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City Hall Subway Station-Before Opening-NYC 1904-2The original City Hall subway station in New York City

By reading first-hand accounts of opening day of the New York City subway, October 27, 1904, you get a picture of the excitement, madness, and sheer feat the construction of the underground system was. The first subway line, the Interborough Rapid Transit, ran from the glorious City Hall subway station (now decommissioned) to 145th Street, proclaiming “City Hall to Harlem in 15 minutes,” though as you’ll discover, even the first day wasn’t without delaeys.

Here are some of the fun facts that we found from reading reports from The New York Times and the Chicago Tribune about opening day:

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The Dutch settlers landed on the tip of Manhattan in 1623, naming their new home New Amsterdam and lining up a battery of canons to defend it. Historic Battery Park (now known as The Battery) was where the early immigrants landed, and Castle Clinton, built with the intention of preventing a British invasion in 1812, was where immigrants were first directed before Ellis Island was built.

Today, the twenty-three acre park is the largest public open space in the Downtown section of Manhattan and Castle Clinton is the most visited National Park Service site in the country, receiving over three-million people annually. In keeping with its history, we’ve put together 10 things you might like to see and do in The Battery this Summer.

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thousandwonders.net rockefeller center-NYC-Untapped Cities30 Rockefeller Plaza. Image via thousandwonders.net

This 19 unit Art-Deco complex is one of New York’s most popular tourist destinations. Every year, it hosts the largest Christmas tree in the country, films a handful of national television’s most popular primetime talkshows as well as the 40 year-old ‘Saturday Night Live,’ and is probably the only New York landmark with a show, the Tina Fey creation ’30 Rock,’ named after its centerpiece, the GE Building. Rockefeller Center is one of the city’s most recognizable landmarks. It draws millions at all times of the year and exemplifies the crossroads of entertainment, corporate America, retail, and tourism, that is the Big Apple. It was completed in 1939 and named for John D. Rockefeller Jr., the son of the Standard Oil Founder John D. Rockefeller Sr. Rockefeller Center is a high traffic Manhattan destination, and has its fair share of secrets intwining it firmly with the city’s history and character. Here are 10 that we found the most eye-catching:

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217 W 57th Street-Nordstrom Tower-Central Park Tower-Skyscraper-57th Street-Extell-NYCRendering by YIMBY/Jose Hernandez, with Central Park Tower at left (at unconfirmed 1,795 feet)

This question pops up around the Untapped Cities office pretty often. What’s the latest tallest building in New York City? With so many supertall buildings going up, particularly on the residential end, it can be hard to keep track. This will be our official tally (updated as new buildings come into play, or get chopped down by the powers that be) of the tallest buildings in New York City:

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George Washington Bridge-Washington Heights-NYC

You readers really surprised us with the amount of love for our Top 10 Secrets of the Lincoln Tunnel last week. We’ve all been stuck in there and it’s fun to think there are secrets even of the most essential of infrastructure. This week, we’re tackling that other Hudson River crossing: the George Washington Bridge. Here are 10 secrets and fun facts:

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de wain valentine david zwirner-NYC-Untapped CitiesDe Wain Valentine at David Zwirner Gallery, open until August 7th. Image via davidzwirner.com

Art reigns supreme in the summer. With countless outdoor installations to look forward to and many New York City art galleries preparing their summer shows for the new season, there is always something to see. That is, if you’re in Chelsea. We’re only partly kidding. While its true that much of the city’s art scene has moved south toward 22nd Street, some steadfast spaces still remain on the Lower East Side and Midtown. Here are our top 10 picks for the city’s must-see art gallery shows of the summer.

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