Covering an exhaustive range of information about Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island, the first edition of The Encyclopedia of New York City was a success by every measure, earning worldwide acclaim and several awards for reference excellence, and selling out its first printing before it was officially published.
But much has changed since the volume first appeared in 1995: the World Trade Center no longer dominates the skyline, a billionaire businessman became an unlikely three-term mayor, and urban regeneration—Chelsea Piers, the High Line, DUMBO, Williamsburg, the South Bronx, the Lower East Side—has become commonplace. To reflect such innovation and change, this definitive, one-volume resource on the city has been completely revised and expanded.
The revised edition includes 800 new entries that help complete the story of New York: from Air Train to E-ZPass, from September 11 to public order. The new material includes broader coverage of subject areas previously underserved as well as new maps and illustrations. Virtually all existing entries—spanning architecture, politics, business, sports, the arts, and more—have been updated to reflect the impact of the past two decades.
The more than 5,000 alphabetical entries and 700 illustrations of the second edition of The Encyclopedia of New York Cityconvey the richness and diversity of its subject in great breadth and detail, and will continue to serve as an indispensable tool for everyone who has even a passing interest in the American metropolis.
|Publisher:||Yale University Press|
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About the Author
Kenneth T. Jackson is the Jacques Barzun Professor of History at Columbia University, where he has chaired the Department of History. The author of the prize-winning Crabgrass Frontier: The Suburbanization of the United States, he has taught New York City history for four decades. He is general editor of the Columbia History of Urban Life and a former president of the Urban History Association, the Society of American Historians, the Organization of American Historians, and the New-York Historical Society.
Read an Excerpt
The Encyclopedia of New York City
By KENNETH T. JACKSON
Yale UNIVERSITY PRESSCopyright © 2010 Yale University
All rights reserved.
A&P. See Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company.
Abbott, Berenice (b Springfield, Ohio, 17 July 1898; d Monson, Maine, 10 Dec 1991). Photographer. She moved to Greenwich Village in 1918 to pursue journalism. During her first few years in the city she developed an interest in the arts, prompting her to move to Paris in 1921 to study sculpture and drawing. She fell into photography when Man Ray recruited her to work as his darkroom assistant, and she soon developed a talent and passion for the medium, becoming a well-known portraitist and photographing such luminary figures as James Joyce and Sylvia Beach. In Paris she met French photographer Eugène Atget, and when she returned to New York City in 1929, she brought the bulk of his images with her, publicizing his documentary work and arranging for the Museum of Modern Art to purchase the collection in 1968.
Fascinated by the contrasts between old buildings awaiting demolition and tall buildings under construction, Abbott—inspired by Lewis Mumford's writings on technological eras—embarked on an ambitious project to systematically chronicle the entire city. Initially, she worked on the project independently while supporting herself with commercial work and teaching at the New School for Social Research, where she established the photography program and continued to teach until 1958. In 1935 she moved into a Greenwich Village loft with the art critic Elizabeth McCausland, who was supportive of Abbott's documentary work and later wrote much of the text to accompany her New York photographs. That same year the Federal Arts Project took interest in Abbott's study of the city and gave her financial support to hire assistants and devote her time to completing the project. In 1939 the set of 305 photographs was given to the Museum of the City of New York, and the images became the subject of her book Changing New York, which is still considered the best record of the city made before World War II. Although most of her photographs were taken in Manhattan, all boroughs are represented in this collection of images that emphasize physical structure and capture the energy of New York City's rapid transformation during the interwar period.
A pioneer in the straight photography movement, which advocated the importance of unmanipulated images, Abbott published the acclaimed Guide to Better Photography in 1941. She also designed several photographic devices, including the telescopic lighting pole or "autopole," and held U.S. patents for four of her inventions. A number of her portraits of local artists, along with photographs of downtown streets and interiors, were collected in the book Greenwich Village Today and Yesterday (1948). Later projects included the documentation of scientific phenomena for high school textbooks and automobile culture in small-town America. Abbott moved to Maine in 1966. Many of her New York City photographs are archived at the New York Public Library, where a major retrospective of her work was exhibited in 1989.
