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Nearly 40 years into his 365-year prison sentence, notorious serial killer-turned-born again Christian David Berkowitz, AKA Son of Sam, is back in the news this week: The identity of the fellow inmate who slashed Berkowitz’s throat in an attempted murder in 1979 has finally been revealed. The news coincides with the 39th anniversary of the so-called Summer of Sam. Beginning July 29th, 1976, New York City was gripped with fear of this self-proclaimed "monster... prowling...
From 1626 until 1827, New York City was one of the capitals of American slavery. But when it comes to the history of slavery in the five boroughs, "the average New Yorker today knows nothing," Brooklyn-raised artist and photographer Nona Faustine says in a phone interview. It's a history that's been largely hidden: There are almost no reminders on Wall Street, which the New York City Common Council declared the city’s first official slave market in 1711, meant to...
In a city transforming at the speed of light, nostalgia for an older New York, death knells for Brooklyn, and trepidation at creeping change in the outer boroughs is widespread. As Adam Gopnik writes in Through the Children’s Gate: A Home in New York, “The map of the city we carried just five years ago hardly corresponds to the city we know today, while the New Yorks we knew before that are buried completely.” While it’s...

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