North Brother Island: The Last Unknown Place in New York City

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9780823257713: North Brother Island: The Last Unknown Place in New York City

Few people today have ever heard of North Brother Island, though a hundred years ago it was place known to―and often feared by―nearly everyone in New York City. The island, a small dot in the East River, twenty acres slotted between today’s gritty industrial shores of the Bronx and Queens, was a minor piece of the New York archipelago until the late 19th century, when calls for social and sanitary reform―and the massive expansion of the city’s population―combined to remake NBI as a hospital island, a place to contain infectious disease and, later, other societal ills.

Abandoned since 1963, North Brother Island is a ruin and a wildlife sanctuary (it is the protected nesting ground of the Black-crowned Night Heron), closed to the public and virtually invisible to it. But one cannot mistake its abandoned state as a sign of its irrelevance to the city’s history and culture. Traces of the extensive hospital campus remain, as do sites linked to notorious people (it was the final home of “Typhoid Mary”) and events (the steamship General Slocum sank by its shores). It has stories to tell.

Photographer Christopher Payne (Asylum: Inside the Closed World of State Mental Hospitals) was granted permission by New York City’s Parks & Recreation Department to photograph the island over a period of years. The results are both beautiful and startling. On North Brother Island, devoid of human habitation for fifty years, buildings great and small are being consumed by the unchecked growth of vegetation. In just a few decades, a forest has sprung up where once there were the streets and manicured lawns of a hospital campus.

North Brother Island: The Last Unknown Place in New York City includes a history by University of Pennsylvania preservationist Randall Mason, who has studied the island extensively, and an essay by the writer Robert Sullivan (Rats, The Meadowlands), who came along on one of the rare expeditions.

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Book Description :

From a quarantine hospital to a juvenile drug treatment center to an uninhabited island of ruins―this magnificent photographic survey that brings North Brother Island to life.

About the Author :

Christopher Payne, a photographer based in New York City, specializes in the documentation of America’s vanishing architecture and industrial landscape. Trained as an architect, he has a natural interest in how things are purposefully designed and constructed, and how they work. His first book, New York’s Forgotten Substations: The Power Behind the Subway, offered dramatic, rare views of the behemoth machines that are hidden behind modest facades in New York City. His second book, Asylum: Inside the Closed World of State Mental Hospitals, which includes an essay by the renowned neurologist Oliver Sacks, is the result of a seven-year exploration of America’s vast and largely abandoned state mental institutions. Asylum was winner of the Ken Book Award of the National Alliance on Mental Illness/NYC and was named one of the “10 Best Art Books” by New York Times critic Holland Cotter.

Randall Mason is Associate Professor and Chair of the Graduate Program in Historic Preservation at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Design. He worked previously at the Getty Conservation Institute, University of Maryland, and Rhode Island School of Design. His books include The Once and Future New York, on the origins of historic preservation in New York City (winner of the Antoinette Forester Downing Award), and Giving Preservation a History (with Max Page). In 2012–13, Mason held the National Endowment for the Arts Rome Prize at the American Academy in Rome.

Robert Sullivan is the author of numerous books, including The Meadowlands: Wilderness Adventures at the Edge of a City; Rats: Observations on the History and Habitat of the City’s Most Unwanted Inhabitants; The Thoreau You Don’t Know: The Father of Nature Writers on the Importance of Cities, Finance, and Fooling Around; A Whale Hunt, and, most recently, My American Revolution. His stories and essays have been published in magazines such as New York, The New Yorker, and A Public Space. He is a contributing editor to Vogue.

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Description du livre Fordham University Press, United States, 2014. Hardback. État : New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Few people today have ever heard of North Brother Island, though a hundred years ago it was place known to-and often feared by-nearly everyone in New York City. The island, a small dot in the East River, twenty acres slotted between today s gritty industrial shores of the Bronx and Queens, was a minor piece of the New York archipelago until the late 19th century, when calls for social and sanitary reform-and the massive expansion of the city s population-combined to remake NBI as a hospital island, a place to contain infectious disease and, later, other societal ills. Abandoned since 1963, North Brother Island is a ruin and a wildlife sanctuary (it is the protected nesting ground of the Black-crowned Night Heron), closed to the public and virtually invisible to it. But one cannot mistake its abandoned state as a sign of its irrelevance to the city s history and culture. Traces of the extensive hospital campus remain, as do sites linked to notorious people (it was the final home of Typhoid Mary ) and events (the steamship General Slocum sank by its shores). It has stories to tell.Photographer Christopher Payne (Asylum: Inside the Closed World of State Mental Hospitals) was granted permission by New York City s Parks Recreation Department to photograph the island over a period of years. The results are both beautiful and startling. On North Brother Island, devoid of human habitation for fifty years, buildings great and small are being consumed by the unchecked growth of vegetation. In just a few decades, a forest has sprung up where once there were the streets and manicured lawns of a hospital campus. North Brother Island: The Last Unknown Place in New York City includes a history by University of Pennsylvania preservationist Randall Mason, who has studied the island extensively, and an essay by the writer Robert Sullivan (Rats, The Meadowlands), who came along on one of the rare expeditions. N° de réf. du libraire AAJ9780823257713

