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You are offerding on 2 guaranteed authentic WEEGEE "ARTHUR FELLIG"4X5 original negatives as shown- This negative is from the PM New York City Daily News between 1940 - 1948. They were originally published in 1944
you can find these exact images and the International Center of Photography (ICP) website and on google if you search
clare boothe luce weegeeAND CLICK ON IMAGES TAB
A GOOD READ:Artist as Reporter: Weegee, Ad Reinhardt, and the PM News PictureFront CoverJason E. HillUniv of California Press, Jan 9, 2018 - Art - 375 pages
Active from 1940 to 1948, PM was a progressive New York City daily tabloid newspaper committed to the politics of labor, social justice, and antifascism—and it prioritized the intelligent and critical deployment of pictures and their perception as paramount in these campaigns. With PM as its main focus, Artist as Reporter offers a substantial intervention in the literature on American journalism, photography, and modern art. The book considers the journalistic contributions to PM of such signal American modernists as the curator Holger Cahill, the abstract painter Ad Reinhardt, the photographers Weegee and Lisette Model, and the filmmaker, photographer, and editor Ralph Steiner. Each of its five chapters explores one dimension of the tabloid’s complex journalistic activation of modernism’s potential, showing how PM inserted into daily print journalism the most innovative critical thinking in the fields of painting, illustration, cartooning, and the lens-based arts. Artist as Reporter promises to revise our own understanding of midcentury American modernism and the nature of its relationship to the wider media and public culture.BiographyWeegee, born Usher Fellig on June 12, 1899 in the town of Lemburg (now in Ukraine), first worked as a photographer at age fourteen, three years after his family immigrated to the United States, where his first name was changed to the more American-sounding Arthur. Self-taught, he held many other photography-related jobs before gaining regular employment at a photography studio in lower Manhattan in 1918. This job led him to others at a variety of newspapers until, in 1935, he became a freelance news photographer. He centered his practice around police headquarters and in 1938 obtained permission to install a police radio in his car. This allowed him to take the first and most sensational photographs of news events and offer them for sale to publications such as the Herald-Tribune, Daily News, Post, the Sun, and PM Weekly, among others. During the 1940s, Weegee's photographs appeared outside the mainstream press and met success there as well. New York's Photo League held an exhibition of his work in 1941, and the Museum of Modern Art began collecting his work and exhibited it in 1943. Weegee published his photographs in several books, including Naked City (1945), Weegee's People (1946), and Naked Hollywood (1953). After moving to Hollywood in 1947, he devoted most of his energy to making 16-millimeter films and photographs for his "Distortions" series, a project that resulted in experimental portraits of celebrities and political figures. He returned to New York in 1952 and lectured and wrote about photography until his death on December 26, 1968.Weegee's photographic oeuvre is unusual in that it was successful in the popular media and respected by the fine-art community during his lifetime. His photographs' ability to navigate between these two realms comes from the strong emotional connection forged between the viewer and the characters in his photographs, as well as from Weegee's skill at choosing the most telling and significant moments of the events he photographed. ICP's retrospective exhibition of his work in 1998 attested to Weegee's continued popularity; his work is frequently recollected or represented in contemporary television, film, and other forms of popular entertainment.Lisa HostetlerHandy et al. Reflections in a Glass Eye: Works from the International Center of Photography Collection, New York: Bulfinch Press in association with the International Center of Photography, 1999, p. 231.
Arthur (Usher) Fellig (June 12, 1899 – December 26, 1968), known by his pseudonym Weegee, was a photographer and photojournalist, known for his stark black and white street photography in New York City.[1]
Weegee worked in Manhattan's Lower East Side as a press photographer during the 1930s and 1940s and developed his signature style by following the city's emergency services and documenting their activity.[2] Much of his work depicted unflinchingly realistic scenes of urban life, crime, injury and death. Weegee published photographic books and also worked in cinema, initially making his own short films and later collaborating with film directors such as Jack Donohue and Stanley Kubrick.Contents1 Life2 Name3 Photographic career3.1 Photographic technique3.2 Late 1930s to mid-1940s3.3 1950s and 1960s4 Legacy5 In popular culture6 Public collections7 See also8 References9 External linksLifeWeegee was born Ascher (later anglicized to Usher) Fellig in Złoczów (now Zolochiv, Ukraine), near Lemberg in Austrian Galicia. His given name was changed to Arthur when he emigrated with his family to New York in 1909. There he took numerous odd jobs, including working as a street photographer of children on his pony[3] and as an assistant to a commercial photographer. In 1924 he was hired as a darkroom technician by Acme Newspictures (later United Press International Photos). He left Acme in 1935 to become a freelance photographer. Describing his beginnings, Weegee stated:
In my particular case I didn't wait 'til somebody gave me a job or something, I went and created a job for myself—freelance photographer. And what I did, anybody else can do. What I did simply was this: I went down to Manhattan Police Headquarters and for two years I worked without a police card or any kind of credentials. When a story came over a police teletype, I would go to it. The idea was I sold the pictures to the newspapers. And naturally, I picked a story that meant something.[4]
He worked at night and competed with the police to be first at the scene of a crime, selling his photographs to tabloids and photographic agencies.[5] His photographs, centered around Manhattan police headquarters, were soon published by the Herald Tribune, World-Telegram, Daily News, New York Post, New York Journal American, Sun, and others.[citation needed]
In 1957, after developing diabetes, he moved in with Wilma Wilcox, a Quaker social worker whom he had known since the 1940s, and who cared for him and then cared for his work.[6] He traveled extensively in Europe until 1964, working for the London Daily Mirror and on a variety of photography, film, lecture, and book projects.[7] On December 26, 1968, Weegee died in New York at the age of 69.[8]
NameThe origin of Fellig's pseudonym is uncertain. One of his earliest jobs was in the photo lab of The New York Times, where (in a reference to the tool used to wipe down prints) he was nicknamed "squeegee boy". Later, during his employment with Acme Newspictures, his skill and ingenuity in developing prints on the run (e.g., in a subway car) earned him the name "Mr. Squeegee".[9] He may subsequently have been dubbed "Weegee"–a phonetic rendering of Ouija–because his instant and seemingly prescient arrivals at scenes of crimes or other emergencies seemed as magical as a Ouija board.[9][2]
Photographic careerPhotographic techniqueMain article: ƒ/8 and be thereMost of his notable photographs were taken with very basic press photographer equipment and methods of the era, a 4×5 Speed Graphic camera preset at f/16 at 1/200 of a second, with flashbulbs and a set focus distance of ten feet.[10] He was a self-taught photographer with no formal training.[11] He is often said—incorrectly—to have developed his photographs in a makeshift darkroom in the trunk of his car.[12] While Fellig would shoot a variety of subjects and individuals, he also had a sense of what sold best:
Names make news. There's a fight between a drunken couple on Third Avenue or Ninth Avenue in Hell's Kitchen, nobody cares. It's just a barroom brawl. But if society has a fight in a Cadillac on Park Avenue and their names are in the Social Register, this makes news and the papers are interested in that.[13]
Weegee is spuriously credited for answering "f/8 and be there" when asked about his photographic technique.[14] Whether or not he actually said it, the saying has become so widespread in photographic circles as to have become a cliché.[15][16]
Some of Weegee's photos, like the juxtaposition of society grandes dames in ermines and tiaras and a glowering street woman at the Metropolitan Opera (The Critic, 1943), were later revealed to have been staged.[17][18]
Late 1930s to mid-1940s
Weegee's rubber stamp for signing his picturesIn 1938, Fellig became the only New York freelance newspaper photographer with a permit to have a portable police-band shortwave radio. Weegee worked mostly at night; he listened closely to broadcasts and often beat authorities to the scene.[19]
Five of his photographs were acquired by the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in 1943. These works were included in its exhibition Action Photography.[20] He was later included in "50 Photographs by 50 Photographers", another MoMA show organized by photographer Edward Steichen,[20] and he lectured at the New School for Social Research. Advertising and editorial assignments for magazines followed, including Life and beginning in 1945, Vogue.
Naked City (1945) was his first book of photographs. Film producer Mark Hellinger bought the rights to the title from Weegee.[20] In 1948, Weegee's aesthetic formed the foundation for Hellinger's film The Naked City. It was based on a gritty 1948 story written by Malvin Wald about the investigation into a model's murder in New York. Wald was nominated for an Academy Award for his screenplay, co-written with screenwriter, Albert Maltz, who would later be blacklisted in the McCarthy-era.[21] Later the title was used again for a naturalistic television police drama series, and in the 1980s, it was adopted by a band, Naked City, led by the New York experimental musician John Zorn.[citation needed]
According to the commentary by director Robert Wise, Weegee appeared in the 1949 film The Set-Up, ringing the bell at the boxing match.[citation needed]
1950s and 1960sWeegee experimented with 16mm filmmaking himself beginning in 1941 and worked in the Hollywood industry from 1946 to the early 1960s, as an actor and a consultant. He was an uncredited special effects consultant[22] and credited stills photographer for Stanley Kubrick's 1964 film Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb. His accent was one of the influences for the accent of the title character in the film, played by Peter Sellers.[22]
In the 1950s and 1960s, Weegee experimented with panoramic photographs, photo distortions and photography through prisms. Using a plastic lens, he made a famous photograph of Marilyn Monroe in which her face is grotesquely distorted yet still recognizable.[23] For the 1950 movie The Yellow Cab Man, Weegee contributed a sequence in which automobile traffic is wildly distorted. He is credited for this as "Luigi" in the film's opening titles. He also traveled widely in Europe in the 1960s, where he photographed nude subjects. In London he befriended p*rnographer Harrison Marks and the model Pamela Green, whom he photographed.[citation needed]
In 1962[24], Weegee starred as himself in a "Nudie Cutie" exploitation film, intended to be a pseudo-documentary of his life. Called The 'Imp'probable Mr. Wee Gee, it saw Fellig apparently falling in love with a shop-window dummy that he follows to Paris, all the while pursuing or photographing various women.[25]
LegacyWeegee can be seen as the American counterpart to Brassaï, who photographed Paris street scenes at night. Weegee's themes of nudists, circus performers, freaks and street people were later taken up and developed by Diane Arbus in the early 1960s.[5]
In 1980, Weegee's companion Wilma Wilcox, along with Sidney Kaplan, Aaron Rose and Larry Silver, formed The Weegee Portfolio Incorporated to create an exclusive collection of photographic prints made from Weegee's original negatives.[26] As a bequest, Wilma Wilcox donated the entire Weegee archive – 16,000 photographs and 7,000 negatives[6] – to the International Center of Photography in New York. This 1993 gift and transfer of copyright became the source for several exhibitions and books including Weegee's World, edited by Miles Barth (1997), and Unknown Weegee, edited by Cynthia Young (2006). The first and largest exhibition was the 329-image Weegee's World: Life, Death and the Human Drama, mounted in 1997. It was followed in 2002 by Weegee's Trick Photography, a show of distorted or otherwise caricatured images, and four years later by Unknown Weegee, a survey that emphasized his less violent, post-tabloid photographs.[6]
In 2009, the Kunsthalle Vienna held an exhibition called Elevator to the Gallows. The exhibition combined modern installations by Banks Violette with Weegee's nocturnal photography.[27]
In 2012 ICP opened another Weegee exhibition titled, Murder Is My Business. Also in 2012, an exhibition called Weegee: The Naked City,[28] opened at Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow. Weegee's autobiography, originally published in 1961 as Weegee by Weegee and long out of print, was retitled as Weegee: The Autobiography and republished in 2013.[29]
From April 2013 through July 2014, the Flatz Museum in Dornbirn, Austria presented Weegee. How to photograph a corpse, based on relevant photographs from Weegee's portfolio, including many vintage prints. Original newspapers and magazines, dating back to the time where the photos were taken, accompanied the photographs.[30]
In popular cultureAccording to director Dario Argento, the photographer played by Harvey Keitel in his segment of Two Evil Eyes was inspired by Weegee.The 1992 film The Public Eye is said to be loosely based on Weegee[31]The 1999 The X-Files episode Tithonus, concerns an "Alfred Fellig", investigated for having photographed crime scenes prior to the arrival of emergency services.A crop of his 1940 photo Crowd at Coney Island was used as the cover for the 1990 George Michael album Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1.The John Zorn-led band Naked City took their name and first album cover from Weegee.Weegee is the photographer for the Minutemen in the movie Watchmen.The 2014 film Nightcrawler was also inspired by Weegee.[32]Maguire's crime scene photography in the 2002 film Road to Perdition is based on Weegee.
Weegee (1899-1968)Probably few policemen have seen as much violent sin as Arthur Fellig, better known as Weegee, did. Specializing in crime and catastrophe, Weegee’s work is regarded as some of the most powerful images of the 20th century. His profound influence on other photographers derives not only from his sensational subject matter and his use of the blinding, close-up flash, but also from his eagerness to photograph the city at all hours, at all levels: coffee shops at three in the morning, hot summer evenings in the tenements, debutante balls, parties in the street, lovers on park benches, the destitute and the lonely. No other photographer has better revealed the non-stop spectacle of life in New York City.During the 1930s and 40s Weegee worked as a freelance news photographer in New York City, and was the first private citizen to gain access to police radio transmits. He lived across the street from Manhattan police headquarters waiting for the inevitable call that would announce another gangland execution, botched hold-up, or crime of passion.Weegee’s first book, Naked City, was a runaway success, making him an instant celebrity who suddenly had assignments from Life and Vogue. He was among the first to fully realize the camera’s unique power to capture split-second drama and exaggerated emotion. By the mid-40s, Weegee photographed the furred and bejeweled grandes damesat the Metropolitan Opera and celebrities such as Marilyn Monroe, Andy Warhol, John F. Kennedy, and Liberace, as well as his beloved street people.No other photographer has ever portrayed a city with Weegee's level of intimacy, amorality, complicitness and humor. While his intent was simply to photograph "the soul of the city I knew and loved," his unflinching eye set the trend for young, edgy photographers in the 1960s. He strips the citizens bare, all of them, poor, rich and middling. There is no looking down or looking up: he is too mixed up in everything he sees, too much part of the shenanigans, exposing the bare truth of a city filled with hungers, lusts, and passions.Collections:The Indianapolis Museum of ArtJ. Paul Getty Museum, Los AngelesMuseum of Modern Art, New York CitySan Francisco Museum of Modern ArtMuseum of Modern Art, Oxford, United KingdomMuseum of Contemporary Art, Los AngelesInternational Center of Photography, New York CitySelected Solo Exhibitions:2012 Weegee: Murder Is My Business- International Center of Photography, New York CityWeegee: Naked City – Steven Kasher Gallery, New York City2011 Naked Hollywood: Weegee in Los Angeles – The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles2006 Unknown Weegee – International Center of Photography, New York City2003 Weegee’s Trick Photography – International Center of Photography, New York City1997 Weegee’s World: Life, Death and the Human Drama – International Center of Photography, New York City1977 Weegee the Famous – International Center of Photography, New York City1962 Weegee by Weegee – Photokina, Cologne, Germany1960 Weegee: Charicatures of the Great – Photokina, Cologne, Germany1941 Weegee: Murder is my Business – The Photo League, New York CitySelected Group Exhibitions:2004 Out of Place – Galerie Nordenhake, Berlin1948 50 Photographs by 50 Photographers – The Museum of Modern Art, New York City1943 Action Photography – The Museum of Modern Art, New York CitySelected Publications:Naked Hollywood: Weegee in Los Angeles published by Skira Rizzoli (2011)Weegee: Murder Is My Business published by ICP (2011)Unknown Weegee published by ICP/Steidl (2006)Weegee: Photographs from the J. Paul Getty Museum published by Getty Publications (2005)Weegee published by Phaidon (2004)Weegee’s World published by Bulfinch (2000)Weegee’s New York Photography 1935-1960 published by Te Neues (2000)The Village published by Da Capo Press (1989)Weegee the Famous published by Capa, Cornell, and Coplans (1977)Weegee’s Creative Photography published by Ward Lock (1964)Weegee by Weegee: An Autobiography published by Da Capo Press (1961)Weegee’s Creative Camera published by Hanover House (1959)Weegee’s Secrets of Shooting with Photoflash published by Designers 3 (1953)Naked Hollywood published by Pellegrini and Cudahy (1953)Weegee’s People published by Duell, Sloan & Pearce (1946)Naked City published by Duell, Sloan & Pearce (1945)
hotography, at its mid-nineteenth-century beginning, muscled in on painting one precinct at a time. Portraiture, of a solemn, straight-on sort, suggested itself immediately. Its hold-still composition, simple and traditional, met a mechanical necessity of the new art: early studio photographers, at the mercy of long-duration exposure, often steadied the backs of their subjects’ heads with clamps unseen by camera or viewer. Landscapes held still on their own if the wind didn’t blow, so Gustave Le Gray could become an automated Poussin, while Mathew Brady strained to click his way past Gilbert Stuart. History painting—crowded, violent, declamatory—had to postpone its photographic update until smaller cameras made picture-taking portable and fleet. But genre painting, with its casual assemblages of ordinary life, stood ready early on to be appropriated by the new medium.
In “Bystander” (Laurence King), a newly updated history of street photography, Colin Westerbeck and Joel Meyerowitz point out the genre’s early inclination toward “humble people as subjects.” Louis Désiré Blanquart-Evrard’s “Photographic Album for the Artist and the Amateur” (1851) and John Thomson’s “Street Life in London” (1877) put images of chimney sweeps and millers in front of well-off viewers who could regard them with curiosity and concern: “Unlettered, uncomplicated people were felt to preserve an otherwise lost capacity for sincerity for which modern artists and intellectuals yearned.” Early in the twentieth century, as photography’s documentary capacities turned reformist in the hands of Jacob Riis and Paul Strand, it was still, as Riis’s famous title showed, a matter of “the other half” being viewed by those perched far above.
Only when tabloid newspapers went into mass circulation after the First World War, Westerbeck and Meyerowitz argue, did those “humble people” become the audience as well as the subject matter. More than anyone else, it was Arthur Fellig, self-insistently known as Weegee the Famous, whose “photographs of the poor were made—at least, originally—for the poor themselves.” The New Yorkers Weegee photographed—especially those caught up in sudden calamities of crime and fire—obtained a kind of fame that lasted not fifteen minutes but more like fifteen hours, until the next morning’s edition swept away the previous afternoon’s.“Shirtless Officers” (1941).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyFor decades, Weegee has been collected as art, thus restoring some of the original other-half dynamic between viewer and image. Coffee-table books of his work abound: “Unknown Weegee” (2006), produced for an exhibition at the International Center of Photography, is the least hefty and best arranged; “Weegee’s New York: Photographs 1935-1960” (1982) is the grittiest. These have recently been joined by “Extra! Weegee!” (Hirmer), which contains nearly four hundred photographs, alongside the original, often exuberant, captions affixed by Acme Newspictures, the agency through which Weegee sold them. But there has been no complete biography of the photographer. Now Christopher Bonanos’s “Flash: The Making of Weegee the Famous” (Holt) has displaced a host of fragmentary recollections and the loudmouthed, unreliable memoir, “Weegee by Weegee,” published in 1961.
Usher Fellig was born into a family of Galician Jews in 1899. He became Arthur sometime after arriving on the Lower East Side, ten years later. According to Bonanos, his “sense of family” was so “minimal” that he miscounted his own siblings in that memoir. The Felligs joined the tenement dwellers who would soon constitute much of Arthur’s subject matter.
His coup de foudre came, he later recalled, before he left school, in the seventh grade: “I had had my picture taken by a street tintype photographer, and had been fascinated by the result. I think I was what you might call a ‘natural-born’ photographer, with hypo—the chemicals used in the darkroom—in my blood.” He acquired a mail-order tintype-making kit, and later got himself hired, at fifteen, to take pictures for insurance companies and mail-order catalogues. He bought a pony on which to pose street urchins whose parents were willing to pay for images that made their offspring look like little grandees. (The pony, which he named Hypo, ate too much and was repossessed.) During the early nineteen-twenties, Fellig worked in the darkrooms of the Times and Acme Newspictures, sleeping in the Acme offices when he couldn’t make his rent. He kept the agency’s photographers ahead of the competition by learning to develop pictures on the subway, just after they’d been shot. By 1925, Acme was letting him take photographs, albeit uncredited, of his own.
Bonanos describes the Speed Graphic camera—even now, still part of the Daily News logo—as being “tough as anything, built mostly from machined aluminum and steel.” It was the only press credential Fellig needed at murders and fires, where, after leaving Acme, in 1934, he continued to show up with a manic freelancing zeal. A couple of years later, he was living in a room at 5 Centre Market Place, with no hot water but with a handful of books, among them “Live Alone and Like It” and “The Sex Life of the Unmarried Adult.” He decorated the place with his own published photographs—“like taxidermied heads on a hunter’s wall,” as Bonanos puts it. He got to the nighttime action so fast that he developed (and encouraged) a reputation for being psychic. Bonanos shows that Weegee’s success had more to do with persistence than with telepathy; a bell connected the photographer’s room to the Fire Department’s alarms, and he got permission to install a police radio in his ’38 Chevrolet. However much Weegee wanted people to believe that his professional moniker came from being recognized as a human Ouija board, it in fact derived from his early drudgery as a squeegee boy—a dryer of just developed prints—in the Times’ darkroom.
Bonanos, the city editor of New York magazine, stacks up the “nine dailies” that chronicled the metropolis between the two World Wars. The Times was “prim about bloodshed, more interested in Berlin than in Bensonhurst,” and the Herald-Tribune wanted photographers to show up for assignments wearing ties. Neither employed Weegee regularly, and although the tabloids ran on visuals, his real bread and butter came from the afternoon broadsheets, especially the Post, then full-sized and liberal but just as “lousy at making money” as it is today. The World-Telegram was the first to give Weegee the individual credit lines he was soon commanding from everyone else. Bonanos resurrects the inky roar of this world with a fine, nervy lip: Weegee’s murder pictures broke through not because of their “binary quality of life and death” or their “technical felicity . . . with angles and shadow play” but mostly because their sprawled, bleeding, well-hatted and finely shod gangsters made them “more fun” than all the others.“Their First Murder” (1941).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyBonanos also proves himself resourceful, tracking down a rubbernecking seven-year-old whom Weegee photographed after a murder in 1939, as well as a toddler who appeared in a Coney Island crowd scene the following year. Readers will want to keep their Weegee collections on the coffee table; Bonanos describes more pictures than his publisher could reasonably reproduce, even in a book that occasionally becomes relentless and replete, like a contact sheet instead of a selected print. But Weegee and his world don’t encourage minimalism, and, fifty years after his death, he has at last acquired a biographer who can keep up with him.
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Weegee’s frantic pace was a matter of economic and temperamental need. No matter how fast he might be on his feet, the job required a lot of waiting around between catastrophes, and car-wreck pictures paid only two dollars and fifty cents apiece. “Naked City,” Weegee’s immortally titled first book of photographs, published in 1945, reproduces a Time Inc. check stub that records a thirty-five-dollar payment for “two murders.” Bonanos captured the variation and the intensity of it all in a “tally of unrest” from April, 1937. Over three days, New York provided Weegee with a felonious repast: a hammer murder, an arson fire, a truck accident, a brawl by followers of Harlem’s Father Divine, and the booking of a young female embezzler.
During the forties, the short-lived, liberal, and picture-laden PM, which Bonanos sizes up as an “inconsistent and often late-to-the story but pretty good newspaper,” put Weegee on retainer and made his pictures pop, bringing out their details and sharpening their lines through “an innovative process involving heated ink and chilled paper.” His first exhibition, in 1941, at the Photo League’s gallery, on East Twenty-first Street, garnered good reviews. Its title, “Murder Is My Business,” was a noirish bit of self-advertisem*nt destined to be overtaken by events: thanks to rackets-busting and a male-draining World War, New York was headed for a prolonged plunge in the rate of local killings.“Showgirl Backstage” (circa 1950).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyWeegee liked being known as “the official photographer for Murder Inc.,” but his gangland pictures lack the pity and fear—as well as concupiscence—that his camera extracted from people committing crimes of passion and sheer stupidity. In the summer of 1936, he made a splash with photographs of the teen-age Gladys MacKnight and her boyfriend after their arrest for the hatchet murder of Gladys’s disapproving mother. In one of the pictures, the adolescent couple look calm and a little sullen, as if they’d been grounded, not booked for capital murder. Weegee displays a discernible compassion toward the panicked chagrin of Robert Joyce, a Dodgers lover who shot and killed two Giants fans when he was loaded with eighteen beers; his face reaches us through Weegee’s lens as he’s sobering up, beside a policeman, his eyes wide with the realization of what he’s done. Weegee never got his wish to shoot a murder as it was happening, but his real gift was for photographing targets after they’d ripened into corpses. He “often remarked,” Bonanos notes, “that he took pains to make the dead look like they were just taking a little nap.”
Weegee’s pictures are full of actual sleepers—along with those coöperatively feigning slumber for the camera—in bars and doorways, atop benches and cardboard boxes, in limousines and toilet stalls, at Bowery missions or backstage. He became to shut-eye what Edward Weston was to peppers and Philippe Halsman would be to jumping. Even his photographs of mannequins, another frequent subject, seem to evince a fascination with, and perhaps a yearning for, rest. The dummies don’t so much appear inanimate as etherized, ready to rejoin the urban rat race once they’ve gotten forty winks.
The voyeur was also an exhibitionist. Weegee sometimes surrendered his camera so that he could inhabit a shot instead of creating it. That’s him next to an open trunk with a corpse, and there he is dressed as a clown, photographing from a ring of the circus. In 1937, Life commissioned him to do a photo-essay about a police station’s booking process. He turned it into a feature about a crime photographer: him. His grandiosity grew with the years, despite, or because of, his self-diagnosed “great inferiority complex.” He took credit for helping to make Fiorello LaGuardia famous (never mind that LaGuardia was already mayor), and wrote in his memoir that he and the gossip columnist Walter Winchell “had a lot of fun together, chasing stories in the night.” The index to Neal Gabler’s stout biography of Winchell yields no mention of Weegee.“Life Saving” (1940).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyIn his début show, at the Photo League, Weegee exhibited a supremely affecting picture of a mother and daughter weeping for two family members who are trapped inside a burning tenement, and titled it “Roast.” A few years later, for “Naked City,” the book of photographs that forever secured his reputation, Weegee renamed the image “I Cried When I Took This Picture.” Cynthia Young, a curator at the I.C.P., has written that the retitled photograph became “a new kind of self-portrait, making the photographer part of the subject of the picture,” though she points out that some of the Photo League’s left-leaning members had disliked the original label. Did Weegee really cry? Colin Westerbeck once commented, “No, Weegee, you didn’t. You took that picture instead of crying.” The truth about the retitling lies not somewhere in between but at both poles. The man who once said, “My idea was to make the camera human,” experienced emotion at the fire; then crafted a sick joke about it; then, later still, realized that the image would go over better with sobs than with smart-assedness. Take away the question of intention and the picture one is left with remains, indisputably, a moment cut from life with a tender shiv.
The secret of Weegee’s photography—and the M.O. of his coarse life—was an ability to operate as both the giver and the getter of attention. Weegee didn’t learn to drive until the mid-nineteen-thirties, and before getting his license he relied on a teen-age driver, who took him not only to breaking news but also to his favorite brothel, in the West Seventies. The madam there, named May, “had peepholes in the wall,” and she and Weegee would watch the boy chauffeur perform in the next room. Weegee excised this last detail from the manuscript of his memoir, but merely to save the driver from embarrassment. In the early forties, he carried his infrared camera into dark movie theatres to photograph couples who were necking, and then sold the credited images. He also took some remarkable pictures of people in drag under arrest. In these images, the voyeur in Weegee seems overwhelmed by a respectful solidarity with his subjects’ defiant display. In his memoir, he writes about getting “a telegram from a men’s magazine; they wanted pictures of abnormal fellows who liked to dress in women’s clothes. I would call that editor and tell him that what was abnormal to him was normal to me.”“Unusual Crime” (circa 1940).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyWeegee liked to say that he was looking for “a girl with a healthy body and a sick mind.” The two most important women in his history were unlikely candidates for extended involvement. Throughout the early and mid-nineteen-forties, Wilma Wilcox, a South Dakotan studying for a master’s in social work at Columbia, provided Weegee with the non-clingy company he preferred; what Bonanos calls “her mix of social-worker patience and prairie sturdiness” allowed her to survive his “erratic affection.” In 1947, he married a woman named Margaret Atwood, a prosperous widow whom he had met at a book signing for “Weegee’s People,” a follow-up to “Naked City.” The marriage lasted a few years. Weegee pawned his wedding ring in lieu of getting a divorce.
The voyeur-exhibitionist dynamic reached its peak when Weegee was, in Bonanos’s phrase, “watching the watchers”—an interest that grew over time. His pictures of people observing crime, accident, and even happy spectacle extended what Westerbeck and Meyerowitz see as street photography’s long tradition of memorializing the crowd instead of the parade. In 2007, the New York State Supreme Court affirmed the street photographer’s right to take pictures of people in public, something that had never much worried Weegee. “Poor people are not fussy about privacy,” he declared. “They have other problems.”
Weegee made three of his greatest views of viewers between 1939 and 1941. The first of them shows people neatly arranged in the windows of a Prince Street apartment building, looking out into the night as cheerfully as if they’d just been revealed from behind the little paper flaps of an Advent calendar. Below them, in the doorway of a café, is what’s brought them to the windows: a corpse claimed by the Mob and a handful of well-dressed police detectives. “Balcony Seats at a Murder” ran in Life, portraying harmless, guilt-free excitement, a carnival inversion of what a generation later might have been recorded at Kitty Genovese’s murder.
