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New York, New York

James A. Watkins is an entrepreneur, musician, and a writer with four non-fiction books and hundreds of magazine articles read by millions.

THE STATUE OF LIBERTY (Photograph by James A Watkins)

THE STATUE OF LIBERTY (Photograph by James A Watkins)

The Dutch Buy Manhattan Island

New York City boasts one of the largest natural ports in the world, offering a safe haven for seafaring ships. It was 'discovered' by an Italian explorer, Giovanni da Verrazzano, in 1524.

The Dutch laid claim to the city in 1621, and purchased Manhattan Island from the American Indians for about $700. The Indians were not sea merchants. The Dutch named it New Amsterdam. It is now the most valuable piece of land, and the most man-made environment, in the world.





New Amsterdam

New Amsterdam was occupied by 350 families by 1660. Four years later the city was taken over by the English, and renamed New York. It was nearly destroyed by the British during the American Revolution, before becoming an American City in 1783, with a population of 25,000. Due to the devastation, Christians set up almshouses, an older version of homeless shelters, to house and feed the 20% of the citizens whose homes were ruined.



The Erie Canal

The Erie Canal opened in 1825 linking New York City with the Great Lakes. During the next 35 years the city grew faster than any city in the history of Earth. By 1835, half of all imports and exports to and from the United States passed through New York Harbor.



The Depression of 1837

The United States suffer a depression in 1837, caused by a depression in England that resulted in the price of cotton (our main export) dropping precipitously, which was followed by England and Europe cutting off the flow of capital to America that it depended upon for its rapidly expanding economy.

To top it off, the wheat crop failed, creditors foreclosed, banks failed, and the government was nearly broke. In New York City, unemployment reached 33% and those employed suffered an average of 40% in pay cuts. 200,000 people were in utterly hopeless distress of surviving the winter. Again, Christian Charity came through the save the citizenry without any assistance from the government.



Immigration Booms

America in the 19th Century had plenty of cheap land and a scarcity of labor. 1845 to 1854 saw the greatest influx of immigrants in the nation's history. 2.4 million new citizens moved here during that decade and 2/3 of them came through New York City.

By 1860, one of every eight Americans was foreign born, with Irish and Germans by far the most numerous of them. Since these immigrants arrived with little skills, they were paid far less than the native born and faced withering discrimination. But with time, these two groups produced countless American success stories, that only the opportunities for upward mobility Free Market Capitalism can provide.



Central Park

Another depression hit in 1857. But the twenty years in between the two depressions were times of extreme prosperity in New York City, and America. In 1857, stockbrokers, banks, railroads, and all sorts of businesses went bankrupt; and charges of fraud flew in every direction.

On the bright side, Central Park, covering 843 acres, was planned by Frederick Law Olmstead for the enjoyment of the city's denizens, and was completed just in time for the outbreak of the American Civil War. This park was and is one of the most far-sighted ideas in the history of urban planning.



Boss Tweed

After the Civil War, New York City was the leader in manufacturing for the United States. The city's huge numbers of poor immigrants huddled in tenements were ripe pickings for government programs instituted by the notorious mayor Boss Tweed. He did a lot for the poor; but corruption, graft and theft were enormous in his political administration.



The Depression of 1873

Then came the greatest depression of the 19th Century in 1873. Reckless investment in America caused a worldwide financial panic. Within weeks thousands of businesses, banks, brokerage houses, and railroads went bankrupt. Hundreds of factories and mills closed; hundreds of thousands of people were suddenly out of work. In the city vacant storefronts were visible everywhere.



Wall Street

The Brooklyn Bridge was finished in 1883, not only the greatest bridge and greatest feat of engineering of its day, but a work of art.  In 1886, the Statue of Liberty opened.  In this same period, Wall Street became the financial center of America.  The invention of the elevator, and steel-frame construction, produced an astonishing vertical boom in the city.  By 1900, New York City was one of the greatest cities on earth.



New York Subway

The decade of 1900 to 1910 was the peak of immigration, this time mainly Italians and Eastern Europeans peasants—largely Catholics; but not a few Jews. The immigrants were fleeing poverty and persecution.

