A Life Lost Too Soon, Comedian Richy Craig, Jr.

Kensico Vaudeville Project #11 Name: Richy W. Craig, Jr. Act: Comedian, Dancer, Singer Born: November 17, 1902, Manhattan Died: November 28, 1933, Manhattan What could be worse for a performer: suffering through tuberculosis for seven years, or watching Milton Berle steal your act? To Richy W. Craig, Jr., both happened. When he was buried in the NVA burial ground he was only thirty-one years old. The New York Post called Craig “a vaudevillian of dry Continue Reading →

Kensico Vaudeville Project Updates

The Kensico Vaudeville Project was launched in 2015. After a break it will return with updates in 2017-2018. This project is to document the vaudeville performers who are interred in the National Vaudeville Association burial grounds in Kensico Cemetery in Westchester County. These are individuals who have biographies written so far. More will be added to this list. Kensico Vaudeville Project Updates: Nettie Kelley Adams – Singer Charles Ahearn – Cyclist Anna Bylund Anderson – Continue Reading →

New York State Creates WW1 Commission

It has a long title, but New York State finally has a World War One centennial organization to join the many other states that work with the U.S. World War One Centennial Commission. On Nov. 29, 2016, Governor Cuomo signed Bill #6856, which creates the New York State World War I 100th Anniversary Commemoration Commission. This had been promoted by the World War One Centennial Committee for New York City, which launched in April at Continue Reading →

Governors Island Book Nominated for Apple Award

I am happy to announce that my latest book has been nominated for an Apple Award, presented by the Guides Association of New York City. This is a big honor for me and my book, The Governors Island Explorer’s Guide: Adventure and History in New York Harbor. This is the second consecutive year I have been nominated for an Apple Award; last year I was also up for the award for The Algonquin Round Table Continue Reading →

Dorothy Parker Reviews the Ziegfeld Follies

On Saturday I debuted my W.C. Fields History Walking Tour as part of Fields Fest, a 6-week celebration of the life of the great comedian. Dorothy Parker was a huge fan of Fields. In my book The Algonquin Round Table New York: A Historical Guide, I was really happy to be able to include a photo of Parker and Fields together. One of the parts of the tour I wanted to do, but didn’t for Continue Reading →

New Walking Tour: Cocktails & Christmas Lights

I wrote two new new walking tours this month. The first is W.C. Fields History, which is a one-time event on Saturday, Nov. 19, for Fields Fest. My other one is called Classic Cocktails and Christmas Lights, and it debuts on November 21, 6:30 p.m. I wanted to visit new places I don’t normally take tour groups and I also wanted to to see the store windows on Fifth Avenue at night. I love hotel Continue Reading →

99 Years Ago First Doughboys Died in WW1

Today is the Ninety-ninth anniversary of the first American soldiers to be killed in combat in World War I. The three became national heroes and their names were printed in newspapers coast-to-coast. Today they are remembered together on Governors Island, where three roads carry their names. On Nov. 3, 1917, German troops killed Private Merle David Hay, Corporal James B. Gresham, and Private Thomas F. Enright, all serving with Company F, 16th Infantry Regiment, First Continue Reading →

W.C. Fields Fest Begins November 1 in New York

I love a good festival. In 1999 my friends and I started the long-running Dorothy Parker-theme Parkerfest. Two years ago I was one of the organizers for the Marx Brothers tribute, Marxfest. And now I am getting back into the Jazz Age by becoming part of W.C. Fields and Fields Fest. On Dec. 25 is the 70th anniversary of the death of the great comedian. Fields Fest is being executed by Trav S.D., everyone’s favorite Continue Reading →

World War I History Day on Governors Island Photos

It was a big honor for me last month to be the volunteer coordinator for World War I History Day at Governors Island National Monument. I was knocked out when the National Park Service counted more than 12,000 visitors engaged with us for the day. It was such a hit that we are going to return, with a two-day schedule, on September 16-17, 2017. The first “Doughboy Day at Fort Jay” was launched to prepare Continue Reading →

World War I Book Now in Production

It was a huge relief to submit to my editor Amy Lyons the last photos and the map information for my upcoming book, World War I New York: A Guide to the City’s Enduring Ties to the Great War. It is due out March 1, 2017, from Globe Pequot Press. They published my last two guidebooks, The Governors Island Explorer’s Guide and The Algonquin Round Table New York: A Historical Guide. The new book is Continue Reading →