In the summer of 1940, Weegee captured a cluster of beachgoers observing an effort to resuscitate a drowned swimmer. The focus of the picture is a pretty young woman, the person most preoccupied with the camera, the only one giving it a big smile. She doesn’t disgust the viewer; she pleases, with her longing to be noticed, and her delighted realization that she, at least, is breathing. She’s the life force, in all its wicked gaiety.“Dr. Eliot, would you let the dog out?”The following year, Weegee made the best of his gawker studies, a picture prompted by what Bonanos identifies as “a small-time murder at the corner of North Sixth and Roebling Streets,” in Williamsburg. In it, more than a dozen people, most of them children, exhibit everything from fright to squealing relish. “Extra! Weegee!” reveals that the Acme caption for this kinetic tableau was “Who Said People Are All Alike?,” which Weegee, with his taste for the body blow, changed to “Their First Murder.” The killing that’s taken place is merely the big bang; the faces, each a vivid record of the ripple effects of crime, become the real drama.
“I have no time for messages in my pictures. That’s for Wesern Uni on,” Weegee said, swiping Samuel Goldwyn’s line. But once in a while he made a photograph with clear political intent, such as the one of Joe McWilliams, a fascistic 1940 congressional candidate shown looking at, and like, a horse’s ass. There’s also the image of a black mother holding a small child behind the shattered glass of their front door, smashed by toughs who didn’t want them moving into Washington Heights. Most deliberately, Weegee made a series of car-wreck pictures at a spot on the Henry Hudson Parkway where the off-ramp badly needed some fencing; he was proud that their publication helped get a barrier installed.
In a foreword to “Naked City,” William McCleery, a PM editor, detected a crusading impulse in Weegee’s picture of poor children escaping a New York heat wave: “You don’t want those kids to go on sleeping on that fire escape forever, do you?” Bonanos, too, thinks this photograph was made and received with indignation, but the image has always been more picturesque than disturbing. (Weegee almost certainly posed the children and told them to keep their eyes shut.) Still, Weegee often exhibited an immigrant’s pride—Bonanos calls him a “proud Jew”—that can be seen as broadly political. One looks at the pictures he made in Chinatown and Little Italy toward the end of the war, full of American Flags and patriotic embraces, and senses his appreciation of the eclectic energies at play in the city, along with a feeling that the old tenement world was ready to take a fine leap toward something better.“As the World Series of 1943 Got Under Way” (1943).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / Getty
“Girl at the Circus” (circa nineteen-forties to nineteen-fifties).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / Getty
“They’re Looking Up at the Empire State” (1945).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyEven when not explicitly activist, Weegee’s stance remains compassionate. Down on the Bowery, Sammy’s—a self-conscious dive frequented by boozehounds, talentless belters, a dwarf mascot, and uptown slummers—was the place Weegee chose for his book parties, somewhere he could both gape and show off. The bar was itself a contrivance, a kind of nightly photo op, but the pictures Weegee took there manage to be both exploitative and humane.
How literally true, and how staged, was Weegee’s work? In “Bystander,” Westerbeck and Meyerowitz show that early street photographers tried “to bully or finagle their subjects into behaving naturally.” This fundamental tension between a composed pictorialism and a trouvé “snapshot aesthetic” persisted in photography decade after decade. Alfred Stieglitz, as if trying to negotiate a compromise, would sometimes frame a setup and wait for passersby to wander into it; Brassaï orchestrated his photographs; on occasion Ben Shahn included his wife as a “fake subject” among real ones.
Bonanos admits that Weegee would sometimes “give the truth some extra help,” and when it comes to what he calls “minor adjustments” the biographer doesn’t mount an especially high horse. Still, he doesn’t hide the whoppers that amount to fake views. On November 22, 1943, Weegee’s most egregious cheating produced his most famous picture, “The Critic”: a scraggly, impoverished woman looks scornfully at a pair of fur-clad, tiara-wearing ladies arriving at the opera. The ladies are actually behaving more naturally than the down-on-her-luck observer, a woman Weegee found at Sammy’s and plied with drink before taking her uptown to complete his scheme. When he republished his opera photographs a couple of years later, his printed commentary gave no hint of the deception.“Fireman Rescues Torahs” (mid-nineteen-forties).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyThere were plenty of occasions when circ*mstances arranged themselves without need of manipulation—ones Weegee recognized for their unlikely, organic beauty, and took pains to capture before they could disappear from his viewfinder. “Extra! Weegee!” reproduces his photograph of a church fire on West 122nd Street, where the water arcs made by several fire hoses appear to be flying buttresses, permanent parts of the structure they’ve just come to save. In a nighttime picture, a thin man near a lamppost looks like one of Giacometti’s elongated sculptures. A shot through the open doors of a paddy wagon reveals two men on opposite sides of the van’s spare tire, covering their faces with hats; the result is a comic mystery and a sort of Mickey Mouse silhouette, in which their hats look like ears.
This attraction to the bizarre suggests Weegee as a precursor to photographers like Diane Arbus. In “On Photography” (1977), Susan Sontag acknowledges that Arbus once referred to Weegee as “the photographer she felt closest to,” but she rejected any connection between the two beyond a shared urban sensibility:The similarity between [Weegee’s] work and Arbus’ ends there. However eager she was to disavow standard elements of photographic sophistication such as composition, Arbus was not unsophisticated. And there is nothing journalistic about her motives for taking pictures. What may seem journalistic, even sensational, in Arbus’ photographs places them, rather, in the main tradition of Surrealist art.
And yet one can hardly discount or fail to notice the Surrealist essence of Weegee’s paddy-wagon picture. The mask-like fedora might as well be Magritte’s apple. Weegee knew Surrealism when he saw it, and the recognition came from an artistic instinct for provocative juxtaposition. A circus-audience picture from 1943 shows two deadpan, hatted women holding hatted monkey dolls in their laps—an image that points straight ahead to Arbus’s work.“Couple at the Palace Theatre” (circa 1943).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / Getty
“I Cried When I Took This Picture” (1939).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyThe publication of “Naked City,” in 1945, brought public praise from Langston Hughes and a congratulatory note from Alfred Stieglitz: “My laurel wreath I hand to thee.” If there were critics who remained skeptical of photography’s status as art, there were now plenty of them ready to usher this night-crawling creature of newsprint into the pantheon. (Several Weegees had been exhibited in two moma shows in 1943 and 1944.) Weegee did not grow rich, but he craved fame more than money, and he had enough of the former to appear in advertising endorsem*nts for camera equipment.
By the time all this acclaim was upon him, Weegee had more or less finished doing his most interesting work. He did shoot a girl being launched out of a cannon, but he was not made for the space age, let alone the era of urban renewal. Vogue’s art director, Alexander Liberman, brought him to the magazine for a time, but not much came of that, and the bits of advertising and commercial photography that he undertook don’t engage us now any more than they did him at the time.“Making a Drink” (circa nineteen-forties).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyIt was a mistake for Weegee to enter the well-lit, corporate world. His power had always come from making night into day. With flashbulbs, and even their riskier, flash-powder antecedent, he was able to own and preserve the instant when—Fiat lux!—he spun the world a hundred and eighty degrees. For a split second, the immigrant scrapper could be God, or, at least, Lucifer. Actual daytime represented exile, a demotion.
The itch to remain Weegee the Famous took him to Hollywood. Mark Hellinger, the columnist turned producer, seeking a sexy name for a detective movie, had bought the rights to the title “Naked City,” and shot the film in New York. This was a little like Cecil B. DeMille’s office wanting Norma Desmond’s car instead of Norma Desmond, but the experience of being around the production impelled Weegee, in 1948, to shift coasts, where he wasted a few years chasing bit parts in films. The only significant work from this period was a series of nighttime promotional photographs taken across the country for a 1950 Universal movie, “The Sleeping City.”“The Critic” (1943).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyWeegee was back in New York by the end of 1951, and spent much of the next decade making pointless forays into Europe, art-house films, and soft p*rn. He photographed the members of camera clubs ogling Bettie Page, the pinup queen, and sought connection with a younger artistic crowd in Greenwich Village. He once invited Judith Malina, the co-founder of the Living Theatre, home, then chased her around his apartment. She recalled Weegee for Bonanos shortly before her death: “He wanted to see the soul of the person. He wanted to see the essence of the person. And he certainly wanted to see the tit* of the person.”
Throughout his last years, Weegee devoted a baffling amount of time to “distortions,” fun-house caricatures of celebrities like Salvador Dali and Marilyn Monroe. They’re interesting for a second or two, but the car wrecks he’d photographed years before—pulverized and accordioned vehicles—were more authentically, captivatingly warped. What he considered a late creative stretch was actually shrinkage; toward the end, he ceased making many distinctions between art and junk. To slow the drift, he tried old tricks, at one point even buying another pony—a replacement for the long-dead Hypo. An attempted return to nighttime news photography proved beyond his physical energies.“Couple in Voodoo Trance” (circa 1956).Photograph by Weegee / ICP / GettyAmid the tiresome braggadocio of Weegee’s memoir, one finds no mention of either Margaret Atwood or Wilma Wilcox, but the latter made a god-sent return to Weegee at the end of his life. Decades earlier, Wilcox had been shocked by his storage methods—“photographs not in files but tossed into a pork barrel.” In 1964, with money from her pension, she purchased a brownstone on West Forty-seventh Street, and allowed Weegee, and his œuvre, to move in.
He died from a brain tumor at Christmastime in 1968, and Wilcox, “the silent hero of Weegee’s story,” according to Bonanos, set about organizing the wild clutter of his superabundant, uneven work. She lived until 1993, perhaps with a premonition of the photographic age now upon us, an era in which that smiling girl on the beach has no need of a press photographer to get herself noticed; she comes to us through her Instagram feed, as a selfie from which the drowning man has probably been cropped. Defying one of Weegee’s dicta—“A picture is like a blintz. Eat it while it’s hot”—Wilcox succeeded in getting his messy life’s achievement into the International Center of Photography, which today holds it in “about five hundred big gray archival boxes kept cool and dry
Morris Engel (April 8, 1918 – March 5, 2005) was an American photographer, cinematographer and filmmaker best known for directing the 1953 film Little Fugitive in collaboration with his wife, photographer Ruth Orkin, and their friend, writer Raymond Abrashkin.
Engel completed two more features during the 1950s, Lovers and Lollipops (1956) and Weddings and Babies (1960).
Engel was a pioneer in the use of hand-held cameras and nonprofessional actors in his films, using cameras that he helped design, and his naturalistic films influenced future prominent independent and French New Wave filmmakers.[1]Contents1 Career2 Legacy3 Personal life4 Filmography5 Recent Exhibitions (Selection)6 References7 External linksCareerA lifelong New Yorker, Morris Engel was born in Brooklyn in 1918. After joining the Photo League in 1936, Engel had his first exhibition in 1939, at the New School for Social Research.[2] He worked briefly as a photographer for the Leftist newspaper PM[2] before joining the United States Navy as a combat photographer from 1941 to 1946 in World War II.[2] After the war, he returned to New York where he again was an active Photo League member, teaching workshop classes and serving as co-chair of a project group focusing on postwar labor issues.[3]Richie Andrusco in Little FugitiveIn 1953, Engel, along with his girlfriend, fellow photographer Ruth Orkin, and his former colleague at PM, Raymond Abrashkin, made Little Fugitive for $30,000, shooting the film on location with hand-held 35mm camera. The film, one of the first successful American "independent films" earned them an Academy Award nomination for Best Writing, Motion Picture Story and a Silver Lion at the Venice Film Festival. The film told the story of a seven-year-old boy, played by Richie Andrusco, who runs away from home and spends the day at Coney Island. Andrusco never appeared in another film, and the other performers were mainly nonprofessionals. Though the film was a critical success,[4] Engel and Orkin, who had since married, had a hard time finding funding [4] for their next film, Lovers and Lollipops, which was completed in 1955. The film was about a widowed mother dating an old friend, and how her young daughter complicates their budding relationship.A scene from Lovers and LollipopsLike Little Fugitive, Lovers and Lollipops was filmed with a hand-held 35 millimeter camera that did not allow simultaneous sound recording. The sound of both films was dubbed later. Lovers and Lollipops was followed two years later by the more adult-centered Weddings and Babies, a film about an aspiring photographer than is often seen as autobiographical. This was Engel's only film to have live sound recorded at the time of filming. Weddings and Babies was the first 35 mm fiction film made with a portable camera equipped for synchronized sound.[5]
In the 1960s, Engel directed a variety of television commercials.[6] He made a fourth film in the late 1960s[2] called I Need a Ride to California (83 minutes), which followed a group of hippies in Greenwich Village, but it was never released during his lifetime. [6]
LegacyEngel and Orkin's work occupy a pivotal position in the independent and art film scene of the 1950s, and was influential on John Cassavetes, Martin Scorsese and François Truffaut[1][4][7] and was frequently cited as an example by the influential film theorist Siegfried Kracauer.[8]
Writing in Cassavetes on Cassavetes, biographer Raymond Carney says that Cassavetes was familiar with the work of the New York-based independent filmmakers who preceded him, and was "particularly fond" of Engel's three films. Carney writes that "Commentators who regard him as the 'first independent' are only displaying their ignorance of the history of independent American film, which goes back to the early 1950s.[9]
Truffaut was inspired by Little Fugitive's spontaneous production style when he created The 400 Blows (1959), saying long afterwards: “Our New Wave would never have come into being if it hadn’t been for the young American Morris Engel, who showed us the way to independent production with [this] fine movie.”[10]
Personal lifeEngel and Orkin remained married until Orkin's death in 1985. In the 1980s, Engel began taking panoramic photographs[6] and in the 1990s, Engel returned to filmmaking, this time working on video. He completed two works: A Little Bit Pregnant[6] in 1994 and Camillia[6] in 1998.
Engel died of cancer in 2005.
FilmographyThe Little Fugitive (1953)Lovers and Lollipops (1956)Weddings and Babies (1960)The Dog Lover (1964) (short)I Need a Ride to California (1968) (released in 2019)A Little Bit Pregnant (1994)
Morris Engel, the New York photographer and filmmaker whose 1953 film, "The Little Fugitive," established a model for independent moviemaking that influenced directors like John Cassavetes and François Truffaut, died Saturday at his home on Central Park West. He was 86.
The cause was cancer, said his son, Andy Engel.
"The Little Fugitive" tells the story of a 7-year-old Brooklyn boy, played by Richie Andrusco, who mistakenly believes he has killed his older brother and runs away to hide at Coney Island. The movie was made on a budget of $30,000 using a lightweight 35-millimeter camera that Mr. Engel had developed with a friend, Charlie Woodruff. The small, unobtrusive camera allowed Mr. Engel to film his tale with an intimacy and realism that seemed revolutionary in a time when the Hollywood dream factory was functioning at its fantastic height.
The simple, disarming film, with its street-level views of ordinary New Yorkers going about their lives, proved to have an international appeal. It won the Silver Lion at the 1953 Venice Film Festival, and its story, by Mr. Engel, his soon-to-be wife, Ruth Orkin, and Ray Ashley, a journalist who had been a colleague of Mr. Engel's at the newspaper PM, was nominated for an Academy Award in 1954.
The movie's success encouraged other young filmmakers to circumvent the Hollywood system and finance their own resolutely personal films. In 1957, the young actor John Cassavetes borrowed $40,000 to make "Shadows," a partly improvised drama whose success opened the door to other New York independent filmmakers.
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SIGN UPIn 1959, the French film critic François Truffaut drew on Mr. Engel's childhood themes and production techniques to create "The 400 Blows," the film that introduced the French New Wave. "Our New Wave would never have come into being if it hadn't been for the young American Morris Engel, who showed us the way to independent production with his fine movie, 'Little Fugitive,"' Mr. Truffaut later told Lillian Ross in an interview for The New Yorker.
Born in Brooklyn in 1918, Mr. Engel took courses as a teenager at the Photo League, a cooperative founded by a group of socially engaged photographers, where one his teachers was Berenice Abbott. He had his first show at the New School for Social Research in 1939, worked briefly for PM and then entered the Navy, where as a combat photographer he covered the Normandy landing. After the war, Mr. Engel became a busy photojournalist, working for a wide range of publications including McCall's and Collier's.
Unlock more free articles.Create an account or log inWith Ms. Orkin, herself a gifted photographer, Mr. Engel made two more independent features: "Lovers and Lollipops" (1956), about a small girl struggling with the idea of her widowed mother's remarriage, and "Weddings and Babies" (1958), an autobiographical study of a photographer whose artistic ambitions are thwarted by his fiancée's dreams of domesticity. Neither enjoyed the success of "The Little Fugitive."
Mr. Engel returned to his work as a commercial photographer and did not make another feature until "I Need a Ride to California" in 1968, a drama about East Village hippies that remains unreleased. Later in life, he worked on video documentaries, including "A Little Bit Pregnant" (1993) and "Camelia" (1998).
"He was a street photographer his whole life," said his daughter, Mary Engel. "Through the 90's, he shot wide, color panoramas of the streets that have never really been exhibited, and we are working on that." The writer-director Joanna Lipper recently shot a remake of "The Little Fugitive," which Ms. Engel co-produced.
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Respect the Hustle of Soda Can Raccoon and Murder CatBesides his son and daughter, Mr. Engel is survived by two sisters, Pearl Russell and Helen Siemianowski, and a grandson. Ms. Orkin died in 1985.
Morris Engel was born in Brooklyn, New York on April 8, 1918. He attended Abraham Lincoln High School and joined the Photo League in 1936 where he met Aaron Siskind, Berenice Abbott and Paul Strand, who invited him to work on his film “Native Land.”
Engel became a staff photographer on the newspaper “PM” and joined the Navy in 1941. As a member of Combat Photo Unit 8 that landed on Normandy on D-Day, he received a citation from Captain Edward Steichen.
After his return to “PM” he worked for many national magazines including “Ladies Home Journal”, “McCall’s”, “Fortune”, “Colliers” and others.
His initial interest for motion pictures begun with Paul Strand reached a new level when he built a lightweight hand-held 35mm camera with Charles Woodruff. This camera was a major factor in the production of his first film, “Little Fugitive.” It served the dual purpose of creating extreme fluidity, and being able to work on a small budget, with a tiny crew. The film, which is about a 7-year-old boy who runs away to Coney Island, has received international acclaim. Francois Truffaut said “Our new wave would never have come into being if it hadn’t been for the young American Morris Engel, who showed us the way to independent production with his fine movie “Little Fugitive.” It won the Silver Lion at the Venice Film Festival, was nominated for an Academy Award, and was selected by the Library of Congress National Film Registry in 1997.
Engel and Orkin married during the making of “Little Fugitive” in 1952, and made a second film together, “Lovers and Lollipops.” Engel made “Weddings and Babies” in 1958 that starred Viveca Lindfors, and “I Need a Ride to California” in 1968. He also completed two video features, “A Little Bit Pregnant” in 1994, and “Camellia” in 1998. He also returned to the streets of NYC, shooting color panoramas.
Chronology1918 Born April 8 in New York City1936 Joined the Photo League1939 Solo exhibition, The New School; worked on Native Land with Paul Strand1940 Staff photographer, PM newspaper1941 U.S. Navy, Chief Photographer’s Mate, Combat Photo Unit #8, (4 years)1945 Resumed work as staff photographer on PM1947 Freelance work for magazines: Ladies Home Journal, McCall’s, Collier’s, Fortune, This Week, and others1951 Made 35mm motion picture short, The Farm They Won1952 Co-produced, co-directed, co-writer and photographed Little Fugitive, award-winning feature film1952 Married Ruth Orkin1955 Co-produced, co-directed, co-writer and photographed Lovers and Lollipops, award-winning feature film1958 Produced, directed and photographed Weddings and Babies, award- winning feature film1959 Son Andy Born1960 Did CBS television story on Brasilia1961 Corporate film for Chase Manhattan Bank1961 Daughter Mary born, Directed television commercials, including award-winning Oreo commercial1962 The Dog Lover, a film starring Jack Guilford1968 I Need a Ride to California, 35mm feature film; “Peace Is,” short film1994 Video feature A Little Bit Pregnant1998 Video feature Camellia2005 Dies March 5Awards:United States Navy Photographic Institute Citation for Exceptionally Meritorious Photography, Awarded Navy Day, October 27, 1945For Outstanding Achievement While Serving As A U.S. Navy Combat Photographer and as a member of combat photo unit number eight. For an exceptionally fine series of still photographs of the invasions in Southern France and on the Normandy Beaches, where his indifference to danger and his keen awareness of what scenes were most vital in the action around him, resulted in a contribution of great value to the visual records of the war. His photograph showing enemy dead on the Normandy beach, taken on D-day and in the face of grave danger, is one of the great pictures of the war and reflects the highest credit upon Engel and the U.S. Navy photographic service.Signed by Edward Steichen, Captain USNR/Director, Navy Photographic InstituteMayor’s Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting, Crystal Apple Award, 1988Lifetime Achievement Award, Photographic Administrators, 1998Pioneer of Independent Cinema Award, 2002
ExhibitionsSolo Exhibitions:1939 The New School for Social Research, Introduction by Paul Strand1940 The Photo League, NYC1944 U.S. Navy Exhibit at the Ilford Company, London England1999 Photographs Do Not Bend, Dallas, TX1999 Howard Greenberg Gallery, NYC2000 Stephen Daiter Gallery, Chicago, IL
Group Exhibitions:
1948 The Exact Instant, 100 Years of News, Photography, In and Out of Focus, 50 Photographs by 50 Photographers,Museum of Modern Art, NYC1978 Photographic Crossroads: The Photo League, International Center for Photography1980 The Witkin Gallery: Anniversary Collector’s Show. New York, NY1985 Roy Stryker: U.S.A., 1943-1950,International Center of Photography, NYC1985 American Images 1945-1980, Barbican Art Gallery, London, England1985 A Tribute to Lee D. Witkin, The Witkin Gallery, Inc., NYC1986 Tides of Immigration, Romantic Visions andUrban Realities, Brooklyn College, NYC1987-89 The Photo League, 1936-1951, organized bySUNY New Paltz, travelled to 10 colleges throughout New YorkState1999 On the Elbow, The Witkin Gallery, Inc., NYCThe Photo League, Gallery 292, NYC1995 An American Century of Photography: From Dry-plate to Digital, The Hallmark Photography Collection, ICP, NYC1997 Oh Boy! A Group Show of Photographs. Port Washington Public Library, Port Washington, NY1998 The New York School of Photography, 1930s – 1960’s, Jan Kesner Gallery, LA, CA1998 Take the A Train, Howard Greenberg Gallery1998 Eight Million Stories: Twentieth-Century New York Life in Prints and Photographs, New York Public Library,NYC1999 Photo League, Fundacion Telefonica, Spain2002 Classic Images; Photography of Ruth Orkin and Morris Engel. Sag Harbor, NY2006 “Where Do We Go From Here?”: The Photo League and Its Legacy (1936-2006). New York Public Library, New York,NY2011 Modernist Photography, 1910-1950 at Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Boston, MA2011 Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera Since 1870. San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco,CA2012 Museum of the City of New York: London Street Photography, with “City Scenes: Highlights of New York StreetPhotography.” New York, NY2012 Film and Photo in New York: Morris Engel, Louis Fauer, Robert Frank, Helen Levitt, Paul Strand and Weegee. ArtInstitute of Chicago Chicago, IL.2012 The Radical Camera: New York’s Photo League 1936-1951, Jewish Museum, NY, NY2015 Coney Island – Visions of an American Dreamland, 1861-2008, Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, CT2016 PM Exhibition at Steven Kasher Gallery, NY.CollectionsPUBLIC COLLECTIONS:
Amon Carter Museum, Fort Worth, TXArt Institute of Chicago, Chicago, ILBowdoin College Museum of Art, Brunswick, MECenter for Creative Photography, Tucson, AZGeorge Eastman House, Rochester, NYWilliam A. Farnsworth Library and Art Museum, Rockland, MEHallmark Photographic Collection, Kansas City, MOInternational Center of Photography, New York, NYLA County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CAMetropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NYMuseum of the City of New York, New York, NYMuseum of Fine Arts, Houston, TXMuseum of Modern Art, New York, NYNational Portrait Gallery, Washington, DCNational Gallery of Canada, OttawaNew Orleans Museum of Art, New Orleans, LANew York Public Library, New York, NYNewark Museum, Newark, NJRhode Island School of Design, Providence, RIJohn & Mable Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, FLSaint Louis Art Museum, St. Louis, MOSan Antonio Museum Association, San Antonio, TXSpencer Museum of Art, Lawrence, KSUniversity of Louisville Photographic Archives, Louisville, KYUniversity of New Mexico Art Museum, Albuquerque, NMYale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CTIndianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, INMuseum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA
Clare Boothe Luce (née Ann Clare Boothe; March 10, 1903[1][2] – October 9, 1987) was an American author, politician, U.S. Ambassador and public conservative figure. A versatile author, she is best known for her 1936 hit play The Women, which had an all-female cast. Her writings extended from drama and screen scenarios to fiction, journalism and war reportage. She was the wife of Henry Luce, publisher of Time, Life, Fortune, and Sports Illustrated.
Politically, Luce was a leading conservative in later life and was well known for her anti-communism. In her youth, she briefly aligned herself with the liberalism of President Franklin Roosevelt as a protégé of Bernard Baruch, but later became an outspoken critic of Roosevelt.[3] Although she was a strong supporter of the Anglo-American alliance in World War II, she remained outspokenly critical of British colonialism in India.[4]
Known as a charismatic and forceful public speaker, especially after her conversion to Roman Catholicism in 1946, she campaigned for every Republican presidential candidate from Wendell Willkie to Ronald Reagan.Contents1 Early life2 Marriage to Henry Luce3 Writing career4 Political career4.1 House of Representatives4.2 Ambassador to Italy4.3 Ambassador to Brazil nomination4.4 Political life after office4.5 Presidential Medal of Freedom5 Death6 Legacy6.1 Feminism6.2 Clare Boothe Luce Program6.3 Conservatism7 Publications8 See also9 Notes10 References11 External linksEarly lifeLuce was born Ann Clare Boothe in New York City on March 10, 1903, the second child of Anna Clara Schneider (also known as Ann Snyder Murphy, Ann Boothe, and Ann Clare Austin) and William Franklin Boothe (also known as "John J. Murphy" and "Jord Murfe").[5] Her parents were not married and would separate in 1912. Her father, a sophisticated man and a brilliant violinist,[6] instilled in his daughter a love of literature, if not of music, but had trouble holding a job and spent years as a travelling salesman. Parts of young Clare's childhood were spent in Memphis and Nashville, Tennessee, Chicago, Illinois, and Union City, New Jersey as well as New York City.[7] Clare Boothe had an elder brother, David Franklin Boothe.Clare Boothe as a young socialite in the 1920sShe attended the cathedral schools in Garden City and Tarrytown, New York, graduating first in her class in 1919 at 16.[8] Her ambitious mother's initial plan for her was to become an actress. Clare understudied Mary Pickford on Broadway at age 10, and had her Broadway debut in Mrs. Henry B. Harris' production of "The Dummy" in 1914, a detective comedy. She then had a small part in Thomas Edison's 1915 movie, The Heart of a Waif.[9] After a tour of Europe with her mother and stepfather, Dr. Albert E. Austin, whom Ann Boothe married in 1919, she became interested in the women's suffrage movement, and she was hired by Alva Belmont to work for the National Woman's Party in Washington, D.C. and Seneca Falls, New York.[10]
She wed George Tuttle Brokaw, millionaire heir to a New York clothing fortune, on August 10, 1923, at the age of 20. They had one daughter, Ann Clare Brokaw (1924–1944). According to Boothe, Brokaw was a hopeless alcoholic, and the marriage ended in divorce in 1929.[11]
On November 23, 1935, she married Henry Luce, the publisher of Time, Life, and Fortune. She thereafter called herself Clare Boothe Luce, a frequently misspelled name that was often confused with that of her exact contemporary Claire Luce, a stage and film actress. As a professional writer, Luce continued to use her maiden name.
In 1939 she commissioned Frida Kahlo to paint a portrait of the late Dorothy Hale. Kahlo produced The Suicide Of Dorothy Hale. Luce was appalled and almost destroyed it; Isamu Noguchi persuaded her not to. The painting is now at the Phoenix Art Museum.[12]
On January 11, 1944, her only child, Ann Clare Brokaw, a 19-year-old senior at Stanford University, was killed in an automobile accident.[13] As a result of the tragedy, Luce explored psychotherapy and religion. After grief counseling with Father Fulton Sheen, she was received into the Roman Catholic Church in 1946.[14] She became an ardent essayist and lecturer in celebration of her faith, and she was ultimately honored by being named a Dame of Malta. As a memorial to her daughter, beginning in 1949 she funded the construction of a Catholic church in Palo Alto for use by the Stanford campus ministry. The new Saint Ann Chapel was dedicated in 1951. It was sold by the diocese in 1998 and in 2003 became a church of the Anglican Province of Christ the King.[15]
Marriage to Henry LuceThe marriage between Clare and Henry was difficult. Henry was by any standard extremely successful, but his physical awkwardness, lack of humor, and newsman's discomfort with any conversation that was not strictly factual put him in awe of his beautiful wife's social poise, wit, and fertile imagination.[16] Clare's years as managing editor of Vanity Fair left her with an avid interest in journalism (she suggested the idea of Life magazine to her husband before it was developed internally).[17] Henry himself was generous in encouraging her to write for Life, but the question of how much coverage she should be accorded in Time, as she grew more famous, was always a careful balancing act for Henry since he did not want to be accused of nepotism.
