Private Roberts from Tennessee, Captured 4 Times

This week I led a pre-Memorial Day tour to Cypress Hills National Cemetery. It was the first time I had ever visited the gravesite of Private William D. Roberts, Confederate soldier, in Grave 3254. I’ve written in the past about the 500 Confederates buried in Brooklyn. And a book about the World War One war dead. But Private Roberts’ story is unique, so I’ll share it for Memorial Day. As a prisoner of war who Continue Reading →

May 22 Tour of Cypress Hills National Cemetery

The only National Cemetery in New York City is in Brooklyn. Visit the beautiful and historic Cypress Hills National Cemetery, the final resting place for 21,000 veterans and dependents from the American Revolution to the Vietnam War. The cemetery was opened in 1862, and is older than Arlington National Cemetery. Take a walk to visit the graves of 24 Medal of Honor winners and soldiers from more than 200 years of American History. See the Continue Reading →

8 More Unmarked Graves of Woodlawn Cemetery

I am really happy my friend Michael Cumella has pushed Woodlawn Cemetery to finally put a gravestone on the final resting place of singer Nora Bayes. The unveiling is Saturday, April 21, at noon at the landmark cemetery in the Bronx. A nice New York Times story explains the whole rigmarole about why the famous singer never got a stone when she died 90 years ago. But this is just the first of a number Continue Reading →

WWI Princeton Club of New York Casualties Remembered

Princeton lost 151 men in World War I. Whether through wounds, accidents, injuries, sickness or the Influenza Pandemic, the toll was high. Of these 151, twenty-nine were members of the Princeton Club of New York. In the club entrance foyer is a beautiful bronze memorial to the honored war dead of the club. For my talk at the club on my book World War I New York: A Guide to the City’s Enduring Ties to Continue Reading →

Meuse-Argonne Campaign Guest Blogger

Cypress Hills National Cemetery is a place that I’ve spent many hours visiting, researching, and giving walking tours. With the centennial of World War I coming up, I’m doing more at the landmark burial ground on the Brooklyn-Queens border. I had a lot of leftover material for my upcoming book World War I New York: A Guide to the City’s Enduring Ties to the Great War. I gave some of it to a blog devoted Continue Reading →

Charles Clair, English Dramatic Actor

Kensico Vaudeville Project #12 Name: Charles Clair Act: Actor Born: 2 February 1871, London Died: 12 Oct 1939, Brooklyn Actor Charles Frederick Clair was born 2 February 1871 in London. He emigrated to the United States when he was 21. He arrived in New York on 11 April 1892 aboard the City of Berlin from Liverpool. His name appears as both Clair and Claire in billings; Clair is on his immigration application. Clair married a Continue Reading →

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 →

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, 1st Continue Reading →