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tv   The Brooklyn Bridge  CSPAN  December 24, 2016 4:54pm-6:01pm EST

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c-span3. >> join us on tuesday, january 3 for the opening of new congress. watch the swearing in of the new members of the senate. and the election of the speaker of the house. our live coverage of the days from capitol hill begins on c-span at 7:00 a.m. you can listen to it on the c-span radio app. architectural, historian barry lewis talks about the construction of the brooklyn bridge. that was built in the 1870's. he looks at wynette -- manhattan needed the bridge. historical society hosted this event. >> we are thrilled to welcome barry lewis back to the new york
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historical society. he is an architectural historian who specializes in european architecture of the 18th and 20th centuries. he is best known throughout new videohrough a series of walking tour is presented by channel 13 including the emmy award nominated shows 42nd street, broadway and harlem. he has lectured at numerous venues, including columbia university, the smithsonian institute and the harvard graduate -- before we begin we would like to ask everyone to turn off cell phones, electronic beepers, let's give barry lewis a warm welcome. [applause] barry: i don't need that. me, i am all over the stage. it is interesting, i had some
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people talking to me about this lecture. i am not talking about the brooklyn bridge as much as brooklyn. why brooklyn needed the bridge and more so than that, new york. new york would never ever admit that they needed brooklyn but they needed it. just in case people were not here, it was a series of three lectures. i did the first one about a month ago. in recouping that, remember that new york becomes the premier city of america by the 1820's and 1830's. 60,000 people in manhattan by 1800, by 1875, 1 million people on manhattan island. that is called growth. this was an 1860's print of a part of manhattan, a part of new york. remember, in those days, new york city was strictly an island. you got to the 1860's, the brooklyn bridge was going to
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begin in 1869. the reason it was needed, by the time you get to the late 1860's, downtown the york was the central business district of the order. it becomes the central business district of america by the 1830's. new york is growing at this time. unfortunately, manhattan is a long, skinny island. the only way to grow is uptown. by the time you get to the 1860's, the time the brooklyn bridge would be built, the middle class people are forced the easts far north as 60's and north 40's. they had to commute down to wall street. the women committed them to the ladies smile. that is the union, madison square area. if you had to depend on these courses, they were horrible.
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an idea of the traffic. broadway is going off to the left. look at that backup of horse colors. if you are heading here, that is another three miles. thought that committing today is awful, it was pretty awful back then. a cartoon ofas what was the busiest intersection of america. one of them was the busiest in the world. that was broadway. there is the u.s. post office. that is not here today. that stood until 1938. there is probably going up to our tribeca. that is going up to what is today the brooklyn bridge. that is the middle of the loop the 1890's. nobody is going anywhere fast.
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the problem was that these three systems of our cities could not take all of these people. everybody is piled onto the street. you had to get people off of the street. one way or another. weekber, i mentioned last what we call brooklyn today is basically kings county, originally, that was six separate towns. they were founded by the dutch, recognized by the english, broke them was only one of those six towns. it was the closest to new york and new york was the epic -- economic engine in the 1930's. sure, if you want to live in manhattan, you can live although it uptown in the west 40's and 50's and 60's. if you can live in brooklyn, you are right across from the centrist district. this is important to remember because we all think of wall street as the financial district. all you had to do was cross that river.
