leg, as it were) onto...

Duration:01:11:10

#272 Life in New Amsterdam

9/20/2018
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We are turning back the clock to the very beginning of New York City history with this special two-part episode, looking at the very beginnings of European settlement in the area and the first significant Dutch presence on the island known as Manhattan. The Dutch were drawn to the New World not because of its beauty, but because of its beavers. Beaver pelts were all the rage in European fashion, and European explorers like Henry Hudson reported back that this unexplored land was filled...

Duration:01:00:19

#271 Counter Culture: Diners, Automats, and Luncheonettes in New York

9/6/2018
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The classic diner is as American as the apple pie it serves, but the New York diner is a special experience all its own, an essential facet of everyday life in the big city. They range in all shapes and sizes -- from the epic, stand-alone Empire Diner to tiny luncheonettes and lunch counters, serving up fried eggs and corned beef. In this episode, the Bowery Boys trace the history of the New York diner experience, a history of having lunch in an ever-changing metropolis. There were no New...

Duration:01:04:35

#270 Heaven on the Hudson: A History of Riverside Park

8/23/2018
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In peeling back the many layers to Riverside Park, upper Manhattan's premier ribbon park, running along the west side from the Upper West Side to Washington Heights, you will find a wealth of history that takes you back to Manhattan's most rugged days. The windswept bluffs overlooking the Hudson River were home to only desolate mansions and farmhouses, its rock outcroppings appealing to tortured poets such as Edgar Allan Poe. But the railroad cleaved the peace when it laid its tracks...

Duration:00:59:45

#269 Harry Houdini and the Golden Age of Magic in New York

8/9/2018
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Harry Houdini became one of the greatest entertainers of the 20th century, a showman whose escape artistry added a new dimension to the tried-and-true craft of stage magic. In this show, we present not only a mini-biography on the daredevil wizard, but a survey of the environment which made him -- a city of magic, mediums and mystery. New York during the late 19th century was a place of real, practical magic -- electric lights, elevated trains, telephones and other wonders that would have...

Duration:01:05:21

#268 The Astonishing Saga of the Atlantic Cable

7/26/2018
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New Yorkers threw a wild, exuberant celebration in the summer of 1858 in honor of 'the eighth wonder of the world', a technological achievement that linked North America and Europe by way of an underwater cable which sat on the floor of the Atlantic Ocean. The transatlantic cable was set to link the telegraph systems of the United Kingdom with those in the United States and Canada, and New Yorkers were understandably excited. Peter Cooper, one of the city's wealthiest men, was attached to...

Duration:00:55:10

#267 Broadway: The Story of a Street

7/12/2018
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Today we're joined by Fran Leadon, the author of a new history of Broadway, called “Broadway: A History of New York in 13 Miles”. We've discussed Broadway, the street, in just about every show we’ve done -- as so many of the city’s key events have taken place along Broadway or near it. And that’s also the point of Fran’s book -- by telling the story of a street, you’re actually telling the story of the entire city. On today’s show, we’ll be discussing how Broadway moved north --...

Duration:01:00:06

#266 New York City during the Revolutionary War (1776-1783)

6/28/2018
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What was life like in New York City from the summer of 1776 to the fall of 1783 -- the years of British occupation during the Revolutionary War? New York plays a very intriguing role in the story of American independence. The city and the surrounding area were successfully taken by the British by the end of 1776 -- George Washington and the Continental Army forced to escape for the good of the cause -- and the port city became the central base for British operations during the...

Duration:00:59:17

#265 Absolutely Flawless: A History of Drag in New York City

6/14/2018
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Television audiences are currently obsessed with shows like RuPaul's Drag Race and FX's Pose, presenting different angles on the profession and art of drag. New York City has been crucial to its current moment in pop culture and people have been performing and enjoy drag performers in this city for over 120 years. In the beginning there were two styles of drag -- vaudeville and ballroom. As female impersonators filled Broadway theaters -- one theater is even named for a famed gender...