It has been reported that their marriage was sexually "open."[18] Clare Luce's lovers included Ambassador Joseph P. Kennedy, Randolph Churchill, General Lucian K. Truscott, Jr., General Charles Willoughby,[19] and Roald Dahl.
Joseph P. Kennedy was the father of several United States politicians. Clare Luce at times provided advice to the campaigns of John F. Kennedy, who became the 35th U.S. president.
Dahl, who became a very successful author after the war, was at the time a dashing young RAF fighter pilot, temporarily assigned to Washington. He was part of a plan developed by spymaster Sir William Stephenson (code name "Intrepid"), intended to weaken American isolationist thinking by influencing, among others, American journalists and politicians. Dahl was
". . . instructed to romance Clare, who was thirteen years his senior, to see if, with the right kind of encouragement, she could warm to the British position."
The very tall (6'6") and athletic Dahl later claimed he found his affair with Clare to be so physically demanding that he had begged the British ambassador to relieve him of the task, but the Ambassador told him he must continue.[20]
In the early 1960s, both Luces were friends of philosopher, author, and LSD advocate Gerald Heard.[21] They tried LSD one time under his careful supervision. Although taking LSD never turned into a habit for either of the Luces, a friend (and biographer of Clare), Wilfred Sheed, wrote that Clare made use of it at least several times.[22]
The Luces stayed together until Henry's death from a heart attack in 1967. As one of the great "power couples" in American history, they were bonded by their mutual interests and complementary, if contrasting, characters. They treated each other with unfailing respect in public, never more so than when he willingly acted as his wife's consort during her years as Ambassador to Italy. She was never able to convert him to Catholicism (he was the son of a Presbyterian missionary) but he did not question the sincerity of her faith, often attended Mass with her, and defended her when she was criticized by his fellow Protestants.
In the early years of her widowhood, she retired to the luxurious beach house that she and her husband had planned in Honolulu, but boredom with life in what she called "this fur-lined rut"[23] brought her back to Washington, D.C. for increasingly long periods. She made her final home there in 1983.
Writing career
Poster from the 1939 film The WomenA writer with considerable powers of invention and wit, Luce published Stuffed Shirts, a promising volume of short stories, in 1931. Scribner's magazine compared the work to Evelyn Waugh's Vile Bodies for its bitter humor. The New York Times found it socially superficial, but praised its "lovely festoons of epigrams" and beguiling stylishness: "What malice there may be in these pages has a felinity that is the purest Angoran."[24] The book's device of characters interlinked from story to story was borrowed from Sherwood Anderson's Winesburg, Ohio (1919), but it impressed Andre Maurois, who asked Luce's permission to imitate it.[25] Luce also published many magazine articles. Her real talent, however, was as a playwright.
After the failure of her initial stage effort, the marital melodrama Aoffere With Me (1935), she rapidly followed up with a satirical comedy, The Women. Deploying a cast of no fewer than 40 actresses who discussed men in often scorching language, it became a Broadway smash in 1936 and, three years later, a successful Hollywood movie. Toward the end of her life, Luce claimed that for half a century, she had steadily received royalties from productions of The Women all around the world. Later in the 1930s, she wrote two more successful, but less durable plays, also both made into movies: Kiss the Boys Goodbye and Margin for Error. The latter work "presented an all-out attack on the Nazis' racist philosophy"[26] Its opening night in Princeton, New Jersey, on October 14, 1939, was attended by Albert Einstein and Thomas Mann. Otto Preminger directed and starred in both the Broadway production and screen adaptation.[27]
Much of Luce's famously acid wit ("No good deed goes unpunished",[28] "Widowhood is a fringe benefit of marriage", "A hospital is no place to be sick") can be traced back to the days when, as a wealthy young divorcee in the early 1930s, she became a caption writer at Vogue and then, associate editor and managing editor of Vanity Fair. She not only edited the works of such great humorists as P. G. Wodehouse and Corey Ford but also contributed many comic pieces of her own, signed and unsigned. Her humor, which she retained into old age, was one of the pillars of Clare's character.General Chiang Kai-shek and Madame Chiang welcome Clare Boothe Luce, April 1942Another branch of Luce's literary career was that of war journalism. Europe in the Spring was the result of a four-month tour of Britain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy, and France in 1939–1940 as a correspondent for Life magazine. She described the widening battleground of World War II as "a world where men have decided to die together because they are unable to find a way to live together."[29]
In 1941, Luce and her husband toured China and reported on the status of the country and its war with Japan. Her profile of General Douglas MacArthur was on the cover of Life on December 8, 1941, the day after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. After the United States entered the war, Luce toured military installations in Africa, India, China, and Burma, compiling a further series of reports for Life. She published interviews with General Harold Alexander, commander of British troops in the Middle East, Chiang Kai-shek, Jawaharlal Nehru, and General Stilwell, commander of American troops in the China-Burma-India theater.[29]
Her lifelong instinct for being in the right place at the right time and easy access to key commanders made her an influential figure on both sides of the Atlantic. She endured bombing raids and other dangers in Europe and the Far East. She did not hesitate to criticize the unwarlike lifestyle of General Sir Claude Auchinleck's Middle East Command in language that recalled the barbs of her best playwriting. One draft article for Life, noting that the general lived far from the Egyptian front in a houseboat, and mocking RAF pilots as "flying fairies", was discovered by British Customs when she passed through Trinidad in April 1942. It caused such Allied consternation that she briefly faced house arrest.[30] Coincidentally or not, Auchinleck was fired a few months later by Winston Churchill. Her varied experiences in all the major war theaters qualified her for a seat the following year on the House Military Affairs Committee after she was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1942.[citation needed]
Luce never wrote an autobiography but willed her enormous archive of personal papers to the Library of Congress.[citation needed]
Political careerHouse of RepresentativesIn 1942, Luce won a Republican seat in the United States House of Representatives representing Fairfield County, Connecticut, the 4th Congressional District. She based her platform on three goals: "One, to win the war. Two, to prosecute that war as loyally and effectively as we can as Republicans. Three, to bring about a better world and a durable peace, with special attention to post-war security and employment here at home."[31] She took up the seat formerly held by her late stepfather, Dr. Albert Austin. An outspoken critic of Roosevelt's foreign policy,[31] Luce was supported by isolationists and conservatives in Congress, and she was appointed early to the prestigious House Military Affairs Committee. Although she was by no means the only female representative on the floor, her beauty, wealth, and penchant for slashing witticisms caused her to be treated patronizingly by colleagues of both sexes.[32] She made a sensational debut in her maiden speech, coining the phrase "globaloney" to disparage Vice President Henry Wallace's recommendation for airlines of the world to be given free access to US airports.[33] She called for repeal of the Chinese Exclusion Act, comparing its "doctrine of race theology" to Adolf Hitler's,[34] advocated aid for war victims abroad, and sided with the administration on issues such as infant-care and maternity appropriations for the wives of enlisted men. Nevertheless, Roosevelt took a dislike to her and campaigned in 1944 to attempt to prevent her re-election, publicly calling her "a sharp-tongued glamor girl of forty."[35] She retaliated by accusing Roosevelt of being "the only American president who ever lied us into a war because he did not have the political courage to lead us into it."[36]
During her second term, Luce was instrumental in the creation of the Atomic Energy Commission[37] and, during the course of two tours of Allied battlefronts in Europe, she campaigned for more support of what she considered to be America's forgotten army in Italy. She was present at the liberation of several Nazi concentration camps in April 1945, and after V-E Day, she began warning against the rise of international Communism as another form of totalitarianism, likely to lead to World War III.[31]
In 1946, she was the co-author of the Luce–Celler Act of 1946, which permitted Indians and Filipinos permission to immigrate to the US, introducing a quota of 100 immigrants from each country, and allowed them ultimately to become naturalized citizens.[38]
Ambassador to Italy
Clare Boothe Luce, ambassador to Italy, with husband Henry Luce (1954)Luce returned to politics during the 1952 presidential election and she campaigned on behalf of Republican candidate Dwight Eisenhower, giving more than 100 speeches on his behalf. Her anti-Communist speeches on the stump, radio, and television were effective in persuading a large number of traditionally Democratic-voting Catholics to switch parties and vote Eisenhower. For her contributions Luce was rewarded with an appointment as Ambassador to Italy, a post that oversaw 1150 employees, 8 consulates, and 9 information centers. She was confirmed by the Senate in March 1953, the first American woman ever to hold such an important diplomatic post.
Italians reacted skeptically at first to the arrival of a female ambassador in Rome, but Luce soon convinced those of moderate and conservative temper that she favored their civilization and religion. "Her admirers in Italy-and she had millions- fondly referred to her as la Signora, 'the lady'".[39] The country's large Communist minority, however, regarded her as a foreign meddler in Italian affairs.
She was no stranger to Pope Pius XII, who welcomed her as a friend and faithful acolyte.[40]
Over the course of several audiences since 1940, Luce had impressed Pius XII as one of the most effective secular preachers of Catholicism in America.[41]
Her principal achievement as ambassador was to play a vital role in negotiating a peaceful solution to the Trieste Crisis of 1953–1954, a border dispute between Italy and Yugoslavia that she saw as potentially escalating into a war between East and West. Her sympathies throughout were with the Christian Democratic government of Giuseppe Pella, and she was influential on the Mediterranean policy of Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, another anticommunist. Although Luce regarded the abatement of the acute phase of the crisis in December 1953 as a triumph for herself, the main work of settlement, finalized in October 1954, was undertaken by professional representatives of the five concerned powers (Britain, France, the United States, Italy, and Yugoslavia) meeting in London.[42]
As ambassador, Luce consistently overestimated the possibility that the Italian left would mount a governmental coup and turn the country communist unless the democratic center was buttressed with generous American aid. Nurturing an image of her own country as a haven of social peace and prosperity, she threatened to boycott the 1955 Venice Film Festival if the American juvenile delinquent film Blackboard Jungle was shown.[43] Around the same time, she fell seriously ill with arsenic poisoning. Sensational rumors circulated that the ambassador was the target of extermination by agents of the Soviet Union. Medical analysis eventually determined that the poisoning was caused by arsenate of lead in paint dust falling from the stucco that decorated her bedroom ceiling. The episode debilitated Luce physically and mentally, and she resigned her post in December 1956.[44] Upon her departure, Rome's Il Tempo concluded "She has given a notable example of how well a woman can discharge a political post of grave responsibility."[45]
In 1957, she was awarded the Laetare Medal by the university of Notre Dame, considered the most prestigious award for American Catholics.[46]
A United States Defense Department historical study declassified in 2016 revealed that during her time as Ambassador, Boothe Luce oversaw a covert financial support program for centrist Italian governments aimed at weakening the Italian Communist Party's hold on labor unions.[47]
Great appreciator of Italian haute couture, she was a frequent visitor and client of the ateliers Gattinoni, Ferdinandi, Schuberth and Sorelle Fontana in Rome.
Ambassador to Brazil nominationIn April 1959, President Eisenhower nominated a recovered Luce to be the US Ambassador to Brazil. She began to learn enough of the Portuguese language in preparation for the job, but she was by now so conservative that her appointment met with strong opposition from a small number of Democratic senators. Leading the charge was Oregon Senator Wayne Morse. Still, Luce was confirmed by a 79 to 11 vote. Her husband urged her to decline the appointment, noting that it would be difficult for her to work with Morse, who chaired the Senate Subcommittee on Latin American Affairs. Luce eventually sent Eisenhower a letter explaining that she felt that the controversy surrounding her appointment would hinder her abilities to be respected by both her Brazilian and US coworkers. Thus, as she had never left American soil, she never officially took office as ambassador.
Political life after officeAfter Fidel Castro led a revolution in Cuba in 1959, Luce and her husband began to sponsor anticommunist groups. This support included funding Cuban exiles in commando speedboat raids against Cuba in the early 1960s.[48][49] Luce's continuing anticommunism as well as her advocacy of conservatism led her to support Senator Barry Goldwater of Arizona as the Republican candidate for president in 1964. She also considered but rejected a candidacy for the United States Senate from New York on the Conservative party ticket. That same year, which also saw the political emergence of her future friend Ronald Reagan, marked the voluntary end of Henry Luce's tenure as editor-in-chief of Time. The Luces retired together, establishing a winter home in Arizona and planning a final move to Hawaii. Her husband, Henry, died in 1967 before that dream could be realized, but she went ahead with construction of a luxurious beach house in Honolulu, and, for some years, she led an active life in Hawaii high society.
In 1973, President Richard Nixon named her to the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board (PFIAB). She remained on the board until President Jimmy Carter succeeded President Gerald Ford in 1977. By then, she had put down roots in Washington, D.C., that would become permanent in her last years. In 1979, she was the first woman to be awarded the Sylvanus Thayer Award by the United States Military Academy at West Point.
President Reagan reappointed Luce to PFIAB. She served on the board until 1983.
In 1986, Luce was the recipient of the Golden Plate Award of the American Academy of Achievement.[50]
Presidential Medal of FreedomPresident Reagan awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom[51] in 1983. She was the first female member of Congress to receive this award.[52]
Upon presenting her with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Reagan said this of Luce:
A novelist, playwright, politician, diplomat, and advisor to Presidents, Clare Boothe Luce has served and enriched her country in many fields. Her brilliance of mind, gracious warmth and great fortitude have propelled her to exceptional heights of accomplishment. As a Congresswoman, Ambassador, and Member of the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, Clare Boothe Luce has been a persistent and effective advocate of freedom, both at home and abroad. She has earned the respect of people from all over the world, and the love of her fellow Americans.[53]
DeathLuce died of brain cancer on October 9, 1987, at age 84, at her Watergate apartment in Washington, D.C. She is buried at Mepkin Abbey, South Carolina, a plantation that she and Henry Luce had once owned and given to a community of Trappist monks. She lies in a grave adjoining those of her mother, her daughter, and her husband.
LegacyFeminismRevered in her later years as a heroine of the feminist movement, Luce had mixed feelings about the role of women in society. As a Congresswoman in 1943, she was invited to co-sponsor a submission of the Equal Rights Amendment, offered by Representative Louis Ludlow of Indiana, but claimed that the invitation got lost in her mail.[54] Luce never ceased to advise women to marry and provide supportive homes for their husbands. (During her ambassadorial years, at a dinner in Luxembourg attended by many European dignitaries, Luce was heard declaiming that all women wanted from men was "babies and security.")[55] Yet, her own professional career as a successful editor, writer, playwright, reporter, legislator, and diplomat remarkably showed how a woman of humble origins and no college education could raise herself to an escalating series of public heights. Luce bequeathed a large part of her personal fortune of some $50 million to an academic program, the Clare Boothe Luce Program, designed to encourage the entry of women into technological fields traditionally dominated by men. Because of her determination and unwillingness to let her gender stand in the way of her personal and professional achievements, Luce is considered to be an influential role model by many women. Starting from humble beginnings, Luce never allowed her initial poverty or her male counterparts' lack of respect to keep her from achieving as much as if not more than many of the men surrounding her.[citation needed] In 2017, she was inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame.[56]
Clare Boothe Luce ProgramSince 1989, the Clare Boothe Luce Program (CBLP) has become a significant source of private funding support for women in science, mathematics, and engineering. All awards must be used exclusively in the United States (not applicable for travel or study abroad). Student recipients must be U.S. citizens and faculty recipients must be citizens or permanent residents. Thus far, the program has supported more than 1,500 women.
The terms of the bequest require the following criteria:
at least fifty percent of the awards go to Roman Catholic colleges, universities, and one high school (Villanova Preparatory School)grants are made only to four-year degree-granting institutions, not directly to individualsThe program is divided into three distinct categories:
undergraduate scholarships and research awards,graduate and post-doctoral fellowships, andterm support for tenure-track appointments at the assistant or associate professorship level.[37]ConservatismThe Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute (CBLPI) was founded in 1993 by Michelle Easton.[57] The non-profit think tank seeks to advance American women through conservative ideas and espouses much the same philosophy as that of Clare Boothe Luce, in terms of both foreign and domestic policy.[58] The CBLPI sponsors a program that brings conservative speakers to college campuses such as conservative commentator, Ann Coulter.[59]
The Clare Boothe Luce Award, established in 1991 in memory of Luce, is The Heritage Foundation's highest award for distinguished contributions to the conservative movement. Prominent recipients include Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, and William F. Buckley Aoffere with Me1936 The Women1938 Kiss the Boys Goodbye1939 Margin for Error1951 Child of the Morning1970 Slam the Door SoftlyScreen Stories1949 Come to the StableBooks1931 Stuffed Shirts1940 Europe in the Spring1952 Saints for Now (editor)
LATE IN THE FALL OF 1980, ARCHIE AND Selwa Roosevelt called me in New York and invited me to dinner in Washington. It seemed a long way to go for a party, until Selwa casually said, ''Clare Luce is coming.''
This was a shock to me. Since the recent publication of my biography of Edith Roosevelt - Archie's grandmother - I had nursed a secret longing to write the life of Clare Boothe Luce. I blurted out this ambition. Selwa promptly brushed aside my anxiety about meeting Mrs. Luce while the idea was in embryo: ''She won't take any notice of you. She's only interested in talking to men.''
The Roosevelt town house was festive that misty November evening. Ancestral portraits lined the walls, silver and crystal gleamed in the warming candlelight. But I was so frozen with apprehension that my mind blanked out as I was being introduced to Clare Boothe Luce. I suppose I was overcome by her legendary accomplishments as playwright, politician and diplomat. A few minutes later, when I recovered my wits, I saw her standing with a group of men, and went over and joined them. As Selwa had predicted, she took no notice of me whatsoever.
She was then 77 years old, with a lofty poise that made her seem taller than 5 foot 5. Her hair was dyed pale blonde, her face was a classic oval, her skin was moth's-wing fine, almost translucent, and her limpid blue eyes were alternately steely and vivid with intelligence. Somebody's description of her came to mind: ''A beautiful palace without central heating.''
At dinner, I sat opposite her. She plunged into a one-sided conversation with Alistair Horne, the English military historian. As she sipped steadily at her wine, her voice took on an aristocratic drawl. I noticed that whenever her monologues on politics and history were interrupted, her jaw protruded disagreeably. Again, she appeared to pay no attention to me, yet I sensed she missed nothing. At one point, she asked what I did for a living. ''You're too young and charming to be a good writer,'' she said, and turned away.
At the end of the evening, I was standing at the top of the staircase with about a dozen people when Mrs. Luce decided to make her exit through our midst. Ignoring her host and hostess, she looked around myopically, came straight up to me, put both hands on my shoulders, kissed me, and said: ''Good night, you sweet thing.'' A flash of red cape, and she was gone. I stood absolutely still. Was this a benediction?
Dig deeper into the moment.Special offer: Subscribe for $1 a week.EARLIER THAT YEAR, WHILE LOOKING through the files I obsessively keep about characters who strike my fancy, I had come across a 1973 interview with Mrs. Luce. I read it with deepening fascination. Here was a child who understudied Mary Pickford, an adolescent who campaigned for equal rights with the suffragette Alice Paul, a 20-year-old beauty who married a millionaire more than twice her age. Here, too, was the managing editor of the original Vanity Fair and the author of two books and four Broadway plays - including ''The Women,'' which was a big hit of the 1936-37 season and had been earning her worldwide royalties ever since. She was married a second time, to Henry Luce, the founder of Time, worked as a war correspondent, and was elected to Congress, all before she was 40.
Most of this was fresh to me, a fairly recent immigrant from England. Before the piece came to an end, I had learned about her flamboyant conversion to Catholicism, her appointment as the first American female Ambassador to a major country, and her 1960's experiments with LSD. I was enthralled, and decided then that I should like to write a book about this woman. I expressed my interest to Daniel Boorstin, the Librarian of Congress. He and his wife were friends of Mrs. Luce's, and offered to put in a good word for me.
By coincidence, Dan called the morning after the Roosevelt party to say that he'd just spoken to Mrs. Luce and that she was ''receptive'' to the idea of a biography. Had she realized the night before that the person she embraced was the biographer who wanted to ''embrace'' her? Two days later, I made my first formal move by writing to Mrs. Luce at her Watergate apartment, enclosing a copy of my previous book. ''Sooner or later,'' I stated, ''someone will embark on a major biography, and I should like it to be me.'' The year came to an end. There was no reply. Mrs. Luce had returned to her house in Hawaii. I was afraid that I had been overconfident, and that she was no longer ''receptive.'' Finally, in March, a letter arrived. It was postmarked Honolulu. My stomach fluttered as I opened the pink envelope, lined with gaudy sea shells. A phrase written in her forceful italic hand leaped out at me: disinclined to work with a biographer. Desolate, I read on.
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I learned later that she had abandoned her memoirs in the 1960's with the excuse: ''How can I tell the truth about Harry?'' She once admitted to me that Mr. Luce had ''wandered off the reservation'' early in their marriage, and she could not bear to write about it. (The relationship endured, however. As Mrs. Morehead, in ''The Women,'' says: ''It's being together at the end that really matters.'') Undeterred, I wrote another imploring letter. ''In some strange way, the project has taken me over. Every day I find myself in the Lincoln Center Theater Collection poring over crumbling news clippings.'' On April 7, I heard again from Hawaii. Addressing me by my first name, Mrs. Luce wrote, ''You are a very persistent - and persuasive - young woman.'' She promised ''a conclusive conversation'' after her return to Washington at the end of the month.
It was the Boorstins who made that conversation possible, at a dinner in their Cleveland Park house on May 5. My husband, Edmund, and I got there first, and were waiting on the second floor when the guest of honor arrived. I heard her decline the elevator and slowly mount the stairs. Dr. Boorstin, wearing a red smoking jacket, crested the last step with Mrs. Luce on his arm. She had on a sea-green silk caftan -more Hawaiian than Halston, I thought.
Over dinner, Mrs. Luce did most of the talking. She paid little attention to the food. Her delivery was hypnotically slow as she reminisced. Occasionally, she paused for a name or a date, which I could not help supplying. At one point she forgot the name of a trans-Atlantic liner she had taken to Europe in 1914. ''The R.M.S. Carmania,'' I said. She hesitated over a London hotel she had stayed in after World War I. ''The Victoria,'' I said. Each time she looked at me quizzically. Our bizarre duet was interrupted by the appearance of orange blancmange. Dan said: ''Well, it's time to talk frankly about why we're here tonight.'' Mrs. Luce covered her head with a napkin. ''How often does it happen,'' said Dan, ''this coming together of a great subject and an ideal biographer?''
She twirled her wine glass. ''I've done too many things. It doesn't stack up.''
As passionately as I could, I recapitulated her achievements. ''Had you lived a little later, you might well have been President.'' She rolled her eyes. I said, ''You should cooperate with a writer now, or someone uninformed might do a hatchet job when you're gone.''
The jaw came out. ''What do I care about people's opinions after I'm dead? I'm no Madame Curie or Margaret Sanger.''
Nobody could disagree with this, but nobody dared agree either. Negative feelings hung in the air. ''That's that,'' I thought dejectedly. ''The moment has come and gone.''
After dinner, we went back to the sitting room for coffee. Edmund moved next to Mrs. Luce, while I sank onto an ottoman opposite, wondering how to rescue the situation. She was uncharacteristically subdued, introspective even, and frowned at the ceiling. All of a sudden, she gave a deep sigh, and the pain vanished from her face. She tapped Edmund on the knee. ''What are we going to do about your bride?''
''Are you two discussing my future?'' I threw up my arms in mock despair. ''I have no future.''
''Oh, yes, you have,'' she said. We both got up and clasped hands in the center of the room. The others discreetly kept their distance. ''But you understand my reluctance. My father abandoned us when I was 7, my mother and daughter were killed, and my brother. . . .'' Her voice trailed off when she saw me nodding. I knew all about him - that charming misanthropic wastrel.
But she still could not bring herself to say yes. ''I am going to let my secretary, Dorothy Farmer, decide,'' she said. ''Take her for a hamburger.'' How weird, I thought. Who is this controlling angel?
At lunch two days later, Dorothy Farmer did not look particularly formidable. She was a tiny, round figure who chuckled a lot and confessed to a weakness for balls of butter. She told me that Mrs. Luce had said, ''That Sylvia Morris is going to do my biography whether I cooperate or not.''
Apparently Dorothy approved, because shortly afterward Mrs. Luce called to give me the go-ahead. I asked what I should do next. ''It seems to me you're doing it already,'' she said. In Washington, that summer of 1981, I worked my way steadily through the Clare Boothe Luce Papers in the Library of Congress. It appeared she had never thrown a scrap away. At 246 linear feet, the collection was bigger than that of most Presidents. And no wonder: her life spanned 20 Administrations of 15 Chief Executives, eight of whom she had known personally. She had also been on good terms with many foreign leaders, from Winston Churchill (who interested her in painting) to Indira Gandhi. She had a romantic penchant for World War II generals, from Douglas MacArthur and Joseph Stilwell in the East to Mark Clark and Lucian Truscott Jr. in the West.
Since I was spending more and more time in Washington, and Mrs. Luce was in Hawaii less and less, I bought a small condominium one block from the Library of Congress. Our first interview took place on Friday, Oct. 30. I was admiring an exquisite collection of calling-card cases on the coffee table when my subject appeared. ''They're laid out for the appraiser,'' she said, sitting in an armchair opposite me.
It soon became apparent that she intended to control the interview. She sidestepped my questions with the agility of a card-sharper. I tried to press her. ''You didn't like Mr. Luce when you first met. What did he say or do that made you change your mind? Was it his determination in pursuing you?''
She laughed, remembering the turbulent spring of 1935, when Henry Robinson Luce was trying to get a divorce from his wife in order to marry her, and she was abroad, playing hard to get. ''I shook him in Africa,'' she said, then launched into another deflecting anecdote. ''The most embarrassing story of my whole life was in Tunis. There was a toilet that had a great globe over it, and a string, and any noise that you made was reverberated over all of Africa. Even pee-pee sounded like Niagara Falls.'' It was not an auspicious beginning. But I persevered, and in the course of an hour managed to record some hard biographical material. She told me how she had stayed as a girl with an impoverished doctor in the Weimar Republic, and how her first husband, George Brokaw, a golf-playing drunk, would wake her up with Yale Glee Club songs on his banjo.
IN EARLY DECEMBER, MRS. LUCE'S HABITUAL restlessness brought a move to the Shoreham Apartments on Calvert Street. By then I had taped many hours of reminiscences. It did not occur to me that I had begun to fill a void in her life until I announced my departure for England to spend Christmas with my sister. A flash of anguish crossed her face, and I realized with surprise that she was going to be alone.
She looked like a corpse when I got back in early January 1982. An aspirin-based painkiller had caused old ulcer scars to hemorrhage, and she had been rushed off in an ambulance, near death. The egalitarian treatment she received in the emergency ward had not been to her regal taste. ''A hospital,'' she said sardonically, ''is no place to be sick.''
As yet she had no full-time maid, so Edmund and I agreed to stay with her for a few days. Uneasy as I was about too much intimacy with Clare - she had asked me to call her that now - I put aside my scruples, for she was extremely frail. Her brush with mortality had loosened her inhibitions, and when I took in her breakfast tray the first morning she launched into intimate details of life with her first husband. He drowned in the swimming pool at a drying-out clinic after Clare divorced him in 1929.
The day that followed was, I found, typical for Clare Boothe Luce. She spent the first half of it in bed, reading and dictating to Dorothy and to Mary Leader, her other secretary. About 10 A.M., the telephone began to ring. William Safire called to ask what she thought of the news that F.D.R. had bugged Bernard Baruch's bedroom. William F. Buckley Jr. wanted to discuss questions of conservative counsel to the Reagan Administration. Both ''Good Morning America'' and ''The Today Show'' invited her to appear in connection with a Harper's cover story by Wilfrid Sheed entitled ''Clare Boothe Luce: From Courtesan to Career Woman.'' She declined, saying, ''I would prefer to have gone from career woman to courtesan.''
Lunch was a scrambled egg and tea. During the afternoon, an old friend who had been in the intelligence community came by for some ''spy chat.'' Espionage was one of Clare's favorite subjects. To her satisfaction, Ronald Reagan had reappointed her to the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, on which she had served under President Nixon.
Later, she read a pile of position papers and magazines on domestic and foreign policy. An article on the economic and social condition of the United States put her in a dark mood. She said to me in all seriousness, ''I don't see much hope for a country where you can't get live-in servants.''
After a dinner of chicken salad and ice cream, we watched the shipboard seduction scene from ''Brideshead Revisited.'' Clare seemed a little bored, and said, ''They only allow the missionary position on PBS.''
When it was time for bed, she settled down with a detective story. I kissed her good night and left, not turning out any lights because I knew she liked to fall asleep with all bulbs burning brightly.
WE TALKED OFTEN ABOUT MY GOING WITH HER TO Hawaii ''next time'' to work on her personal papers. But I had learned she could be fickle, and I wasn't surprised when she went there in March without me. On her return, she set a firm date for us to spend three weeks with her in June.
We arrived in Hawaii on June 8. We were met by a limousine whose dashboard sported a brass plaque: ''This car built especially for Clare Boothe Luce by General Motors Corp.''
Clare lived on Kahala Avenue, in the exclusive shadow of Diamond Head. I could smell frangipani as we swung into the driveway. Trumpet vines tumbled in profusion over a high trellised wall; beyond lay a meticulously groomed garden, with orchids, hibiscus and birds of paradise. A swimming pool glimmered in the late afternoon sun, and mangoes, guavas and coconuts lay scattered on the bright green lawn.