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you would have wonderful neighbors to live in. acrossknow brooklyn, from the cbd, there were these very fine >> beginning with brooklyn heights. as you fan out from brooklyn heights you have carroll gardens, the top end of park .lope, prospect heights these were fine middle-class neighborhoods to serve the aroundwho worked the cbd wall street. in the 1850's, brooklyn annexed williamsburg and the rest of the old town of bushwick. it wound up being across from manhattan from new york's lower east side which was becoming the main immigrant district of the city. the lower eastin
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side, the densest pact urban district in the world. you would have these immigrants in new york, packed together in these tournaments, looking -- 10 immense -- tennements. the immigrants basically came over into williamsburg. it is interesting when williamsburg and bushwick, they called it the eastern edition. i never understood why. they called it the eastern edition and that eastern addition, because of its proximity, the immigrant section of new york, that got the spillover from the lower east side from williamsburg and greenpoint. here is a map of the neighborhood. the spilled over into bushwick, which is what is going on now
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with the young people. -- theylled over spillover into bushwick, into brownsville, over into queens which is where i grew up in woodhaven. we always called the brooklyn line the city line. it is still called that today. this area on the city line. tenementrea was your packed immigrant area of what became the city of brooklyn. , from them new york cbd you had such fine , middle-class housing for middle-class people who were headed to wall street to their corporate jobs. just to go over what i went over in the first lecture, the fairy
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to fulton street, it starts in the 17th century. now you know you're going to get to brooklyn. landed.where the ferry today. it full street brooklyn heights is to the left. the moment you come off of the peers you go up to a height. that is brooklyn heights. it is a flatland. area that isstrial fast gentrifying. that is where brooklyn bridge park is today. the first fairy was to fulton -- ferry was to full street. this is the village of brooklyn. it is off on the left.
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1830's, it comes down the atlantic avenue of the south side of the village and ends up at the east river. tothe 1850's they decide develop their property and put in a ferry. from montague street to wall street. erries running f between each other. they are overrun with people. there was no place to put another one. here is a 19th century photograph. it took you from sheer over to wall street. here over to wall street. here is another view. looking at montague street it looks so quiet and peaceful.
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weekdayhow lovely on a morning. birds are chirping. waves are laughing. -- [inaudible] the commute was awful. the cartoons tell you the truth. the crowds extend practically into the river. was --s like there [inaudible] with what you had to deal every morning. you think you have it hard, but they had it even harder. and sometimes even the east river, everything else was going wrong. to get out of work, you are tired and you want to go home. you hope that the ice doesn't break and you fall in. who knows how thick it is.
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place.ry is frozen in visiting the city at the time, freeze, impeded from going across the east river, he knew he had a better way of doing it, o this fellow john rowe. you never invited him to dinner to tell jokes. he was a brilliant man. he was german by birth. he was an engineer. his philosophy teacher was hagel. he said where you think the future is? world.ays, the new you he wound up in pennsylvania. a machine thatd created wire rope. then strands of wire out of
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steel. then you got wire rope. they were bundled together and you had a whil wire cable. you could suspend from those cables roadways but also aqueducts for the canals the need to cross the landscape. absolutely brilliant. when he saw the east river he knew the suspension bridge technology that he used, he could adapt it to the brooklyn bridge. bridge wouldooklyn be longer than anything ever built. here is his print, or a print of what the brooklyn bridge would look like. some people called it the bridge to long island. others called it the east river bridge. it eventually got the name brooklyn bridge.
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you can see the aqueduct designed in 1849 to bring the canal over the delaware river. that is a river going underneath. technologyion bridge allow the largest clearance, the widest clearance for both of the delaware river. reason whye suspension technology was used. today it was a roadway. as ay be closed only pedestrian bridge. i don't know. it was a beautiful structure. pennsylvania with new york. bridge is only 500 plus feet long. the brooklyn bridge would be a ,ile-long but the central span and that is what counts, is going to be 1600 feet. that is very important.
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that is why suspension technology was used. the east river was a very busy commercial river. it could not be blocked by a huge. in the middle to hold the bridge. with suspension technology had the ships to pass under the bridge. way, wire was used in this bridge. at some point it was not. if you really want to know about the building of the brooklyn thege, it is written in 1980's. at the time the brooklyn bridge was 100 years old. way, it isy the going to be in operation independently until the 1950's. it's going to be used in the george washington bridge. spanw bridge has a central that is twice the length of the brooklyn bridge.