Ethnic neighborhoods began to spring up around the city. The "Lower East Side" of the city was the most densely populated place in the world. The spread of public schools was largely due to the desire to educate and "Americanize" immigrant children.

At the same time, a mass migration occurred inside the United States as country folk designed to leave the isolation of rural towns and farms for the bright lights of the big city.

The New York Subway was built under the city, and opened in 1904, transforming working class life as these folks could now enjoy the museums, libraries, parks, and concert venues.



Greenwich Village

In the 1910s the Bohemian culture arose in the Greenwich Village area of Manhattan, centered on literature; art; poetry; music; and subversive politics. During this same period New York became the entertainment; shopping; jewelry; and garment manufacturing center of the world. In 1913 the tallest building in the world, the Woolworth Building, celebrated its grand opening.






In 1921, the northern part of Manhattan, known as Harlem, was the largest black community in the world outside Africa, and the capital of Black America. It was a clean, airy, sunny, modern community. And it became the home of the distinctly American music known as Jazz.

The 1920s were the decade of the greatest economic boom in American history. New York was the cultural and economic center of the nation. 'Broadway' boomed as the theatre district; king of the musical play.




By 1930 New York was the most populous city on Earth, with 11 million residents. It led the world in communications, radio, newspapers, commerce, skyscrapers, sports, restaurants, amusements, and technology. It had the greatest concentration of lawyers, bankers, engineers, architects, designers, and corporations in the Western Hemisphere.

New York had become the world center of democracy, capitalism, and modernity. The Chrysler Building was completed in 1930, the tallest building in the world for 11 months. Then the Empire State Building became the top dog when it opened in 1931.



The Great Depression

The stock market crash of 1929 precipitated the Great Depression of the 1930s. Unemployment rose to 25%. This terrible time had the benefit of the city being forced to rid itself of fat in its budget, and more importantly, eliminating corruption.

New York had been transformed into the most efficiently administered city in the world by the start of World War Two. After that war ended, New York had a new wave of immigrants come to live in the city over a period of 20 years—Spanish-speakers from Latin America; and black Americans from the rural South.





The Great Decline

The city plunged into racial tension in the 1960s; witnessed 'white flight' to the suburbs; and then economic chaos brought the city to financial ruin in the 1970s. The city became too crowded, dirty, smelly, antagonistic, and violent. A huge crime wave swept through for about 20 years.



Rudolph Giuliani

The city was saved by one Rudolph Giuliani. Giuliani inherited this mess, one of the most dangerous cities in the world then, when he was elected mayor in 1993. As mayor he cleaned up the filthy city, tremendously improved the quality of life for its citizens, and accomplished what was said to be impossible: he cut crime in half, by using a novel concept—arresting, prosecuting, and incarcerating criminals; rather than coddling them by looking the other way since it must be 'society's' fault they are that way.

He became the first Republican to win a second mayoral term since Mayor LaGuardia in 1941—interestingly enough, unquestionably the greatest previous mayor the city has had. After this dramatic improvement in the safety of its law-abiding citizens, New York experienced an unprecedented boom in tourism and remains today a fabulous place to visit.



The City

I have visited New York on numerous occasions and it would take another Hub to show all of the wonderful delights one can partake of in the city today. I strongly recommend the Circle Line cruise around Manhattan Island; the double-decker tour buses; live music venues; art museums; and of course a Broadway show.

This is the most vibrant city in the world. For a first time visitor, it seems incredible. After a multitude of visits, one realizes there is no end to the discoveries, adventures, and experiences in this fascinating place. New York. The City.


James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on May 10, 2011:

Ornov.dm99— Thank you for saying so. I am glad you liked my Hub. And you are most welcome, too.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 17, 2009:

Betty Reid— Thank you! Yes, that last photo was about a month before it went down. I saw that you love museums and art and I write about art sometimes. I appreciate the visit and comments.

