A Closer Look at the Mostly Unsung Father of Greater New York

Andrew H. Green was 15 years old, traveling alone from his family’s home in Worcester, Mass., when he got his first taste of the city that he would come to so profoundly define.

In Connecticut, he wrote his father in 1835, “we changed stages and found in our stage nearly a whole cheese with a half a dozen sheets of gingerbread which we break and throw to the poor as we passed along.” Not long after, he asked his father to send him a pair of calfskin boots “for they cost an enormous price here.” He later reported that his brother’s cap was stolen from the store in which young Andrew worked from 7 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., said it was lonesome there, but confidently added: “I know how to keep books well.”

Those glimpses of the man who would become president of the city’s Board of Education, chairman of the Central Park Commission, city comptroller and, as head of a commission to consolidate what would become the five boroughs, the father of Greater New York, are contained in hundreds of his letters that were recently acquired by the New York Public Library.

The trove was purchased late in 2010 at an auction conducted on behalf of Green’s descendants.

Green remains largely unsung, though, despite the best efforts of his chief cheerleader, Michael Miscione, the Manhattan borough historian who has argued relentlessly that Green deserved more than a commemorative Central Park bench on Fifth Avenue. As a result of his prodding and the cooperation of the Parks Department and Scott Stringer, the Manhattan borough president, Andrew H. Green Park is scheduled to be completed within a few years along the East River from East 60th to 63rd Streets.

“His biography is not very well known,” said Thomas G. Lannon, assistant curator in the library’s manuscripts and archives division, which, according to Richard W. Oliver, the auctioneer, paid $500 for a cache of letters from Green to his father and purchased other letters and documents as well. (The Museum of the City of New York also bought some Green documents from among the thousands of family mementos. His silk top was sold for $300).

Some of his papers are in the collection of the New-York Historical Society. Scholars hope the newly found letters acquired by the New York Public Library will help shed more light on one of the 19th century’s most transformational figures.

“To me,” Mr. Miscone said, “the most intriguing letters were the early ones he personally wrote to his father when he was a young man in his formative teens and early ’20s when he is finding his way in life.”

Among the other items purchased by the library are notebooks Green filled during a European trip in 1868 while he visited gardens and parks. Another notebook, dated 1861, meticulously itemizes pending tasks related to Central Park, which was authorized by the state in 1853: “Get a list of gatekeeper stations, mend wire fences, estimates for bridge repair, moulds, preparations for concert ice, small map of drainage, planting trees, move rollers, salt, music arrangements, stones for concourse, instructions to gatekeeper … ”

Mr. Miscione alerted the library and other New York cultural institutions to the auction, which was held in Massachusetts in September, and attended it himself after what he described as a miserable week culling the most important papers and keeping them from private collections.

“If it didn’t end well, it could have made the rest of my life miserable,” he said. “It was high drama at the borough historian’s office.”

Eve M. Kahn contributed reporting.

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Urban Forager | Pine Tree Tea

Back in the mid-1960s, decades ago, the foraging forefather Euell Gibbons, Grape Nuts spokesman and author of “Stalking the Healthful Herbs,” asked millions of Americans if they had ever eaten a pine tree. While I’ve never consumed a pine tree per se, I was interested in sampling some pine needles for a wholesome tea.

Pinus strobus — a k a white pine, Northern white pine or soft pine — is native to eastern North America. The Haudenosaunee Indians called it the “tree of peace.” White pines grow as tall as 180 feet or higher. Their fine, flexible blue-green needles grow five to a bundle, forming large clusters that resemble giant fan brushes.

Various American Indian tribes used different parts of the tree as both as a winter food source (the inner bark) and for medicine. The bark, leaves and twigs can be made into a cough remedy and a poultice.

According to Gibbons, who died in 1975, white pine needles and bark have about five times the amount of vitamin C as lemons, and were used to prevent scurvy.

Gibbons, who lived near a sawmill, took his bark samples from already-cut pine trees and tried making pine-tree bark stew and pine-bark wheat bread. He found them nutritious but too bitter for consumption. (“They would make an excellent emergency food,” he reported, “but I would not call them gourmet products.”)

Even though I’m allergic to pine nuts, I was intrigued by the idea of a citrusy, white pine needle tea. Chopping up a cup’s worth of fresh needles gathered from a friend’s backyard pine tree left the kitchen infused with an Alpine, slightly resinous aroma. I put the needles in a Mason jar for several hours with a half-teaspoon of wild honey and a squirt of lemon for taste, and kept my allergy medicine handy, just in case.

Luckily, I didn’t need the medicine. The tea was reminiscent of a cross between rosehip and chrysanthemum — two tea ingredients I use for winter colds and headaches — but with a slightly resiny, kind of cotton-ball-mouth aftereffect. With every sip I took, I felt even thirstier than before. Perhaps that’s a good thing (you’ll ingest more vitamin C), but I think I agree with Euell Gibbons: it’s definitely just a survival food.

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Sweat | Workout for a World of Grief

Work it Out

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As a lifelong resident of Brighton Beach, Brooklyn, Gary Atlas would always enjoy seeing the robust old Russians marching up the beach, dripping and content after a frigid dip in the wintry ocean.

So in September 2007, while unemployed and tending to his mother, Enid, who was dying of emphysema, Mr. Atlas sought relief from depression by running on the beach and swimming in the ocean every day.

And as winter came, and the deepening chill matched his desolate feelings, he continued, never skipping a day.

“I watched my mother die a slow and torturous death, and it wore me down mentally and physically,” Mr. Atlas, 58, recalled. “The running and swimming became my escape from the pain. She had trouble getting oxygen, so these runs and swims felt like I was breathing for both of us.”