Clare greeted us with a critique of Irving Kristol's ''The Democratic Idea in America.'' There was never any small talk with her. After we had a swim, she went to the bar and mixed herself a large Scotch. In no time, her speech slowed, and the timbre of her voice grew pontifical. She had a low tolerance for liquor, and frankly admitted that it bothered her quarrelsome ulcers, which she nicknamed ''Qaddafi and Begin.'' We had an early supper, and retired to sleep off our jet lag.
Next morning, a purple orchid and The Honolulu Advertiser were laid across our lanai breakfast table. Clare appeared at 10 o'clock and took me to the library. On the desk was a large scrapbook entitled ''My School Days.'' We looked at it together. Every picture provoked such a flood of anecdote that I frantically tried to keep my cassette recorder going, while acting like a good listener and scribbling research leads.
By lunchtime, I was a wreck, but Clare's stories continued to flow in her best ''posterity voice.'' The Congresswoman was spending Christmas, 1944, at the Italian front; in 1945, she was witnessing the liberation of a concentration camp; the Ambassador was solving the Trieste problem. . . . Incredibly, she wanted to go on through the afternoon. Her stories grew more intimate: ''Just as I was getting ready for bed, a man came in and fell over the coal scuttle. It was Bernie Baruch! Well, at least it wasn't Randolph!'' More stories flowed at dinner. Afterward, we watched ''The Lady Vanishes'' on the Betamax. I sat beside her on her bed, and fell asleep in utter exhaustion.
TWENTY DAYS PASSED. I SIFTED through a vast number of diaries, letters and albums. Everything in Clare was there from the start: beauty, charm, humor, coquetry, intellect, manipulativeness and all-consuming ambition.
She worked ahead of me in her room, going through trunks and boxes of papers. I had a fright once when I heard tearing sounds. I rushed in, thinking she was destroying documents. ''Oh no, I'm just taking blank pages out of these diaries, so they'll be lighter for shipping to the library.''
Clare was an insomniac who had terrifying nightmares. She also had extreme mood swings. At parties, she was gracious and amusing; the following day she would complain of the dullness of Honolulu society. When a conservative professor made a dinner toast to ''the American dream,'' she grumbled, ''You can see why I'm so bored in this fur-lined rut.''
She confessed to being ''low in the mind'' when we said our goodbyes on July 3. ''Seeing my life paraded before me these last few weeks has been traumatic.'' She hugged me close, and had tears in her eyes. I returned to the real world with more questions than answers about Clare Boothe Luce. Those nightmares and black moods hinted at suppressed truths. It was time to dig deeper.
The circ*mstances of her early years still confused me. I tracked down her New York birth certificate, and found that she was born not on April 10, 1903, but on March 10 - and not on Riverside Drive, but in the less genteel environs of West 125th Street. I told her about the dates, and she stared at me. ''Mother always said I was born at Easter.'' ''Anyway,'' she went on quickly, ''people born under the Aries sign are much more lighthearted and gay than those born under Pisces.'' She knew very well when she was born. For the first time in our relationship I felt uneasy. The honeymoon was over; we were entering a period of adjustment.
Then I discovered that her father was not a theater violinist when he met her mother, but a patent-medicine salesman, and that her mother had not been a chorus girl, but a ''typewriter'' living in a Lower West Side tenement. Her grandfather was not a Bavarian Catholic, but a Lutheran. I shared these findings with her, and she said ominously, ''Dorothy and I agree that you are one hell of a detective.''
OVER THE NEXT FIVE YEARS, I TRAVELED far in search of my elusive subject. I went to Bernard Baruch's South Carolina estate, where his nurse recalled the day when Clementine Churchill refused to sit at the table with Clare because of an alleged affair she had had ''with one of our best generals.'' I visited the Greenbriar Hotel in West Virginia and confirmed that Clare's scheming mother had taken her there in 1919, hoping the dazzling 16-year-old would ensnare the Prince of Wales. I went to Herefordshire to meet Clare's oldest living beau, still carrying her picture in his wallet. In France, I sought out the Riviera hotel where she won a beauty contest at 19. In Scotland, I uncovered a romance with a Russian soldier who had been the leader of the first Duma. In Newport, R.I., I toured the house where she had spent her first married summer. In Palo Alto, Calif., I found the spot where Clare's only child, Ann, was killed in a 1944 car crash.
In between, I worked through mounds of political correspondence and diplomatic papers. I interviewed scores of people, including Edward Teller, Fleur Cowles, William F. Buckley Jr., Irene Selznick and Laura Z. Hobson, not to mention members of the Luce family, Clare's Congressional aides, her deputy chief in Rome, her interior designer, her confessor, her doctor and a decaying Countess in Murray Hill. What I concluded was that very few people ever knew Clare Boothe Luce. Although she had the gift of instant intimacy, she would just as quickly distance herself at the first hint of real closeness. Once I came to terms with this personality flaw, I was able to make allowances for it, and try not to extract from Clare more than she was able to give. With understanding came tolerance, and my affection for her returned.
IN NOVEMBER 1986, THE OLD VIC Company of London put on a 50th-anniversary revival of ''The Women,'' starring Susannah York and Maria Aitken. Clare asked me to go to the final rehearsals and opening night.
We stayed at Claridge's. (One of the trials of writing about the very rich is that frequently you have to match their expenditures.) Time Inc. gave a dinner in Clare's honor at Le Gavroche. I saw her working very hard on her partner, former Prime Minister Edward Heath. She told me afterward: ''I was having no success at charming him, so I slayed him with pure intellectual superiority.''
The next night we ate alone at the hotel. Clare was contemplative, and asked me who I felt closest to - ''not counting (Continued on Page 33) Edmund.'' Before I could reply she said, ''I feel closest to you because you know everything.''
She was now 83, and seemed to be her old energetic self, doing morning exercises and running along the corridor like a gazelle. During the week we were there, she kept up a gruelling schedule of rehearsals and interviews. But I noticed that, uncharacteristically, she mislaid keys and itineraries, mistook the time and date and lost her wallet. One morning I had to knock at her door for several minutes before she answered. She looked dazed. ''I think it would be better if you came back in half an hour. I might have taken too many sleeping pills.''
Later I helped her zip up her dress. ''The trouble with you,'' I said, ''is that your mind and heart want to do more than your body will allow.'' She nodded. ''That's why I'm always so depressed.''
That night I wrote in my diary: Clare's mind is going.
CLARE SPENT MUCH of that winter traveling between Washington and New York to visit a dying stepdaughter-in-law. We continued to see each other, and chatted often on the phone. She complained about her appearance. ''I don't go to beauty parlors anymore. My hair's so thin and my nails won't grow.''
I noticed through the spring that her behavior was becoming more and more erratic. In May, I went to Europe on a research trip. When I came back, Clare called to tell me she had a brain tumor. Her voice was tremulous, but she sounded confident that radiation would take care of the problem. ''This way, perhaps, I'll make it to December.''
On July 12, Edmund and I took her out to dinner. She was shaky on her legs, but ate well - smoked fish salad, broiled trout, strawberries and blueberries, and coffee. Her doctor had forofferden alcohol, but she called for a kir, poured some over the fruit, and impishly dunked petit* fours in the rest. She talked as much as ever, if less coherently, complaining of how she had loaned Orson Welles $5,000 to produce ''Macbeth,'' and how he had never paid her back. She said the duch*ess of Windsor used to rap the Duke's knuckles when he ate with his fingers. ''The jury is still out on me,'' was all she would report on her treatment.
On July 27, Clare gave what was, in effect, her own farewell party. She invited 22 people, mostly writers and journalists. For almost an hour we stood in the library having drinks. Our hostess was nowhere to be seen. At last, she made a painfully slow entrance, supported by two attendants. We were shocked at her skeletal appearance, made more macabre by a silver wig. She is dying on her feet, I thought. This is no party, but a wake.
Clare held court on a low couch, munching popcorn and drinking Perrier. Dinner was served almost at once. It consisted of borscht and sour cream, pasta with shrimp, and goulash. Dessert (her final mischievous joke?) was a Dove bar, complete with stick, laid across fine china.
She never left the apartment again. At 9 o'clock on the morning of Oct. 9, 1987, her secretary called to tell me she had died. I felt a thud in my chest, such as you have as a child when you are very frightened. I rushed over to the apartment, but the body had already been removed.
Just before the end, she had told a nurse that ''many important people'' would attend her funeral. Well, there were a few at the memorial service at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York. Richard Nixon came, as did chief delegate to the United Nations Vernon Walters, Central Intelligence Director William Webster and former Secretary of the Interior William Clark. Cardinal O'Connor, Bill Buckley, and Clare's stepson Hank gave eulogies.
She was buried privately at Mepkin Abbey, a Trappist monastery in South Carolina. In earlier times, it had been her plantation. There she had spent some of the happiest days of her marriage to Henry Luce, and there she had written several plays. The Abbott spoke of a ''clear light extinguished.'' As she was lowered in a gleaming pine coffin into the ground next to her husband, I heard a monk say: ''There's no distance between them now: it's vault to vault.'' Men shoveled red soil onto the casket.
So there, beneath a great live oak, on the banks of the tranquil Cooper River, lies Clare Boothe Luce. God rest her tormented soul.Weegee was the great photographer of New York in the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s, whose book Naked City helped to create the mythology of the city. “I have no inhibitions and neither does my camera…” – Weegee
Arthur Fellig acquired the name Weegee early in his career, a reference to the ouija board and his uncanny ability to arrive quickly at crime scenes – sometimes, even before the police (from 1937, he was the only civilian allowed to install a police radio in his car). Between 1940 and 1944 he worked on a retainer to PM newspaper, free to choose his own stories. He published Naked City in 1945, following it up the next year with Weegee’s People. He was fascinated by celebrity and promoted his own as Weegee the Famous. Naked Hollywood was published in 1953. He died in 1968. In 1981 Side Gallery organised the first UK tour of Weegee’s work, opening up a relationship between Amber and his widow Wilma Wilcox that lasted through until her death in the early 1990s. In 2008, Amber’s Pat McCarthy interviewed Sid Kaplan on Weegee – the celebrated New York photographer and printer had known him and had printed most of the Weegee photographs held in the AmberSide Collection. A transcript of that interview is available here.
PM was a liberal-leaning daily newspaper published in New York City by Ralph Ingersoll from June 1940 to June 1948 and financed by Chicago millionaire Marshall Field III.
The paper borrowed many elements from weekly news magazines, such as many large photos and at first was bound with staples. In an attempt to be free of pressure from business interests, it did not accept advertising. These departures from the norms of newspaper publishing created excitement in the industry. Some 11,000 people applied for the 150 jobs available when the publication first hired staff.Contents1 Publication history2 Politics3 Staff3.1 Editors3.2 Writers3.3 Contributors3.4 Photographers3.5 Contributing photographers3.6 Sunday magazine section4 See also5 Bibliography6 References7 External linksPublication history
In 1945, Coulton Waugh employed a novel art approach on his PM strip Hank. According to Waugh, Hank was "a deliberate attempt to work in the field of social usefulness."[1]The origin of the name is unknown, although Ingersoll recalled that it probably referred to the fact that the paper appeared Post Meridian (in the afternoon);[2] The New Yorker reported that the name had been suggested by Lillian Hellman.[3] (There is no historical evidence for the suggestion that the name was an abbreviation of Picture Magazine.)
The first year of the paper was a general success, though it was already in some financial trouble: its circulation of 100,000–200,000 was insufficient. Circulation averaged 165,000, but the paper never managed to sell the 225,000 copies a day it needed to break even. Marshall Field III had become the paper's funder; quite unusually, he was a "silent partner" in this continually money-losing undertaking.[4]
According to a June 21, 1966, memo from Ingersoll:
Before the end of the War it was actually operating in the black.... In my opinion at the time and these 20 years later−PM's death is most soundly attributable to a sustained and well-organized plot originating amongst Field's friends and associates in the business world who were alienated by Field's loyalty to PM and to me. The hostility was there from the beginning; the plot came together under the auspices of a man named Harry Cushing who was a retainer of Field's. The principal and successful offensive of this group was that it had as its objective Field's distraction from PM by persuading him to start the Sun in Chicago. Once they committed Field to the Sun venture, the end was inevitable. I can diagram it for you but merely put it on record here.[5]
PM was sold in 1948 and published its final issue on June 22. The next day it was replaced by the New York Star, which folded on January 28, 1949.
1942 World War II political cartoon by Dr. SeussThere were accusations that the paper was Communist-dominated,[6] but others have said that the paper frequently opposed the policies of the Communist Party (CP) and engaged into editorial battles with the CP's paper, the Daily Worker.[7]
StaffEditorsLeo Huberman was labor editor.
WritersI. F. Stone was the paper's Washington correspondent. He published an award-winning series on European Jewish refugees attempting to run the British blockade to reach Palestine (later collected and published as Underground to Palestine). Staffers included theater critic Louis Kronenberger and film critic Cecelia Ager.
The sports writers were Tom Meany, Tom O’Reilly and George F. T. Ryall, who covered horse racing. Sophie Smoliar was the New York City reporter working frequently with photographer Arthur Felig (Weegie) (submitted by her son and a collection of her original articles). Elizabeth Hawes wrote about fashion, and her sister Charlotte Adams covered food.[4][8]
ContributorsTheodor Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, published more than 400 cartoons on PM's editorial page.[8][9] Crockett Johnson's comic strip Barnaby debuted in the paper in 1942. Other artists who worked at PM included Ad Reinhardt, one of the founders of Abstract Expressionism, and Joseph LeBoit, who both contributed margin cartoons and drawings. Noted artist Jack Coggins contributed wartime artwork for at least 9 issues between 1940 and 1942.[10]
Coulton Waugh created his short-lived strip, Hank, which began April 30, 1945 in PM. The story of a disabled G.I. returning to civilian life, Hank had a unique look due to Waugh's decorative art style, combined with dialogue lettered in upper and lower case rather than the accepted convention of all uppercase lettering in balloons and captions. Some dialogue was displayed with white lettering reversed into black balloons. Hank sought to raise questions about the reasons for war, and how it might be prevented by the next generation. Waugh discontinued it at the very end of 1945 because of eyestrain.[1] Cartoonist Jack Sparling created the short-lived comic strip Claire Voyant, which ran from 1943 to 1948 in PM, and which was subsequently syndicated by the Chicago Sun-Times.
Other writers who contributed articles included Erskine Caldwell, Myril Axlerod, McGeorge Bundy, Saul K. Padover, James Wechsler, eventually the paper's editorial writer, Penn Kimball, later a professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, Myril Axelrod Bennett, Heywood Hale Broun, James Thurber, Dorothy Parker, Ernest Hemingway, Eugene Lyons, Earl Conrad, Benjamin Stolberg, Louis Adamic, Malcolm Cowley,[4] Tip O'Neill (later Speaker of the House;[8] and Ben Hecht.[4]
PhotographersWeegee, Margaret Bourke-White, Ray Platnick and Arthur Leipzig were the primary photographers.
Julius "Skippy" Adelman (born around 1924)[11][12]John Albert (né John Joseph Albert; 1910–1972)Bernie Aumuller (né Bernard A. Aumuller; 1920–1971), his father, Bernard George Aumuller (1895–1975) was also a photographerGene BadgerMargaret Bourke-White (1904–1971)Hugh Broderick (né Hugh J. Broderick; 1910–1971)William "Bill" Brunk (Los Angeles Examiner)John S. DeBiase (1901–1954)[13]John DerryStephen DerryDavid Eisendrath, Jr. (né David Benjamin Eisendrath; 1914–1988)Morris Engel (1918–2005)Alan FischerMorris Gordon (1918–2005)Irving Haberman (né Isaac Haberman; 1916–2003)Martin Harris (1908–1971)Dan IsraelCharles Fenno Jacobs (1904–1974)Dan Keleher, (né Daniel J. Keleher, Jr., 1908–1952)Peter KillianArthur Leipzig (né Isidore Leipzig; 1918–2014)[14]Helen Levitt (1913–2009)Leo Lieb (né Morris Leo Lieb; 1909–2001)Ray Platnick (né Raphael Platnick; 1917–1986)Weegee, (pseudonym of Arthur (Usher) Fellig (1899–1968)[15]Mary "Morrie" Morris (né Mary Louise Morris; 1914–2009), one of the first female AP photographers and pioneer of white umbrellas used give a softer look to flash lighting and portraiture. She, in June 1937, married filmmaker Ralph Steiner. In 1963, she married classical record producer for Mercury, Harold Lawrence (né Harold Levine; 1923–2011), who, at the time, was the General Manager of the London Symphony OrchestraContributing photographersRobert Capa (1913–1954)Walker Evans (1903–1975)Edward Weston (1886–1958)Edward Steichen (1879–1973)Ralph Steiner (1899–1986)Sunday magazine sectionPicture News was the Sunday magazine section of PM.
Editor: William Thomas McCleery (1912–2000)Managing editor: Herbert Yahraes (né Herbert Conrad Yahraes, Jr.; 1906–1985)Associate editors: Lorimer Dexter Heywood (1899–1977), Kenneth Stewart, David Rodman Lindsay (1916–1985), Peggy Wright, Gertrude StammStaff: Raymond Abrashkin (1911–1960), Skippy Adelman, Holly Beye (née Helen Beye; 1922–2011), W. Russell Bowie, Jr. (1920–2002) (son of Walter Russell Bowie), Mary Morris (maiden; 1914–2009), Charles Norman (1904–1996), Roger Samuel Pippett (1895–1962), Robert Rice (1916–1998), Selma Robinson (maiden; 1899–1977) (mother-in-law of Hymen B. Mintz), Dale Rooks (né Rhine Dale Rooks; 1917–1954) (photographer), Lillian E. Ross (née Lillian Rosovsky; 1918–2017)Art director: H. Russell Countryman
The Farm Security Administration (FSA) was a New Deal agency created in 1937 to combat rural poverty during the Great Depression in the United States. It succeeded the Resettlement Administration (1935–1937).[1]
The FSA is famous for its small but highly influential photography program, 1935–44, that portrayed the challenges of rural poverty. The photographs in the FSA/Office of War Information Photograph Collection form an extensive pictorial record of American life between 1935 and 1944. This U.S. government photography project was headed for most of its existence by Roy Stryker, who guided the effort in a succession of government agencies: the Resettlement Administration (1935–1937), the Farm Security Administration (1937–1942), and the Office of War Information (1942–1944). The collection also includes photographs acquired from other governmental and nongovernmental sources, including the News Bureau at the Offices of Emergency Management (OEM), various branches of the military, and industrial corporations.[2]
In total, the black-and-white portion of the collection consists of about 175,000 black-and-white film negatives, encompassing both negatives that were printed for FSA-OWI use and those that were not printed at the time. Color transparencies also made by the FSA/OWI are available in a separate section of the catalog: FSA/OWI Color Photographs.[2]
The FSA stressed "rural rehabilitation" efforts to improve the lifestyle of very poor landowning farmers, and a program to purchase submarginal land owned by poor farmers and resettle them in group farms on land more suitable for efficient farming.
Reactionary critics, including the Farm Bureau, strongly opposed the FSA as an alleged experiment in collectivizing agriculture—that is, in bringing farmers together to work on large government-owned farms using modern techniques under the supervision of experts. After the Conservative coalition took control of Congress, it transformed the FSA into a program to help poor farmers buy land, and that program continues to operate in the 21st century as the Farmers Home Administration.
Walker Evans portrait of Allie Mae Burroughs (1936)
Arthur Rothstein photograph "Dust Bowl Cimarron County, Oklahoma" of a farmer and two sons during a dust storm in Cimarron County, Oklahoma (1936)
Dorothea Lange photograph of an Arkansas squatter of three years near Bakersfield, California (1935)The projects that were combined in 1935 to form the Resettlement Administration (RA) started in 1933 as an assortment of programs tried out by the Federal Emergency Relief Administration. The RA was headed by Rexford Tugwell, an economic advisor to President Franklin D. Roosevelt.[3] However, Tugwell's goal moving 650,000 people into 100,000,000 acres (400,000 km2) of exhausted, worn-out land was unpopular among the majority in Congress.[3] This goal seemed socialistic to some and threatened to deprive powerful farm proprietors of their tenant workforce.[3] The RA was thus left with only enough resources to relocate a few thousand people from 9 million acres (36,000 km2) and build several greenbelt cities,[3] which planners admired as models for a cooperative future that never arrived.[3]
The main focus of the RA was to now build relief camps in California for migratory workers, especially refugees from the drought-stricken Dust Bowl of the Southwest.[3] This move was resisted by a large share of Californians, who did not want destitute migrants to settle in their midst.[3] The RA managed to construct 95 camps that gave migrants unaccustomed clean quarters with running water and other amenities,[3] but the 75,000 people who had the benefit of these camps were a small share of those in need and could only stay temporarily.[3] After facing enormous criticism for his poor management of the RA, Tugwell resigned in 1936.[3] On January 1, 1937,[4] with hopes of making the RA more effective, the RA was transferred to the Department of Agriculture through executive order 7530.[4]
On July 22, 1937,[5] Congress passed the Bankhead-Jones Farm Tenant Act.[5] This law authorized a modest credit program to assist tenant farmers to purchase land,[5] and it was the culmination of a long effort to secure legislation for their benefit.[5] Following the passage of the act, Congress passed the Farm Security Act into law. The Farm Security Act officially transformed the RA into the Farm Security Administration (FSA).[3] The FSA expanded through funds given by the Bankhead-Jones Farm Tenant Act.[3]
Relief workOne of the activities performed by the RA and FSA was the buying out of small farms that were not economically viable, and the setting up of 34 subsistence homestead communities, in which groups of farmers lived together under the guidance of government experts and worked a common area. They were not allowed to purchase their farms for fear that they would fall back into inefficient practices not guided by RA and FSA experts.[6]
The Dust Bowl in the Great Plains displaced thousands of tenant farmers, sharecroppers, and laborers, many of whom (known as "Okies" or "Arkies") moved on to California. The FSA operated camps for them, such as Weedpatch Camp as depicted in The Grapes of Wrath.
The RA and the FSA gave educational aid to 455,000 farm families during the period 1936-1943. In June, 1936, Roosevelt wrote: "You are right about the farmers who suffer through their own fault... I wish you would have a talk with Tugwell about what he is doing to educate this type of farmer to become self-sustaining. During the past year, his organization has made 104,000 farm families practically self-sustaining by supervision and education along practical lines. That is a pretty good record!"[7]
The FSA's primary mission was not to aid farm production or prices. Roosevelt's agricultural policy had, in fact, been to try to decrease agricultural production to increase prices. When production was discouraged, though, the tenant farmers and small holders suffered most by not being able to ship enough to market to pay rents. Many renters wanted money to buy farms, but the Agriculture Department realized there already were too many farmers, and did not have a program for farm purchases. Instead, they used education to help the poor stretch their money further. Congress, however, demanded that the FSA help tenant farmers purchase farms, and purchase loans of $191 million were made, which were eventually repaid. A much larger program was $778 million in loans (at effective rates of about 1% interest) to 950,000 tenant farmers. The goal was to make the farmer more efficient so the loans were used for new machinery, trucks, or animals, or to repay old debts. At all times, the borrower was closely advised by a government agent. Family needs were on the agenda, as the FSA set up a health insurance program and taught farm wives how to cook and raise children. Upward of a third of the amount was never repaid, as the tenants moved to much better opportunities in the cities.[8]
The FSA was also one of the authorities administering relief efforts in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico during the Great Depression. Between 1938 and 1945, under the Puerto Rico Reconstruction Administration, it oversaw the purchase of 590 farms with the intent of distributing land to working and middle-class Puerto Ricans.[9]
ModernizationThe FSA resettlement communities appear in the literature as efforts to ameliorate the wretched condition of southern sharecroppers and tenants, but those evicted to make way for the new settlers are virtually invisible in the historic record. The resettlement projects were part of larger efforts to modernize rural America. The removal of former tenants and their replacement by FSA clients in the lower Mississippi alluvial plain—the Delta—reveals core elements of New Deal modernizing policies. The key concepts that guided the FSA's tenant removals were: the definition of rural poverty as rooted in the problem of tenancy; the belief that economic success entailed particular cultural practices and social forms; and the commitment by those with political power to gain local support. These assumptions undergirded acceptance of racial segregation and the criteria used to select new settlers. Alternatives could only become visible through political or legal action—capacities sharecroppers seldom had. In succeeding decades, though, these modernizing assumptions created conditions for Delta African Americans on resettlement projects to challenge white supremacy.[10]
FSA and its contribution to societyThe documentary photography genre describes photographs that would work as a time capsule for evidence in the future or a certain method that a person can use for a frame of reference. Facts presented in a photograph can speak for themselves after the viewer gets time to analyze it. The motto of the FSA was simply, as Beaumont Newhall insists, "not to inform us, but to move us."[citation needed] Those photographers wanted the government to move and give a hand to the people, as they were completely neglected and overlooked, thus they decided to start taking photographs in a style that we today call "documentary photography." The FSA photography has been influential due to its realist point of view, and because it works as a frame of reference and an educational tool from which later generations could learn. Society has benefited and will benefit from it for more years to come, as this photography can unveil the ambiguous and question the conditions that are taking place.[11]
Photography programThe RA and FSA are well known for the influence of their photography program, 1935–1944. Photographers and writers were hired to report and document the plight of poor farmers. The Information Division (ID) of the FSA was responsible for providing educational materials and press information to the public. Under Roy Stryker, the ID of the FSA adopted a goal of "introducing America to Americans." Many of the most famous Depression-era photographers were fostered by the FSA project. Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, and Gordon Parks were three of the most famous FSA alumni.[12] The FSA was also cited in Gordon Parks' autobiographical novel, A Choice of Weapons.
The FSA's photography was one of the first large-scale visual documentations of the lives of African-Americans.[13] These images were widely disseminated through the Twelve Million Black Voices collection, published in October 1941, which combined FSA photographs selected by Edwin Rosskam and text by author and poet Richard Wright.
PhotographersFifteen photographers (ordered by year of hire) would produce the bulk of work on this project. Their diverse, visual documentation elevated government's mission from the "relocation" tactics of a Resettlement Administration to strategic solutions which would depend on America recognizing rural and already poor Americans, facing death by depression and dust. FSA photographers: Arthur Rothstein (1935), Theodor Jung (1935), Ben Shahn (1935), Walker Evans (1935), Dorothea Lange (1935), Carl Mydans (1935), Russell Lee (1936), Marion Post Wolcott (1936), John Vachon (1936, photo assignments began in 1938), Jack Delano (1940), John Collier (1941), Marjory Collins (1941), Louise Rosskam (1941), Gordon Parks (1942) and Esther Bubley (1942).
With America's entry into World War II, FSA would focus on a different kind of relocation as orders were issued for internment of Japanese Americans. FSA photographers would be transferred to the Office of War Information during the last years of the war and completely disbanded at the war's end. Photographers like Howard R. Hollem, Alfred T. Palmer, Arthur Siegel and OWI's Chief of Photographers John Rous were working in OWI before FSA's reorganization there. As a result of both teams coming under one unit name, these other individuals are sometimes associated with RA-FSA's pre-war images of American life. Though collectively credited with thousands of Library of Congress images, military ordered, positive-spin assignments like these four received starting in 1942, should be separately considered from pre-war, depression triggered imagery. FSA photographers were able to take time to study local circ*mstances and discuss editorial approaches with each other before capturing that first image. Each one talented in her or his own right, equal credit belongs to Roy Stryker who recognized, hired and empowered that talent.
John Collier Jr.John Collier Jr.
Jack DelanoJack Delano
Walker EvansWalker Evans
Dorothea LangeDorothea Lange
Russell LeeRussell Lee
Carl MydansCarl Mydans
Gordon ParksGordon Parks
Arthur RothsteinArthur Rothstein
John VachonJohn Vachon
Marion Post WolcottMarion Post Wolcott
These 15 photographers, some shown above, all played a significant role, not only in producing images for this project, but also in molding the resulting images in the final project through conversations held between the group members. The photographers produced images that breathed a humanistic social visual catalyst of the sort found in novels, theatrical productions, and music of the time. Their images are now regarded as a "national treasure" in the United States, which is why this project is regarded as a work of art.[14]Photograph of Chicago's rail yards by Jack Delano, circa 1943Together with John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath (not a government project) and documentary prose (for example Walker Evans and James Agee's Let Us Now Praise Famous Men), the FSA photography project is most responsible for creating the image of the Depression in the United States. Many of the images appeared in popular magazines. The photographers were under instruction from Washington, DC, as to what overall impression the New Deal wanted to portray. Stryker's agenda focused on his faith in social engineering, the poor conditions among tenant cotton farmers, and the very poor conditions among migrant farm workers; above all, he was committed to social reform through New Deal intervention in people's lives. Stryker demanded photographs that "related people to the land and vice versa" because these photographs reinforced the RA's position that poverty could be controlled by "changing land practices." Though Stryker did not dictate to his photographers how they should compose the shots, he did send them lists of desirable themes, for example, "church", "court day", and "barns". Stryker sought photographs of migratory workers that would tell a story about how they lived day-to-day. He asked Dorothea Lange to emphasize cooking, sleeping, praying, and socializing.[15] RA-FSA made 250,000 images of rural poverty. Fewer than half of those images survive and are housed in the Prints and Photographs Division of the Library of Congress. The library has placed all 164,000 developed negatives online.[16] From these, some 77,000 different finished photographic prints were originally made for the press, plus 644 color images, from 1600 negatives.
Documentary filmsThe RA also funded two documentary films by Pare Lorentz: The Plow That Broke the Plains, about the creation of the Dust Bowl, and The River, about the importance of the Mississippi River. The films were deemed "culturally significant" by the United States Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the National Film Registry.
