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by Gotham Gazette Staff, Mar 14, 2012
 

African Burial Grounds - More than 20,000 African-Americans are interred at the burial ground in Lower Manhattan, discovered during construction on a federal office building in 1991. Visitors to this site, maintained by the New York Public Library's Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture can look at photos,a map of historic African-American sites in New York and take a virtual tour of the burial ground.

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Brooklyn Daily Eagle - The main focus of this site, published by the Brooklyn Public Library, is to give readers access to an online archive of the Brooklyn Eagle. Each daily paper from late 1841 through 1902 is available; there's also tips for research, and a history and timeline of the paper. In total, there are 147,000 pages of newspaper to read.

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Brooklyn Genealogy Information Page - This Web site is intended as a jumping off point for Brooklynites researching family histories. Visitors can search for their last names and find the email addresses of possible relatives; there's also a list of links to personal genealogical pages and a place to add your own. But this site is also chock-full of obscure Brooklyn history. There is a page of obsolete street names, lots of old maps, histories of old disasters, and neighborhood stories reprinted from old newspapers.

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Early Films of New York - On this Library of Congress site, visitors can watch 45 silent films of New York City, made between 1898 and 1906. Visitors can browse or search the database, read short background essays, and get a suggested bibliography for further reading. The films themselves seem to work better on PCs than they do on Macs.

Ellis Island Immigration Museum - Once the gateway for millions to America, Ellis Island is now home to a first-rate museum that chronicles the turn-of-the-century immigrant experience. Website includes virtual family scrapbooks and an Ellis Island genealogy search.

Forgotten New York - Site creator Kevin Walsh promises a “gateway to a New York City that existed long ago -- and still exists in a hidden form today.” Categories include signs, cemeteries, street scenes ("Abandoned hospitals, ancient theatres, Brooklyn's old ballpark.."), street lamps, subways ("Outdated signs, doorways to nowhere, closed stations, disappeared and forgotten routes"). Pictures and stories. (11/12/03)

Harlem 1900 - 1940: An African-American Community - This site stemmed from a 1991 exhibit by the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, The New York Public Library, and has continued to be updated since. The site's two dozen short articles are about Harlem during the time of its renaissance, focusing on activists, the arts, business, the community, sports, writers and intellectuals. Also included are a timeline of the Harlem Renaissance, and tips for teachers who want to incorporate the site into lessons.

Inventing Gotham - Part of a high school course for students at Fieldston High School in the Bronx, this website is an interactive map of New York -- or Manhattan at least. By clicking on marked locations, visitors can read student-written histories of that spot. The Student Web Page Projects icon on the sidebar also includes links to websites that the students have created themselves.

Lower East Side Business Improvement District - The website for the Lower East Side Business Improvement District, which promotes the historic Orchard Street shopping district. The site includes a calendar of events and lengthy lists of historical sites and businesses in the area.

Lower East Side Conservancy - The website for the Lower East Side Conservancy, an oganization whose mission is to promote and preserve Jewish culture on the Lower East Side. The site contains 360 degree interior views of two historic synagogues, a map of more historic synagogues on the Lower East Side, and information about walking tours given by the group.

Lower East Side Tenement Museum - The website for the Lower East Side Tenement Museum. Content on the site is a mixture of historical material and information about urban housing and immigrant life today. The site's features include a virtual tour of a Lower East Side tenement with audio files, illustrations of federal detention centers for immigrants, and photo essays on urban housing policy. The site also features a Lower East Side 'merchant of the month,' and provides information for educators and the general public about the museum itself.

Lower East Side Tenement Museum - The website for the Lower East Side Tenement Museum. Content on the site is a mixture of historical material and information about urban housing and immigrant life today. The site's features include a virtual tour of a Lower East Side tenement with audio files, illustrations of federal detention centers for immigrants, and photo essays on urban housing policy. The site also features a Lower East Side 'merchant of the month,' and provides information for educators and the general public about the museum itself.

LTVsquad.com - The LTV squad claims to be the city's oldest existing exploration team. This site documents their explorations through the city's "abandoned and/or unseen infrastructure." It is regularly updated with new photos.