Hank O'Neal, Berenice Abbott: American Photographer (New York: McGraw–Hill, 1982); Douglas Levere, New York Changing: Revisiting Berenice Abbott's New York (New York: Prince ton Architectural Press, 2004); George Sullivan, Berenice Abbott, Photographer: An In de pen dent Vision (New York: Houghton Mifflin, 2006)
Abbott, George (Francis) (b Forestville, N.Y., 25 June 1887; d Miami Beach, 31 Jan 1995). Director, producer, and playwright. He began his career as an actor in 1913–34 and later produced, directed, and wrote more than 75 plays and musicals, including Twentieth Century (1932), Boy Meets Girl (1935), Where's Charley? (1948), The Pajama Game (1954), and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1962). With Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart he wrote the book for On Your Toes (1936), directed and wrote The Boys from Syracuse (1938), and produced and directed Pal Joey (1940). He also worked on the adaptation for the stage of Betty Smith's A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1951), which he produced and directed, and was an author and the director of Damn Yankees (1955) and Fiorello! 1959). He worked on a revival of Damn Yankees in 1994.
Sara J. Steen
Abbott, Lyman (b Roxbury [now in Boston], 18 Dec 1835; d New York City, 22 Oct 1922). Minister. After a brief period in the Midwest he wrote for Harper's Magazine and moved to New York City, where he worked with Henry Ward Beecher on the publication Christian Union (later renamed Outlook). He became the editor in 1881, and the journal was soon known as the leading exponent of progressive Christian social thought, especially the Social Gospel. Abbott took part in Henry George's mayoral campaigns, was active in the Progressive Party, and wrote four books on Christianity and contemporary issues. In 1890 he succeeded Beecher as pastor of the Plymouth Congregational Church in Brooklyn Heights.
Ira V. Brown, Lyman Abbott, Christian Evolutionist: A Study in Religious Liberalism (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1953)
Eileen W. Lindner
ABC. See American Broadcasting Company.
Abdul-Jabbar, Kareem [Alcindor, Lew] (b New York City, 16 Apr 1947). Basketball player. Born in Harlem, he led the elite Catholic high school Power Memorial to a 95–6 record during his four years on the basketball court, including a 71-game winning streak. He earned all-American honors three times and graduated as the leading scorer and rebounder in New York City high school basketball history. He later became one of the most successful college and professional basketball players of all time, winning three National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) championships at the University of California, Los Angeles, and playing most of his professional career with the Los Angeles Lakers and Milwaukee Bucks. In 1971 he changed his name to reflect his Muslim faith, which he began practicing in college. He has made two brief returns to the New York City basketball scene since his retirement as a player: he applied for the position of head basketball coach at Columbia University in 2003 and was hired for a brief time as a scout by the New York Knicks in 2004. Abdul-Jabbar has also authored several books, including On the Shoulders of Giants: My Journey through the Harlem Renaissance (2007).
Abel, Rudolf (Ivanovich) [Golfus, Emil R.; Fisher, William August] (b England, 11 July 1903; d Moscow, 15 Nov 1971). Cold war spy. A colonel in the Soviet security agency (KGB), he began his career in espionage in 1927. In 1948 he is said George Abbott to have entered the United States through Canada with a forged passport. He then lived in Brooklyn under the alias Emil R. Golfus and worked at an art and photographic studio at 252 Fulton Street. In 1957 fellow Soviet Reino Hayhanen defected, became a counter spy, and helped the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) locate Abel, thereby dismantling a Soviet spy ring. After he was arrested on 21 July 1957, a search of his home revealed spy equipment. He was convicted by a federal district court in Brooklyn and sentenced to 30 years in prison. On 10 February 1962, he was exchanged for American U-2 pi lot Francis Gary Powers.