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the gw goes from clifton cliff. the brooklyn bridge is going from the flat lands to folks streets. it is not taking you to brooklyn heights. that is flat lands. the flatland over at south street. it has to be a longer bridge. you notice it comes down to park road. is taking you from the center of the central business district of new york to the heart of the business district of brooklyn. that is why it was placed where it was placed. bridge, hefor this and his son are on the dock in brooklyn and they are surveying. a brooklyn ferry came in. where ittor missed came in. in 10 days he died a very horrible death. in 1869 before the bridge has of thegun he is out
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picture. the fellow who built the bridge is this guy, washington roebling. he knew that if the roebling name remained in history it would always be associated with john roebling. nobody really noticed he was around. he was the guy who actually built the bridge. 60's, he saidhis to a reporter most people think i died in 1869. that is when his father was killed in that accident. on thean amazing job building the bridge within a year of the bridge construction. he takes over from his father. the instruction would become the bridge done under high pressure. if you go from high pressure air issurface pressure air, it
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quite a difference and it causes . problem if you go to fast it is painful for some people. 28 men died in the building of the brooklyn bridge. it was a dangerous job. means this fellow from 1870 to 1883, the bridge is being built, he is basically a semi-invalid. making -- [inaudible] whether his binoculars or maybe he had a telescope, he would take up the violin, but he would do all of his drawings as he would see the bridge progressing. they had to be taken to the bridge itself.
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who did he choose to do that? his wife. what a fascinating lady she was. she learned basic engineering from her husband shows she could take the drawings to be engineers. at first were not too happy taking orders my woman but she was so confident, she knew so well what she was doing, she had the right manner about her, they came to respect her so much, when the brooklyn bridge opened this lady got the honor of driving the first carriage over the brooklyn bridge. after it was built she went back to being a housewife. 1930's ofn the early cancer. her husband basically got better after the bridge opened. i can imagine why he was invalided.
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bridges caps on collapsing. i'm sure he felt his bridge would never collapse. and yet you never know. in the back of his mind you could see the scenario, traffic goes over it and the whole things falls over. no wonder he was nervous. after the bridge was built, his nerves settled down. he basically got over the medical problems he had. wife and ranis roebling wire. the factory may still be there. there is a roebling, new jersey. it is dedicated to the roebling's. but he basically winds up running the country. he didn't like the way his grandson was running the company. major person involved
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with construction of the brooklyn bridge. sick as he was, he ominous died. he is the last of them to survive. of course there is another character involved. boss tweed. he was representative of corrupt politics of the day. he tried to noodle his way into the funding of the brooklyn bridge. he was at the height of his power. earlyl from power in the 1870's. today we have a new view of him. a lot of people say the reformers who hated him wanted immigrants to become nice white protestant yankees. language care what they spoke. he understood they needed coal and they needed a job. he got both of them for the immigrants. so they gave him their votes.
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it is interesting, 1876. 100 years after the revolution. you could imagine considering the corruption of politics that went to the white house, maybe they were right, democracies the always know what they are doing. but we survived. we survived tweed, we survived hayes in the white house. the brooklyn bridge itself, a very dangerous job. this will become the foundation of the brooklyn bridge. it was basically a huge breadbasket, turned upside down, pushed to the bottom of the --er, then inside of the they pumped in high-pressure air. the men are all working with high-pressure air. at the end of the job, they then
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would go to a decompression to, spend five minutes and it, and then they would be on the surface. they wanted to get home to their families. they were tired. , on the left you see one of the guys climbing into a decompression chamber. he won't be spending enough time there. these guys, probably the immigrants that tweet got his votes from. they were lucky because in 1873 the stock market crashed. these guys had jobs. in the middle of depression, the best thing is to have a job big project like a dam. , he iss guy is working lighting a gaslamp. very bad combination.
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.here was a horrible fire i think that is where the washington buildings would come down. they invented the telephone. edison was working on moving pictures. in three years of the bridge being opened we built the first steel framed skyscraper. the world is changing. we had barely completed the first transcontinental railroad. five railroads were running across the street. that is not a great chapter in american history. but it was the industrial civilization over the continent. where did that profit go? it came back to new york.