Duration:01:04:50

#264 The Landmarks of Coney Island

5/31/2018
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The Coney Island Boardwalk -- officially the Riegelmann Boardwalk -- just became an official New York City scenic landmark, and to celebrate, the Bowery Boys are headed to Brooklyn's amusement capital to toast its most famous and long-lasting icons. Recorded live on location, this week's show features the backstories of these Coney Island classics: -- The Wonder Wheel, the graceful, eccentric Ferris wheel preparing to celebrate for its 100th year of operation; -- The Spook-o-Rama, a...

Duration:00:57:27

#263 Ebbets Field and the Glory Days of the Brooklyn Dodgers

5/17/2018
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The Robins. The Bridegrooms. The Superbas. The Dizziness Boys. Dem Bums. The Boys of Summer. Whatever you call them, they will always be known in the hearts of New Yorkers as the Brooklyn Dodgers, the legendary baseball team that almost literally defined the spirit of Brooklyn in the early and mid 20th century. Equally as heralded is their former home Ebbets Field, a tiny stadium east of Prospect Park that saw several spectacular moments in sports history. This tiny but mighty field was...

Duration:01:01:52

#262 Secrets of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine

5/4/2018
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The Bowery Boys have finally made to one of the most enigmatic and miraculous houses of worship in America – the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. This Episcopal cathedral has a story like no other and a collection of eccentric artifacts and allegorical sculpture – both ancient and contemporary – that continues to marvel and confound. Located in Morningside Heights in Upper Manhattan, St. John the Divine – named for the Apostle and author of the Book of Revelations -- is no ordinary...

Duration:01:11:10

#261 The Huddled Masses: Emma Lazarus and the Statue of Liberty

4/19/2018
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The words of the The New Colossus, written 135 years ago by Jewish writer Emma Lazarus in tribute to the Statue of Liberty, have never been more relevant -- or as hotly debated -- as they are today. What do these words mean to you? "Give me your tired, your poor/Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free/The wretched refuse of your teeming shore." In this episode, Tom and Greg look at the backstory of these verses -- considered sacred by many -- and the woman who created them. Emma...

Duration:01:10:25

#260 Journey to Grey Gardens: A Tale of Two Edies

4/5/2018
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In this episode of the Bowery Boys, Greg digs into the back story of one of the most famous documentaries ever made – Grey Gardens. The film, 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 film – or the Broadway musical or the HBO film inspired by the documentary – know that it possesses a strange, timeless quality. Mrs Edith Bouvier...

Duration:00:57:39

#259 Crossing to Brooklyn: How the Williamsburg Bridge Changed New York

3/22/2018
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Sure, the Brooklyn Bridge gets all the praise, but New York City's second bridge over the East River has an exceptional story of its own. In this episode, we'll answer some interesting questions, including: -- Why is the bridge named for a 19th century industrial neighborhood in Brooklyn and why is it not, for instance, called the Manhattan Bridge (a name not in use yet in 1903) or the East River Bridge (which was its original name)? -- Why did everybody think the bridge looked so...

Duration:00:55:08

#258 Tales from Tribeca History

3/15/2018
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TriBeCa (Triangle Below Canal) is a breathtaking neighborhood of astounding architectural richness. But how much do you know about this trendy destination and its patchwork of different histories? You'll be surprised to learn about the many facets of this unusual place, including: -- Lispenard's Meadow, tracing back to the property's first Dutch settlers; -- St. John's Park, New York's first ritzy residential district; -- Washington Market, the open-air marvel that fed New Yorkers for...

Duration:01:03:14

#257 Frozen In Time: The Great Blizzard of 1888

3/7/2018
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This year marks the 130th anniversary of one of the worst storms to ever wreak havoc upon New York City, the now-legendary mix of wind and snow called the Great Blizzard of 1888. The battering snow-hurricane of 1888, with its freezing temperatures and crazy drifts three stories high, was made worse by the condition of New York’s transportation and communication systems, all completely unprepared for 36 hours of continual snow. The storm struck on Monday, March 11, 1888, but many thousands...

Duration:00:51:38