Enid Atlas died in 2009 at age 82, but Mr. Atlas has kept up his routine in her memory. Wednesday was his 1,201st consecutive day.

Each day he runs six miles — always shirtless — up and down the length of the beach, from Brighton to Sea Gate, and then plunges into the ocean and swims out past the jetties.

In the summer, the swim may be a luxurious hourlong ramble. On the coldest days, with air temperatures dipping into the teens and water temperatures into the 30s, the swim shrinks to a zesty eight or nine minutes. These are the days Mr. Atlas loves.

“The tougher the weather, the more I get into it,” he said.

During blizzards, he follows the snowplow in the street or runs through the powder. During hurricanes and northeasters, he has struggled to get back to shore, he said. On days when he has neglected to do the full workout, he has torn himself out of bed at 2 a.m. to run and swim in the dark.

Mr. Atlas’s apartment building opens onto the east end of the ocean boardwalk, and most of its residents are Russian immigrants who also embrace the cold. Mr. Atlas said he now earned some money taking care of a few of the older people in the neighborhood, but he still felt useless without a steady job and income.

“I’m in a pretty bad mood most of the time, and this helps keep me even-keeled,” he said, walking barefoot up the snowy beach on Wednesday after his swim. With a sea breeze and temperatures in the 30s, Mr. Atlas wore only a snug bathing suit and a wide grin.

“There’s nothing like this feeling — I’m ready to tackle life,” he said. “But without this, I’d be in bad shape. The high lasts about three hours, and then I’m back to feeling miserable.”

Wednesday’s was a typical workout.

Trudging through the soft sand near the boardwalk, he headed west past the Coney Island attractions and bundled-up tourists. He waved to construction workers, and at the end of the boardwalk at Seagate, he turned back, making sure to take his habitual lap on the long Steeplechase Pier, where in the summer he likes to jump off the end, to cheers from the fishermen, crabbers and conga drummers.

After the hourlong run, he sat on a jetty pole near the water’s edge and stripped down to his briefs and waded in. He swam out perhaps 100 yards and did a medley of sidestroke, backstroke and crawl.

After his 10-minute swim — no towel, no shivering — he knocked around the boardwalk air-drying and chatting with the regulars and smiling at the Russian women with their fur coats and walkers.

Mr. Atlas sat on a bench, his tan, fit body basking in the sun. He said the routine had made him healthy and robust.

“This guy ain’t normal,” said Jimmy Falcone, 75, a friend of Mr. Atlas’s who walked by carrying a 15-pound dumbbell in each hand. “Too much discipline. I exercise, sure, but I like my cigarettes and my Johnnie Walker scotch.”

Mr. Atlas is hardly the only cold-water swimmer in New York City. The organization Coney Island Brighton Beach Open Water Swimmers runs open-group swims and open-water races from June to November, and the Polar Bear Club has winter swims on Sundays at Coney Island.

Mr. Atlas is devoted to the streak now and said, “It’d kill me to stop.”

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Make Money Online Quick and Easy through Forex Trading

Are you looking for ways to make money online quick and easy? Are you one of those people who are already sick and tired of slaving themselves off in a 9 to 5 job and ending up still broke during payday? Are you looking for a way to earn money and still be able to spend quality time with your loved ones? If you are any of these, then its probably time to shake things up a bit and open your mind to a new way to earn quick and easy money. Nowadays, there are lots of options one can choose from, but the easiest is through Forex trading. Through Forex trading, a trade or two a day can help you get the money you need to have a decent and comfortable life.

How can one make money online quick and easy by just placing some bets? Currencies move in only two directions: up or down. Therefore, ones guess to how the currency will move is just limited to two and there is a 50% chance that one can get it right. Thus, if one exerts just enough effort to learn more about how a currency moves his chances of making the accurate guess greatly increases. Assume that one is able to predict the currency movement accurately four or five times in a row and in each instant he is able to double his money, then a dollar can become 5 dollars within just a few hours of trading.

Through Forex trading, one can make money online quick and easy. One only needs to understand how the currencies move and how they are affected by economic, political, and social conditions. There are also several tools that one can use in order to make a more educated guess about how a particular currency will perform against another currency. Once one is able to master the techniques, one can earn money effortlessly. There are also trading robots that can automate things a bit, allowing one to earn money without having the need to go online 24 hours a day. Thus, one can eventually become financially free and still have time to spend with friends and loved ones.

Are you looking for more information regarding make money online quick and easy? Visit www.realforextrading.info today!

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Hire 24/7 Call Center Contact Services

Empowering globalization is changing the face of business and development strategies, which indicates the adaptation of the numerous companies from all the aspects. Along with the transform in the business running patterns, the alteration in the approach towards the consumers has also occurred in loads of different ways, as it is understood that the business touches the heights of triumph only because of its consumers.

Various kind of customer services are endeavored for different fields, like the email services, tele calling services, technical support team, inbound calls attendees, online chat support staff, and now, even 24 hours help desk, which is obtainable for all the 24/7.

For the companies that encompass consumers across the globe and do not have adequate as well as proficient humane to take care of such services in a professional way so as to retain the business brand name, the preeminent option is to hire 24/7 call center contact services, which functions exceptionally professionally and with very high expertise for diverse consumers.

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Thus, the 24/7 call center contact services are the preeminent services for the globalized businesses that have to hold many clients and that too in the diverse parts of the world, so that all customer can be reached upon very potentially. With this, you can not just have pleased consumers, but also can retain your brand name with higher expertise.

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