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anybody who was making money in the country wanted to have an office in new york, they wanted to live in brooklyn. that is why this bridge is being built. new yorkers are finally saying the scale. it was like the pyramids. a city.sing above you are looking at the brooklyn tower.oward the new york that is the jersey palisades in the background. in the heart of downtown new york we begin to see high-rise buildings because of the coming of the elevator. the elevator was first introduced in the 1850's. everybody wanted to see one. nobody would ride it. he will begin to get used to it. developers began to build high-rise office buildings. very high rise. a height of 10 stories. you had to get and an elevator
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to get to the top. for the first time in history the offices at the top of the .uilding were the worst you have to climb up five stories to get there. they would charge you top dollar. you were so lucky. you had a view from the top buildings. aree towers, they say they 277 feet high. it is not really a river. it goes up and it goes down. those buildings probably didn't go higher. that is higher than any other. it really was of a scale that you cannot imagine. it is being built here on the new york side. .hen it was built it came down that is the new york anchorage being built. it literally came down in the middle of this five-story city.
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, it wasas a young kid before they had ripped out a lot of the buildings. it was still so much a part of new york city. it is not part of the city anymore. you can't really go back to it and touch it. it doesn't have the impact to me that it had when it rose out of the city. look at the scale of it. we are looking at it from the hudson river. the towers have gone up. they are beginning to string the cables. when you walk up manhattan there are a few elevator buildings. look how those towers rose above the city. it was really impressive.
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it still is. overe come here from all the world just to walk over it. cables a view of the being strong. are bundled together. they go over the top. there are the elevator office buildings in the central business district. tower with the roof on top of it. of fultone foot street. that is the empire stores. they are now part of the brooklyn bridge park. they do all kinds of things to it. look at that cable going up over the bridge. , don't know if you noticed that ran over the top of the towers following the path of the
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cable. i don't know who they got to walk. here is the new york side. there is the new york anchorage. there are the office buildings in the background. here is the brooklyn side. fulton street is on the left. i can barely see the tower. look at this. the photographer had to climb up this walkway to the talk of the tower. meshhat protects you is a that you can't even see. i don't know how he did it. he is looking back to brooklyn. when they designed the brooklyn bridge they wanted it to come down in the commercial area of
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brooklyn. justmes down into brooklyn one building away from fulton street. that is fulton street running down to the fulton ferry. it is turning right and it winds up in front of brooklyn city hall which you really can see in this photograph. i don't know if you see how densely packed up it was. the bridge was purposefully designed to run into the back of the commercial companies so that it wouldn't disturb fulton street. not that the oldest buildings were there. you can imagine the intense condition of that street. this is what it looked like. street, it wasll ripped up in the 1950's.
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we are looking under the bridge toward dumbo. nothing ever got built. no wonder we needed it. she understood we were destroying our city. for me this is the perfect example. why they thought it necessary to rip out the hard of the commercial part of old brooklyn i don't know. it has been this way since 1950. whether or not they went to build everything i have no idea. , this is where the cables came down and were anchored into the earth. these are huge anchorages. to keepghs 60,000 tons the cable in place. i don't understand the engineering because inside there
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is a hollow port that runs up several stories. back before 9/11 they opened up the anchorage evening activities. fans, i was there for several different kinds of events. the events weren't always so terrific but being in the anchorage was wonderful. sometimes you know the venue is more interesting. that is the way it is. i love the brooklyn anchorage. as soon as we have the attack on 9/11 they closed it up. it was a beautiful construction. it was amazing to go into it. here it is 1881. you notice the roads are suspended from the cables. in 1881 washington had a steel
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framed road. the brooklyn bridge was turned into a car only bridge they didn't have to do much strengthening because that roadway supported more traffic. another thing, you are looking towards new york. i don't know if you have noticed , these two guys hanging out in the middle. it looks like they are hanging out at 42nd street but they are right there in the middle of this walkway. one looks like he is nonchalantly leaning against this road as if he could not care less. anyway, washington road designed the approaches.
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they are quite handsome. nobody notices them today because they are very behind. but back in the 1880's, even when i was a kid you could come up to these anchorages. ranesigned the tunnels that the streets. he designed them very wide. the detailing is quite beautiful. they really never found a home. but the anchorage, both of them are quite handsome. nobody ever noticed them until today. by the way, the brooklyn bridge when it was open, it did not put the fairies out of business.
