Gracie-Mansion full-NYCOriginal front entrance. Image via City Parks Foundation

Gracie Mansion, New York’s own White House, is most known for being the residence of the Mayor of New York City. But before Mayor La Guardia moved in, the house had been through its own history. The house changed hands multiple times creating a colorful history since its construction in 1799. Not only that, but the piece of land it stands on has its own interesting past previous to the mansion being built. Here are 10 fun facts about Gracie Mansion located in the Carl Schurz Park on the Upper East Side of Manhattan that we learned on a recent tour.


Alexander HamiltonAlexander Hamilton by John Turnbull. Image via Museum of the City of New York

This past Friday, February 5th, the Museum of the City of New York opened an exhibit on early American portraiture titled Picturing Prestige: New York Portraits, 1700-1860. Curated by Bruce Weber, the exhibit illustrates early New York’s growth as a city and arts capital featuring paintings of New York High Society, Titans of Industry, and some of our nation’s Founding Fathers. (more…)

Hamilton and Friends-Event-NYC-Untapped CitiesImage via the Museum of the City of New York

Untapped Cities is pleased to serve as a co-sponsor for the upcoming talk “Hamilton and Friends: Portraiture in Early New York” at the Museum of the City of New YorkAlexander Hamilton was a man of many faces: politician, economist, revolutionary — and rumored philanderer. After he was killed in a duel with Aaron Burr in 1804, Hamilton’s widow, Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton, worked tirelessly to defend her husband’s reputation. Today we are familiar with likenesses of Alexander Hamilton — including one that is on the ten dollar bill. This panel will explore how portraiture served in the decades after the American Revolution as a critical tool in shaping and canonizing the public image of leaders and notables.  (more…)

St Marks is Dead-Book Club Talk-Museum of CIty of NY-Ada Calhoun-NYC

Untapped Cities is pleased to serve as a co-sponsor for the upcoming talk “St. Marks is Dead” at the Museum of the City of New York. Waxing nostalgic about “the good old days” of St. Marks may be the hallmark of a real New Yorker. According to journalist Ada Calhoun, author of the 2015 book, St. Marks Is Dead, every generation from 1890 to 1990 has done it. The 3-block East Village strip has undergone several massive transformations throughout its lifetime, evolving from a bucolic Dutch farm to an immigrant enclave to a hippie haven to the epicenter of punk. Today, the identity of St. Marks is in flux once again. Under the shadow of gentrification, many New Yorkers are looking back at its gritty heyday during the tumultuous 1970s and 80s with longing.


New Year’s Eve can be a stressful event to navigate in New York. There’s so much going on, often at outrageous prices, that it’s difficult to pick the best option – causing many New Yorkers to just call it a night and stay home. Here’s a list of alternative New York events to get you excited for 2016:


Under the Dump at West 47th Street.
A central highlight of the comprehensive exhibit
Jacob Riis: Revealing New York’s Other Half at the Museum of the City of New York is a map showing the places where Riis photographed in the city in support of his social reform efforts. While many of the photographs are concentrated in downtown areas like the Lower East Side and Chinatown, Riis and his team did venture as far uptown as Hell’s Kitchen and the Upper East Side.

Here is a sampling of Riis’ photographic haunts, featured in the current exhibit: