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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.
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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

#244 The Rise of the Fifth Avenue Mansions

11/23/2017
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At the heart of New York’s Gilded Age – the late 19th century era of unprecedented American wealth and excess – were families with the names Vanderbilt, Belmont and Astor, alongside power players like A.T. Stewart, Jay Gould and William ‘Boss’ Tweed. They would all make their homes – and in the case of the Vanderbilts, their great many homes – on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue. The image of Fifth Avenue as a luxury retail destination today grew from the street’s aristocratic reputation in the...

Duration: 00:52:52


#243 New York In Neon: Signs of the City

11/16/2017
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A neon sign blazing on a rainy New York City street evokes the romance of another era, welcoming or mysterious -- depending on how many film noirs you've seen. In 2017, a neon sign says more about a business than the message that its letters spell out. It’s an endangered form of craftsmanship although the production of neon is making a hopeful comeback. In this show Greg briefly take a look at the classic signage in New York City, the kinds of signs you might have seen in New York d...

Duration: 00:59:02


#242 New York and the Dawn of Photography

11/9/2017
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We’re taking you back to a world that seems especially foreign today – a world with no selfie sticks, no tens of billions of photographs taken every day from digital screens, a world where the photograph was a rare, special and beautiful thing. New York City plays a very interesting role in the development of photography. While the medium was not invented here, many of its earliest American practitioners were trained here. In particular, the students of Samuel Morse (better known for the...

Duration: 00:59:00


#241 Edgar Allan Poe in New York

10/26/2017
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Edgar Allan Poe was a wanderer -- looking for work, for love, for meaning. That's why so many American cities can lay claim to a small aspect of his legacy. Baltimore, Boston, Richmond and Philadelphia all have their own stories to tell about the great writer. In this show, we spotlight the imprint Poe made upon New York City. Poe was in New York both on the year of his birth (as the child of two stage actor) and the year of his death (fleeing his longtime home in Fordham). Throughout out...

Duration: 01:04:25


#240 The Ghosts of Greenwich Village

10/19/2017
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For this year's annual Bowery Boys Halloween ghost story podcast, we cautiously approach the dark secrets of Greenwich Village, best known for bohemians, shady and winding streets and a deep unexpected history. You will never look at its parks and townhouses again after this show! The stories featured this year: -- The hidden history of Washington Square Park with the oldest tree in New York -- nicknamed the Hangman's Elm -- and some truly grave secrets beneath its lovely walkways --...

Duration: 00:54:52


#239 Murder at Manhattan Well

10/12/2017
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There once was a well just north of Collect Pond (New York’s fetid source of drinking water in the late 18th century) in a marshy place called Lispenard’s Meadow, in the area of today’s SoHo. One cold day in December – in the year 1799 -- a boy came across a lady’s article of clothing here matching that in the possession of a missing woman named Elma Sands. Upon looking into the old, boarded-up well, investigators discovered a horrifying sight – the lifeless body of Ms. Sands, which had...

Duration: 00:51:16


#238 Astoria and Long Island City

9/28/2017
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The borough of Queens has a history unlike any in the New York City region, but the story of its northwestern region -- comprising Astoria, Long Island City and about a half dozen other, smaller neighborhoods -- is particularly surprising. And there are basic aspects of these wonderful neighborhoods, fundamental to every day life here, that you may have never known. How did Astoria get its name? John Jacob Astor is involved, but not in the way you think. Was Long Island City an actual...

Duration: 01:02:22


#237 Columbus Circle: A Century of Controversy

9/14/2017
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Columbus Circle, a center of media and shopping at the entrance to Central Park, has a history that, well, runs against the grain. Counter-clockwise, if you will. When the park was completed in the mid 19th century, a 'Grand Circle' was planned for a busy thoroughfare of horse-drawn carriages. A monument to the Italian explorer Christopher Columbus was placed at its center in 1892, bought and paid for by New York's new Italian community. But the circle had awkwardly adjusted to modern...

Duration: 00:50:59


#236 Times Square in the '70s

9/7/2017
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Take a trip with us down the grittiest streets in Times Square -- the faded marquees of the grindhouses, the neon-lit prurient delights of Eighth Avenue at night. Times Square in the 1970s was all about fantasy -- from the second-run theaters of 42nd Street to the pornographic pleasures of the adult bookstores next door. And yet our ideas of this place and time are also caught in a bit of fantastic nostalgia. In memory it becomes an erotic theme park, a quaint corner of New York City...

Duration: 01:02:51


#235 The Crash of '29: New York In Crisis

8/31/2017
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Something so giddy and wild as New York City in the Jazz Age would have to burn out at some point but nobody expected the double catastrophe of a paralyzing financial crash and a wide-ranging government corruption scandal. Mayor Jimmy Walker, in a race for a second term against a rising congressman named Fiorello La Guardia, might have had a few cocktails at the Central Park Casino after hearing of the pandemonium on Wall Street in late October 1929. The irresponsible speculation fueling...