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they were still running at capacity. by the mid-1890's the city of reached one million people. they could not stop the fairies. put them outg that of business was the coming of the subway. . but the bridge >> here is opening day in may of 1883. pedestrianshere are on the roadways. and in the middle is the elevated promenade that john roebling designed. he was very proud of it. boulevard in"the the sky" for pedestrians. now, in recent years, it was opened to bicyclists. rights been -- you know, now they're figuring out if they can widen that promenade,
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they really need to do it with all the bicyclists and all the pedestrians. but it was one of john proudest features of the brooklyn bridge, because he crowded new yorkers could feel like a bird and they could river, on hiseast bridge. and he gave them the best view. above the cars, up above the carriages, looking over them. think about it. the williamsburg, manhattan bridge, the walkways are right ofre at the same level traffic. here, you were above it. now, the brooklyn bridge was opened. the cable cars would go back and forth, strictly for the bridge. opened up, those cable cars closed down at night. 1880's, they had to go 24 hours a day. that was the nature of new york and brooklyn. the underground, only in the last year has it finally gone to 24-hour operation.
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mean, london! one of the grettest cities -- greatest cities in the world, the subway would close down by midnight. but not anymore. in new york, you couldn't have down, even inng 90's.80's and those lamps, they would have been gas. is they're electric. probably one of the first times saw electric lighting, when they walked across the brooklyn bridge. and because of the nature of the cables, this is basically the world's first all-steel and stone bridge. in ther is metal brooklyn bridge is steel. it's not iron. we have gone past the age of iron. now, here's the bridge coming down into manhattan, into new york. you can see the cable cars at work. you see how the city was -- up to thee right bridge. the bridge came right through the city. there was a wonderful relationship between the two. cars would eventually be ripped out so that
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l-train system would come across the river. and they had built a terminal over park row. municipal building. on the hall of regards chamber street. this terminal went through variations. way, one of thomas moving pictures is a trip over the brooklyn bridge, on either the cable car l-train. i really don't know what he was on, but i think you can youtube it. brooklyn.over the you come over the bridge and you wind up in this terminal. so you can go back in the past, a certain extent, just as much as we need to go back into quite frankly. so the city of brooklyn -- of course, this is 1910. been annexed to new york. the city of brooklyn is growing bounds. and two million people by the early 1920's. that is a lot of people.
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can't do this with horse cars. okay. you had the bridge. get there, if you have neighborhoods that are growing and being developed far the bridge? you can't bring all these people up on the bridge in horse cars. do it.esn't so brooklyn built, in the 1880's l-trainy 90's, an system that would feed the brooklyn bridge. five l-trainhe lines wound up at the brooklyn bridge. line thatline is the feeds the eastern addition. that's broadway and brooklyn. broadway brooklyn and broadway in queens. ran throughy new york,rg, east cypress hills and it was line in over the city the early 20th century. this is an l-train system, not
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elevated subway system. this is a more primitive technology. it could not handle the numbers people that subway system of today could handle. at for those days, it was miracle, because you weren't on the street. and you knew when you took the l-train, it would take you a certain amount of time to get tookhere, but it always you that time. in l.a., they say if you have to 20 minutese, it's away, you plan for a two-hour trip because of the freeways. it's fascinating. l.a. people have all of their trunk of their car, because they never know. so they have their whole lives in their cars. with the l-train system, you absolutely knew when you were get over the brooklyn bridge to park row. l-trains encouraged the building of fine townhouse neighborhoods. we'll see what i'm talking about in a minute. is the post civil war period, when all the cities are
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suffering in america from too many people and too little space. handle ittreets can't at all. everybody is looking to put the new transportation above the streets. various proposals, including on the upper right, a monorail. i love it. when i was a kid in the 1950's, we got popular science. year, they would have monorail, the transportation of the future. in disneyland,t but that's about it. here's actually, on the upper a real l-trainow system looked. ninth avenue l, the first l-train line that new york built in the 1870's. it's only three cars long. the cars -- i remember the cars but only as a i don't know -- i'm sure they were narrower than subway cars. than subwayorter cars. it was only a three-car train. system,ay, the l-train all of the lines, were two tracks only.