Netherworld Online - This site is about going places in the city where you're not supposed to go. It includes enough diatribes, photographs, and links to keep anyone interested in "urban exploration" busy for some time. It says over and over that it is no longer regularly maintained, but its old stuff is still useful.

New York History - An eclectic mixture of New York History-related information and products. Early 20th century images, vintage photos on e-cards, and an early history of the New York Yankees. In large part, this is a site for buying things about New York's history, rather than for using as a research tool.

New York: A Documentary Film Online - For those who didn't get enough from the 14 and a half hour movie, the accompanying website to Ric Burns' acclaimed New York: A Documentary Film has a wealth of information about the city's history. The "Hidden New York" section has 360 degree tours of a dozen historical locations in the city; the interview gallery has excerpts from interviews with 36 prominent New Yorkers, from El Doctorow to Peter Vallone. Interactive features abound, and everything on the site is attractively presented.

NY Historical Society - The regularly updated homepage of New York Historical Society includes a daily "This Day in New York History," as well as illustrated descriptions of past, present and future exhibitions. Also available is information about the group programs and an online store.

Protecting Health for 200 Years - The New York City Department of Health turns 200 in 2005 and it has set up a page on its Web site celebrating its bicentennial. Among other things, the site has a timeline of public health in New York City, and a chart comparing public health in the city today to what it was like in 1805 (when major concerns for the upstart department were wild hogs running through the streets and animal carcasses decaying in public spaces). The calendar of events lists some interesting-sounding lunch forums to be held throughout the year, but doesn't have dates for them.

Satchmo.net - The Louis Armstrong House and Archives opened as a museum in October 2003. On the accompanying website, visitors can take a video tour of the house, and listen to Armstrong's home recordings. There is also information about current exhibits, a Louis Armstrong timeline, and a calendar that informs visitors about upcoming events at the house, and important dates in Armstrong's life.

Seneca Village - This site is based on information from the book Park and the People by Elizabeth Blackmar and Roy Rosenweig. Seneca village, located between 82nd and 89th streets between Seventh and Eighth Avenues was New York's first known community of African-American property owners. African-Americans lived in alongside Irish and German immigrants in Seneca from 1825 to 1857, when it was destroyed to make way for Central Park. This site offers pictures of original maps, census documents and information about Seneca Village and its evacuation.

Tamiment Library & Robert Wagner Labor Achives - New York University's labor archives contains various print, photographic, film, and oral history collections examining "the complex relationship between trade unionism and progressive politics and how this evolved over time." Its Web site gives a guide to this material (located in the NYU library), in addition to including several online-specific exhibits.

The History Box - This attractive site is intended to be used as a resource for historians and genealogists. The most useful sections are the directories, with entries for various topics -- Broadway, Business Matters, Inns, Occupations -- that pull together articles from elsewhere on the web and present them in one place.

The Living City NYC - This site is a timeline following issues of New York City's public health from the 1860s to the 1920s. Each decade has its own page. Major events, like the Great Blizzard of 1888 and the Tenement House Act of 1901 also get their own entries. There are also a few special exhibits on topics such as street cleaning. The site is a joint project by Columbia's school of public health, the National Science Foundation, and the Center for the History & Ethics of Public Health.

The Village Voice at 50 - The Village Voice published a special edition celebrating its 50th anniversary last week. Its Web incarnation includes a series of essays about theater, the gay movement, black journalism and other subjects by Voice writers, a neat timeline of the history of the city through the magazine's eyes over the last 50 years, and 50 front covers to remember, among other things.

Walks in New York and Elsewhere - This blog is a running commentary on the walks that architectural historian Sandra Levine takes around New York City, illustrated with photographs. Levine gives her perspective on the city's most well-known areas -- and some of its less-traveled ones as well.

Weeksville Society - Weeksville was a black community in nineteenth-century Brooklyn. Physical evidence of the community was first discovered in 1968, leading to restoration and archeological efforts in the area, now Bedford Stuyvesant. This site, dedicated to telling the story of the original and rediscovered Weeksville, offers photos, articles and information about visits, as well as audio interviews with those involved in the restoration and archeological processes.


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