World War II activitiesDuring World War II, the FSA was assigned to work under the purview of the Wartime Civil Control Administration, a subagency of the War Relocation Authority. These agencies were responsible for relocating Japanese Americans from their homes on the West Coast to Internment camps. The FSA controlled the agricultural part of the evacuation. Starting in March 1942 they were responsible for transferring the farms owned and operated by Japanese Americans to alternate operators. They were given the dual mandate of ensuring fair compensation for Japanese Americans, and for maintaining correct use of the agricultural land. During this period, Lawrence Hewes Jr was the regional director and in charge of these activities.[17]
Reformers ousted; Farmers Home AdministrationAfter the war started and millions of factory jobs in the cities were unfilled, no need for FSA remained.[citation needed] In late 1942, Roosevelt moved the housing programs to the National Housing Agency, and in 1943, Congress greatly reduced FSA's activities. The photographic unit was subsumed by the Office of War Information for one year, then disbanded. Finally in 1946, all the social reformers had left and FSA was replaced by a new agency, the Farmers Home Administration, which had the goal of helping finance farm purchases by tenants—and especially by war veterans—with no personal oversight by experts. It became part of Lyndon Johnson's war on poverty in the 1960s, with a greatly expanded budget to facilitate loans to low-income rural families and cooperatives, injecting $4.2 billion into rural America.[18]
The Great DepressionThe Great Depression began in August 1929, when the United States economy first went into an economic recession. Although the country spent two months with declining GDP, the effects of a declining economy were not felt until the Wall Street Crash in October 1929, and a major worldwide economic downturn ensued.
Although its causes are still uncertain and controversial, the net effect was a sudden and general loss of confidence in the economic future and a reduction in living standards for most ordinary Americans. The market crash highlighted a decade of high unemployment, poverty, low profits for industrial firms, deflation, plunging farm incomes, and lost opportunities for economic growth.[19]New York, often called New York City[a] or NYC, is the most populous city in the United States. With a 2020 population of 8,804,190 distributed over 300.46 square miles (778.2 km2), the city is the most densely populated major city in the United States. NYC is more than twice as populous as Los Angeles, the nation's second-largest city. New York City is at the southern tip of New York State and is situated on one of the world's largest natural harbors. The city comprises five boroughs, each of which is coextensive with a respective county. The five boroughs, which were created in 1898 when local governments were consolidated into a single municipality, are: Brooklyn (Kings County), Queens (Queens County), Manhattan (New York County), the Bronx (Bronx County), and Staten Island (Richmond County).[11] New York City is a global city and a cultural, financial, high-tech,[12] entertainment, glamour,[13] and media center with a significant influence on commerce, health care and scientific output in life sciences,[14][15] research, technology, education, politics, tourism, dining, art, fashion, and sports. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplomacy,[16][17] and it is sometimes described as the world's most important city[18] and the capital of the world.[19][20]
The city is the geographical and demographic center of both the Northeast megalopolis and the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the U.S. by both population and urban area. With over 20.1 million people in its metropolitan statistical area and 23.5 million in its combined statistical area as of 2020, New York City is one of the world's most populous megacities.[21] The city and its metropolitan area are the premier gateway for legal immigration to the United States. As many as 800 languages are spoken in New York,[22] making it the most linguistically diverse city in the world. New York City enforces a right-to-shelter law guaranteeing shelter to anyone who needs shelter, regardless of their immigration status;[23] and the city is home to more than 3.2 million residents born outside the U.S., the largest foreign-born population of any city in the world as of 2016.[24] It is the most visited U.S. city by international visitors.[25] Providing continuous 24/7 service and contributing to the nickname The City That Never Sleeps, the New York City Subway is the largest single-operator rapid transit system in the world with 472 passenger rail stations, and Penn Station in Midtown Manhattan is the busiest transportation hub in the Western Hemisphere.[26]
New York City traces its origins to Fort Amsterdam and a trading post founded on the southern tip of Manhattan Island by Dutch colonists in approximately 1624. The settlement was named New Amsterdam (Dutch: Nieuw Amsterdam) in 1626 and was chartered as a city in 1653. The city came under British control in 1664 and was renamed New York after King Charles II granted the lands to his brother, the Duke of York.[27] The city was temporarily regained by the Dutch in July 1673 and was renamed New Orange; the city has been named New York since November 1674. New York City was the capital of the United States from 1785 until 1790,[28] and has been the largest U.S. city since 1790. The Statue of Liberty greeted millions of immigrants as they came to the U.S. via Ellis Island by ship in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and is a symbol of the U.S. and its ideals of liberty and peace.[29]
Anchored by Wall Street in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan, New York City has been called both the world's leading financial and fintech center[30][31] and the most economically powerful city in the world,[32] and is home to the world's two largest stock exchanges by market capitalization of their listed companies, the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq.[33][34] As of 2021, the New York metropolitan area is the second largest metropolitan economy in the world with a gross metropolitan product of almost $2.0 trillion. If the New York metropolitan area were its own country, it would have the tenth-largest economy in the world. New York City is an established safe haven for global investors.[35] As of 2023, New York City is the most expensive city in the world for expatriates to live.[36] New York City is home to the highest number of billionaires,[37][38] individuals of ultra-high net worth (greater than US$30 million),[39] and millionaires of any city in the world.[40] Many districts and monuments in New York City are major landmarks, including three of the world's ten-most visited tourist attractions in 2023.[41] A record 66.6 million tourists visited New York City in 2019. Times Square is the brightly illuminated hub of the Broadway Theater District,[42] one of the world's busiest pedestrian intersections[43] and a major center of the world's entertainment industry.[44] Many of the city's landmarks, skyscrapers, and parks are known around the world, and the city's fast pace led to the phrase New York minute. The Empire State Building is a global standard of reference to describe the height and length of other structures.[45] New York's residential and commercial real estate markets are the most expensive in the world.[46]
The city features over 120 colleges and universities, including some of the world's top universities.[47] Its public urban university system, the City University of New York, is the largest in the nation.[48] In the 21st century, New York City has emerged as a global node of creativity, entrepreneurship,[49] and as a symbol of freedom and cultural diversity.[50] The New York Times has won the most Pulitzer Prizes for journalism and remains the U.S. media's newspaper of record. The Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village, part of the Stonewall National Monument, is considered the historic epicenter of LGBTQ+ culture in the city[51] and the birthplace of the modern gay rights movement worldwide.[52][53] New York City is the headquarters of the global art market, with numerous art galleries and sale houses collectively hosting half of the world's art sales; and the Metropolitan Museum of Art is both the largest and one of the world's most-visited art museums and hosts the globally focused Met Gala fashion event annually.[54][55]
EtymologySee also: Nicknames of New York CityIn 1664, New York was named in honor of the Duke of York (later King James II of England).[56] James's elder brother, King Charles II, appointed the Duke as proprietor of the former territory of New Netherland, including the city of New Amsterdam, when England seized it from Dutch control.[57]
HistoryMain article: History of New York CityFor a chronological guide, see Timeline of New York City.Further information: History of Manhattan, Timeline of Brooklyn, Timeline of Queens, Timeline of the Bronx, and Timeline of Staten IslandEarly historyMain article: History of New York City (prehistory–1664)
Lenape sites in Lower ManhattanIn the pre-Columbian era, the area of present-day New York City was inhabited by Algonquians, including the Lenape. Their homeland, known as Lenapehoking, included the present-day areas of Staten Island, Manhattan, the Bronx, the western portion of Long Island (including Brooklyn and Queens), and the Lower Hudson Valley.[58]
The first documented visit into New York Harbor by a European was in 1524 by Italian Giovanni da Verrazzano, an explorer from Florence in the service of the French crown.[59] He claimed the area for France and named it Nouvelle Angoulême (New Angoulême).[60] A Spanish expedition, led by the Portuguese captain Estêvão Gomes sailing for Emperor Charles V, arrived in New York Harbor in January 1525 and charted the mouth of the Hudson River, which he named Río de San Antonio ('Saint Anthony's River').[61]
In 1609, the English explorer Henry Hudson rediscovered New York Harbor while searching for the Northwest Passage to the Orient for the Dutch East India Company.[62] He proceeded to sail up what the Dutch would name the North River (now the Hudson River), named first by Hudson as the Mauritius after Maurice, Prince of Orange. Hudson's first mate described the harbor as "a very good Harbour for all windes" and the river as "a mile broad" and "full of fish".[63] Hudson claimed the region for the Dutch East India Company. In 1614, the area between Cape Cod and Delaware Bay was claimed by the Netherlands and called Nieuw-Nederland ('New Netherland').
The first non–Native American inhabitant of what would eventually become New York City was Juan Rodriguez, a merchant from Santo Domingo who arrived in Manhattan during the winter of 1613–14, trapping for pelts and trading with the local population as a representative of the Dutch. Broadway, from 159th Street to 218th Street in Upper Manhattan, is named Juan Rodriguez Way in his honor.[64][65][importance?]
Dutch ruleMain articles: New Amsterdam, Fort Amsterdam, and New Netherland
The Castello Plan, a 1660 map of New Amsterdam (the top right corner is roughly north) in Lower Manhattan
New Amsterdam, centered in what eventually became Lower Manhattan, in 1664, the year England took control and renamed it New YorkA permanent European presence near New York Harbor was established in 1624, making New York the 12th-oldest continuously occupied European-established settlement in the continental United States,[66] with the founding of a Dutch fur trading settlement on Governors Island. In 1625, construction was started on a citadel and Fort Amsterdam, later called Nieuw Amsterdam (New Amsterdam), on present-day Manhattan Island.[67][68]
The colony of New Amsterdam was centered on what would ultimately become Lower Manhattan. Its area extended from the southern tip of Manhattan to modern-day Wall Street, where a 12-foot (3.7 m) wooden stockade was built in 1653 to protect against Native American and British raids.[69] In 1626, the Dutch colonial Director-General Peter Minuit, acting as charged by the Dutch West India Company, purchased the island of Manhattan from the Canarsie, a small Lenape band,[70] for "the value of 60 guilders"[71] (about $900 in 2018).[72] A frequently told but disproved legend claims that Manhattan was purchased for $24 worth of glass beads.[73][74]
Following the purchase, New Amsterdam grew slowly.[27] To attract settlers, the Dutch instituted the patroon system in 1628, whereby wealthy Dutchmen (patroons, or patrons) who brought 50 colonists to New Netherland would be awarded swaths of land, along with local political autonomy and rights to participate in the lucrative fur trade. This program had little success.[75]
Since 1621, the Dutch West India Company had operated as a monopoly in New Netherland, on authority granted by the Dutch States General. In 1639–1640, in an effort to bolster economic growth, the Dutch West India Company relinquished its monopoly over the fur trade, leading to growth in the production and trade of food, timber, Tobacco, and slaves (particularly with the Dutch West Indies).[27][76]
In 1647, Peter Stuyvesant began his tenure as the last Director-General of New Netherland. During his tenure, the population of New Netherland grew from 2,000 to 8,000.[77][78] Stuyvesant has been credited with improving law and order in the colony; however, he earned a reputation as a despotic leader. He instituted regulations on liquor sales, attempted to assert control over the Dutch Reformed Church, and blocked other religious groups (including Quakers, Jews, and Lutherans) from establishing houses of worship.[79] The Dutch West India Company would eventually attempt to ease tensions between Stuyvesant and residents of New Amsterdam.[80]
English ruleMain articles: Province of New York and History of New York City (1665–1783)
The Fall of New Amsterdam by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris, part of the Conquest of New Netherland
Fort George and New York with British Navy ships of the line c. 1731
Slave being burned at the stake after the 1741 slave revolt[81]In 1664, unable to summon any significant resistance, Stuyvesant surrendered New Amsterdam to English troops, led by Colonel Richard Nicolls, without bloodshed.[79][80] The terms of the surrender permitted Dutch residents to remain in the colony and allowed for religious freedom.[82]
In 1667, during negotiations leading to the Treaty of Breda after the Second Anglo-Dutch War, the victorious Dutch decided to keep the nascent plantation colony of what is now Suriname (on the northern South American coast) they had gained from the English; and in return, the English kept New Amsterdam. The fledgling settlement was promptly renamed "New York" after the Duke of York (the future King James II and VII).[83]
After the founding, the duke gave part of the colony to proprietors George Carteret and John Berkeley. Fort Orange, 150 miles (240 km) north on the Hudson River, was renamed Albany after James's Scottish title.[84] The transfer was confirmed in 1667 by the Treaty of Breda, which concluded the Second Anglo-Dutch War.[85][repetition]
On August 24, 1673, during the Third Anglo-Dutch War, Anthony Colve of the Dutch navy seized New York from the English at the behest of Cornelis Evertsen the Youngest and rechristened it "New Orange" after William III, the Prince of Orange.[86] The Dutch would soon return the island to England under the Treaty of Westminster of November 1674.[87][88]
Several intertribal wars among the Native Americans and some epidemics brought on by contact with the Europeans caused sizeable population losses for the Lenape between the years 1660 and 1670.[89] By 1700, the Lenape population had diminished to 200.[90] New York experienced several yellow fever epidemics in the 18th century, losing ten percent of its population in 1702 alone.[91][92]
In the early 18th century, New York grew in importance as a trading port while as a part of the colony of New York.[93] It became a center of slavery, with 42% of households enslaving Africans by 1730.[94]
Most cases were that of domestic slavery; others were hired out to work at labor. Slavery became integrally tied to New York's economy through the labor of slaves throughout the port, and the banking and shipping industries trading with the American South. During construction in Foley Square in the 1990s, the African Burying Ground was discovered; the cemetery included 10,000 to 20,000 of graves of colonial-era Africans, some enslaved and some free.[95]
The 1735 trial and acquittal in Manhattan of John Peter Zenger, who had been accused of seditious libel after criticizing colonial governor William Cosby, helped to establish freedom of the press in North America.[96] In 1754, Columbia University was founded under charter by King George II as King's College in Lower Manhattan.[97]
American RevolutionFurther information: American Revolution
The Battle of Long Island, one of the largest battles of the American Revolutionary War, which took place in Brooklyn on August 27, 1776The Stamp Act Congress met in New York in October 1765, as the Sons of Liberty organization emerged in the city and skirmished over the next ten years with British troops stationed there.[98] The Battle of Long Island, the largest battle of the American Revolutionary War, was fought in August 1776 within the modern-day borough of Brooklyn.[99]
After the battle, in which the Americans were defeated, the British made the city their military and political base of operations in North America. The city was a haven for Loyalist refugees and escaped slaves who joined the British lines for freedom newly promised by the Crown. As many as 10,000 escaped slaves crowded into the city during the British occupation. When the British forces evacuated at the close of the war in 1783, they transported 3,000 freedmen for resettlement in Nova Scotia.[100] They resettled other freedmen in England and the Caribbean.[importance?]
The only attempt at a peaceful solution to the war[citation needed] took place at the Conference House on Staten Island between American delegates, including Benjamin Franklin, and British general Lord Howe on September 11, 1776. Shortly after the British occupation began, the Great Fire of New York occurred, a large conFlagration on the West Side of Lower Manhattan, which destroyed about a quarter of the buildings in the city, including Trinity Church.[101]
Post-revolutionary period and early 19th centuryMain article: History of New York City (1784–1854)
First inauguration of George Washington in 1789In 1785, the assembly of the Congress of the Confederation made New York City the national capital shortly after the war. New York was the last capital of the U.S. under the Articles of Confederation and the first capital under the Constitution of the United States.[102] As the U.S. capital, New York City hosted several events of national scope in 1789—the first President of the United States, George Washington, was inaugurated; the first United States Congress and the Supreme Court of the United States each assembled for the first time; and the United States Bill of Rights was drafted, all at Federal Hall on Wall Street.[102] In 1790, for the first time, New York City, surpassed Philadelphia as the nation's largest city. At the end of that year, the national capital was moved to Philadelphia.[103][104]
Over the nineteenth century, New York City's population grew from 60,000 to 3.43 million.[105] Under New York State's abolition act of 1799, children of slave mothers were to be eventually liberated but to be held in indentured servitude until their mid-to-late twenties.[106][107] Together with slaves freed by their masters after the Revolutionary War and escaped slaves, a significant free-Black population gradually developed in Manhattan. Under such influential United States founders as Alexander Hamilton and John Jay, the New York Manumission Society worked for abolition and established the African Free School to educate Black children.[108] It was not until 1827 that slavery was completely abolished in the state, and free Blacks struggled afterward with discrimination. New York interracial abolitionist activism continued; among its leaders were graduates of the African Free School.[importance?] New York city's population jumped from 123,706 in 1820 to 312,710 by 1840, 16,000 of whom were Black.[109][110]
A painting of a snowy city street with horse-drawn sleds and a 19th-century fire truck under blue skyBroadway, which follows the Native American Wecquaesgeek Trail through Manhattan, in 1840.[111]In the 19th century, the city was transformed by both commercial and residential development relating to its status as a national and international trading center, as well as by European immigration, respectively.[112] The city adopted the Commissioners' Plan of 1811, which expanded the city street grid to encompass almost all of Manhattan. The 1825 completion of the Erie Canal through central New York connected the Atlantic port to the agricultural markets and commodities of the North American interior via the Hudson River and the Great Lakes.[113] Local politics became dominated by Tammany Hall, a political machine supported by Irish and German immigrants.[114]
Several prominent American literary figures lived in New York during the 1830s and 1840s, including William Cullen Bryant, Washington Irving, Herman Melville, Rufus Wilmot Griswold, John Keese, Nathaniel Parker Willis, and Edgar Allan Poe. Public-minded members of the contemporaneous business elite lobbied for the establishment of Central Park, which in 1857 became the first landscaped park in an American city.[citation needed]
The Great Irish Famine brought a large influx of Irish immigrants, of whom more than 200,000 were living in New York by 1860, representing upward of one-quarter of the city's population.[115] There was also extensive immigration from the German provinces, where revolutions had disrupted societies, and Germans comprised another 25% of New York's population by 1860.[116][117]
American Civil WarMain articles: New York City in the American Civil War and History of New York City (1855–1897)
Depiction of lynching during the New York City draft riots in 1863Democratic Party candidates were consistently elected to local office, increasing the city's ties to the South and its dominant party. In 1861, Mayor Fernando Wood called on the aldermen to declare independence from Albany and the United States after the South seceded, but his proposal was not acted on.[108] Anger at new military conscription laws during the American Civil War (1861–1865), which spared wealthier men who could afford to hire a substitute, led to the Draft Riots of 1863, whose most visible participants were ethnic Irish working class.[108]
The draft riots deteriorated into attacks on New York's elite, followed by attacks on Black New Yorkers and their property after fierce competition for a decade between Irish immigrants and Black people for work. Rioters burned the Colored Orphan Asylum to the ground, with more than 200 children escaping harm due to efforts of the New York Police Department, which was mainly made up of Irish immigrants.[116]
At least 120 people were killed.[118] Eleven Black men were lynched over five days, and the riots forced hundreds of Blacks to flee. The Black population in Manhattan fell below 10,000 by 1865. The White working class had established dominance.[116][118] Violence by longshoremen against Black men was especially fierce in the docks area.[116] It was one of the worst incidents of civil unrest in American history.[119]
Early 20th centuryMain articles: History of New York City (1898–1945) and History of New York City (1946–1977)
Manhattan's Little Italy in the Lower East Side, c. 1900In 1898, the City of New York was formed with the consolidation of Brooklyn (until then a separate city), the County of New York (which then included parts of the Bronx), the County of Richmond, and the western portion of the County of Queens.[120] The opening of the subway in 1904, first built as separate private systems, helped bind the new city together.[121] Throughout the first half of the 20th century, the city became a world center for industry, commerce, and communication.[122]
In 1904, the steamship General Slocum caught fire in the East River, killing 1,021 people on board.[123] In 1911, the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, the city's worst industrial disaster, killed 146 garment workers and spurred the growth of the International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union and major improvements in factory safety standards.[124]
New York's non-White population was 36,620 in 1890.[125] New York City was a prime destination in the early twentieth century for African Americans during the Great Migration from the American South, and by 1916, New York City had become home to the largest urban African diaspora in North America.[126] The Harlem Renaissance of literary and cultural life flourished during the era of Prohibition.[127] The larger economic boom generated construction of skyscrapers competing in height and creating an identifiable skyline.
A man working on a steel girder high about a city skyline.A construction worker atop the Empire State Building during its construction in 1930. The Chrysler Building is visible behind him.New York City became the most populous urbanized area in the world in the early 1920s, overtaking London. The metropolitan area surpassed the 10 million mark in the early 1930s, becoming the first megacity in human history.[128] The Great Depression saw the election of reformer Fiorello La Guardia as mayor and the fall of Tammany Hall after eighty years of political dominance.[129]
Returning World War II veterans created a post-war economic boom and the development of large housing tracts in Eastern Queens and Nassau County. New York emerged from the war unscathed as the leading city of the world, with Wall Street leading America's place as the world's dominant economic power. The United Nations headquarters was completed in 1952, solidifying New York's global geopolitical influence, and the rise of abstract expressionism in the city precipitated New York's displacement of Paris as the center of the art world.[130]
A two-story building with brick on the first floor, with two arched doorways, and gray stucco on the second floor off of which hang numerous rainbow Flags.Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village, a designated U.S. National Historic Landmark and National Monument, was the site of the June 1969 Stonewall riots and the cradle of the modern LGBTQ+ rights movement.[131][132][133]The Stonewall riots were a series of spontaneous, violent protests by members of the gay community against a police raid that took place in the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, at the Stonewall Inn in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of Lower Manhattan.[134] They are widely considered to be the single most important event leading to the gay liberation movement[131][135][136][137] and the modern fight for LGBT rights.[138][139] Wayne R. Dynes, author of the Encyclopedia of hom*osexuality, wrote that drag queens were the only "transgender folks around" during the June 1969 Stonewall riots. The transgender community in New York City played a significant role in fighting for LGBT equality during the period of the Stonewall riots and thereafter.[140]
Late 20th century to presentMain articles: History of New York City (1978–present) and September 11 attacksIn the 1970s, job losses due to industrial restructuring caused New York City to suffer from economic problems and rising crime rates.[141] While a resurgence in the financial industry greatly improved the city's economic health in the 1980s, New York's crime rate continued to increase through that decade and into the beginning of the 1990s.[142] By the mid 1990s, crime rates started to drop dramatically due to revised police strategies, improving economic opportunities, gentrification, and new residents, both American transplants and new immigrants from Asia and Latin America. Important new sectors, such as Silicon Alley, emerged in the city's economy.[143] New York City's population reached all-time highs in the 2000, 2010, and 2020 US censuses.The World Trade Center, in Lower Manhattan, during the September 11 attacks in 2001New York City suffered the bulk of the economic damage and largest loss of human life in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, attacks.[144] Two of the four airliners hijacked that day were flown into the twin towers of the World Trade Center, destroying the towers and killing 2,192 civilians, 343 firefighters, and 71 law enforcement officers. The North Tower became, and remains, the tallest building to ever be destroyed.[145]
The area was rebuilt with a new World Trade Center, the National September 11 Memorial and Museum, and other new buildings and infrastructure.[146] The World Trade Center PATH station, which had opened on July 19, 1909, as the Hudson Terminal,[importance?] was destroyed in the attacks. A temporary station was built and opened on November 23, 2003.[importance?] An 800,000-square-foot (74,000 m2) permanent rail station designed by Santiago Calatrava, the World Trade Center Transportation Hub, the city's third-largest hub, was completed in 2016.[147] The new One World Trade Center is the tallest skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere[148] and the seventh-tallest building in the world by pinnacle height, with its spire reaching a symbolic 1,776 feet (541.3 m) in reference to the year of U.S. independence.[149][150][151]
The Occupy Wall Street protests in Zuccotti Park in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan began on September 17, 2011, receiving global attention and popularizing the Occupy movement against social and economic inequality worldwide.[152]Manhattan in the aftermath of the Hurricane Sandy in 2012, the worst to strike the city since 1700.[153]New York City was heavily affected by Hurricane Sandy in late October 2012. Sandy's impacts included the flooding of the New York City Subway system, of many suburban communities, and of all road tunnels entering Manhattan except the Lincoln Tunnel. The New York Stock Exchange closed for two consecutive days. Numerous homes and businesses were destroyed by fire, including over 100 homes in Breezy Point, Queens.[excessive detail?] Large parts of the city and surrounding areas lost electricity for several days. Several thousand people in Midtown Manhattan were evacuated for six days due to a crane collapse at Extell's One57.[excessive detail?] Bellevue Hospital Center and a few other large hospitals were closed and evacuated.[excessive detail?] Flooding at 140 West Street and another exchange disrupted voice and data communication in Lower Manhattan.[excessive detail?] At least 43 people died in New York City as a result of Sandy, and the economic losses in New York City were estimated to be roughly $19 billion. The disaster spawned long-term efforts towards infrastructural projects to counter climate change and rising seas.[154]
In March 2020, the first case of COVID-19 in the city was confirmed in Manhattan.[155] The city rapidly replaced Wuhan, China to become the global epicenter of the pandemic during the early phase, before the infection became widespread across the world and the rest of the nation. As of March 2021, New York City had recorded over 30,000 deaths from COVID-19-related complications.
GeographyMain articles: Geography of New York City and Geography of New York–New Jersey Harbor Estuary
Aerial view of the New York City metropolitan area with Manhattan at its centerNew York City is situated in the northEastern United States, in southEastern New York State, approximately halfway between Washington, D.C. and Boston. The location at the mouth of the Hudson River, which feeds into a naturally sheltered harbor and then into the Atlantic Ocean, has helped the city grow in significance as a trading port. Most of New York City is built on the three islands of Long Island, Manhattan, and Staten Island.
During the Wisconsin glaciation, 75,000 to 11,000 years ago, the New York City area was situated at the edge of a large ice sheet.[156] The erosive forward movement of the ice (and its subsequent retreat) contributed to the separation of what is now Long Island and Staten Island. That action left bedrock at a relatively shallow depth, providing a solid foundation for most of Manhattan's skyscrapers.[157] The Hudson River flows through the Hudson Valley into New York Bay. Between New York City and Troy, New York, the river is an estuary.[158] The Hudson River separates the city from the U.S. state of New Jersey. The East River—a tidal strait—flows from Long Island Sound and separates the Bronx and Manhattan from Long Island. The Harlem River, another tidal strait between the East and Hudson rivers, separates most of Manhattan from the Bronx. The Bronx River, which flows through the Bronx and Westchester County, is the only entirely freshwater river in the city.[159][importance?]
The city's land has been altered substantially by human intervention, with considerable land reclamation along the waterfronts since Dutch colonial times; reclamation is most prominent in Lower Manhattan, with developments such as Battery Park City in the 1970s and 1980s.[160] Some of the natural relief in topography has been evened out, especially in Manhattan.[161]
The city's total area is 468.484 square miles (1,213.37 km2); 302.643 sq mi (783.84 km2) of the city is land and 165.841 sq mi (429.53 km2) of this is water.[162][163] The highest point in the city is Todt Hill on Staten Island, which, at 409.8 feet (124.9 m) above sea level, is the highest point on the Eastern seaboard south of Maine.[164] The summit of the ridge is mostly covered in woodlands as part of the Staten Island Greenbelt.[165]
BoroughsMain articles: Boroughs of New York City and Neighborhoods in New York CityA map showing five boroughs in different colors. 1. Manhattan 2. Brooklyn 3. Queens 4. The Bronx 5. Staten IslandNew York City's five boroughsvteJurisdictionPopulationLand areaDensity of populationGDP †BoroughCountyCensus(2020)squaremilessquarekmpeople/sq. milepeople/sq. kmbillions(2012 US$) 2The BronxBronx1,472,65442.2109.334,92013,482$38.726BrooklynKings2,736,07469.4179.739,43815,227$92.300ManhattanNew York1,694,25122.758.874,78128,872$651.619QueensQueens2,405,464108.7281.522,1258,542$88.578Staten IslandRichmond495,74757.5148.98,6183,327$14.806City of New York8,804,190302.6783.829,09511,234$885.958State of New York20,215,75147,126.4122,056.8429166$1,514.779† GDP = Gross Domestic Product Sources:[166][167][168][169] and see individual borough articles.New York City is sometimes referred to collectively as the Five Boroughs.[170] Each borough is coextensive with a respective county of New York State, making New York City one of the U.S. municipalities in multiple counties. There are hundreds of distinct neighborhoods throughout the boroughs, many with a definable history and character.[citation needed]
If the boroughs were each independent cities, four of the boroughs (Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, and the Bronx) would be among the ten most populous cities in the United States (Staten Island would be ranked 37th as of 2020); these same boroughs are coterminous with the four most densely populated counties in the United States: New York (Manhattan), Kings (Brooklyn), Bronx, and Queens.
Lower and Midtown Manhattan photographed by a SkySat satellite in August 2017
Midtown Manhattan, the world's largest central business districtManhattan (New York County) is the geographically smallest and most densely populated borough. It is home to Central Park and most of the city's skyscrapers, and is sometimes locally known as The City.[171] Manhattan's population density of 72,033 people per square mile (27,812/km2) in 2015 makes it the highest of any county in the United States and higher than the density of any individual American city.[172]
Manhattan is the cultural, administrative, and financial center of New York City and contains the headquarters of many major multinational corporations, the United Nations headquarters, Wall Street, and a number of important universities. The borough of Manhattan is often described as the financial and cultural center of the world.[173][174]
Most of the borough is situated on Manhattan Island, at the mouth of the Hudson River and the East River, and its southern tip, at the confluence of the two rivers on the site of today's Financial District in Lower Manhattan, represents the historical birthplace of New York City itself.[175][176] Several small islands also compose part of the borough of Manhattan, including Randalls and Wards Islands, and Roosevelt Island in the East River, and Governors Island and Liberty Island to the south in New York Harbor. Manhattan Island is loosely divided into the Lower, Midtown, and Uptown regions. Uptown Manhattan is divided by Central Park into the Upper East Side and the Upper West Side, and above the park is Harlem, bordering the Bronx (Bronx County). Harlem was predominantly occupied by Jewish and Italian Americans in the 19th century until the Great Migration. It was the center of the Harlem Renaissance. The borough of Manhattan also includes a small neighborhood on the mainland, called Marble Hill, which is contiguous with the Bronx. New York City's remaining four boroughs are collectively referred to as the Outer Boroughs.
