Ephemeral New York

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Description: Chronicling an ever-changing city through faded and forgotten artifacts.

Latest Posts

March 30th
When New York’s first cholera epidemic hit in 1832 and killed 3,515 people (out of a population of 250,000), the poor took the blame. “Many city officials implicated the residents of the poorest neighborhoods for contracting cholera, blaming t… Continue Reading
March 30th
Construction workers operating a backhoe found her first. The workers were in Elmhurst, Queens, in an excavation pit building a new apartment complex. They “assumed they had hit a pipe,” explained the New York Post. “But when the claws o… Continue Reading
March 23rd
The exterior city is what unsettles you first. Streets and sidewalks are quiet, lifeless. You see other people going in and out of shops or walking the dog, yet whenever you decide to get some air, six feet away from the occasional passerby, you feel like… Continue Reading
March 23rd
Public health messaging doesn’t get more straightforward than this ad, which in plain language told the people of Brooklyn to stop “careless” spitting. (Is there any other kind?) The Brooklyn Tuberculosis Committee put out the ad, probab… Continue Reading
March 23rd
This week, plans are underway to turn the glass-encased Jacob Javits Center into a hospital for the expected surge in coronavirus patients. It sounds radical, but it wouldn’t be the first time New York quickly took a massive open space and transform… Continue Reading