Category Archives: history

“It Was the Best of Times – From the Archives

it was the worst of times.” Thus the opening line of Dickens’ “A Tale of Two Cities”  a historical novel set in London and Paris before and during the French Revolution. The novel tells the story of the French Doctor … Continue reading

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A Felon for President – Eugene V. Debs – From the Archives

Eugene V. Debs was born in Terre Haute, Indiana in 1855 to prosperous immigrant parents from Alsace, France.  He attended public schools, dropping out at 14 to take a job on the Vandalia Railroad cleaning grease from freight engines for … Continue reading

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Strange Fruit

Abel Meeropol and his sons Robert and Michael play with a train set. Once upon a time, when I was a young teen, the public high schools of New York City were the crown jewels of public education in America.  … Continue reading

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Immigration – The Great Depression and Fascism in New York

The great stock market crash of 1929 brought an abrupt end to the “roaring twenties” and brought us the Great Depression of the 1930s.  Unemployment rates reached 25% and immigration, both legal and illegal plunged.  It was the only time … Continue reading

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Immigration and the Great Irish Famine – Part I

No city on the planet was growing faster than New York. By 1845 it was home to 70,000 Irish immigrants, 65,000 immigrants born elsewhere and 235,000 American born residents.  From 1783 to 1845 the city’s populations had grown by 50% … Continue reading

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Annie Moore

It was New Years Eve, December 31, 1891 and New York was celebrating. Thousands were in the bars and taverns drinking too many whiskeys or hot  toddies, egg nog or cheap wine according to their tastes and pocketbooks.  Seemed like … Continue reading

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The French Revolution – Danton and Robespierre

And so the King and Queen were dead as well as thousands of other “Enemies of the republic.”  There were now two governments in France; the Commune or the government of Paris and the Convention, the elected government o France. … Continue reading

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