Betty Reid from Texas on November 17, 2009:

Great photos! My brother and sister were at the World Trade Center the week before it was hit - scary. Looks like you are doing some serious research too.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 13, 2009:

nextstopjupiter— Thank you! You are lucky to have many friends in The City; especially a gaggle of artists. I'm impressed! Thank you for the visitation and comments.

nextstopjupiter from here, there and everywhere on November 13, 2009:

Great hub - it brings back memories! I visited NYC in 1993 and 1998, I have many friends there, musicians, painters, writers, filmmakers ..., I think it is time to come back!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on August 01, 2009:

Moonchild60— That's pretty close. I have always heard that the Hampstons is one of the best places in the country to live. Unless that is wrong, you are a lucky lass.

Moonchild60 on July 31, 2009:

Oh another poor soul living in the famous "Hamptons". Sag Harbor is the South Shore of the Island, the Ocean side. I am 5 minutes away from Sag Harbor.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 31, 2009:

Moonchild60— There is no place that compares to New York. I have been to lots of Broadway plays and seen mucho live music up there. My ex-Father in law lives on the northern end of Long Island . . . Sag Harbor. Lyman Warner.

I dig the MOMA. Thanks for the visit and kind comments.

Moonchild60 on July 30, 2009:

Great Hub about New York James! I live on the tip of Long Island and "the city" is about 2 hours away but I go to Manhattan about 15 times in the Fall/Winter, sometimes I stay at hotels for a few days to squeeze in both the MET and a Broadway Play. Additionally, I am a member of MOMA so there is that and other museum trips with my 10 year old as well as the Central Park Zoo. I love New York. I can't see living any place else. Where else could I do all that?

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 29, 2009:

Peggy W— I went there again one week after 9-11 when Rudy went on TV and asked people to come to New York and spend money so too many people wouldn't lose their jobs in the hospitality industries. I stayed maybe six blocks from Ground Zero but I did not go down there. I didn't want to see it.

It sounds as if you had a great visit. I haven't seen the Rockettes but I did see Diana Krall with a full orchestra at Radio City Music Hall. I love those lunch counters. All of the food is great in New York.

Thank you for the kudos. I appreciate you. All of your work is excellent.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on July 29, 2009:

Hi James,

Great hub as I have come to expect from you. Loved the history and photos. The one and only time I was in New York City was when I was 12 years old with my parents. Took the ferry around the Statue of Liberty; saw the Rockettes perform; went up to the top of the Empire State Building; visited St. Patrick's Cathedral; ate lunch at an automat...all very new adventures for a country girl from Wisconsin at the time.

Would love to see it now as an adult. My husband was there on business one week prior to 9-11. That date will surely live on in history!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 23, 2009:

Kebennett1— You are too kind. I'll tell you, a lot of folks miss out on the history amidst all the glitz and glamour of New York, but there are many fascinating historical sites to see there. I forgot to mention Trinity Church, where many famous old timers from history are buried. It was on my outline but I skipped past it somehow. hmmm . . . oh well.

Thanks for reading and commenting.

Kebennett1 from San Bernardino County, California on July 23, 2009:

Very nice James, I said a few days ago that I had no desire to ever visit New York, New York! I have reasons to change my mind now! I believe I would miss a lot of wonderful places and sites as long as a lot of history! Thanks once again!

You have to keep writing, it is obvious, your writing makes a difference!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 21, 2009:



James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 20, 2009:

Who, me? :-)

quietnessandtrust on July 20, 2009:

He does....all drummers are mad

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 20, 2009:

Yea man! You are on a roll! Do it!

I don't have my speakers fixed yet. I have to find my receipt in this mammoth pile of papers here—mmm . . . about knee high. My office looks like a mad professor works in here. :D

quietnessandtrust on July 20, 2009:

Ummmm....well James, because scientists have concluded that drums are among the "TOP 5" most difficult instruments to master and they say that is takes a whopping 120 years to do so!!! they know how to calculate don't they? LOL :-)

It would take me that long to write the hub and I am now 47, so I am not sure if I could get it done.

