Here is a list of the top ten most read stories at New York History in 2009, in descending order.
OHEKA Castle Chronicled in New Book
A new book released this year chronicled the untold story of the largest restored home in America – OHEKA Castle. The 291-page work, entitled OHEKA CASTLE Monument to Survival, is the definitive behind-the-scenes look at the 20-year and $30 million dollar historic preservation of New York’s largest home and Long Island’s largest Gold Coast mansion which, at 115,000 square feet, is more than twice the size of the White House.
NYC: Douglas Brinkley on Roosevelt, ‘-Wilderness Warrior’
Douglas Brinkley (Professor of History and Baker Institute Fellow, Rice University) looked at the pioneering environmental policies of President Theodore Roosevelt, an avid bird-watcher and naturalist at the American Museum of Natural History’s Linder Theater in New York City in April to support his new book The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America.
28th Annual Iroquois Indian Festival
The Iroquois Indian Museum of Howes Cave, New York, held its 28th Annual Iroquois Indian Festival to be held on Labor Day weekend. The festival’s goal was to foster a greater appreciation and deeper understanding of Iroquois culture through presentations of Iroquois music and social dance, traditional stories, artwork, games and food. This year’s master of ceremonies was Museum Educator, Mike Wahrare Tarbell, a member of the Turtle Clan from the Ahkwesahsne Mohawk Nation.
1609 Exhibit Will Look at Henry Hudson’s Voyage
As part of the celebration of the 2009 Hudson-Champlain Quadricentennial the New York State Office of Cultural Education (OCE) is presenting the exhibition “1609,” which re-examines Henry Hudson’s voyage, the myths that surround it, and explore the legacies of Hudson’s unexpected discovery. The exhibit runs through March of 2010 in the New York State Museum’s Exhibition Hall.
The New Amsterdam Trail, Free Downloadable Audio Tour
The Dutch and the indelible role they played in the formation of the ideas and ideals that shaped New York City and America are celebrated in a free downloadable audio walking tour of New Amsterdam featuring National Park Service Rangers and an expert cast of historians, scientists, and other great storytellers.
Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial Events
New Year’s Day 2009 marked the start of New York’s Quadricentennial celebration commemorating 400 years of history on the Hudson River, New York Harbor and Lake Champlain. Throughout the year, New York honored the 400th anniversaries of the voyage of Captain Henry Hudson, who led (for the Dutch) the first European expedition to sail up the river that now bears his name, as well as the voyage of Samuel de Champlain, the first to discover the namesake lake. Communities from the Big Apple to the Canadian border are prepared events and projects to highlight New York’s rich history of exploration and discovery.
New York’s 400th: River Day 2009 Great Flotilla
Beginning June 6, historic vessels and modern day boats traveled the Hudson River from New York Harbor to Albany for “River Day” Commemorating the Voyage of Henry Hudson. Participating boats and ships included The Half Moon, The Onrust, the Sloop Clearwater and Schooner Mystic Whaler plus the Woody Guthrie, a wooden replica of an 18th-19th century Hudson River Ferry Sloop- the 1890′-s-style pilot Schooner Adirondack- the Manhattan, an open boat originally built as a life boat to explore the canals of Amsterdam- and the Shearwater, a classic Maine Schooner. The flotilla spent eight days moving north on the Hudson, stopping at yacht clubs and marinas, and cities and communities.
French and Indian War Reenactment at Old Fort Niagara
Over the Fourth of July Weekend, more than 2,300 historic reenactors brought the 250th anniversary of the French and Indian War to life at Old Fort Niagara in Youngstown, NY. The event featured authentically-costumed 18th century British and French soldiers and American Indian warriors who recreated historic encampments and the “Siege of Fort Niagara” of July 1759.
The Mannahatta Project Uncovers NYC in 1609
A new web site was launched to show viewers what New York City looked like before it was a city. The goal of the Mannahatta Project is no less than “to re-start the natural history of New York City.” The site includes a virtual Mannahatta map that allows you to see Mannahatta from any location, block-by-block species information, lessons on the science and technology used to create the site, hundreds of layers of digital data, place-based lesson plans for elementary and high school students that meet New York State standards, an online discussion page, and event listing.
Dance Theatre of Harlem History Exhibit at NYPL
The most read story of the year at New York History was the announcement of the exhibition Dance Theatre of Harlem: 40 Years of Firsts. Through a rich and colorful mix of spectacular costumes, stage props, posters, programs, intimate photographs and video recordings, the exhibit in the Vincent Astor Gallery of The New York Public Library (no longer running) traced the history of the company, its community outreach, renowned productions and cast of legendary dancers, fans and supporters.