Episode 17: Lindsey Loves History

Before New York City was on the map it was New Amsterdam, and on this episode of the Big Show we meet someone who loves this era. Lindsey Mulholland is a public historian, museum volunteer, and tour guide focused on 400 years of NYC history. We talk about Evacuation Day and what it once meant to the city, where to go to find out about the Colonial Era of Lower Manhattan, and why she loves Continue Reading →

Debut on Travel Channel for Submarine Story

I made my debut last week on the Travel Channel on Mysteries at the Museum. The episode is Season 19, Episode 6: “Italian Sherlock Holmes, King of the Airwaves and Texan Takes Moscow.” My part was the expert to describe the wreck and rescue of U.S. Navy submarine O-5 in 1923. It went down in a collision outside the Panama Canal. The story concerns two sailors trapped underwater and the daring rescue to save their Continue Reading →

Neysa McMein, Illustrator and Iconic Figure

Today is the birth date of Neysa McMein, January 25, 1888, in Quincy, Illinois. Born Marjorie Moran McMein, she was the highest-paid and most in-demand female artist of the Jazz Age, who painted scores of magazine covers and created iconic posters in World War I. She was also a player in Women’s Suffrage in New York, a fashion icon, and a member of the Algonquin Round Table. McMein was a volunteer in France in WWI, Continue Reading →

The 500 Confederates Buried in Brooklyn and the Bronx

I have paid my respects to the Confederate soldiers buried in Brooklyn. Oh, you didn’t know that more than 500 war dead who served in the Confederate States of America are interred there? There are more Confederate graves in New York City than any other place in the Northeast? I’ve been waiting to talk to a couple of reporters for two days, since I wrote a book about city war memorials, and give tours of Continue Reading →

Centennial of General Pershing on Governors Island

One hundred years ago on Sunday, General John J. Pershing woke up in Times Square. He was in bed in the Astor Hotel, which once was on the corner of Broadway and W. 44th Street. I do not know how he got from Forty-second Street to the Battery Maritime Building at 10 South Street, but I like to think that instead of a car he and his group took the Interborough Rapid Transit Company (IRT) Continue Reading →

Rubber Rats and Vintage Uniforms in the Bronx

In the basement of an American Legion hall in the Bronx I saw an Army coat from the Teddy Roosevelt administration, a shirt worn in 1918, and a display of medals that were museum-quality. There was also a rubber rat and caps galore. This could only be a flea market for World War I buffs, and it was held on Saturday, February 25. If there was one story that came out of the inaugural event Continue Reading →

Governors Island WWI Memorial Project Launches

Last summer I started work on a project that is small in scope but means a lot to me. Today I submitted the final grant application information to the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission for what I am calling the Governors Island World War I Memorial Project. Last year when my book The Governors Island Explorer’s Guide was published I was not done with the island, which is by far my favorite park in 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 →

Doughboy Day at Fort Jay Sept. 17

I’m the volunteer coordinator for an event that I’m really excited about. It is to bring World War I history to Governors Island. Last year, my friend David Ernst got me into the reenactor world as a participant in the Veterans Day Parade. It was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed it, and the people I met through it. I was also already on the research trips for my new book about the Continue Reading →

Goldwin Starrett and the Influenza Pandemic of 1918

All of my book research is starting to cross over, and I am reminded of this today because it is the ninty-eighth anniversary of the death of Goldwin Starrett, the young architect of the Algonquin Hotel, in 1918. It was only this month that I started really reading a lot more about the influenza pandemic of 1918-1919, a global disaster that killed 21.5 million worldwide, with 675,000 deaths in the United States. I’m currently writing Continue Reading →