1. Drums

2. Piano

3. Violin

4. Oboe (has 2 reeds)

5. Bassoon (has 2 reeds)

Not necessarily in that order, but it's in the top 5!!! And it's not "playing them" it is MASTERING THEM that they studied. Drums and piano are the only ones that also require 4 way independence, think about it. and the pianist rarely uses his left foot on that second peddle while the drummer is non stop using all 4 limbs, ten fingers and can sing too. That's why I like to think he has the most talent.

One thing the scientists do not know though, and most musicians do not either, is that a drummer / percussionist does not play an instrument, "HE IS THE INSTRUMENT"!!! Why you ask?...Because he is the only one who does not need something in order to play, that's why. Think about it, the pianist, violinist, guitarist, bassist, trumpets, saxophonist, harpist, cellist, woodwinds, trombones, etc... they all need they're instruments to make a sound!!! THE DRUMMER does not. He can play on anything, they cannot, he can play using his hands to clap, his foot to stomp. Percussion has no limits to the sounds, all others do. Hey I can make a trash can lid sound fantastic, can the violinist do that? hahahahahahahahahahaaha :-) Musicians when asked "how many are in the band?"...they say "we have 5 musicians and a drummer" hahahahaha, they admit he is not like them. The singer needs nothing either, but they sing, not play.

I have heard recordings where the whole drum set was just hands clapping, hands slapping legs, fingers snapping and a foot stomping a hard wood floor and it sounded so very, very cool man.

Rich Mullins did this here. If you have good speakers you can hear the foot on the floor too. (studio version)

Lyrics here.

Rich Mullins Screen Door Lyrics:

Rich Mullins

Matthew 7:15-20, Hebrews

6:9-10, James 2:14-26

It's about as useless as

A screen door on a submarine

Faith without works baby

It just ain't happenin'

One is your left hand

One is your right

It'll take two strong arms

To hold on tight

Some folks cut off their nose

Just to spite their face

I think you need some works to show

For your alleged faith

Well there's a difference you know

Between having faith

And playing make believe

One will make you grow

The other one just make you sleep

Talk about it (yeah)

But I really think you oughtta

Take a leap off of the ship

Before you claim to walk on water

Faith without works

Is like a song you can't sing (sing)

It's about as useless as

A screen door on a submarine

Lyrics: Screen Door, Rich Mullins [end]

He did it live here, way cool. Notice Rich has no shoes on, almost never wore shoes. Great version to watch, you try this and sing too, don't loose your cup or you wreck the song.

He also kept none of his royalties, other than to survive. When they went to where he lived after he died, they found a small trailer and his dog on an Indian Reservation, that's it. He use to minister among them.

Well, it looks like I just wrote a condensed hub,,,ROFLOL


James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 20, 2009:

badcompany99— I am glad you enjoyed it. I look forward to checking out your work as well. Thanks.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 20, 2009:

quietnessandtrust— I like that idea, a Hub about drumming. Are you going to take a crack at it?

badcompany99 on July 20, 2009:

I have been to New York once and loved it, enjoyed your hub !

quietnessandtrust on July 19, 2009:

No problem dude and fellow drummer.

Hey now there is a hub for us to write.

"The art of drums and percussion"

Trouble is, it could never be finished because drums and percussion are without your dashboard, like the table and glasses at the diner, like your legs and hands, and on and on it goes. Like Buddy Rich once said "who needs drums?"


James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

tony0724— Oddly enough, I have never been to Boston. I must go sometime. You are welcome and thank you for taking the time to read my article and leave proof that you did. :D

tony0724 from san diego calif on July 19, 2009:

Sadly James NYC Is about the only city I have not been to on the other coast . I have been to Boston many times as I have friends there . But the history lesson was great . Thx for another Informative hub my friend !

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

logic, commonsense— Thank you and you are welcome.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

gurgel1— Yes, you should.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

Joy At Home— New York City is the most fascinating place I have ever been. Number one! You are welcome and thank you!

logic,commonsense on July 19, 2009:

Interesting hub. Thanks for the history and insight.

I have never been to New York but hope to some day.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

quietnessandtrust— Thank you very much!

My family also came here from Wales—Watkins is a Welsh name.