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no express service. fivetopped every three to blocks and it was pulled by a steam-driven locomotive. is so american, so new york. l-traint they put the line, over the sidewalks of ninth avenue, right next to apartments over the stores. so that the day that it went you had six feet from your window, you had this by.ain chugging and it's not only noisy, that's a lot of smoke and cinders. down,en it all went either into the apartments or on to the people along the sidewalk. so... new york. so brooklyn bridge. you see the right, the roadways and the boulevard on either side of the train. sidewalks, on either side of the roadway. they never would put a train on or even aidewalk street, the way we do in
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america. led to life course, under the l. now, a lot of people can't withne anybody living these things. but i grew up in an l-train neighborhood. grew up ontrain i had been converted to subway service. rebuild this whole structure. as we always referred to it the l. life with an l, we just took it for granted. have conversations on jamaica avenue. the train would come by. the noise would drown out all conversation. you would stop. both parties would look in different directions. train would pass by. both parties would then start the conversation exactly at the syllable they left off. also, if you parked under the l, got dings inew you your car, because nuts and bolts l.e always falling from the but having grown up with the l, if you need to go to sleep, have there'sgoing to sleep, nothing like an l train a half block away rumbling in the
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you fallto make asleep. when we moved when i was 11 to a quiet neighborhood that didn't l, none of us could sleep for a week. just too quite. used to these and really, you wonder how life could be led without them. brooklyn.t this is new york. but the l-train station, in the were very much, like this. this is actually the sixth avenue l at 14th street. i remember these l-train stations. cascading roofs. beautiful work for the balustrading. a station house. and then there were wading rooms and-- waiting rooms for men women inside. stainede windows were glass. quite handsome. when i go someplace with my mother, we would wait in the room.g if it was cold, raining, we would wait in a handsome waiting room. back then, it was franklin stoves. when i was around, it was
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heaters. but when your train was only one station away, a buzzer would stand. go up on the platform, wait a few minutes, your train would come along. civilized. people hated these l's by the 20th centuries. bad we didn't save some of these stations. here is the l, in the upper west side. but it could be brooklyn. in brooklyn, the built-up section of brooklyn would be there. in brooklyn, this could be the fulton street l, being built out country, out into the whatands of bedford and would become the heights. we call it bed sky today. it could be fifth avenue where the l-train came down fifth and the development of the park. and remember, the l-train it the row houses. we're anglos. we would not live in apartment houses until the end of the 20th
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century. did,sisted, as the english in living in a proper row house. now, this happens to be harlem, 133rd street, but it could just as well be crown heights, heights, clinton hill. that is how these cities were developed. and here is -- again, all of l-train lines took you to the brooklyn bridge, except for ran alongine that broadway brooklyn. the williamsburg ferries. intoyou over the bridge delthis street. here is -- the fifth avenue runs down or ran down the west side of brooklyn. led to the development of park the upper side, the park. of sunset the cemetery. that's the fifth avenue l-train
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line. l-train linereet that ran through the center of brooklyn led to bedford and the heights. this is a 1980 photograph, on the left, four houses made to like one grand mansion. i think that's hancock street or near fulton, near what was the fulton street l. houses in the heights district.oric it was the l that got them to work. and what about flat bush? here's the church on flatbush south from the church, on the upper right. 1870's lookede like it was upstate new york. but the brooklyn l-train hooked up with a commuter line that the flatlands of brooklyn and took you to brighton beach. the brighton line. because of that hookup with the
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1900's,system, by the in flat bush, you began to get the development of these beautiful, beautiful suburban developments. you are looking in the black and prospect park south in the early 1900's, when it was first built. when that was successful, a whole series of neighborhoods were built adjacent to the brighton line. this photograph, this is the coney island avenue. prospect park is a few blocks to the right. these neighborhoods, beverly square west, they're all to the left. the brighton line is immediately in back of us. and here the neighborhood is brand-new. today the trees arch over the streets. you can't even see the houses. really spectacular houses, that whole area is now coming back. way, on flat bush avenue 1930's homesis the
