GET UPDATES IN YOUR INBOX! Subscribe to our SPAM-free updates here:

GET UPDATES IN YOUR INBOX! Subscribe to our SPAM-free email here:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Thursday, April 25, 2019

The First License Plate

1902 advertisement for the Moyea, available from a deal at 3 West 29th Street

On April 25, 1901, New York State became the first in nation to require license plats on automobiles. The plates were not issued by the state -- that practice would not begin until 1903 in Massachusetts -- but instead had to be created by vehicle owners.

As explained by the website
From 1901 thru mid-1903, New York State required automobile owners to file an application with the state, and upon receipt of a certificate in return, motorists placed their initials on the rear of their machines.... [U]se of the owner’s initials as a means of identification greatly facilitated law enforcement and made drivers more accountable for the way in which they operated their automobiles.
Holding drivers accountable was certainly on the minds of New Yorkers: the first automobile traffic fatality in the nation had occurred in New York in 1896, and skyrocketed from there. In 1913, 221 people were killed in car crashes in the city, most of them pedestrians. (To help alleviate the menace of vehicular traffic, the city installed its first tricolor traffic signal in 1920; officials have been trying to figure out other ways to calm traffic in the city ever since.)



Thursday, April 18, 2019

Some Spring Updates from Michelle and James

Spring Updates from

Michelle and James Nevius

Two new articles by James Nevius:

Recently, James had two interesting stories published on the architectural history of the New York.

In Curbed New York, he authored a history of the Grand Hyatt Hotel (formerly the Commodore) next to Grand Central Terminal. The hotel opened a century ago and is now slated for demolition. James chronicles the various twists and turns in the story, including Donald Trump's mid-1970s "rescue" of the hotel.

Then, in The New York Post, James took a look at the history of tin ceilings, which were once common not just in the New York but around the country.

sponsored by the Merchant's House Museum and Village Preservation
TUESDAY, JUNE 18, at 6:00PM

After the Civil War, hundreds of thousands of Italian immigrants came to America, most of them making New York City their first stop. While the Lower East Side and Little Italy are well-known for their immigrant history, many may not remember that the area south of Washington Square was one of the most densely populated Italian precincts in the country.

This illustrated presentation will look at how the Village came to be separated into a wealthier area north and west of Washington Square and a more working-class neighborhood to the south and east. We’ll look at who paved the way for Italians in the district and talk about the importance of holding on to the Italian places that still exist in the area -- RIP Trattoria Spaghetto -- so as to preserve this heritage.


Search This Blog

Blog Archive