Duration: 01:00:29


#234 Queen of the Speakeasies: A Tale of Prohibition New York

8/17/2017
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Texas Guinan was the queen of the speakeasy era, the charismatic and sassy hostess of New York's hottest nightclubs of the 1920s. Her magnetism, sharpened by years of work in Hollywood, would make her one of the great icons of the Prohibition era. She's our guide into the underworld of the Jazz Age as we explore the history of Prohibition and how it affected New York City. The temperance movement united a very bizarre group of players -- progressives, nativists, churchgoers -- in their...

Duration: 00:59:45


#233 The Roaring '20s: Jimmy Walker, Mayor of the Jazz Age

8/3/2017
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The Bowery Boys are heading to the speakeasy and kicking back with some bathtub gin this month -- with a brand new series focusing on New York City during the Prohibition Era. The 1920s were a transformational decade for New York, evolving from a Gilded Age capital to the ideal of the modern international city. Art Deco skyscrapers reinvented the skyline, reorienting the center of gravity from downtown to a newly invigorated Midtown Manhattan. Cultural influences, projected to the world...

Duration: 00:59:32


#232 The Story of SoHo

7/20/2017
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Picture the neighborhood of SoHo (that’s right, "South of Houston") in your head today, and you might get a headache. Crowded sidewalks on the weekend, filled with tourists, shoppers and vendors, could almost distract you from SoHo’s unique appeal as a place of extraordinary architecture and history. On this podcast we present the story of how a portion of “Hell’s Hundred Acres” became the one of the most famously trendy places in the world. In the mid 19th century this area, centered...

Duration: 00:59:06


The Bowery Boys Present: The First Broadway Musical

7/6/2017
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While Greg and Tom are away this week on life-changing adventures, please enjoy this very New York City-centric episode of the Bowery Boys spinoff podcast The First: Stories of Inventions and their Consequences -- The Black Crook is considered the first-ever Broadway musical, a dizzying, epic-length extravaganza of ballerinas, mechanical sets, lavish costumes and a storyline about the Devil straight out of a twisted hallucination. The show took New York by storm when it debuted on...

Duration: 00:27:08


#231 The Stonewall Riots Revisited

6/22/2017
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In the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, undercover police officers attempting to raid the Stonewall Inn, a mob-controlled gay bar with darkened windows on Christopher Street, were met with something unexpected -- resistance. That 'altercation' was a messy affair indeed -- chaotic, violent, dangerous for all. Homeless youth fought against riot police along the twisting, crooked streets of the West Village. And yet, by the end, thousands from all walks of life met on those very same...

Duration: 00:56:21


#230 Before Harlem: New York's Forgotten Black Communities

6/8/2017
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Today we sometimes define New York City's African-American culture by place – Harlem, of course, and also Crown Heights and Bedford-Stuyvesant, neighborhoods that developed for groups of black residents in the 20 century. But by no means were these the first in New York City. Other centers of black and African-American life existed long before then. In many cases, they were obliterated by the growth of the city, sometimes built over without a single marker, without recognition. This is...

Duration: 01:00:12


#229 Live in Brooklyn! The Bowery Boys: Ten Years of Podcasting

5/25/2017
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In early June of 2007, Tom Meyers and Greg Young sat around a laptop and a karaoke microphone, looked out over Canal Street in the Lower East Side and began recording the very first Bowery Boys: New York City History Podcast. For ten years the Bowery Boys podcast has brought the history of this extraordinary city to life -- the people, places and events which have helped shape our modern metropolis. In celebration of this anniversary, join them for their very first podcast event in front...

Duration: 01:22:11


#228 The Pirate of Pearl Street: The New York Adventures of Captain Kidd

5/11/2017
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The area of Lower Manhattan below Wall Street is today filled with investment bankers, business people and tourists. But did you know, over 300 years ago, that the same streets were once crawling with pirates? In the early decades of the British colony of New York, the city was quite an appealing destination for pirates and their ships filled with stolen treasure. After all, the port of New York was far away from the supervision of the crown, providing local merchants with ample...

Duration: 00:53:59


#227 The Hindenburg Over New York

4/27/2017
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On the afternoon of May 6, 1937, New Yorkers looked overhead at an astonishing sight -- the arrival of the Hindenburg, the largest airship in the world, drifting calmly across the sky. New York City was already in the throes of "Zeppelin mania" by then. These rigid gas-filled airships, largely manufactured by Germany, were experiencing a Jazz Age rediscovery thanks in part to the Graf Zeppelin, a glamorous commercial airship which first crossed the ocean in 1928. Its commander and crew...

Duration: 00:51:14


#226 The Beauty Bosses of Fifth Avenue

4/13/2017
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The Midtown Manhattan stretch of Fifth Avenue, once known for its ensemble of extravagant mansions owned by the Gilded Age's wealthiest families, went through an astonishing makeover one hundred years ago. Many lavish abodes of the rich were turned into exclusive retail boutiques, catering to the very sorts of people who once lived here. On the forefront of this transformation were two women from very different backgrounds. Elizabeth Arden was a Canadian entrepreneur, looking to establish...

Duration: 00:51:01

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