Louise Bernikow, Abel (New York: Trident, 1970) Martin Ebon, Stephanie Miller
Abercrombie and Fitch. Firm of retailers formed during the late nineteenth century as an outdoor-supply store by David T. Abercrombie, a railroad engineer and prospector. It opened on South Street in Manhattan, where one of the first customers was Ezra H. Fitch, a wealthy lawyer and sportsman who became Abercrombie's partner. In 1908 the store provided President Theodore Roosevelt with equipment for an African safari, including snake-proof sleeping bags. Abercrombie left in 1912, and in 1917 Fitch moved the store to Madison Avenue at 45th Street, where a fly-casting pond was installed on the roof and a shooting range in the basement (which closed after a friend of Ernest Hemingway injured his shoulder while firing an elephant gun). Well-known customers in the following years included Admiral Richard Byrd, Charles Lindbergh, and Amelia Earhart, as well as Presidents William Howard Taft and Warren G. Harding (who both bought golf clubs), Woodrow Wilson (riding equipment), Herbert Hoover (fishing tackle), and Dwight D. Eisenhower (boots for weekends at Camp David); King Hussein of Jordan outfitted his yacht there, and Katharine Hepburn occasionally rode a bicycle across the main floor. In 1977 the firm, which operated a chain of nine stores, declared bankruptcy. The name was bought in 1978 by Oshman's Sporting Goods, which opened its first Abercrombie and Fitch store in 1979 in California and another at South Street Seaport in 1984. Abercrombie and Fitch was sold to the Limited in 1988. In the early twenty-first century the company operated over 300 stores nationwide, selling clothing geared toward young adults.
Eric Wm. Allison
Abigail Adams Smith Museum. Former name of the Mount Vernon Hotel Museum and Garden.
Abingdon Square. Name given to the intersection of West 12th Street, Eighth Avenue, and Hudson Street in Manhattan, and by extension to the surrounding neighborhood. Its eponym is Charlotte Warren, by marriage the countess of Abingdon; she was the daughter of Susannah de Lancey and the English privateer Admiral Peter Warren, whose estate of 300 acres (121 hectares) encompassed most of what is now the West Village. Th e neighborhood has a varied architecture that includes nineteenth-century row houses, apartment buildings, tenements, and commercial buildings, as well as factory buildings and ware houses at Westbeth and the Gansevoort Meat Market that have been converted into residences for artists and expensive condos. Its principal commercial thoroughfares are Hudson Street and Bleecker Street, which are lined with specialty shops and restaurants. A restoration in 2004 transformed the 0.22-acre (0.09-hectare) Abingdon Square Park from an asphalt triangle into a green park, emphasizing its historic character.
abolitionism. The course of abolitionism in New York City followed that within the state in general in many matters. Gouverneur Morris introduced a resolution to eliminate slavery in New York State at the state constitutional convention in 1777; a large majority of the delegates approved it. However, no further action was taken until 1785 when the state legislature debated several abolitionist measures. Among them was a plan introduced by Aaron Burr to free all slaves immediately, which won the support of Federalists (who sought to extend civil rights to blacks) but was soundly defeated; another plan calling for gradual emancipation, which a majority of the legislature supported, failed because it would also have extended suffrage to blacks. Federalists concentrated on ending the slave trade and in 1785 passed a bill banning the sale of slaves in New York State but allowing slaves to be brought into the state and remain there for no longer than nine months. During the same year such well-known figures as John Jay, Alexander Hamilton, Chancellor Livingston, Philip Schuyler, and Hector St. John de Crèvecoeur established the New York Manumission Society to encourage public support for abolition. The society mediated indentureship negotiations and provided legal assistance to African Americans who were denied their freedom; its efforts to ensure compliance with the law of 1785 were largely unsuccessful because slave owners often found loopholes that allowed sales of slaves out of state. The legislature in 1799 passed the Act for the Gradual Emancipation of Negroes and Other Slaves, which declared free the children of slaves born on or after 4 July, granted freedom to slaves born before that date at the age of 24 for women and 28 for men, and required the registration of children indentured to their masters until the age of manumission. To end abuses of the law the legislature in 1817 declared all slaves free as of 4 July 1827. In 1841 the state rescinded the provisions allowing nonresidents to hold slaves for as long as nine months.