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Description du livre Fordham University Press, United States, 2014. Hardback. État : New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Few people today have ever heard of North Brother Island, though a hundred years ago it was place known to-and often feared by-nearly everyone in New York City. The island, a small dot in the East River, twenty acres slotted between today s gritty industrial shores of the Bronx and Queens, was a minor piece of the New York archipelago until the late 19th century, when calls for social and sanitary reform-and the massive expansion of the city s population-combined to remake NBI as a hospital island, a place to contain infectious disease and, later, other societal ills. Abandoned since 1963, North Brother Island is a ruin and a wildlife sanctuary (it is the protected nesting ground of the Black-crowned Night Heron), closed to the public and virtually invisible to it. But one cannot mistake its abandoned state as a sign of its irrelevance to the city s history and culture. Traces of the extensive hospital campus remain, as do sites linked to notorious people (it was the final home of Typhoid Mary ) and events (the steamship General Slocum sank by its shores). It has stories to tell. Photographer Christopher Payne (Asylum: Inside the Closed World of State Mental Hospitals) was granted permission by New York City s Parks Recreation Department to photograph the island over a period of years. The results are both beautiful and startling. On North Brother Island, devoid of human habitation for fifty years, buildings great and small are being consumed by the unchecked growth of vegetation. In just a few decades, a forest has sprung up where once there were the streets and manicured lawns of a hospital campus. North Brother Island: The Last Unknown Place in New York City includes a history by University of Pennsylvania preservationist Randall Mason, who has studied the island extensively, and an essay by the writer Robert Sullivan (Rats, The Meadowlands), who came along on one of the rare expeditions. N° de réf. du libraire AAJ9780823257713

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Description du livre Fordham University Press. Hardback. État : new. BRAND NEW, North Brother Island: The Last Unknown Place in New York City, Christopher Payne, Randall Mason, Robert Sullivan, At first encounter, North Brother Island is among the most unexpected of places: an uninhabited island of ruins in New York City that hardly anyone knows, existing today almost in secret. But in some fundamental sense it is also quite ordinary, for just as they have in other parts of the city, people have lived, worked, studied, healed, and died there for centuries. The island has been bought and sold, used and re-used many times over. For a while, though, it was famous: in 1885, it became the home of the Riverside Hospital, which had been established to isolate and treat people with infectious diseases. By 1895, the hospital had grown to such an extent that the social reformer Jacob Riis wrote that there "was nothing like it in the world." Later, the island's reputation grew mostly in infamy: in 1904, the passenger steamship General Slocum caught fire in the East River, leaving more than a thousand souls dead on the shores of North Brother Island, the single greatest loss of life in New York City to that time; in 1908, the hospital received as a patient Mary Mallon, better known as "Typhoid Mary," who would die on North Brother in 1938. North Brother Island is both part of the City of New York and a world apart from it. Its twenty acres sit low in the East River, just north of Hell Gate, with twenty-five or so buildings in various states of decay. As there is no public access, it's most easily seen as you lift off the tarmac at LaGuardia. Look to the west for a brown smudge stuck in the blue-gray East River, close up against Rikers Island and not far from the Bronx shoreline. That's NBI. Photographer Christopher Payne, renowned for his work at abandoned state mental hospitals (Asylum: Inside the Closed World of State Mental Hospitals, MIT Press, 2009), received permission to visit and photograph the island over a period of years, and this book, North Brother Island: The Last Unknown Place in New York City, is the result of that work. His collaborator and co-author is Randall F. Mason, Chair of the Graduate Program in Historic Preservation at the University of Pennsylvania, who has studied the island and its history as a unique example in the annals of urban planning and policy. North Brother Island: The Last Unknown Place in New York City features an essay and over 80 large-scale color images by Christopher Payne, and a highly illustrated study by Prof. Mason, including images from throughout the island's history, official documents, and other supporting graphics. N° de réf. du libraire B9780823257713

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Randall Mason; Robert Sullivan
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Mason Randall
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Description du livre Fordham University Press. État : New. pp. 144 Illus. N° de réf. du libraire 96208118

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