Downtown Brooklyn seen from Lower ManhattanBrooklyn (Kings County), on the western tip of Long Island, is the city's most populous borough. Brooklyn is known for its cultural, social, and ethnic diversity, an independent art scene, distinct neighborhoods, and a distinctive architectural heritage. Downtown Brooklyn is the largest central core neighborhood in the Outer Boroughs. The borough has a long beachfront shoreline including Coney Island, established in the 1870s as one of the earliest amusem*nt grounds in the U.S.[177] Marine Park and Prospect Park are the two largest parks in Brooklyn.[178] Since 2010, Brooklyn has evolved into a thriving hub of entrepreneurship and high technology startup firms,[179][180] and of postmodern art and design.[180][181]
The growing skyline of Long Island City in Queens,[182] facing the East RiverQueens (Queens County), on Long Island north and east of Brooklyn, is geographically the largest borough, the most ethnically diverse county in the United States,[183] and the most ethnically diverse urban area in the world.[184][185] Historically a collection of small towns and villages founded by the Dutch, the borough has since developed both commercial and residential prominence. Downtown Flushing has become one of the busiest central core neighborhoods in the outer boroughs.[citation needed] Queens is the site of the Citi Field baseball stadium, home of the New York Mets, and hosts the annual U.S. Open tennis tournament at Flushing Meadows–Corona Park. Additionally, two of the three busiest airports serving the New York metropolitan area, John F. Kennedy International Airport and LaGuardia Airport, are in Queens.
The Bronx
The Yankee Stadium in the BronxThe Bronx (Bronx County) is both New York City's northernmost borough, and the only one that is mostly on the mainland. It is the location of Yankee Stadium, the baseball park of the New York Yankees, and home to the largest cooperatively-owned housing complex in the United States, Co-op City.[186] It is home to the Bronx Zoo, the world's largest metropolitan zoo,[187] which spans 265 acres (1.07 km2) and houses more than 6,000 animals.[188] The Bronx is the birthplace of hip hop music and its associated culture.[189] Pelham Bay Park is the largest park in New York City, at 2,772 acres (1,122 ha).[190]
Staten Island
St. George, Staten IslandStaten Island (Richmond County) is the most suburban in character of the five boroughs. It is connected to Brooklyn by the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge, and to Manhattan by way of the free Staten Island Ferry. In central Staten Island, the Staten Island Greenbelt spans approximately 2,500 acres (10 km2), including 28 miles (45 km) of walking trails and one of the last undisturbed forests in the city.[191] Designated in 1984 to protect the island's natural lands, the Greenbelt comprises seven city parks.
ArchitectureFurther information: Architecture of New York City; List of buildings, sites, and monuments in New York City; List of tallest buildings in New York City; and List of hotels in New York City
The Empire State Building has setbacks, Art Deco details, and a spire. It was the world's tallest building from 1931 to 1970.
The Chrysler Building, built in 1930, is in the Art Deco style, with ornamental hubcaps and a spire.
Landmark 19th-century rowhouses, including brownstones, on tree-lined Kent Street in the Greenpoint Historic District, Brooklyn
Modernist and Gothic Revival architecture in Midtown ManhattanNew York has architecturally noteworthy buildings in a wide range of styles and from distinct time periods, from the Dutch Colonial Pieter Claesen Wyckoff House in Brooklyn, the oldest section of which dates to 1656, to the modern One World Trade Center, the skyscraper at Ground Zero in Lower Manhattan and the most expensive office tower in the world by construction cost.[192]
Manhattan's skyline, with its many skyscrapers, is universally recognized, and the city has been home to several of the tallest buildings in the world. As of 2019, New York City had 6,455 high-rise buildings, the third most in the world after Hong Kong and Seoul.[193] Of these, as of 2011,[needs update] 550 completed structures were at least 330 feet (100 m) high, with more than fifty completed skyscrapers taller than 656 feet (200 m). These include the Woolworth Building, an early example of Gothic Revival architecture in skyscraper design; completed in 1913, for 17 years it was the world's tallest building.[194]
The 1916 Zoning Resolution required setbacks in new buildings and restricted towers to a percentage of the lot size, to allow sunlight to reach the streets below.[195] The Art Deco style of the Chrysler Building (1930) and Empire State Building (1931), with their tapered tops and steel spires, reflected the zoning requirements.[citation needed] The buildings have distinctive ornamentation, such as the eagles at the corners of the 61st floor on the Chrysler Building, and are considered some of the finest examples of the Art Deco style.[196] A highly influential example of the International Style in the United States is the Seagram Building (1957), distinctive for its façade using visible bronze-toned I-beams to evoke the building's structure. The Condé Nast Building (2000) is a prominent example of green design in American skyscrapers[197] and has received an award from the American Institute of Architects and AIA New York State for its design.[citation needed]
The character of New York's large residential districts is often defined by the elegant brownstone rowhouses and townhouses and shabby tenements that were built during a period of rapid expansion from 1870 to 1930.[198] In contrast, New York City also has neighborhoods that are less densely populated and feature free-standing dwellings. In neighborhoods such as Riverdale (in the Bronx), Ditmas Park (in Brooklyn), and Douglaston (in Queens), large single-family homes are common in various architectural styles such as Tudor Revival and Victorian.[199][200][201]
Stone and brick became the city's building materials of choice after the construction of wood-frame houses was limited in the aftermath of the Great Fire of 1835.[202] A distinctive feature of many of the city's buildings is the roof-mounted wooden water tower. In the 1800s, the city required their installation on buildings higher than six stories to prevent the need for excessively high water pressures at lower elevations, which could break municipal water pipes.[203] Garden apartments became popular during the 1920s in outlying areas, such as Jackson Heights.[204]
According to the United States Geological Survey, an updated analysis of seismic hazard in July 2014 revealed a "slightly lower hazard for tall buildings" in New York City than previously assessed. Scientists estimated this lessened risk based on a lower likelihood than previously thought of slow shaking near the city, which would be more likely to cause damage to taller structures.[205] Manhattan contained over 500 million square feet of office space as of 2022;[repetition] the COVID-19 pandemic and hybrid work model have prompted consideration of commercial-to-residential conversion within Midtown Manhattan.[206]Ten mile (16km) Manhattan skyline panorama from 120th Street to the Battery, taken in February 2018 from across the Hudson River in Weehawken, New JerseyRiverside ChurchDeutsche Bank Center220 Central Park SouthCentral Park TowerOne57432 Park Avenue53W53Chrysler BuildingBank of America Tower4 Times SquareThe New York Times BuildingEmpire State BuildingManhattan Westa: 55 Hudson Yards, 14b: 35 Hudson Yards, 14c: 10 Hudson Yards, 14d: 15 Hudson Yards56 Leonard Street8 Spruce StreetWoolworth Building70 Pine StreetFour Seasons Downtown40 Wall Street3 World Trade Center4 World Trade CenterOne World Trade CenterClimateMain article: Climate of New York CityNew York CityClimate chart (explanation)JFMAMJJASOND 3.6 4028 3.2 4230 4.3 5036 4.1 6246 4 7155 4.5 8064 4.6 8570 4.6 8369 4.3 7662 4.4 6551 3.6 5442 4.4 4434█ Average max. and min. temperatures in °F█ Precipitation totals in inchesMetric conversion
Deep snow in Brooklyn during the Blizzard of 2006Under the Köppen climate classification, New York City has a humid subtropical climate (Cfa), and is the northernmost major city on the North American continent with this categorization. The suburbs to the immediate north and west are in the transitional zone between humid subtropical and humid continental climates (Dfa).[207][208] Annually, the city averages 234 days with at least some sunshine.[209]
Winters are chilly and damp, and prevailing wind patterns that blow sea breezes offshore temper the moderating effects of the Atlantic Ocean; yet the Atlantic and the partial shielding from colder air by the Appalachian Mountains keep the city warmer in the winter than inland North American cities at similar or lesser latitudes. The daily mean temperature in January, the area's coldest month, is 33.3 °F (0.7 °C).[210] Temperatures usually drop to 10 °F (−12 °C) several times per winter,[211] yet can also reach 60 °F (16 °C) for several days even in the coldest winter month. Spring and autumn are unpredictable and can range from cool to warm, although they are usually mild with low humidity. Summers are typically hot and humid, with a daily mean temperature of 77.5 °F (25.3 °C) in July.[210]
Nighttime temperatures are often enhanced due to the urban heat island effect. Daytime temperatures exceed 90 °F (32 °C) on average of 17 days each summer and in some years exceed 100 °F (38 °C), although this is a rare achievement, last occurring on July 18, 2012.[212] Similarly, readings of 0 °F (−18 °C) are extremely rare, last occurring on February 14, 2016.[213] Extreme temperatures have ranged from −15 °F (−26 °C), recorded on February 9, 1934, up to 106 °F (41 °C) on July 9, 1936;[210] the coldest recorded wind chill was −37 °F (−38 °C) on the same day as the all-time record low.[214] The record cold daily maximum was 2 °F (−17 °C) on December 30, 1917, while, conversely, the record warm daily minimum was 87 °F (31 °C), on July 2, 1903.[212] The average water temperature of the nearby Atlantic Ocean ranges from 39.7 °F (4.3 °C) in February to 74.1 °F (23.4 °C) in August.[215]
The city receives 49.5 inches (1,260 mm) of precipitation annually, which is relatively evenly spread throughout the year. Average winter snowfall between 1991 and 2020 was 29.8 inches (76 cm); this varies considerably between years. Hurricanes and tropical storms are rare in the New York area.[216] Hurricane Sandy brought a destructive storm surge to New York City on the evening of October 29, 2012, flooding numerous streets, tunnels, and subway lines in Lower Manhattan and other areas of the city and cutting off electricity in many parts of the city and its suburbs.[217] The storm and its profound impacts have prompted the discussion of constructing seawalls and other coastal barriers around the shorelines of the city and the metropolitan area to minimize the risk of destructive consequences from another such event in the future.[154]
vteClimate data for New York (Belvedere Castle, Central Park), 1991–2020 normals,[b] extremes 1869–present[c]MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYearRecord high °F (°C)72(22)78(26)86(30)96(36)99(37)101(38)106(41)104(40)102(39)94(34)84(29)75(24)106(41)Mean maximum °F (°C)60.4(15.8)60.7(15.9)70.3(21.3)82.9(28.3)88.5(31.4)92.1(33.4)95.7(35.4)93.4(34.1)89.0(31.7)79.7(26.5)70.7(21.5)62.9(17.2)97.0(36.1)Average high °F (°C)39.5(4.2)42.2(5.7)49.9(9.9)61.8(16.6)71.4(21.9)79.7(26.5)84.9(29.4)83.3(28.5)76.2(24.6)64.5(18.1)54.0(12.2)44.3(6.8)62.6(17.0)Daily mean °F (°C)33.7(0.9)35.9(2.2)42.8(6.0)53.7(12.1)63.2(17.3)72.0(22.2)77.5(25.3)76.1(24.5)69.2(20.7)57.9(14.4)48.0(8.9)39.1(3.9)55.8(13.2)Average low °F (°C)27.9(−2.3)29.5(−1.4)35.8(2.1)45.5(7.5)55.0(12.8)64.4(18.0)70.1(21.2)68.9(20.5)62.3(16.8)51.4(10.8)42.0(5.6)33.8(1.0)48.9(9.4)Mean minimum °F (°C)9.8(−12.3)12.7(−10.7)19.7(−6.8)32.8(0.4)43.9(6.6)52.7(11.5)61.8(16.6)60.3(15.7)50.2(10.1)38.4(3.6)27.7(−2.4)18.0(−7.8)7.7(−13.5)Record low °F (°C)−6(−21)−15(−26)3(−16)12(−11)32(0)44(7)52(11)50(10)39(4)28(−2)5(−15)−13(−25)−15(−26)Average precipitation inches (mm)3.64(92)3.19(81)4.29(109)4.09(104)3.96(101)4.54(115)4.60(117)4.56(116)4.31(109)4.38(111)3.58(91)4.38(111)49.52(1,258)Average snowfall inches (cm)8.8(22)10.1(26)5.0(13)0.4(1.0)0.0(0.0)0.0(0.0)0.0(0.0)0.0(0.0)0.0(0.0)0.1(0.25)0.5(1.3)4.9(12)29.8(76)Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in)10.810.011.111.411.511.210.510. snowy days (≥ 0.1 in) relative humidity (%)61.560.258.555.362.765. dew point °F (°C)18.0(−7.8)19.0(−7.2)25.9(−3.4)34.0(1.1)47.3(8.5)57.4(14.1)61.9(16.6)62.1(16.7)55.6(13.1)44.1(6.7)34.0(1.1)24.6(−4.1)40.3(4.6)Mean monthly sunshine hours162.7163.1212.5225.6256.6257.3268.2268.2219.3211.2151.0139.02,534.7Percent possible sunshine54555757575759635961514857Average ultraviolet index2346788864215Source 1: NOAA (relative humidity and sun 1961–1990; dew point 1965–1984)[212][219][209]Source 2: Weather Atlas[220]See Climate of New York City for additional climate information from the outer boroughs.
Sea temperature data for New York[220]MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYearAverage seatemperature °F (°C)41.7(5.4)39.7(4.3)40.2(4.5)45.1(7.3)52.5(11.4)64.5(18.1)72.1(22.3)74.1(23.4)70.1(21.2)63.0(17.2)54.3(12.4)47.2(8.4)55.4(13.0)ParksMain article: List of New York City parks
Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, with the Unisphere at center, was used in both the 1939 and 1964 New York World's Fairs.The city of New York has a complex park system, with various lands operated by the National Park Service, the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, and the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. In its 2018 ParkScore ranking, the Trust for Public Land reported that the park system in New York City was the ninth-best park system among the fifty most populous U.S. cities.[221] ParkScore ranks urban park systems by a formula that analyzes median park size, park acres as percent of city area, the percent of city residents within a half-mile of a park, spending of park services per resident, and the number of playgrounds per 10,000 residents.[importance?] In 2021, the New York City Council banned the use of synthetic pesticides by city agencies and instead required organic lawn management. The effort was started by teacher Paula Rogovin's kindergarten class at P.S. 290.[222][importance?]
National parksMain article: National Park Service
The Statue of Liberty on Liberty Island in New York Harbor, a global symbol of the United States and its ideals of liberty, freedom, and opportunity[29]Gateway National Recreation Area contains over 26,000 acres (110 km2), most of it in New York City.[223] In Brooklyn and Queens, the park contains over 9,000 acres (36 km2) of salt marsh, wetlands, islands, and water, including most of Jamaica Bay and the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge. Also in Queens, the park includes a significant portion of the western Rockaway Peninsula, most notably Jacob Riis Park and Fort Tilden. In Staten Island, it includes Fort Wadsworth, with historic pre-Civil War era Battery Weed and Fort Tompkins, and Great Kills Park.
The Statue of Liberty National Monument and Ellis Island Immigration Museum are managed by the National Park Service and are in both New York and New Jersey. They are joined in the harbor by Governors Island National Monument. Historic sites under federal management on Manhattan Island include Stonewall National Monument; Castle Clinton National Monument; Federal Hall National Memorial; Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace National Historic Site; General Grant National Memorial (Grant's Tomb); African Burial Ground National Monument; and Hamilton Grange National Memorial. Hundreds of properties are listed on the National Register of Historic Places or as a National Historic Landmark.
State parksMain article: New York state parks
Marsha P. Johnson State ParkThere are seven state parks within the confines of New York City. They include:
The Clay Pit Ponds State Park Preserve, a natural area that includes extensive riding trails.Riverbank State Park, a 28-acre (11 ha) facility[224]Marsha P. Johnson State Park, a state park in Brooklyn and Manhattan that borders the East River renamed in honor of Marsha P. Johnson[225]City parksSee also: New York City Department of Parks and Recreation
The Pond and Midtown Manhattan as seen from Gapstow Bridge in Central Park
The Boathouse on the Lullwater in Prospect Park, BrooklynNew York City has over 28,000 acres (110 km2) of municipal parkland and 14 miles (23 km) of public beaches.[226] The largest municipal park in the city is Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx, with 2,772 acres (1,122 ha).[190][227]
Central Park, an 843-acre (3.41 km2)[190] park in middle-upper Manhattan, is the most visited urban park in the United States and one of the most filmed and visited locations in the world, with 40 million visitors in 2013.[228] The park has a wide range of attractions; there are several lakes and ponds, two ice-skating rinks, the Central Park Zoo, the Central Park Conservatory Garden, and the 106-acre (0.43 km2) Jackie Onassis Reservoir.[229] Indoor attractions include Belvedere Castle with its nature center, the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theater, and the historic Carousel. On October 23, 2012, hedge fund manager John A. Paulson announced a $100 million gift to the Central Park Conservancy, the largest ever monetary donation to New York City's park system.[230]Washington Square Park is a prominent landmark in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of Lower Manhattan. The Washington Square Arch at the northern gateway to the park is an iconic symbol of both New York University and Greenwich Village.Prospect Park in Brooklyn has a 90-acre (36 ha) meadow, a lake, and extensive woodlands. Within the park is the historic Battle Pass, prominent in the Battle of Long Island.[231]Flushing Meadows–Corona Park in Queens, with its 897 acres (363 ha) making it the city's fourth largest park,[232] was the setting for the 1939 World's Fair and the 1964 World's Fair[233] and is host to the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center and the annual U.S. Open Tennis Championships tournament.[234]Over a fifth of the Bronx's area, 7,000 acres (28 km2), is dedicated to open space and parks, including Pelham Bay Park, Van Cortlandt Park, the Bronx Zoo, and the New York Botanical Gardens.[235]In Staten Island, the Conference House Park contains the historic Conference House, site of the only attempt of a peaceful resolution to the American Revolution which was conducted in September 1775, attended by Benjamin Franklin representing the Americans and Lord Howe representing the British Crown.[236] The historic Burial Ridge, the largest Native American burial ground within New York City, is within the park.[237]Military installationsBrooklyn is home to Fort Hamilton, the U.S. military's only active duty installation within New York City,[238] aside from Coast Guard operations. The facility was established in 1825 on the site of a battery used during the American Revolution, and it is one of America's longest serving military forts.[239] Today, Fort Hamilton serves as the headquarters of the North Atlantic Division of the United States Army Corps of Engineers and for the New York City Recruiting Battalion. It also houses the 1179th Transportation Brigade, the 722nd Aeromedical Staging Squadron, and a military entrance processing station. Other formerly active military reservations still used for National Guard and military training or reserve operations in the city include Fort Wadsworth in Staten Island and Fort Totten in Queens.[citation needed]
DemographicsHistorical populationYearPop.±%16984,937— 17125,840+18.3%17237,248+24.1%173710,664+47.1%174611,717+9.9%175613,046+11.3%177121,863+67.6%179049,401+126.0%180079,216+60.4%1810119,734+51.1%1820152,056+27.0%1830242,278+59.3%1840391,114+61.4%1850696,115+78.0%18601,174,779+68.8%18701,478,103+25.8%18801,911,698+29.3%18902,507,414+31.2%19003,437,202+37.1%19104,766,883+38.7%19205,620,048+17.9%19306,930,446+23.3%19407,454,995+7.6%19507,891,957+5.9%19607,781,984−1.4%19707,894,862+1.5%19807,071,639−10.4%19907,322,564+3.5%20008,008,278+9.4%20108,175,133+2.1%20208,804,190+7.7%Note: Census figures (1790–2010) cover the present area of all five boroughs, before and after the 1898 consolidation. For New York City itself before annexing part of the Bronx in 1874, see Manhattan#Demographics.[240]Source: U.S. Decennial Census;[241]1698–1771[242] 1790–1890[240][243]1900–1990[244] articles: Demographics of New York City and Demographic history of New York CityNew York City is the most populous city in the United States,[249] with 8,804,190 residents incorporating more immigration into the city than outmigration since the 2010 United States census.[248][250][251] More than twice as many people live in New York City as compared to Los Angeles, the second-most populous U.S. city.[249] New York City gained more residents between 2010 and 2020 (629,000) than any other U.S. city, and a greater amount than the total sum of the gains over the same decade of the next four largest U.S. cities (Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, and Phoenix, Arizona) combined.[252][253] New York City comprises about 44% of the state's population,[254] and about 39% of the population of the New York metropolitan area.[255] The majority of New York City residents in 2020 (5,141,538, or 58.4%) were living on Long Island, in Brooklyn, or in Queens.[256] The New York City metropolitan statistical area, has the largest foreign-born population of any metropolitan region in the world. The New York region continues to be by far the leading metropolitan gateway for legal immigrants admitted into the United States, substantially exceeding the combined totals of Los Angeles and Miami.[257]
In 2020, the city had an estimated population density of 29,302.37 inhabitants per square mile (11,313.71/km2), rendering it the nation's most densely populated of all municipalities with more than 100,000 residents. Geographically co-extensive with New York County, the borough of Manhattan's 2017 population density of 72,918 inhabitants per square mile (28,154/km2) makes it the highest of any county in the United States and higher than the density of any individual American city.[258][259][260][repetition] The next three densest counties in the United States are also New York boroughs: Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens respectively.[261][repetition]
Race and ethnicityMain article: New York City ethnic enclavesHistorical demographics2020[262]2010[263]1990[264]1970[264]1940[264]
Map of racial distribution in New York, 2010 U.S. Census. Each dot is 25 people: White, Black, Asian, Hispanic, or Other (yellow)The city's population in 2020 was 30.9% White (non-Hispanic), 28.7% Hispanic or Latino, 20.2% Black or African American (non-Hispanic), 15.6% Asian, and 0.2% Native American (non-Hispanic).[265] A total of 3.4% of the non-Hispanic population identified with more than one race. Throughout its history, New York has been a major port of entry for immigrants into the United States. More than 12 million European immigrants were received at Ellis Island between 1892 and 1954.[266] The term "melting pot" was first coined to describe densely populated immigrant neighborhoods on the Lower East Side. By 1900, Germans were the largest immigrant group, followed by the Irish, Jews, and Italians.[267] In 1940, Whites represented 92% of the city's population at 6.6 million.[264][268]
Approximately 37% of the city's population is foreign born, and more than half of all children are born to mothers who are immigrants as of 2013.[269][270] In New York, no single country or region of origin dominates.[269] The ten largest sources of foreign-born individuals in the city as of 2011 were the Dominican Republic, China, Mexico, Guyana, Jamaica, Ecuador, Haiti, India, Russia, and Trinidad and Tobago,[271] while the Bangladeshi-born immigrant population has become one of the fastest growing in the city, counting over 74,000 by 2011.[24][272]
Asian Americans in New York City, according to the 2010 census, number more than one million, greater than the combined totals of San Francisco and Los Angeles.[273] New York contains the highest total Asian population of any U.S. city proper.[274] The New York City borough of Queens is home to the state's largest Asian American population and the largest Andean (Colombian, Ecuadorian, Peruvian, and Bolivian) populations in the United States, and is also the most ethnically and linguistically diverse urban area in the world.[275][185] Tens of thousands of asylum seekers from Venezuela have arrived in New York City since 2022.[276]Chinatown, Manhattan
Little Italy, Manhattan
Koreatown, Manhattan
Little Manila, Queens
Little Russia, Brooklyn
Little India, QueensThe Chinese population is the fastest-growing nationality in New York State. Multiple satellites of the original Manhattan's Chinatown—home to the highest concentration of Chinese people in the Western Hemisphere,[277] as well as in Brooklyn, and around Flushing, Queens, are thriving as traditionally urban enclaves—while also expanding rapidly eastward into suburban Nassau County[278] on Long Island,[279] as the New York metropolitan region and New York State have become the top destinations for new Chinese immigrants, respectively, and large-scale Chinese immigration continues into New York City and surrounding areas,[257][280][281][282][283][284] with the largest metropolitan Chinese diaspora outside Asia,[24][285] including an estimated 812,410 individuals in 2015.[286]
In 2012, 6.3% of New York City was of Chinese ethnicity, with nearly three-fourths living in either Queens or Brooklyn.[287] A community numbering 20,000 Korean-Chinese (Chaoxianzu or Joseonjok) is centered in Flushing, Queens, while New York City is home to the largest Tibetan population outside China, India, and Nepal, also centered in Queens.[288] Koreans made up 1.2% of the city's population, and Japanese 0.3%. Filipinos were the largest Southeast Asian ethnic group at 0.8%, followed by Vietnamese, who made up 0.2% of New York City's population in 2010. Indians are the largest South Asian group, comprising 2.4% of the city's population, with Bangladeshis and Pakistanis at 0.7% and 0.5%, respectively.[289] Queens is the preferred borough of settlement for Asian Indians, Koreans, Filipinos, and Malaysians,[290][257] and other Southeast Asians;[291] while Brooklyn is receiving large numbers of both West Indian and Asian Indian immigrants, and Manhattan is the favored destination for Japanese.[citation needed]
New York City has the largest European and non-Hispanic white population of any American city. At 2.7 million in 2012, New York's non-Hispanic White population is larger than the non-Hispanic White populations of Los Angeles, Chicago, and Houston combined.[292] The non-Hispanic White population has begun to increase since 2010.[293][needs update]
The European diaspora residing in the city is very diverse. According to 2012 census estimates, there were roughly 560,000 Italian Americans, 385,000 Irish Americans, 253,000 German Americans, 223,000 Russian Americans, 201,000 Polish Americans, and 137,000 English Americans. Additionally, Greek and French Americans numbered 65,000 each, with those of Hungarian descent estimated at 60,000 people. Ukrainian and Scottish Americans numbered 55,000 and 35,000, respectively. People identifying ancestry from Spain numbered 30,838 total in 2010,[294] and Belarusians numbered about 55,000 as of 2010.[295]
People of Norwegian and Swedish descent both stood at about 20,000 each, while people of Czech, Lithuanian, Portuguese, Scotch-Irish, and Welsh descent all numbered between 12,000 and 14,000.[296] Arab Americans number over 160,000 in New York City,[297] with the highest concentration in Brooklyn. Central Asians, primarily Uzbek Americans, are a rapidly growing segment of the city's non-Hispanic White population, enumerating over 30,000, and including more than half of all Central Asian immigrants to the United States,[298] most settling in Queens or Brooklyn. Albanian Americans are most highly concentrated in the Bronx,[299] while Astoria, Queens is the epicenter of American Greek culture as well as the Cypriot community.[citation needed]
New York is home to the highest Jewish population of any city in the world, numbering 1.6 million in 2022, more than Tel Aviv and Jerusalem combined.[300] In the borough of Brooklyn, an estimated 1 in 4 residents is Jewish.[301] The city's Jewish communities are derived from many diverse sects, predominantly from around the Middle East and Eastern Europe, and including a rapidly growing Orthodox Jewish population, the largest outside Israel.[288]
The metropolitan area is home to 20% of the nation's Indian Americans and at least 20 Little India enclaves, and 15% of all Korean Americans and four Koreatowns;[246] the largest Asian Indian population in the Western Hemisphere; the largest Russian American,[280] Italian American, and African American populations; the largest Dominican American, Puerto Rican American, and South American[280] and second-largest overall Hispanic population in the United States, numbering 4.8 million;[294] and includes multiple established Chinatowns within New York City alone.[302]
Ecuador, Colombia, Guyana, Peru, Brazil, and Venezuela are the top source countries from South America for immigrants to the New York City region; the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Haiti, and Trinidad and Tobago in the Caribbean; Nigeria, Egypt, Ghana, Tanzania, Kenya, and South Africa from Africa; and El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala in Central America.[303] Amidst a resurgence of Puerto Rican migration to New York City, this population had increased to approximately 1.3 million in the metropolitan area as of 2013.[citation needed]
Since 2010, Little Australia has emerged and is growing rapidly, representing the Australasian presence in Nolita, Manhattan.[304][305][306][307] In 2011, there were an estimated 20,000 Australian residents of New York City, nearly quadruple the 5,537 in 2005.[308][309] Qantas Airways of Australia and Air New Zealand have been planning for long-haul flights from New York to Sydney and Auckland, which would both rank among the longest non-stop flights in the world.[310] A Little Sri Lanka has developed in the Tompkinsville neighborhood of Staten Island.[311] Le Petit Sénégal, or Little Senegal, is based in Harlem. Richmond Hill, Queens is often thought of as "Little Guyana" for its large Guyanese community,[312] as well as Punjab Avenue (ਪੰਜਾਬ ਐਵੇਨਿਊ), or Little Punjab, for its high concentration of Punjabi people. Little Poland is expanding rapidly in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.[citation needed]
Sexual orientation and gender identityMain articles: LGBT culture in New York City, Same-sex marriage in New York, Stonewall riots, and NYC Pride MarchFurther information: New York City Drag March, Queens Liberation Front, Queens Pride Parade, Greenwich Village Halloween Parade, List of LGBT people from New York City, and List of largest LGBT events
Caribbean NYC-LGBTQ Equality Project
The NYC Dyke March, the world's largest celebration of lesbian pride and culture[313]
NYC Pride March in Manhattan, the world's largest[314][315]
The Multicultural Festival at the 2018 Queens Pride ParadeNew York City has been described as the gay capital of the world and the central node of the LGBTQ+ sociopolitical ecosystem, and is home to one of the world's largest LGBTQ populations and the most prominent.[51] The New York metropolitan area is home to about 570,000 self-identifying gay and bisexual people, the largest in the United States.[316][317] Same-sex sexual activity between consenting adults has been legal in New York since the New York v. Onofre case in 1980 which invalidated the state's sodomy law.[318] Same-sex marriages in New York were legalized on June 24, 2011, and were authorized to take place on July 23, 2011.[319] Brian Silverman, the author of Frommer's New York City from $90 a Day, wrote the city has "one of the world's largest, loudest, and most powerful LGBT communities", and "Gay and lesbian culture is as much a part of New York's basic identity as yellow cabs, high-rise buildings, and Broadway theatre".[320] LGBT travel guide Queer in the World states, "The fabulosity of Gay New York is unrivaled on Earth, and queer culture seeps into every corner of its five boroughs".[321] LGBT advocate and entertainer Madonna stated metaphorically, "Anyways, not only is New York City the best place in the world because of the queer people here. Let me tell you something, if you can make it here, then you must be queer."[322]
The annual New York City Pride March proceeds southward down Fifth Avenue and ends at Greenwich Village in Lower Manhattan; the parade is the largest pride parade in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants and millions of sidewalk spectators each June.[323][314] The annual Queens Pride Parade is held in Jackson Heights and is accompanied by the ensuing Multicultural Parade.[324]
Stonewall 50 – WorldPride NYC 2019 was the largest international Pride celebration in history, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising, with 150,000 participants and five million spectators attending in Manhattan alone.[325] New York City is home to the largest transgender population in the world, estimated at more than 50,000 in 2018, concentrated in Manhattan and Queens; however, until the June 1969 Stonewall riots, this community had felt marginalized and neglected by the gay community.[324][140] Brooklyn Liberation March, the largest transgender-rights demonstration in LGBTQ history, took place on June 14, 2020, stretching from Grand Army Plaza to Fort Greene, Brooklyn, focused on supporting Black transgender lives, drawing an estimated 15,000 to 20,000 affiliation (2014)[328][329]Christian 59%Catholic 33%Protestant 23%Other Christian 3%Unaffiliated 22%Jewish 8%Muslim 7%Hindu 2%Buddhist 1%Other faiths 1%Religious affiliations in New York City
The landmark Neo-Gothic Roman Catholic St. Patrick's Cathedral, Midtown Manhattan
Central Synagogue, a notable Reform synagogue located at 652 Lexington Avenue
The Islamic Cultural Center of New York in Upper Manhattan, the first mosque built in New York City
Ganesh Temple in Flushing, Queens, the oldest Hindu temple in the U.S.ChristianityFurther information: St. Patrick's Cathedral (Midtown Manhattan), Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, and Christmas in New YorkLargely as a result of Western European missionary work and colonialism, Christianity is the largest religion (59% adherent) in New York City,[328] which is home to the highest number of churches of any city in the world.[19] Roman Catholicism is the largest Christian denomination (33%), followed by Protestantism (23%), and other Christian denominations (3%). The Roman Catholic population are primarily served by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York and Diocese of Brooklyn. Eastern Catholics are divided into numerous jurisdictions throughout the city. Evangelical Protestantism is the largest branch of Protestantism in the city (9%), followed by Mainline Protestantism (8%), while the converse is usually true for other cities and metropolitan areas.[329] In Evangelicalism, Baptists are the largest group; in Mainline Protestantism, Reformed Protestants compose the largest subset. The majority of historically African American churches are affiliated with the National Baptist Convention (USA) and Progressive National Baptist Convention. The Church of God in Christ is one of the largest predominantly Black Pentecostal denominations in the area. Approximately 1% of the population is Mormon. The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and other Orthodox Christians (mainstream and independent) were the largest Eastern Christian groups. The American Orthodox Catholic Church (initially led by Aftimios Ofiesh) was founded in New York City in 1927.[citation needed]
JudaismMain articles: Judaism in New York City, History of the Jews in New York, and Jewish arrival in New AmsterdamJudaism, the second-largest religion practiced in New York City, with approximately 1.6 million adherents as of 2022, represents the largest Jewish community of any city in the world, greater than the combined totals of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.[330][331] Nearly half of the city's Jews live in Brooklyn, which is one-quarter Jewish.[332][333] The ethno-religious population makes up 18.4% of the city and its religious demographic makes up 8%.[334] The first recorded Jewish settler was Jacob Barsimson, who arrived in August 1654 on a passport from the Dutch West India Company.[335][importance?] Following the assassination of Alexander II of Russia, for which many blamed "the Jews", the 36 years beginning in 1881 experienced the largest wave of Jewish immigration to the United States.[336][relevant?] In 2012, the largest Jewish denominations were Orthodox, Haredi, and Conservative Judaism.[337] Reform Jewish communities are prevalent through the area. 770 Eastern Parkway is the headquarters of the international Chabad Lubavitch movement, and is considered an icon, while Congregation Emanu-El of New York in Manhattan is the largest Reform synagogue in the world.[citation needed]
IslamMain article: Islam in New York CityIslam ranks as the third largest religion in New York City, following Christianity and Judaism, with estimates ranging between 600,000 and 1,000,000 observers of Islam, including 10% of the city's public school children.[338] 22.3% of American Muslims live in New York City, with 1.5 million Muslims in the greater New York metropolitan area, representing the largest metropolitan Muslim population in the Western Hemisphere[339]—and the most ethnically diverse Muslim population of any city in the world.[340] Powers Street Mosque in Brooklyn is one of the oldest continuously operating mosques in the U.S., and represents the first Islamic organization in both the city and the state of New York.[341][342]
Hinduism and other religious affiliationsFurther information: Hindu Temple Society of North AmericaFollowing these three largest religious groups in New York City are Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Zoroastrianism, and a variety of other religions. As of 2023, 24% of Greater New Yorkers identified with no organized religious affiliation, including 4% Atheist.[343]
Wealth and income disparityNew York City, like other large cities, has a high degree of income disparity, as indicated by its Gini coefficient of 0.55 as of 2017.[344] In the first quarter of 2014,[needs update] the average weekly wage in New York County (Manhattan) was $2,749, representing the highest total among large counties in the United States.[345] In 2022, New York City was home to the highest number of billionaires of any city in the world, with a total of 107.[37] New York also had the highest density of millionaires per capita among major U.S. cities in 2014, at 4.6% of residents.[346] New York City is one of the relatively few American cities levying an income tax (about 3%) on its residents.[347][348][349] As of 2018, there were 78,676 homeless people in New York City.[350]
EconomyMain article: Economy of New York CityFurther information: Economy of Long Island and Economy of New York
Midtown Manhattan, the world's largest central business district[351]see captionThe Financial District of Lower ManhattanNew York City is a global hub of business and commerce and an established safe haven for global investors,[35] and is sometimes described as the capital of the world.[352] New York is a center for worldwide banking and finance, health care and life sciences,[15] medical technology and research, retailing, world trade, transportation, tourism, real estate, new media, traditional media, advertising, legal services, accountancy, insurance, and the arts in the United States; while Silicon Alley, metonymous for New York's broad-spectrum high technology sphere, continues to expand. The Port of New York and New Jersey is a major economic engine, benefitting post-Panamax from the expansion of the Panama Canal, and accelerating ahead of California seaports in monthly cargo volumes in 2023.[353][354][355]
Many Fortune 500 corporations are headquartered in New York City,[356] as are a large number of multinational corporations. New York City has been ranked first among cities across the globe in attracting capital, business, and tourists.[357][358] New York City's role as the top global center for the advertising industry is metonymously reflected as Madison Avenue.[359] The city's fashion industry provides approximately 180,000 employees with $11 billion in annual wages.[360] The non-profit Partnership for New York City is the city's pre-eminent private business association, comprising approximately 330 corporate leaders.[citation needed] The fashion industry is based in Midtown Manhattan and is represented by the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CDFA), headquartered in Lower Manhattan.
