Untitled, 1981, by Jean-Michel Basquiat

How Basquiat Used His Surroundings as a Canvas

Jean-Michel Basquiat created art that commented on New York City, while also contributing to its architecture and style.
H.A. Thomas & Wylie's interior view of the Hoffman House bar

The Painting That Changed New York City

Classical nudes were once reserved for learned men in elite spaces. Then a hotelier hung Nymphs and Satyr in a public bar, shaking up NYC's bourgeoisie.
Couney incubator

Coney Island’s Incubator Babies

Yes, you read that right.
Manhattan glacier

Should Manhattanites Worry About the New Manhattanish-Size Iceberg?

Probably. If all Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets melt, the sea level will rise over 200 feet.
Maxim Gorky

Revolutionary Writer Maxim Gorky’s NYC Sex Scandal

In 1906, Russian Bolshevik writer Maxim Gorky was given a warm welcome in the United States. Then the American media manufactured a scandal about his girlfriend.
Hart Island

Burying NYC’s Forgotten Dead at Hart Island

A few miles off the coast of the Bronx is Hart Island, a potter's field where New York City's poor and unclaimed dead are buried.
biting dogs

The 19th Century War on Dogs

Dogs have always been a matter of debate in American cities. In 19th-century New York City, the debate involved paying impoverished children to participate in dog-murder.
Black Tom Explosion Diver

The Unlikely Spy Alliance Behind the 1916 Black Tom Explosion

German imperialists teamed up with Irish republicans and Indian nationalists during World War I; the resulting conspiracy trial ended in a courtroom assassination.
Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton

How Anti-Catholicism Created an American Saint

Elizabeth Ann Seton is known today as the first American Roman Catholic saint. her road to canonization was no easy path.
Public Baths

Public Baths Were Meant to Uplift the Poor

In Progressive-Era New York, a now-forgotten trend of public bathhouses was introduced in order to cleanse the unwashed masses.