Abolition did not end discrimination against blacks in New York, who were denied full rights of citizenship. The Democrats controlling the state constitutional convention of 1821 redefined the property requirement for voting along racial lines: blacks could vote only if they owned property worth at least $250, whereas the property qualification was eliminated for white male voters. Meanwhile, many free blacks joined the abolitionist movement, which was also taken up by the first black newspapers in New York City, Freedom's Journal (1827–29) and the Rights of All (1829). The city became an abolitionist center during the 1830s and in 1833 home to the American Anti-Slavery Society, the first national organization of its kind. Some of its most influential members were leaders of the city's black community, including Samuel E. Cornish and Theodore S. Wright. Under the society's auspices Wright and Henry Highland Garnet made speaking tours of the northern and western states and with other black abolitionists from the city became leading spokesmen for the antislavery movement: they argued that blacks would not enjoy the full rights of citizenship until slavery was eradicated throughout the country. By demonstrating political acumen and oratorical skills, they also sought to destroy myths of inferiority that provided a basis for discriminatory legislation.
Interracial tensions mounted during the 1830s. Many white abolitionists advocated repatriating blacks to Africa, leading blacks to build a separate movement against racism while continuing to work with whites. Such prominent African Americans from Manhattan as Philip Bell Cornish and J. W. C. Pennington attended the first National Negro Convention in Philadelphia from 15 to 24 September 1830, the first of several such conventions held during the 1830s. At the New York State Negro Convention, held in New York City on 25 January 1831, a number of delegates denounced efforts by the New York Colonization Society to resettle blacks in Africa as a scheme to perpetuate slavery and proclaimed their dedication to abolition and the uplift of free blacks. Abolitionism failed to win much support among whites and even intensified antiblack sentiment among white workers who viewed blacks as competitors in the labor market. During a several-day rampage in 1834 known as the Journeymen's Riot, white day laborers disrupted a meeting of abolitionists at Chatham Street Chapel and attacked the homes of Lewis Tappan and scores of African Americans.
The Colored American, launched in 1837, provided coverage of the movement until ceasing publication in 1841. Black churches became the most important venues for abolitionism. Through astute biblical exegesis, hard-nosed political analysis, and fiery oratory, black clergymen inspired their congregations to embrace "moral suasion," a policy of eschewing political action and converting slaveholders to abolitionism through moral argument. In 1840 a number of blacks left the American Anti-Slavery Society after disagreeing with members who favored moral suasion and helped to form the American and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society. African Americans during the 1840s continued to hold state and local conventions where speakers protested racism, criticized business for maintaining ties to the southern economy, and encouraged blacks to vote for candidates of the Liberty and Free Soil parties, hoping that in return for the support of black voters the parties would oppose limitations on black suffrage in New York State. Such leaders as Garnet, who at a convention in Buffalo in 1843 urged slaves to fight for their freedom, adopted a more militant stance. The Ram's Horn (1847) also took up the abolitionist cause.
Protecting the freedom of African Americans also became an abolitionist cause in the city, where slave hunters sought to kidnap the many fugitive slaves who settled there. Concern mounted after the passing of the Fugitive Slave Act (1850), which outlawed efforts to help runaway slaves and required officials to cooperate in recapturing them. The case of James Hamlet, a resident of Williamsburgh captured by local authorities and transported to Baltimore, became a cause célèbre: the New York Vigilance Committee (1835), an organization dedicated to helping fugitives, raised $800 to buy his freedom, and on 5 October 1850 his return to the city was celebrated with a rally at City Hall Park.
Excerpted from The Encyclopedia of New York City by KENNETH T. JACKSON. Copyright © 2010 by Yale University. Excerpted by permission of Yale UNIVERSITY PRESS.
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