I will pull up all of these links later and get back to you, brother. But for now, I want you to know that I very much appreciate you for visiting and leaving such valuable information.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

DynamicS— I read the New York part of your wonderful Hub about your trip—which I enjoyed thoroughly. :-)

I have heard people talk down about the double-decker bus tours and the Circle Line boat around Manhattan Island—shame on them! Both of these are wonderful, and inexpensive ways to learn the lay of the land and what it is all about.

Thank you for your remarks and you are welcome.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

Douglas— You are most welcome, sir. Thank you very much for your insightful comments. As you point out: Law and Order is not a bad thing! :-)

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

John B— Thank you. You are right. That photo is framed and sits on my coffee table. I look at every day.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

Betty Wilson— I never saw a Broadway Play until I was about 42 years old. I wasn't interested. I thought it would be boring compared to film. Boy was I wrong! After my first experience, I was hooked on live theater. I have probably attended 15 plays there since. In fact, I won't go to New York City without a Broadway Play in my itinerary.

Thanks for your commentary. It means a lot to me that you took the time to check it out and leave word. :D

gurgel1 from profile on July 19, 2009:

I should get to New York some time.

Joilene Rasmussen from United States on July 19, 2009:

For several years now, New York has been on my "Top 10" of places to visit. You just upped it in its standing on that list.

Thanks James, for the very lovely hub.

quietnessandtrust on July 19, 2009:

Yeah James, great hub dude!!!!

My family is from Staten Island. Many came over in the late 1800's and many more in the early 1900's. They came from Wales, Finland, Ireland and Italy. One of them came in 1774 on the ship "Diana", his name was Thomas Salisbury and he was a grocer. That's my last name too. It dates back to at least 1100 in town records. I am told William the conqueror

he was known as "William the Bastard" (French: Guillaume le Bâtard) because of the illegitimacy of his birth, he destroyed many records though, so I think my name goes back farther. It comes from the town of Salisbury, so the founder goes back a ways. Same as The Salisbury Plains where Stonehenge is at.

James this below is fascinating for you as a history student.

The Chief advisor to King James I was The 1st Earl of Salisbury named Robert Cecil (1563-1612) who also came to the USA and was appointed Secretary of State in 1596 too. WOW!!! Way cool stuff man. :-) A picture here.

Grave here, it's his tomb...with skeleton too.

Robert Cecil: Earl of Salisbury, 1563-1612 : Servant of Two Sovereigns (Hardcover)

by Alan Haynes

Alan Haynes (Author)

Shalom James :-)

Sandria Green-Stewart from Toronto, Canada on July 19, 2009:

James, another lesson in history. Thanks for pulling together such great information about the most intriguing city in the world. NYC has very fascinating history. Thanks for sharing.

I remember my first visit to NYC, I was about 17 and my family went to visit relatives there. I still lived in a Third world country then, so you can appreciate my wonderment. It was magical and continues to be so even after hundreds of visits. I can hear Sinatra's song "New York, New York" ringing in my ears.

NYC was our last stop in our recent road trip and it was the cherry on the ice cream. So much to do and see in NYC. I loved the bus tours, so educational...

Thanks for bringing such amazing history to us.

Douglas on July 19, 2009:

Thankyou James. What a wonderful synopsis of a truly wonderful and powerful city. Thanks also for pointing out problems, such as New York had experienced prior to the arrival of Rudy Giluianni can be solved through application of law and order, something quite overlooked these days, particularly by parents of future offenders.

John B on July 19, 2009:

Nice presentation! Terrific pic of U 2 on top of a very historic place. I'm sure this photo means much to U!

Betty Wilson on July 19, 2009:


What a treat! A flowing "Memory Trip" based on my school's History Lessons through the years right up to today. My first trip to NY was my High School Senior Trip. Visited the "MAGICAL CITY" several times through the years. Worked in the city a few times in the early 90's, seeing the office lofts & such that is not visible when just touring. Certainly enjoyed everything I did. My most recent visit was in the early fall of 2008. Broadway Plays are always great. Always exciting to revisit the city in my mind - even if it is in my mind's eye!

Thanks for your time in doing this interesting piece on New York.


