MCNY Blog: New York Stories

Iconic photos of a changing city, and commentary on our Collections & Exhibitions from the crew at MCNY.org

Author Archives: Lauren Robinson

Frequently Asked Questions for Rights & Reproductions

We receive many inquiries at the Museum of the City of New York regarding rights and reproductions for objects in our collections. Below are some frequently asked questions and responses. … Continue reading

May 2, 2017 · 4 Comments

Minnie Fisher, Immigrant and Labor Activist

The Museum completed processing our Pamphlet Collection over the past summer and shared the finding aid online with funds from the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation, and has now completed item … Continue reading

February 21, 2017 · 1 Comment

Restaurants of Yore

It’s harder and harder for an independent restaurant to survive in New York City, according to an article published in the New York Times on October 25, 2016: “Is New … Continue reading

December 20, 2016 · Leave a comment

Valentina: Fashion Onstage

“The Theater of Valentina: Costume or Couture?” is a question posed by Kohle Yohannan in his groundbreaking book, Valentina: American Couture and the Cult of Celebrity.[1] Indeed, it can at … Continue reading

December 6, 2016 · Leave a comment

Young Chuck Connors, Mayor of Chinatown

“Mayor of Chinatown” Chuck Connors enthralled New Yorkers around the turn of the century with tall tales and colorful language describing the ethnic neighborhood he inhabited. Connors claimed to have … Continue reading

May 24, 2016 · 1 Comment

How a Colonial Relic Became a Civil War Memento: Tracing Object History in the Silver Collection

Over the course of digitizing the Museum’s silver collection, we’ve come across many objects with storied histories, but not many can weave a historical path through our collection with the … Continue reading

March 30, 2016 · Leave a comment

Ice Skating

Nobody is certain when humans first began ice skating, but it is believed that they did so at least a few thousand years ago. The first skates were sharp pieces … Continue reading

December 22, 2015 · Leave a comment

The Crown Jewel of Brooklyn – Prospect Park

What is it I associate so keenly with the summer smell and sensual keenness of Prospect Park? – Alfred Kazin[1] The construction of Central Park prompted the city of Brooklyn … Continue reading

September 15, 2015 · 1 Comment

Hygienic whiskey and little nerve pills: The rise of direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical advertising

Before the passage of the Pure Food and Drug Act of 1906, the manufacture and sale of so-called “medicine” in the United States was unregulated. This wild west atmosphere enabled … Continue reading

August 25, 2015 · 1 Comment

Company Songs

While cataloging ephemera under the National Endowment for Humanities grant, I couldn’t help but notice how many companies, clubs, societies, and associations had songs written and printed for special occasions. … Continue reading

June 2, 2015 · 2 Comments

Clowns!

Clowns inspire laughter and happiness in some people, and fear or aversion in many others. They have been around for more than 4,000 years and in nearly as many places … Continue reading

September 23, 2014 · Leave a comment

Elaine Stritch, Grande Dame of the Stage

Last Saturday night the crowd gathered around the piano at Marie’s Crisis to sing “The Ladies Who Lunch” from Broadway’s 1970 hit musical, Company, in honor of the dearly departed … Continue reading

July 22, 2014 · 1 Comment

Untimely Deaths of Stage Performers

The Museum is digitizing 30,000 photographs of Broadway and off-Broadway productions dating from the 1860s up to the 2000s with a Museums for America grant funded by the Institute of … Continue reading

May 20, 2014 · 2 Comments

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