A New Home For “Fearless Girl”

Strong woman.

With her chin up and hands placed firmly on her hips, the young girl’s slender frame stands rigid and defiant before an onrushing creature of muscle and sinew. An unseen wind catches her hair and billows her dress like a sail, yet the girl remains still and unyielding. Mere feet from her is a horned beast of enormous size and even greater power, but the girl’s face shows neither fear nor concern, but unfailing confidence and immeasurable calm. Her name is Fearless Girl, and she is currently a close second to the Statue of Liberty as the New York area’s most famous sculpture.

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New York Fact-O-Gram #5

USS TurnerThis is the story of the USS Turner (vessel designation DD-648), a World War II-era United States Navy destroyer. The Turner was nearly 350 feet long, weighed about 1600 tons, and she was armed with torpedoes, depth charges, and a plethora of guns. The Turner was a newly launched warship when it entered WWII in June 1943. Less than a year later, her flaming hulk would sink to the bottom of New York Harbor. How the ship came to meet such a fate in a place far removed from enemy fire remains a point of debate among many.

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New York Fact-O-Gram #4

The Current Madison Square Garden.

The Current Madison Square Garden.
(By Rich Mitchell.)

Most people outside New York City know that Madison Square Garden is the name of the city’s premier indoor sports facility. However, most don’t know that the Madison Square Garden of today is neither the original venue nor is it in the location of the original. Amazingly, the current Madison Square Garden is actually the fourth structure to bear the iconic name of the most storied sports and entertainment facility ever to exist here in my native New York City. Continue reading

The Brother, the General, and Mary

The Ruins of Riverside Hospital on North Brother Island

The Ruins of Riverside Hospital on North Brother Island.
(Image by reivax.)

Located in the East River of New York City is a place that was at the core of events filled with death, tragedy, and unrepentant malice. It is North Brother Island, an overgrown, 20-acre island that sits between the city’s Bronx County and its infamous Riker’s Island prison. Both the island and its smaller twin South Brother Island are now wildlife sanctuaries and devoid of any human presence. However, in years past North Brother Island was home to Riverside Hospital, a treatment facility for many infectious diseases; it was also the scene of fiery death that remained unrivaled in New York City history until the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001.

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New York Fact-O-Gram #3

Bryant Park. (The New York Public Library is to the rear.)

Bryant Park.
(The New York Public Library is to the rear.)

Here’s another New York City “Fact-O-Gram”: There is a single block within Midtown Manhattan that, at different points in time, has held a park, a reservoir, an exhibition hall, and a library. It has changed as New York City has changed, with each new element within its borders forming a unique and important facet of the lives of the city’s residents. This is a story of change and rebirth within the heart of New York City. This is the story of Bryant Park. Continue reading

Common Knowledge

Landing of Columbus.

Columbus discovers…that others beat him to the New World.

Americans tend to know of the extremes of a given type of incident or element of an event, but few are aware of other occurrences that, while not quite as spectacular, devastating, or salacious as the better-known events, are nonetheless possessed of their own elements of courage, triumph, and bitter tragedy. The lack of awareness is the fulcrum that allows truth to pivot toward lesser things. That fulcrum is not only the exact point where the failures of the common body of knowledge become apparent, it is where our own desire and ability to be informed fails us as well, and it’s where true knowledge should not only begin, it’s where so-called “common knowledge” should end. Unfortunately for us all, it does not.

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New York Fact-O-Gram #2

Here’s another New York City “Fact-O-Gram”: NYC holds two international records for building destruction. The tallest completed building ever brought down through planned demolition was the city’s towering (and somewhat phallic looking) Singer Building in 1968.

The Singer Building in the distance.

The Singer Building in the distance.

Conversely, the tallest buildings ever brought down through officially unplanned demolition were the “Twin Towers” of the city’s World Trade Center due to Islamic terror attacks on September 11th, 2001.

-Keith V.