James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

Gicky Soriano— Thanks for your insight. I enjoyed reading your take on it. It is an amazing place with quite a history for its relative short time extant. I appreciate what you've added to the conversation.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

Catlyn— Thank you for your kind words. I am so glad you liked it and I appreciate you letting me know that you did. :-)

Gicky Soriano from California on July 19, 2009:

From what I read in your hub, New York has weathered six depressions brought about by war, agricultural and financial woes, racial tension, a crime wave, and stock market crash. Today the city (along with the rest of the world) entered its seventh woe - a worldwide recession. Amazing how New York remains resilient in the face of these trying times inclusive of the 9/11 attack. Through its concerned citizenry, Christian action, and determined leadership, it has endured and risen from the ashes time and again.

An incredible history New York written out in your hub. Like you said James, the city's a fascinating place. It's definitely well worth a visit!

Catlyn from Somewhere in the OC on July 19, 2009:

Thanks for writing such a comprehensive and informative Hub! Visiting New York is on my "bucket list" - God may have other plans :-) Either way, this Hub has definitely illuminated the city, both historically and as a place to spend time in. Great job!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

SirDent— Thank you so much for your warm words. There could be a 1000 page book written about Christian Charity in New York; the Salvation Army; YMCA; YWCA (I am afraid many folks don't know what that "C" stands for). The social programs of the government are modeled on Christian Charity, with the big difference that Christian Charity, while providing necessities, addressed the real problem people had—the hole in their hearts where God is supposed to be. The government programs don't do that, which is why their "clients" stay as they are, in most cases.

SirDent on July 19, 2009:

This tells a great story about the history of New York. I have read the comments also and they are all interesting. One thing I did notice in comments is that not one person mentioned anything about the christians who started the projects for the homeless people there. I believe that to be a great work that helped define the shelters of today.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

jill of alltrades— I humbly accept your gracious compliments. I always enjoy your comments. Thanks for coming!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

k@ri— Those towers were pretty high in the sky, weren't they? It was a long way down from up there. And a magnificent view.

I love history and I am glad you appreciated my condensed account. Thanks for stopping in and you are welcome.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:


Thank you. It is a tough, resilient town. I appreciate your visit and comments. If you do get to go there, you will not regret it.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

Brian S— I was there shortly before 9/11. The night before that photo was taken I spent the evening in the bar on top of one of the towers. They had incredible dancers there; probably pros off duty. I think it was called "The Top of the World." What a view! I also went back a week after 9/11. The mood had obviously changed dramatically.

Thank you for the compliment. I love NY!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:


Thank you very much! I started out planning to write about New York today but thought I give a bit of history. I got so absorbed into the history that by the time I looked up I had 1300 words! Maybe in the future I'll write about my own experiences there, which have been wonderful.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 19, 2009:

Frieda— I have always wanted to live there, too. But never had the funds to do so. My baby sister, 20 years younger, has lived in the Village for 13 years now. She is an actress, off Broadway, but makes her money as a tutor for rich folks' children. She says she will never leave there.

Thank you very much for reading and leaving word.

jill of alltrades from Philippines on July 19, 2009:

Another great hub James! You are really a great historian. How I wish I could visit New York one day.

Kari Poulsen from Ohio on July 19, 2009:

Having grown up an hour from New York, there is so much of the city I took for granted. I remember being on top of the second twin tower right before it was completed. I had a friend who's father worked for Port Authority and he took us up.

It is a great city, and as you say, there is always something new to do. Thanks for the look into it's history! :D

Ethel Smith from Kingston-Upon-Hull on July 19, 2009:

Great photos and info James. I would love to visit New York sometime. This city has fought so hard, especially since 9/11

Brian Stephens from Laroque des Alberes, France on July 19, 2009:

Great hub about a great city, I think visiting New York is one of things to do before I die places. Love the city today photograph.

Bet you were glad you went to the twin towers the month before the terrorist attack. Still hard to believe that happened.

Connie Smith from Tampa Bay, Florida on July 18, 2009:

Very interesting article, James. I enjoyed that history of New York and the pictures were great. I've never been there but one of these days, I do plan to get there.

