Reading, as one does, about Robert Murray, once owner of the most shipping tonnage in New York, until he retired to a 29-acre farm on Manhattan which he called Inclenberg but everyone else called – and still calls – Murray Hill.
Mrs. Murray is sometimes credited with delaying the British as they pursued the haggard Continental army across Manhattan after being nearly destroyed at the Battle of Brooklyn. Supposedly she offered them tea and cakes and her feminine charm. David McCullough in 1776 counters: ”she may have been extremely charming, but she was also a woman in her fifties and the mother of twelve children.”
In Murray Hill today is Sniffen Court, an alley off 36th Street built in 1863-4. Here’s some good photos.
And this curious bit from Curbed:
Right on 36th Street, 1 Sniffen Court has been owned by the Amateur Comedy Club since 1884, and the building is registered as a legitimate theater. Additional research shows that the amateur theater group was a private one, operated strictly by and for the amusement of its own members and social circle with no public performances. The group dramatically broke their private character during World War I, when it became a dramatic theater company for the entertainment and benefit of military service members.
Here’s the Amateur Comedy Club website. One hopes they provide welcome relief from the excessive professionalism of other comedy clubs.
from Edward Robb Ellis’ The Epic Of New York City
A delicacy of the day was orange butter, made according to this recipe: ”Take new cream two gallons, beat it up to a thicknesse, then add half a pint of orange-flower-water, and as much red wine, and so being become the thicknesse of butter it has both the colour and smell of butter.” Drunkenness was common.
Is an under-visited place. Pittsburgh Office told us about it awhile ago
H.P. Lovecraft referred to the “strange and disturbing paintings of Nicholas Roerich” in his Antarctic horror story At the Mountains of Madness.
View from Mount Holyoke, Northampton, Massachusetts, after a Thunderstorm—The Oxbow – Thomas Cole, 1836Posted: August 24, 2012
go over to the Met and see it big.
Cole learned the rudiments of his profession from a wandering portrait painter named Stein
The fourth-highest peak in the Catskills is named after Thomas Cole:
How did you motivate yourself?
That was easy. It was simply money and fame. I was aware as anyone is, that in this world you can just be swept away. I’m aware of this just as much now. New York is a great place to be reminded of it. You arrive here, and Good Lord, you find out in ten seconds that nothing whatever matters, especially your own small life. So I knew I had to write a book that would be the best work in the world. It was that simple.
rest here. FYI The Ginger Man is not the best work in the world. Some writers are better at playing writer than writing. There is a sentence or two in The Ginger Man that I think about lots, though.