The webinar will go live at approximately 5pm on November 30 with the first 100 visitors able to access the webinar. To supplement the limited capacity, there will be a simultaneous YouTube stream with unlimited access. After the live presentation, the webinar will also be posted on YouTube for subsequent viewing.
Author Jim Mackin talks about his new book, some of the people he’s written about and some of the curiosities about the neighborhood that he uncovered during the course of his research.
About the book: What do Humphrey Bogart and Patty Hill (co-author of “Happy Birthday,” the most popular song of all time) have in common? Both of them once lived in the neighborhood of Morningside Heights and Bloomingdale, a strip of land that runs from the 90s to 125th Street, between the Hudson River and Central Park. Spanning hundreds of years, Notable New Yorkers of Manhattan’s Upper West Side is a compilation of stories of nearly 600 former residents who once called Manhattan’s Upper West Side home.
Over the years, the Upper West Side has gone from farmland and summer homes, to Revolutionary War battleground, to a working-class community with enclaves of the wealthy, to the diverse community it is today. Profiling a rare selection of wildly diverse people who shaped the character of the area, Mackin introduces readers to its fascinating residents: some famous, such as George and Ira Gershwin and Thurgood Marshall, and some forgotten, such as Harriet Brooks, Augustus Meyers, and Elinor Smith. Brief biographies reveal intriguing facts about this group, which include scientists, explorers, historians, journalists, artists, entertainers, aviators, public officials, lawyers, judges, and more.
While the focus is on people, the book includes an eclectic collection of interesting facts and colorful stories about the neighborhood, including the 9th Avenue El, Little Coney Island, and, notoriously, one of the most dangerous streets in the city, as well as songs and movies that were written and shot in the neighborhood.
Michael Miscione, Manhattan Borough Historian from 2006-2019, read the book and had this to say: Mackin’s book “is an exhaustive and ofttimes surprising Who’s Who of Upper West Siders who have shaped the worlds of art, culture, politics, and science. After reading his book I thought, ‘Harlem and Greenwich Village boosters take note! The Upper West Side deserves a seat at the table.’”
About Jim Mackin: Mackin is a member of the Bloomingdale Neighborhood History Group, a local historian and the force behind Weekday Walks https://www.weekdaywalks.com/.
His past programs for the BNHG have been enormously popular and his guided tours of the West Side are a must for anyone who lives in the neighborhood or has any interest in the history of the city.
The New York City subway is big. It's complex. Even for the strong of heart, mapping the system and making it understood can be a monstrous undertaking. There are over 470 subway stations, with 25 separate lines and schedules that boggle the mind.
And yet, somehow, we all manage to get from point A to point B on the subway. There have been any number of approaches to mapping the subway over the years, and focusing on points A, B, and everything in between is the very fun part for people like Upper West Sider, historian and map maker John Tauranac. Who better to take us deep inside the Hydra? He'll share historic subway maps, including the recent digitized approach, and guide us through mapping highs and lows, successes and epic fails.
Whether you're a fan of design, maps, history, puzzle-solving, or the great John Tauranac, you'll enjoy this wholly unique perspective on the modern relic that is the NYC subway system! John Tauranac fell into mapping as much by accident as design. In the early 1970s Tauranac started writing about the undercover passageways that pedestrians could take to stay dry in the wet and warm in the cold, only to realize that what he was writing was an instant cure for insomnia. With no training in studio art or graphics, he decided to chart the passageways of Midtown and Lower Manhattan. New York magazine liked his roughs and had them metamorphosed into the “Undercover Maps”. Tauranac went on to be the creative director of the 1979 MTA subway map, and has designed dozens of maps since, including his street atlas, Manhattan Block By Block and his newest subway map, which he believes is not just didactic, it is swellegant. FREE-RSVP
Free Walking Tours of Historic Bloomingdale Explore the History of the Upper West Side between W. 96th and W. 110th Streets Led by Renowned Local Historian Jim Mackin
The free monthly Bloomingdale neighborhood walking tours will resume when the current health crisis passes. Tours Meet at Hostelling International-NY 891 Amsterdam Avenue at 103rd Street More info 212-666-9774 or email@example.com sponsored by the Columbus/Amsterdam BID and Bloomingdale Neighborhood History Group