Significant economic sectors include non-profit institutions, and universities. Manufacturing declined over the 20th century but still accounts for significant employment. particularly in smaller operations.[citation needed] The city's apparel and garment industry, historically centered on the Garment District in Manhattan, peaked in 1950, when more than 323,000 workers were employed in the industry in New York. In 2015, fewer than 23,000 New York City residents were employed in the industry, although revival efforts were underway,[361] and the American fashion industry continues to be metonymized as Seventh Avenue.[362]
Chocolate is New York City's leading specialty-food export, with up to $234 million worth of exports each year.[363] Godiva, one of the world's largest chocolatiers, is headquartered in Manhattan,[364] and an unofficial chocolate district in Brooklyn is home to several chocolate makers and retailers.[365] Food processing is a $5 billion industry that employs more than 19,000 residents.[citation needed]
In 2017, there were 205,592 employer firms in New York City.[263] Of those firms, 64,514 were owned by minorities, while veterans owned 5,506 of those firms, statistics pertinent to the increasing participation of U.S. firms in diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives.[263]Midtown Manhattan in panorama from Weehawken, New Jersey, pictured in September 2021Wall StreetMain article: Wall StreetA large Flag is stretched over Roman style columns on the front of a large building.The New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street, the world's largest stock exchange per total market capitalization of its listed companies[366][367]New York City's most important economic sector lies in its role as the headquarters for the U.S. financial industry, metonymously known as Wall Street. The city's securities industry continues to form the largest segment of the city's financial sector and is an important economic engine.[citation needed] Many large financial companies are headquartered in New York City, and the city is home to a burgeoning number of financial startup companies.
Lower Manhattan is home to the New York Stock Exchange, at 11 Wall Street, and the Nasdaq, at 165 Broadway, representing the world's largest and second largest stock exchanges, respectively, when measured both by overall average daily trading volume and by total market capitalization of their listed companies in 2013.[366][367] Investment banking fees on Wall Street totaled approximately $40 billion in 2012,[368][needs update] while in 2013, senior New York City bank officers who manage risk and compliance functions earned as much as $324,000 annually.[369][importance?] In fiscal year 2013–14, Wall Street's securities industry generated 19% of New York State's tax revenue.[370]
New York City remains the largest global center for trading in public equity and debt capital markets, driven in part by the size and financial development of the U.S. economy.[371]: 31–32 [372] New York also leads in hedge fund management; private equity; and the monetary volume of mergers and acquisitions. Several investment banks and investment managers headquartered in Manhattan are important participants in other global financial centers.[371]: 34–35  New York is the principal commercial banking center of the United States.[373]
Many of the world's largest media conglomerates are based in the city. Manhattan contained over 500 million square feet (46.5 million m2) of office space in 2018,[374] making it the largest office market in the United States,[375] while Midtown Manhattan, with 400 million square feet (37.2 million m2) in 2018,[374] is the largest central business district in the world.[376]
Tech and biotechFurther information: Tech:NYC, Tech companies in New York City, Biotech companies in New York City, and Silicon Alley
View from the Empire State Building looking southward (downtown) at the central Flatiron District, the cradle of Silicon Alley, initially metonymous for the New York metropolitan region's high tech sector
Cornell Tech on Roosevelt IslandNew York is a top-tier global technology hub.[12][377] Silicon Alley, once a metonym for the sphere encompassing the metropolitan region's high technology industries,[378] is no longer a relevant moniker as the city's tech Environment has expanded dramatically both in location and in scope since at least 2003, when tech business appeared in more places in Manhattan and in other boroughs, and not much silicon was involved.[378][379] New York City's current tech sphere encompasses the array of applications involving universal applications of artificial intelligence,[380][381] broadband internet,[382] new media, financial technology (fintech) and cryptocurrency, biotechnology, game design, and other fields within information technology that are supported by its entrepreneurship ecosystem and venture capital investments.
Technology-driven startup companies and entrepreneurial employment are growing in New York City and the region. The technology sector has been claiming a greater share of New York City's economy since 2010.[383] Tech:NYC, founded in 2016, is a non-profit organization which represents New York City's technology industry with government, civic institutions, in business, and in the media, and whose primary goals are to further augment New York's substantial tech talent base and to advocate for policies that will nurture tech companies to grow in the city.[384]
The biotechnology sector is growing in New York City, based on the city's strength in academic scientific research and public and commercial financial support. On December 19, 2011, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg announced his choice of Cornell University and Technion-Israel Institute of Technology to build a $2 billion graduate school of applied sciences called Cornell Tech on Roosevelt Island with the goal of transforming New York City into the world's premier technology capital.[385][386] By mid-2014, Accelerator, a biotech investment firm, had raised more than $30 million from investors, including Eli Lilly and Company, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson, for initial funding to create biotechnology startups at the Alexandria Center for Life Science, which encompasses more than 700,000 square feet (65,000 m2) on East 29th Street and promotes collaboration among scientists and entrepreneurs at the center and with nearby academic, medical, and research institutions.[excessive detail?] The New York City Economic Development Corporation's Early Stage Life Sciences Funding Initiative and venture capital partners, including Celgene, General Electric Ventures, and Eli Lilly, committed[needs update] a minimum of $100 million to help launch 15 to 20 ventures in life sciences and biotechnology.[387]
Real estate
Apple Store at Fifth Avenue, one of the most expensive shopping streets in the world.[388][389]The total value of all New York City property was assessed at US$1.479 trillion for the 2017 fiscal year, an increase of 6.1% from the previous year and up 38% from the $1.072 trillion assessed for 2017; of the total market value for 2024, single family homes accounted for $765 billion (51.7%), co-ops, condos and apartment buildings totaled $351 billion (23.7%) and commercial properties were valued at $317 billion (21.4%).[390][391]
In 2014, Manhattan was home to six of the top ten ZIP codes in the United States by median housing price.[392] Fifth Avenue in Midtown Manhattan commands the highest retail rents in the world, at $3,000 per square foot ($32,000/m2) in 2017.[393] In 2019, the most expensive home sale ever in the United States achieved completion in Manhattan, at a selling price of $238 million, for a 24,000 square feet (2,200 m2) penthouse apartment overlooking Central Park.[394] In 2022, one-bedroom apartments in Manhattan rented at a median monthly price of US$3,600.00, one of the world's highest. New York City real estate is a safe haven for global investors.[35]
TourismMain article: Tourism in New York City
Times Square, the hub of the theater district and a global media center, is one of the world's leading tourist attractions with 50 million tourists annually.[43]
The I Love New York logo designed by Milton Glaser in 1977Tourism is a vital industry for New York City, and NYC & Company represents the city's official bureau of tourism. New York has witnessed a growing combined volume of international and domestic tourists, reflecting over 60 million visitors to the city per year, the world's busiest tourist destination.[19] Approximately 12 million visitors to New York City have been from outside the United States, with the highest numbers from the United Kingdom, Canada, Brazil, and China. Multiple sources have called New York the most photographed city in the world.[395][396][397]
I Love New York (stylized I ❤ NY) is both a logo and a song that are the basis of an advertising campaign and have been used since 1977 to promote tourism in New York City,[398] and later to promote New York State as well. The trademarked logo, owned by New York State Empire State Development,[399] appears in souvenir shops and brochures throughout the city and state, some licensed, many not.[citation needed] The song is the state song of New York.
The majority of the most high-profile tourist destinations to the city are situated in Manhattan. These include Times Square; Broadway theater productions; the Empire State Building; the Statue of Liberty; Ellis Island; the United Nations headquarters; the World Trade Center (including the National September 11 Memorial & Museum and One World Trade Center); the art museums along Museum Mile; green spaces such as Central Park, Washington Square Park, the High Line, and the medieval gardens of The Cloisters; the Stonewall Inn; Rockefeller Center; ethnic enclaves including the Manhattan Chinatown, Koreatown, Curry Hill, Harlem, Spanish Harlem, Little Italy, and Little Australia; luxury shopping along Fifth and Madison Avenues; and events such as the Halloween Parade in Greenwich Village; the Brooklyn Bridge (shared with Brooklyn); the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade; the lighting of the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree; the St. Patrick's Day Parade; seasonal activities such as ice skating in Central Park in the wintertime; the Tribeca Film Festival; and free performances in Central Park at SummerStage.[citation needed]
Points of interest have developed in the city outside Manhattan and have made the outer boroughs tourist destinations in their own right. These include numerous ethnic enclaves; the Unisphere, Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, and Downtown Flushing in Queens;[citation needed] Downtown Brooklyn, Coney Island, Williamsburg, Park Slope, and Prospect Park in Brooklyn;[citation needed] the Bronx Zoo, the New York Botanical Garden, and the Grand Concourse in the Bronx;[citation needed] and the Staten Island Ferry.
Media and entertainmentMain article: Media in New York CityFurther information: New Yorkers in journalism
Rockefeller Center, one of Manhattan's leading media and entertainment hubs
Times Square Studios on Times Square is sometimes called the "Crossroads of the World".New York City has been described as the entertainment[19][400][401] and digital media capital of the world.[402] The city is a prominent location for the American entertainment industry, with many films, television series, books, and other media being set there.[403] As of 2019, New York City was the second-largest center for filmmaking and television production in the United States, producing about 200 feature films annually, employing 130,000 individuals. The filmed entertainment industry has been growing in New York, contributing nearly $9 billion to the New York City economy alone as of 2015.[404] By volume, New York is the world leader in independent film production—one-third of all American independent films are produced there.[405][406] The Association of Independent Commercial Producers is based in New York.[407][importance?] In the first five months of 2014,[needs update] location filming for television pilots in New York City exceeded the record production levels for all of 2013,[408] with New York surpassing Los Angeles as the top North American city for the same distinction during the 2013–2014 cycle.[409]
New York City is the center for the advertising, music, newspaper, digital media, and publishing industries and is the largest media market in North America.[410] Some of the city's media conglomerates and institutions include Warner Bros. Discovery, the Thomson Reuters Corporation, the Associated Press, Bloomberg L.P., the News Corp, The New York Times Company, NBCUniversal, the Hearst Corporation, AOL, Fox Corporation, and Paramount Global. Seven of the world's top eight global advertising agency networks have their headquarters in New York.[411] Two of the top three record labels' headquarters are in New York: Sony Music Entertainment and Warner Music Group. Universal Music Group has offices in New York.[importance?] New media enterprises are contributing an increasingly important component to the city's central role in the media sphere.[citation needed]
More than 200 newspapers and 350 consumer magazines have an office in the city,[406] and the publishing industry employs about 25,000 people.[412] Two of the three national daily newspapers with the largest circulations in the United States are published in New York: The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times (NYT). Nicknamed "the Grey Lady",[importance?] the NYT has won the most Pulitzer Prizes for journalism and is considered the U.S. media's newspaper of record.[413] Tabloid newspapers in the city include the New York Daily News, which was founded in 1919 by Joseph Medill Patterson,[414] and The New York Post, founded in 1801 by Alexander Hamilton.[415] At the local news end of the media spectrum, Patch Media is headquartered in Manhattan.
New York City has a comprehensive ethnic press, with 270 newspapers and magazines published in more than 40 languages.[416] El Diario La Prensa is New York's largest Spanish-language daily and the oldest in the nation.[417] The New York Amsterdam News, published in Harlem, is a prominent[citation needed] African American newspaper. The Village Voice, historically the largest alternative newspaper in the United States, announced in 2017 that it would cease publication of its print edition and convert to a fully digital venture.[418] The television and radio industry developed in New York and is a significant employer in the city's economy.[citation needed] The three major American broadcast networks are all headquartered in New York: ABC, CBS, and NBC. Many cable networks are based in the city as well, including CNN, MSNBC, MTV, Fox News, HBO, Showtime, Bravo, Food Network, AMC, and Comedy Central. News 12 Networks operated News 12 The Bronx and News 12 Brooklyn. WBAI, with news and information programming, is one of the few socialist radio stations operating in the United States.[citation needed]
New York is a major center for non-commercial educational media. NYC Media is the official public radio, television, and online media network and broadcasting service of New York City,[419] and has produced several original Emmy Award-winning shows covering music and culture in city neighborhoods and city government. The oldest public-access television channel in the United States is the Manhattan Neighborhood Network, founded in 1971.[420] WNET is the city's major public television station and a primary source of national Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) television programming. WNYC, a public radio station owned by the city until 1997, has the largest public radio audience in the United States.[421]
EducationMain article: Education in New York City
Butler Library at Columbia University
The Washington Square Arch, an unofficial icon of both New York University and the Greenwich Village neighborhood that surrounds it[422]
Fordham University's Keating Hall in the BronxNew York City has the largest educational system of any city in the world.[19] The city's educational infrastructure spans primary education, secondary education, higher education, and research.
Primary and secondary educationThe New York City Public Schools system, managed by the New York City Department of Education, is the largest public school system in the United States, serving about 1.1 million students in approximately 1,800 separate primary and secondary schools, including charter schools, as of the 2017–2018 school year.[423] The city's public school system includes nine specialized high schools to serve academically and artistically gifted students. The city government pays the Pelham Public Schools to educate a very small, detached section of the Bronx.[424][importance?]
The New York City Charter School Center assists the setup of new charter schools.[425] There are approximately 900 additional privately run secular and religious schools in the city.[426]
Higher education and researchMore than a million students, the highest number of any city in the United States,[427] are enrolled in New York City's more than 120 higher education institutions, with more than half a million in the City University of New York (CUNY) system alone as of 2020, including both degree and professional programs.[428] According to Academic Ranking of World Universities, New York City has, on average, the best higher education institutions of any global city.[429]
The public CUNY system is one of the largest universities in the nation,[citation needed] comprising 25 institutions across all five boroughs: senior colleges, community colleges, and other graduate/professional schools. The public State University of New York (SUNY) system includes campuses in New York City, including SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University, Fashion Institute of Technology, SUNY Maritime College, and SUNY College of Optometry.
New York City is home to such notable private universities as Barnard College, Columbia University, Cooper Union, Fordham University, New York University, New York Institute of Technology, Rockefeller University, and Yeshiva University; several of these universities are ranked among the top universities in the world,[430][431] while some of the world's most prestigious institutions like Princeton University and Yale University remain in the New York metropolitan area.
The city hosts other smaller private colleges and universities, including many religious and special-purpose institutions, such as Pace University, St. John's University, The Juilliard School, Manhattan College, Adelphi University - Brooklyn, Mercy College (New York), The College of Mount Saint Vincent, Parsons School of Design, The New School, Pratt Institute, New York Film Academy, The School of Visual Arts, The King's College, Marymount Manhattan College, and Wagner College.
Much of the scientific research in the city is done in medicine and the life sciences. In 2019, the New York metropolitan area ranked first on the list of cities and metropolitan areas by share of published articles in life sciences.[14] New York City has the most postgraduate life sciences degrees awarded annually in the United States, and in 2012, 43,523 licensed physicians were practicing in New York City.[432] There are 127 Nobel laureates with roots in local institutions as of 2004.[433]
Major biomedical research institutions include Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Rockefeller University, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, and Weill Cornell Medical College, being joined by the Cornell University/Technion-Israel Institute of Technology venture on Roosevelt Island. The graduates of SUNY Maritime College in the Bronx earned the highest average annual salary of any university graduates in the United States, $144,000 as of 2017.[434][importance?]
Human resourcesPublic healthMain articles: New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation and New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
New York-Presbyterian Hospital, affiliated with Columbia University and Cornell University, is the largest hospital and largest private employer in New York City and one of the world's busiest hospitals.[435]The New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) operates the public hospitals and outpatient clinics as a public benefit corporation. As of 2021, HHC is the largest municipal healthcare system in the United States with $10.9 billion in annual revenues,[436] HHC is the largest municipal healthcare system in the United States[repetition] serving 1.4 million patients, including more than 475,000 uninsured city residents.[437] HHC was created in 1969 by the New York State Legislature as a public benefit corporation (Chapter 1016 of the Laws 1969).[438][importance?] HHC operates 11 acute care hospitals, five nursing homes, six diagnostic and treatment centers, and more than 70 community-based primary care sites, serving primarily the poor and working class. HHC's MetroPlus Health Plan is one of the New York area's largest providers of government-sponsored health insurance and is the plan of choice for nearly half a million New Yorkers.[439][third-party source needed]
HHC's facilities annually provide millions of New Yorkers services interpreted in more than 190 languages.[440] The most well-known hospital in the HHC system is Bellevue Hospital, the oldest public hospital in the United States. Bellevue is the designated hospital for treatment of the President of the United States and other world leaders if they become sick or injured while in New York City.[441] The president of HHC is Ramanathan Raju, MD, a surgeon and former CEO of the Cook County health system in Illinois.[442][importance?] In August 2017, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed legislation outlawing pharmacies from selling cigarettes once their existing licenses to do so expired, beginning in 2018.[443][needs update] New York City enforces a right-to-shelter law guaranteeing shelter to anyone who needs it, regardless of their immigration, socioeconomic, or housing status, which entails providing adequate shelter and food.[23]
Public safetyPolice and law enforcementMain articles: New York City Police Department and Law enforcement in New York CityFurther information: Police surveillance in New York City and Crime in New York City
The New York Police Department (NYPD), the largest police force in the United States
NYPD police officers in BrooklynThe New York Police Department (NYPD) is the largest police force in the United States by a significant margin, with more than 35,000 sworn officers.[444] Members of the NYPD are frequently referred to by politicians, the media, and their own police cars by the nickname, New York's Finest.
Crime overall has trended downward in New York City since the 1990s.[445] In 2012, the NYPD came under scrutiny for its stop-and-frisk program,[446][447][448] which has undergone several policy revisions since then.[citation needed] In 2014, New York City had the third-lowest murder rate among the largest U.S. cities,[449] having become significantly safer after a spike in crime in the 1970s through 1990s.[450] Violent crime in New York City decreased more than 75% from 1993 to 2005, and continued decreasing during periods when the nation as a whole saw increases.[451] By 2002, New York City was ranked 197th in crime among the 216 U.S. cities with populations greater than 100,000.[451] In 1992, the city recorded 2,245 murders.[452] In 2005, the homicide rate was at its lowest level since 1966,[453] and in 2009, the city recorded fewer than 461 homicides for the first time ever since crime statistics were first published in 1963.[452] New York City has stricter gun laws than most other cities in the U.S.—a license to own any firearm is required in New York City, and the NY SAFE Act of 2013 banned assault weapons—and New York State had the fifth lowest gun death rate of the states in 2020.[454] New York City recorded 491 murders in 2021.[455]
Organized crime has long been associated with New York City, beginning with the Forty Thieves and the Roach Guards in the Five Points neighborhood in the 1820s, followed by the Tongs in the same neighborhood, which ultimately evolved into Chinatown, Manhattan. The 20th century saw a rise in the Mafia, dominated by the Five Families, as well as in gangs, including the Black Spades.[456] The Mafia and gang presence has declined in the city in the 21st century.[457][458]
FirefightingMain article: New York City Fire Department
The Fire Department of New York (FDNY), the largest municipal fire department in the United StatesThe Fire Department of New York (FDNY) provides fire protection, technical rescue, primary response to biological, chemical, and radioactive hazards, and emergency medical services for the five boroughs of New York City. The FDNY is the largest municipal fire department in the United States and the second largest in the world after the Tokyo Fire Department.[citation needed] The FDNY employs approximately 11,080 uniformed firefighters and more than 3,300 uniformed EMTs and paramedics.[citation needed] The FDNY's motto is New York's Bravest.
The fire department faces multifaceted firefighting challenges in many ways unique to New York. In addition to responding to building types that range from wood-frame single family homes to high-rise structures, the FDNY responds to fires that occur in the New York City Subway.[459] Secluded bridges and tunnels, as well as large parks and wooded areas that can give rise to brush fires, also present challenges.
The FDNY is headquartered at 9 MetroTech Center in Downtown Brooklyn,[460] and the FDNY Fire Academy is on the Randalls Island.[461] There are three Bureau of Fire Communications alarm offices which receive and dispatch alarms to appropriate units. One office, at 11 Metrotech Center in Brooklyn, houses Manhattan/Citywide, Brooklyn, and Staten Island Fire Communications; the Bronx and Queens offices are in separate buildings.[importance?]
Public library system
The Stephen A. Schwarzman Headquarters Building of the New York Public Library at Fifth Avenue and 42nd StreetThe New York Public Library (NYPL) has the largest collection of any public library system in the United States.[462] Queens is served by the Queens Borough Public Library (QPL), the nation's second-largest public library system, while the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) serves Brooklyn.[462]
CultureMain article: Culture of New York CityFurther information: LGBT culture in New York City, Music of New York City, List of nightclubs in New York City, List of LGBT people from New York City, List of people from New York City, New York Fashion Week, and Met Gala
(from right to left) The John Golden Theatre, Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre, Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre, and Booth Theatre on West 45th Street in Manhattan's Theater DistrictNew York City has been described as the cultural capital of the world.[463][464][465][466] In describing New York, author Tom Wolfe said, "Culture just seems to be in the air, like part of the weather."[467]
The city is the birthplace of many cultural movements, including the Harlem Renaissance in literature and visual art;[468][469] abstract expressionism (known as the New York School) in painting; and hip-hop,[189][470] punk,[471] hardcore,[472] salsa, freestyle, Tin Pan Alley, certain forms of jazz,[473] and (along with Philadelphia) disco in music. New York City has been considered the dance capital of the world.[474][475] New York has long had a flourishing scene for Jewish American literature.[citation needed]
The city is frequently the setting for novels, movies (see List of films set in New York City), and television programs. New York Fashion Week is one of the world's preeminent fashion events and is afforded extensive coverage by the media.[476][477] New York has frequently been ranked the top fashion capital of the world on the annual list compiled by the Global Language Monitor.[478]
One of the most common traits attributed to New York City is its fast pace,[479][480][481] which spawned the term New York minute.[482] Journalist Walt Whitman characterized New York's streets as being traversed by "hurrying, feverish, electric crowds".[481]
New York City's residents are prominently known for their resilience historically, and more recently related to their management of the impacts of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and the COVID-19 pandemic.[483][484][485] New York was voted the world's most resilient city in 2021 and 2022 per Time Out's global poll of urban residents.[484]
Carnegie HallNew York City has more than 2,000 arts and cultural organizations and more than 500 art galleries.[486] The city government funds the arts with a larger annual budget than the National Endowment for the Arts.[486] Wealthy business magnates in the 19th century built a network of major cultural institutions, such as Carnegie Hall and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which have become internationally renowned. The advent of electric lighting led to elaborate theater productions,[citation needed] and in the 1880s, New York City theaters on Broadway and along 42nd Street began featuring a new stage form that became known as the Broadway musical. Strongly influenced by the city's immigrants, productions such as those of Harrigan and Hart, George M. Cohan, and others used song in narratives that often reflected themes of hope and ambition.[citation needed] New York City itself is the subject or background of many plays and musicals.