Frieda Babbley from Saint Louis, MO on July 18, 2009:

Great hub. I was just reading yesterday I think it was about the blackout there that ended up costing New York City billions as opposed to saving on money and resources as was the original plan. It happened sometime mid July. It was a today in history article, but I don't remember where from except that it was online. AP maybe or Wikipedia. Wonderful photos. I've always wanted to go to New York. In fact I've wanted to live there. I'd need mucho denero to do that now, I'm partial to my elbow room.

rosariomontenegro from NEW YORK on July 18, 2009:

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 18, 2009:

advisor4qb— I am humbled by your response. Thank you. I, too, have spent time Upstate New York. My ex-wife's family owned a summer home on Seneca Lake near Watkins Glen (named after me, of course :D) and I enjoyed a few summers there.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 18, 2009:

rosariomontenegro— For brevity I did not get into the details of Giuliani's approach. But I thank you for expanding on what happened. The theory was that most of those who committed these petty crimes, were either those who also committed major crimes (and many of those arrested had outstanding warrants for felonies) but also that those same people might graduate to felonious crime if not brought to a stop now.

You have brought a wise perspective to the Law and Order argument—which is ongoing. I thank you sincerely.

advisor4qb from On New Footing on July 18, 2009:

Yes! Another AWESOME hub, James! Wow, I have never been to New York City. I have been upstate, though!

rosariomontenegro from NEW YORK on July 18, 2009:

Glad that you are so fervently commenting on our beautiful Big Apple.

You say about Giuliani, the famous Mayor:

"he cut crime in half, by using a novel concept —arresting, prosecuting, and incarcerating criminals."

I would like to add a little detail about this.

Giuliani decided to prosecute what had been considered for a long time small crimes not deserving prosecution, all the "minor" attacks on the city like grafitti, the misuse of streets, etc. He cleaned and embellished the whole of the city, not only Manhattan. He and Police Commissioner Bill Bratton used abundantly the "broken window" experiment as an inspiration to bring safety to the city's dwellers and visitors.

If you remember, this experiment (subsequently studied by many Police Departments around the world) had consisted on abandoning a car close to a perfectly normal house. For a couple of weeks or so nothing happened to the car. Then they broke a window pane in the house and didn't repair it. A couple of days later the car was vandalized, proof that neglect brings crime and chaos.

This experiment is worth remembering.

And New York is worth the visit.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 18, 2009:

Paraglider— You are right! It does seem to be more Amsterdam and less York, to be sure. :D

Thanks for visiting, my friend. I am still ruminating about your big Hub. I'll be there to chime in soon. Gently, I promise. :-)

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 18, 2009:

Gypsy Willow— You must! You Must! I first visited in 1992 myself. And it blew my mind! I have since visited as often as I can afford because it is a deep place. Thanks for visiting my Hub and commenting.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 18, 2009:


Thank you my brother. And you are welcome, too.

Dave McClure from Worcester, UK on July 18, 2009:

NY's on my list of places to visit. All my US trips have been for work on the West coast, Oregon, SF, Vegas (where I did visit the New York hotel!) We should never have changed the name though. It still has more in common with old Amsterdam than old York!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 18, 2009:

Mighty Mom— I surely appreciate the accolades! Your response couldn't be more gratifying. Thank you so much for your kind words. There is no place like the Big Apple. My favorite place in the world!

Gypsy Willow from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand on July 18, 2009:

Hope I get to visit one day, I feel I'm missing out!

Tom Cornett from Ohio on July 18, 2009:

Awesome hub took me to NY! Thanks ! :)

Susan Reid from Where Left is Right, CA on July 18, 2009:

New York, New York, a wonderful town! The Bronx is up and the Battery's down, the people ride in a hole in the ground, New York, New York, it's a wonderful town!

I wholeheartedly agree that the Circle Line cruise is a great way to get an overview of the entire city. Visting Ellis Island is also very, very powerful.

Now I'm getting all nostalgic. Thanks for the stroll down memory lane. I miss the east coast and NYC in particular. This hub offers a wonderful look at the city's rich history. I hope it's the first of many you write about the Big Apple! MM

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