Behind The Scenes

Category Archives: Trivia

Celebrate the Tonys with the “Line King”

Broadway was Al Hirschfeld’s true love. As The Hirschfeld Century curator, David Leopold put it, “when you were talking Broadway, you were talking Hirschfeld and vice versa.” Equally central to Broadway history is the Tonys. To celebrate the 69th annual award ceremony taking place this Sunday, June 7 at Radio City Music Hall, we’re highlight […]


Let’s Be Thankful May Day Doesn’t Exist Anymore

Can you imagine the chaos in New York City if everyone’s leases expired on the same day, forcing everyone into the streets with all their belongings, jostling to find new apartments? Well, it happened, and it sounds like a nightmare. It used to be that on February 1, landlords would notify their tenants of what […]

Give Thanks For The First Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving may have been celebrated by Pilgrims and Native Americans in New England with feasts of corn and eel (yes, eel), but it wasn’t until 1863 that it became a truly American holiday. Sarah Josepha Hale, author of the famous rhyme “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” was the first to suggest that Thanksgiving should be celebrated nationwide, […]

The Tragedy of Carl Mays And The Importance of Helmets

By all accounts, Carl Mays was a fantastic ballplayer. According to the the Bill Shannon Biographical Dictionary of New York Sports, he won “53 games in his first two full seasons with the Yankees.” However, his career was marred by a tragic incident that occurred August 16, 1920 (92 years ago today), when his pitch hit Cleveland shortstop […]

“I’m Running This Train!”: Mayor McClellan And The First Subway Ride

Imagine you’re charged with taking a subway for a ride. Now imagine that subway was the first subway ever. A pretty daunting task! Mayor George B. McClellan had the honor of operating the first NYC subway train on October 27, 1904, and was pretty excited about it! The IRT had just opened, and McClellan was supposed […]

Think You Know Your NYC Trivia? Test It With Us!

If there’s one thing New Yorkers enjoy it’s one-upping each other with obscure facts about New York. Ok, maybe that’s just us, but if the popularity of the New-York Historical Society’s new video series with NYC Media is any indication, there are at least a few other people on board. New-York Historical has produced a […]

The Blog To Satisfy All Your Sports Trivia Needs

Which bowler fell through a plate-glass window as a kid, leaving him with permanently curled fingers? Which cyclist was the highest paid athlete of the early 20th century? Did you even know pedestrianism was a sport? It’s for facts like these and more that the Bill Shannon Biographical Dictionary of New York Sports was born. With […]

New-York Historical Society Interns Take To Tumblr

At the New-York Historical Society, our librarians, curators and conservators aren’t the only ones who get to have all the fun. Though we’re closed for renovations, our high school interns have been hard at work researching our collections. And they have the blog to prove it! On their Tumblr site the interns have been blogging […]