Performing artsMain articles: Broadway theatre and Music of New York City
The Lincoln Center houses internationally renowned performing arts organizations including the New York Philharmonic, the Metropolitan Opera, the New York City Ballet, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and the Juilliard School.Broadway theatre is one of the premier forms of English-language theatre in the world, named after Broadway, the major thoroughfare that crosses Times Square,[487] sometimes referred to as "The Great White Way".[488][489][490] Forty-one venues in Midtown Manhattan's Theatre District, each with at least 500 seats, are classified as Broadway theatres. According to The Broadway League, Broadway shows sold approximately $1.27 billion worth of tickets in the 2013–2014 season, an 11.4% increase from $1.139 billion in the 2012–2013 season. Attendance in 2013–2014 stood at 12.21 million, representing a 5.5% increase from the 2012–2013 season's 11.57 million.[491] Performance artists displaying diverse skills are ubiquitous on the streets of Manhattan.[citation needed]
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, anchoring Lincoln Square on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, is home to numerous influential arts organizations, including the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, New York Philharmonic, and New York City Ballet, as well as the Vivian Beaumont Theater, the Juilliard School, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and Alice Tully Hall. The Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute is in Union Square, and Tisch School of the Arts is based at New York University, while Central Park SummerStage presents free music concerts in Central Park.[492]
Visual artsMain article: List of museums and cultural institutions in New York City
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, part of Museum Mile, is one of the largest museums in the world.[493]New York City is home to hundreds of cultural institutions and historic sites. Museum Mile is the name for a section of Fifth Avenue running from 82nd to 105th streets on the Upper East Side of Manhattan,[494] in the upper portion of Carnegie Hill.[495] Nine museums occupy the length of this section of Fifth Avenue, making it one of the densest displays of culture in the world.[496] Its art museums include the Guggenheim, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Neue Galerie New York, and The Africa Center. In addition to other programming, the museums collaborate for the annual Museum Mile Festival, held each year in June, to promote the museums and increase visitation.[497] Many of the world's most lucrative art sales are held in New York City.[498][499]
CuisineMain articles: Cuisine of New York City, List of restaurants in New York City, and List of Michelin starred restaurants in New York CityPeople crowd around white tents in the foreground next to a red brick wall with arched windows. Above and to the left is a towering stone bridge.Smorgasburg, which opened in 2011 as an open-air food market, is part of the Brooklyn Flea.[500]New York City's food culture includes an array of international cuisines influenced by the city's immigrant history. Central and Eastern European immigrants, especially Jewish immigrants from those regions, brought bagels, cheesecake, hot dogs, knishes, and delicatessens (delis) to the city. Italian immigrants brought New York-style pizza and Italian cuisine into the city, while Jewish immigrants and Irish immigrants brought pastrami[501] and corned beef,[502] respectively. Chinese and other Asian restaurants, sandwich joints, trattorias, diners, and coffeehouses are ubiquitous throughout the city. Some 4,000 mobile food vendors licensed by the city, many immigrant-owned, have made Middle Eastern foods such as falafel and kebabs[503] examples of modern New York street food. The city is home to "nearly one thousand of the finest and most diverse haute cuisine restaurants in the world", according to Michelin.[504] The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene assigns letter grades to the city's restaurants based on inspection results.[505] As of 2019, there were 27,043 restaurants in the city, up from 24,865 in 2017.[506] The Queens Night Market in Flushing Meadows–Corona Park attracts more than ten thousand people nightly to sample food from more than 85 countries.[507]
The annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, the world's largest parade[508]
The annual Halloween Parade in Greenwich Village, the world's largest Halloween parade[509]New York City is well known for its street parades, the majority held in Manhattan. The primary orientation of the annual street parades is typically from north to south, marching along major avenues. The annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is the world's largest parade,[508] beginning alongside Central Park[importance?] and proceeding southward to the Flagship Macy's Herald Square store;[510] the parade is viewed on telecasts worldwide and draws millions of spectators in person.[508] Other notable parades including the annual New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade in March, the NYC LGBT Pride March in June, the LGBT-inspired Greenwich Village Halloween Parade in October, and numerous parades commemorating the independence days of many nations. Ticker-tape parades celebrating championships won by sports teams as well as other accomplishments march northward along the Canyon of Heroes on Broadway from Bowling Green to City Hall Park in Lower Manhattan.
Accent and dialectMain articles: New York City English and New York accentThe New York area is home to a distinctive regional accent and speech pattern called the New York dialect, alternatively known as Brooklynese or New Yorkese. It has been considered one of the most recognizable accents within American English.[511] The traditional New York area speech pattern is known for its rapid delivery, and its accent is characterized as non-rhotic so that the sound [ɹ] does not appear at the end of a syllable or immediately before a consonant, therefore the pronunciation of the city name as "New Yawk".[512] The classic version of the New York City dialect is centered on middle- and working-class New Yorkers. The influx of non-European immigrants in recent decades has led to changes in this distinctive dialect,[512] and the traditional form of this speech pattern is no longer as prevalent.[512]
SportsMain article: Sports in the New York metropolitan areaSee also: Traditional games of New York CityThree runners in a race down a street where onlookers are cheering behind barriers.The New York Marathon, held annually in November, is the largest marathon in the world.[513]A tennis stadium pack with fans watching a grass court.The U.S. Open Tennis Championships are held every August and September in Flushing Meadows–Corona Park in Queens.A baseball stadium from behind home plate in the evening.Citi Field, also in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, has been home to the New York Mets since 2009.
Yankee Stadium in The Bronx is home to the New York Yankees and New York City FC.
Madison Square Garden in Midtown Manhattan is home to the New York Knicks, New York Rangers, and St. John's Red Storm.
Barclays Center, home to the Brooklyn Nets of the National Basketball Association and the New York Liberty of the Women's National Basketball Association
UBS Arena, home of the New York Islanders of the National Hockey League (NHL)New York City is home to the headquarters of the National Football League,[514] Major League Baseball,[515] the National Basketball Association,[516] the National Hockey League,[517] and Major League Soccer.[518] The New York metropolitan area hosts the most sports teams in the first four major North American professional sports leagues with nine, one more than Los Angeles, and has 11 top-level professional sports teams if Major League Soccer is included, one more than Los Angeles. Participation in professional sports in the city predates all professional leagues, as the New York Mutuals became one of the first professional baseball teams in 1869, two years before the organization of the National Association of Professional Base Ball Players, the first professional league, of which the Mutuals were founding members.
The city has played host to more than 40 major professional teams in the five sports and their respective competing leagues. Four of the ten most expensive stadiums ever built worldwide (MetLife Stadium, the new Yankee Stadium, Madison Square Garden, and Citi Field) are in the New York metropolitan area.[519] Madison Square Garden, its predecessor, the original Yankee Stadium and Ebbets Field, are sporting venues in New York City, the latter two having been commemorated on U.S. postage stamps. New York was the first of eight American cities to have won titles in all four major leagues (MLB, NHL, NFL and NBA), having done so following the Knicks' 1970 title. In 1972, it became the first city to win titles in five sports when the Cosmos won the NASL final.[citation needed]
American footballThe city is represented in the National Football League by the New York Giants and the New York Jets, although both teams play their home games at MetLife Stadium in nearby East Rutherford, New Jersey,[520] which hosted Super Bowl XLVIII in 2014.[521]
BaseballNew York has been described as the "Capital of Baseball".[522] There have been 35 Major League Baseball World Series and 73 pennants won by New York teams. It is one of only five metro areas to host two Major League Baseball teams, the others being Los Angeles, Chicago, Baltimore–Washington, and until the Athletics depart Oakland, California, the San Francisco Bay Area. Additionally, there have been 14 World Series in which two New York City teams played each other, known as a Subway Series and occurring most recently in 2000. No other metropolitan area has had this happen more than once (Chicago in 1906, St. Louis in 1944, and the San Francisco Bay Area in 1989).[citation needed]
The city's two Major League Baseball teams are the New York Mets, who play at Citi Field in Queens,[523] and the New York Yankees, who play at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. These teams compete in six games of interleague play every regular season that has come to be called the Subway Series.[repetition] The Yankees have won a record 27 championships,[524] while the Mets have won the World Series twice.[525] The city was once home to the Brooklyn Dodgers (now the Los Angeles Dodgers), who won the World Series once,[526] and the New York Giants (now the San Francisco Giants), who won the World Series five times. Both teams moved to California in 1958.[527] There is one Minor League Baseball team in the city, the Mets-affiliated Brooklyn Cyclones,[528] and the city gained a club in the independent Atlantic League when the Staten Island FerryHawks began play in 2022.[529]
BasketballThe city's National Basketball Association teams are the Brooklyn Nets (previously known as the New York Nets and New Jersey Nets as they moved around the metropolitan area[importance?]) and the New York Knicks, while the New York Liberty is the city's Women's National Basketball Association team. The first national college-level basketball championship, the National Invitation Tournament, was held in New York in 1938 and remains in the city.[530] The city is well known for its links to basketball, which is played in nearly every park in the city by local youth, many of whom have gone on to play for major college programs and in the NBA.[citation needed]
Ice hockeyThe metropolitan area is home to three National Hockey League teams. The New York Rangers, the traditional representative of the city itself and one of the league's Original Six, play at Madison Square Garden in Manhattan. The New York Islanders, traditionally representing Nassau and Suffolk Counties of Long Island, play in UBS Arena in Elmont, New York, and played in Brooklyn's Barclays Center from 2015 to 2020. The New Jersey Devils play at Prudential Center in nearby Newark, New Jersey and traditionally represent the counties of neighboring New Jersey which are coextensive with the boundaries of the New York metropolitan area and media market.
SoccerMain article: Soccer in the New York metropolitan areaIn soccer, New York City is represented by New York City FC of Major League Soccer, who play their home games at Yankee Stadium[531] and the New York Red Bulls, who play their home games at Red Bull Arena in nearby Harrison, New Jersey.[532] NJ/NY Gotham FC plays their home games in Red Bull Arena, representing the metropolitan area in the National Women's Soccer League. Historically, the city is known for the New York Cosmos, the highly successful former professional soccer team which was the American home of Pelé.[citation needed] A new version of the New York Cosmos was formed in 2010, and most recently played in the third-division National Independent Soccer Association before going on hiatus in January 2021. New York was a host city for the 1994 FIFA World Cup[533] and will be one of eleven US host cities for the 2026 FIFA World Cup.[534]
Tennis and otherThe annual United States Open Tennis Championships is one of the world's four Grand Slam tennis tournaments and is held at the National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, Queens.[535] The New York City Marathon, which courses through all five boroughs, is the world's largest running marathon,[513] with 51,394 finishers in 2016[536] and 98,247 applicants for the 2017 race.[513][needs update] The Millrose Games is an annual track and field meet whose featured event is the Wanamaker Mile. Boxing is a prominent part of the city's sporting scene, with events like the Amateur Boxing Golden Gloves being held at Madison Square Garden each year.[537][failed verification] The city is considered the host of the Belmont Stakes, the last, longest and oldest of horse racing's Triple Crown races, held just over the city's border at Belmont Park. The city hosted the 1932 U.S. Open golf tournament and the 1930 and 1939 PGA Championships, and has hosted both events several times, most notably[citation needed] for nearby Winged Foot Golf Club. The Gaelic games are played in Riverdale, Bronx at Gaelic Park, home to the New York GAA, the only North American team to compete at the senior inter-county level.[citation needed]
International eventsNew York City hosted the 1984 Summer Paralympics and the 1998 Goodwill Games. New York City's offer to host the 2012 Summer Olympics was one of five finalists, but lost out to article: Environmental issues in New York CityTwo yellow taxis on a narrow street lined with shops.As of 2012, New York City had about 6,000 hybrid taxis in service, the largest number of any city in North America.[539]Environmental issues in New York City are affected by the city's size, density, abundant public transportation infrastructure, and its location at the mouth of the Hudson River. For example, it is one of the country's biggest sources of pollution and has the lowest per-capita greenhouse gas emissions rate and electricity usage. Governors Island is planned to host a US$1 billion research and education center to make New York City the global leader in addressing the climate crisis.[540]
Environmental impact reduction
Sunset Park Material Recovery Facility at the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal in the Sunset ParkAs an oceanic port city, New York City is vulnerable to the long-term manifestations of global warming and rising seas. Climate change has spawned the development of a significant climate resiliency and Environmental sustainability economy in the city. Governors Island is slated to host a US$1 billion research and education center intended to establish New York's role as the global leader in addressing the climate crisis.[541] New York City has focused on reducing its Environmental impact and carbon footprint.[542] Mass transit use in New York City is the highest in the United States. Also, by 2010, the city had 3,715 hybrid taxis and other clean diesel vehicles, representing around 28% of New York's taxi fleet in service, the most of any city in North America.[543] New York City is the host of Climate Week NYC, the largest Climate Week to take place globally and regarded as major annual climate summit.[citation needed]
New York's high rate of public transit use, more than 200,000 daily cyclists as of 2014,[544] and many pedestrian commuters make it the most energy-efficient major city in the United States.[545] Walk and bicycle modes of travel account for 21% of all modes for trips in the city; nationally the rate for metro regions is about 8%.[546] In both its 2011 and 2015 rankings, Walk Score named New York City the most walkable large city in the United States,[547][548][549] and in 2018, Stacker ranked New York the most walkable U.S. city.[550] Citibank sponsored public bicycles for the city's bike-share project, which became known as Citi Bike, in 2013.[551] New York City's numerical "in-season cycling indicator" of bicycling in the city had hit an all-time high of 437 when measured in 2014.[552]
The city government was a petitioner in the landmark Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency Supreme Court case forcing the EPA to regulate greenhouse gases as pollutants.[citation needed] The city is a leader in the construction of energy-efficient green office buildings, including the Hearst Tower among others.[197] Mayor Bill de Blasio has committed to an 80% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions between 2014 and 2050 to reduce the city's contributions to climate change, beginning with a comprehensive "Green Buildings" plan.[542]
Water purity and availabilityMain articles: Food and water in New York City and New York City water supply system
Ridgewood Reservoir on the border between the New York City boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens, within what is now Highland ParkThe New York City drinking water supply is extracted from the protected Catskill Mountains watershed.[553] As a result of the watershed's integrity and undisturbed natural water filtration system, New York is one of only four major cities in the United States the majority of whose drinking water is pure enough not to require purification through water treatment plants.[554] The city's municipal water system is the largest in the United States, moving over one billion gallons of water per day;[555] a leak in the Delaware aqueduct results in some 20 million gallons a day being lost under the Hudson River.[556] The Croton Watershed north of the city is undergoing construction of a $3.2 billion water purification plant to augment New York City's water supply by an estimated 290 million gallons daily, representing a greater than 20% addition to the city's current availability of water.[557] The ongoing expansion of New York City Water Tunnel No. 3, an integral part of the New York City water supply system, is the largest capital construction project in the city's history,[558] with segments serving Manhattan and the Bronx completed, and with segments serving Brooklyn and Queens planned for construction in 2020.[559][needs update] In 2018, New York City announced a $1 billion investment to protect the integrity of its water system and to maintain the purity of its unfiltered water supply.[555]
Air qualityAccording to the 2016 World Health Organization Global Urban Ambient Air Pollution Database,[560] the annual average concentration in New York City's air of particulate matter measuring 2.5 micrometers or less (PM2.5) was 7.0 micrograms per cubic meter, or 3.0 micrograms within the recommended limit of the WHO Air Quality Guidelines for the annual mean PM2.5.[561] The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, in partnership with Queens College, conducts the New York Community Air Survey to measure pollutants at about 150 locations.[562]
Environmental revitalizationNewtown Creek, a 3.5-mile (6-kilometer) a long estuary that forms part of the border between the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens, is designated a Superfund site for Environmental clean-up and remediation of the waterway's recreational and economic resources for many communities.[563] One of the most heavily used bodies of water in the Port of New York and New Jersey, it had been one of the most contaminated industrial sites in the country,[564] containing years of discarded toxins, an estimated 30 million US gallons (110,000 m3) of spilled oil, including the Greenpoint oil spill, raw sewage from New York City's sewer system,[564] and other accumulation.
Government and politicsMain articles: Government of New York City, Politics of New York City, and Elections in New York CityGovernment
New York City Hall is the oldest City Hall in the United States that still houses its original governmental functions.[citation needed]
New York County Courthouse houses the New York Supreme Court and other governmental offices.New York City has been a metropolitan municipality with a Strong mayor–council form of government[565] since its consolidation in 1898. The city government is responsible for public education, correctional institutions, public safety, recreational facilities, sanitation, water supply, and welfare services.
The City Council is a unicameral body of 51 council members whose districts are defined by geographic population boundaries.[566] Each term for the mayor and council members lasts four years and has a two consecutive-term limit,[567] which is reset after a four-year break. The New York City Administrative Code, the New York City Rules, and the City Record are the code of local laws, compilation of regulations, and official journal, respectively.[568][569]
Each borough is coextensive with a judicial district of the state Unified Court System, of which the Criminal Court and the Civil Court are the local courts, while the New York Supreme Court conducts major trials and appeals. Manhattan hosts the First Department of the Supreme Court, Appellate Division while Brooklyn hosts the Second Department. There are several extrajudicial administrative courts, which are executive agencies and not part of the state Unified Court System.
Uniquely among major American cities,[citation needed] New York is divided between, and is host to the main branches of, two different U.S. district courts: the District Court for the Southern District of New York, whose main courthouse is on Foley Square near City Hall in Manhattan and whose jurisdiction includes Manhattan and the Bronx; and the District Court for the Eastern District of New York, whose main courthouse is in Brooklyn and whose jurisdiction includes Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and U.S. Court of International Trade are based in New York, also on Foley Square in Manhattan.
Eric Adams, the current Mayor of New York CityThe present mayor is Eric Adams. He was elected in 2021 with 67% of the vote, and assumed office on January 1, 2022. The Democratic Party holds the majority of public offices. As of April 2016, 69% of registered voters in the city are Democrats and 10% are Republicans.[570] New York City has not been carried by a Republican presidential election since President Calvin Coolidge won the five boroughs in 1924. A Republican candidate for statewide office has not won all five boroughs of the city since it was incorporated in 1898. In 2012, Democrat Barack Obama became the first presidential candidate of any party to receive more than 80% of the overall vote in New York City, sweeping all five boroughs.[importance?] Party platforms center on affordable housing, education, and economic development, and labor politics are of importance in the city.[citation needed] Thirteen out of 26 U.S. congressional districts in the state of New York include portions of New York City.[571]
New York City is the most important geographical source of political fundraising in the United States. At least four of the top five ZIP Codes in the nation for political contributions were in Manhattan for the 2004, 2006, and 2008 elections. The top ZIP Code, 10021 on the Upper East Side, generated the most money for the 2004 presidential campaigns of George W. Bush and John Kerry.[572][excessive detail?] The city has a strong imbalance of payments with the national and state governments. It receives 83 cents in services for every $1 it sends to the federal government in taxes (or annually sends $11.4 billion more than it receives back). City residents and businesses also sent an additional $4.1 billion in the 2009–2010 fiscal year to the state of New York than the city received in return.[573]
TransportationMain article: Transportation in New York CityRapid transit
Port Authority Bus Terminal, the world's busiest bus station, at Eighth Avenue and 42nd Street[574]Mass transit in New York City, most of which runs 24 hours a day, accounts for one in every three users of mass transit in the United States, and two-thirds of the nation's rail riders live in the New York City metropolitan area.[575][576]
BusesNew York City's public bus fleet runs 24/7 and is the largest in North America.[577] The Port Authority Bus Terminal, the main intercity bus terminal of the city, serves 7,000 buses and 200,000 commuters daily, making it the busiest bus station in the world.[574]
RailMain article: New York City SubwayA row of yellow taxis in front of a multi-story ornate stone building with three huge arched windows.New York City is home to the two busiest train stations in the U.S., Grand Central Terminal (pictured) and Penn Station.The front end of a subway train, with a red E on a LED display on the top. To the right of the train is a platform with a group of people waiting for their train.The New York City Subway, the world's largest rapid transit system by number of stationsThe New York City Subway system is the largest rapid transit system in the world when measured by stations in operation, with 472, and by length of routes. Nearly all of New York's subway system is open 24 hours a day, in contrast to the overnight shutdown common to systems in most cities.[578] The New York City Subway is the busiest metropolitan rail transit system in the Western Hemisphere,[579] with 1.70 billion passenger rides in 2019,[580] while Grand Central Terminal, referred to as "Grand Central Station", is the world's largest railway station by number of train platforms.[581]
Public transport is widely used in New York City. 54.6% of New Yorkers commuted to work in 2005 using mass transit.[582] This is in contrast to the rest of the United States, where 91% of commuters travel in automobiles to their workplace.[583] According to the New York City Comptroller, workers in the New York City area spend an average of 6 hours and 18 minutes getting to work each week, the longest commute time in the nation among large cities.[584] New York is the only U.S. city in which a majority (52%) of households do not have a car; only 22% of Manhattanites own a car.[585] Due to their high usage of mass transit, New Yorkers spend less of their household income on transportation than the national average, saving $19 billion annually on transportation compared to other urban Americans.[586]
New York City's commuter rail network is the largest in North America.[575] The rail network, connecting New York City to its suburbs, consists of the Long Island Rail Road, Metro-North Railroad, and New Jersey Transit. The combined systems converge at Grand Central Terminal and Pennsylvania Station and contain more than 250 stations and 20 rail lines.[575] For 24 hours a day, the elevated AirTrain system in Queens connects JFK International Airport to the New York City Subway and the Long Island Rail Road; a separate AirTrain system is planned alongside the Grand Central Parkway to connect LaGuardia Airport to these transit systems.[587][588] For inter-city rail, New York City is served by Amtrak, whose busiest station by a significant margin is Pennsylvania Station on the West Side of Manhattan, from which Amtrak provides connections to Boston, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C. along the Northeast Corridor, and long-distance train service to other North American cities.[589]
The Staten Island Railway rapid transit system solely serves Staten Island, operating 24 hours a day. The Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH train) links Midtown and Lower Manhattan to northEastern New Jersey. Like the New York City Subway, the PATH operates 24 hours a day; meaning three of the six rapid transit systems in the world which operate on 24-hour schedules are wholly or partly in New York (the others are a portion of the Chicago "L", the PATCO Speedline serving Philadelphia, and the Copenhagen heavy rail transit projects under construction in New York City include the Second Avenue Subway.[592]
AirMain article: Aviation in the New York metropolitan area
John F. Kennedy Airport in QueensNew York's airspace is the busiest in the United States and one of the world's busiest air transportation corridors. The three busiest airports in the New York metropolitan area include John F. Kennedy International Airport, Newark Liberty International Airport, and LaGuardia Airport; 130.5 million travelers used these three airports in 2016.[593] JFK and Newark Liberty were the busiest and fourth busiest U.S. gateways for international air passengers, respectively, in 2012; as of 2011, JFK was the busiest airport for international passengers in North America.[594]
Plans have advanced to expand passenger volume at a fourth airport, Stewart International Airport near Newburgh, New York, by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.[595] Plans were announced in July 2015 to entirely rebuild LaGuardia Airport in a multibillion-dollar project to replace its aging facilities[needs update].[596] Other commercial airports in or serving the New York metropolitan area include Long Island MacArthur Airport, Trenton–Mercer Airport and Westchester County Airport. The primary general aviation airport serving the area is Teterboro Airport.
Ferries, taxis and tramsMain articles: Staten Island Ferry, NYC Ferry, Taxis of New York City, and Roosevelt Island Tramway
The Staten Island Ferry shuttles commuters between Manhattan and Staten Island.The Staten Island Ferry is the world's busiest ferry route, carrying more than 23 million passengers from July 2015 through June 2016 on a 5.2-mile (8.4 km) route between Staten Island and Lower Manhattan and running 24/7.[597][598] Other ferry systems shuttle commuters between Manhattan and other locales within the city and the metropolitan area. NYC Ferry, a NYCEDC initiative with routes planned to travel to all five boroughs, was launched in 2017.[599]
Other features of the city's transportation infrastructure encompass 13,587 yellow taxicabs;[600] other vehicle for hire companies;[601][602] and the Roosevelt Island Tramway, an aerial tramway that transports commuters between Roosevelt Island and Manhattan Island.
Cycling networkMain article: Cycling in New York City
Citi Bike bike share service, which started in May 2013New York City has mixed cycling conditions that include urban density, relatively flat terrain, congested roadways with stop-and-go traffic, and many pedestrians. The city's large cycling population includes utility cyclists, such as delivery and messenger services; recreational cycling clubs; and an increasing number of commuters. Cycling is increasingly popular in New York City; in 2017 there were approximately 450,000 daily bike trips, compared with 170,000 in 2005.[603] As of 2017, New York City had 1,333 miles (2,145 km) of bike lanes, compared to 513 miles (826 km) in 2006.[603] As of 2019, there are 126 miles (203 km) of segregated or "protected" bike lanes citywide.[604]
Streets and highwaysFurther information: Commissioners' Plan of 1811
The Commissioners' Plan of 1811 put in place the rectangular grid plan of the streets of ManhattanStreets are also a defining feature of the city. The Commissioners' Plan of 1811 greatly influenced its physical development. Several streets and avenues, including Broadway,[605] Wall Street,[606] Madison Avenue,[359] and Seventh Avenue are used as metonyms for national industries: theater, finance, advertising, and fashion, respectively.
New York City has an extensive web of freeways and parkways, which link the city's boroughs to each other and to North Jersey, Westchester County, Long Island, and southwestern Connecticut through bridges and tunnels. Because these highways serve millions of outer borough and suburban residents who commute into Manhattan, it is common for motorists to be stranded for hours in traffic congestion that are a daily occurrence, particularly during rush hour.[607][608] Congestion pricing in New York City will go into effect in 2022 at the earliest[needs update].[609][610][611]
Unlike the rest of the United States, New York State prohibits right or left turns on red in cities with a population greater than one million, to reduce traffic collisions and increase pedestrian safety. In New York City, therefore, all turns at red lights are illegal unless a sign permitting such maneuvers is present.[612]
River crossingsFurther information: List of bridges and tunnels in New York CityManhattan and Staten Island are primarily coterminous with islands of the same names, while Queens and Brooklyn are at the west end of the larger Long Island, and the Bronx is on New York State's mainland. Manhattan Island is linked to New York City's outer boroughs and to New Jersey by an extensive network of bridges and tunnels.
The George Washington Bridge, across the Hudson River, is the world's busiest motor vehicle bridge.[613][614]The 14-lane George Washington Bridge, connecting Manhattan to New Jersey across the Hudson River, is the world's busiest motor vehicle bridge.[613][614] The Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge, spanning the Narrows between Brooklyn and Staten Island, is the longest suspension bridge in the Americas and one of the world's longest.[615][616] The Brooklyn Bridge, with its stone neo-Gothic suspension towers, is an icon of the city itself; opened in 1883, it was the first steel-wire suspension bridge and was the longest suspension bridge in the world until 1903.[617][618] The Queensboro Bridge "was the longest cantilever span in North America" from 1909 to 1917.[619] The Manhattan Bridge, opened in 1909, "is considered to be the forerunner of modern suspension bridges", and its design "served as the model for the major long-span suspension bridges" of the early 20th century.[620] The Throgs Neck Bridge and Whitestone Bridge connect Queens and the Bronx, while the Triborough Bridge connects the three boroughs of Manhattan, Queens, and the Bronx.
Lincoln TunnelThe Lincoln Tunnel, which carries 120,000 vehicles a day under the Hudson River between New Jersey and Midtown Manhattan, is the busiest vehicular tunnel in the world.[621] The tunnel was built instead of a bridge to allow unfettered passage of large passenger and cargo ships that sailed through New York Harbor and up the Hudson River to Manhattan's piers. The Holland Tunnel, connecting Lower Manhattan to Jersey City, New Jersey, was the first mechanically ventilated vehicular tunnel when it opened in 1927.[622][623] The Queens–Midtown Tunnel, built to relieve congestion on the bridges connecting Manhattan with Queens and Brooklyn, was the largest non-federal project in its time when it was completed in 1940.[624] The Brooklyn–Battery Tunnel (officially known as the Hugh L. Carey Tunnel) runs underneath Battery Park and connects the Financial District in Lower Manhattan to Red Hook in Brooklyn.



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