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restored.just i haven't been there, but i'm planning to go. i hear they did a magnificent job. whole area is changing around. and just to show you that l-trains were not subways, this is the last of the brooklyn l-trains, the myrtle avenue l. until 1969. now, can you imagine if this was today? it would probably be a huge tourist attraction. be usingure if you'd it to go to work, because those are wooden cars. the wooden cars, right to the end, because they never rebuilt the structure below. eastern end of the l was turned into a subway line. it. reconstructed but they never reconstructed this, so it had to carry wooden cars. interior -- this is in 1969. this is an l-train interior, not
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subway. an l-train interior. remember it being narrower modern subways. it was two sets of double seats on either side. a narrowddle, only aisle where only a single line of people could stand. i remember this from the height of four feet; i was a kid. wondered if i would get tall enough to hold on to the yellow strap. the seats bowed out at the so standees could hold on to them. i made sure i was within air range.oning that's the two fans up there. plus the open windows. when i was growing up, there was no air conditioning on subways l-trains. everything had open windows. as a kid, they taught me look you cross.hen keep your wits about you when
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you walk down the street and your head out of a subway or an l-train, or you it within a couple of seconds. among the other features, the guy with the book on his lap, just about see the ratten seats. can still smell them, fell them. the girls used to always hate because it would put a run in their stockings. ratten seats were part of the l train. picture this today with the skyscraper city. not going to this system was a two-generation system. they built it, used it. 1920's, it was already demolished. it had its time, served its had to move one to the subway. imagine 8.5 million people getting around on these things? in disney world it would be fun but i'm not sure if you
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want to live on them. so the brooklyn bridge, that l-train system will tap into it. brooklyn people knew that when you came home to needed more than a house and a backyard. you needed more than a bridge and an l-train to take you home. so what did they do? this statue is at the entrance of prospect park. nobody notices him. know the pedestal but nobody knows him. i'll bet most people look at him think, oh, that's the mad hatter from alice in wonderland. actually, he's stranhan, the of the brooklyn parkway system. a wonderful man. deal with greene, who was not pleasant at all. stranahan was what we call in my
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doll. new york, a he was a doll to deal with. basically he got these two guys river and comest to brooklyn. they had created central park. there they are. and they got a chance to do in brooklyn what they could never in new york, because new york real estate was too expensive. created --lyn, they here's central park, which they had already created in new york. brooklyn they created prospect park. they always considered prospect a much better park than central park. they considered it their masterpiece. the right, downtown brooklyn. on the left, that would be flat bush. prospect gardens is over here. of flat bush is south of the park. they loved prospect park. it gave them room to create three distinct landscapes, and water.ods prospect lake. but more than that, they got to
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in brooklyn that they couldn't do in new york. city ofened the brooklyn. it would be a template for how cities could green themselves. broke park basically took of the fact that here in new york, we have the terminal, the line of hills, runs through new york metropolitan area. it was created by the ice cap. i'm no geologist but billions of years ago, whenever the ice pack in front oft shoved it all kinds of organic debris and the ice cap stopped here in what is nowf new york city and then receded, left a pile of rubbish so to that we know as the terminal. the modern era, if you had money, you lived at the top of the hill, because you know how diseases came about. and all you knew was, if you of the hill,top all the evil vapors would flow
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away from your family. very important to know where the top of the hill is, especially in terms of history. here the terminal comes up the eastern side of staten thend, some of the best of neighborhoods over there. crosses over the narrows, runs up the western edge of brooklyn. that's the bay ridge, the sunset sunset park and the slope in park slope, all because of the terminal. it makes a right turn. where it makes the right turn, elbow, crook, at that that is where prospect park is located. eastward and on top of that ridge of the terminal is where they put one their two parkways. an innovation they had in that they could not do in new york. you notice the terminal then runs northeastward across long island. this map, that's the terminal coming up the west side of
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brooklyn. then, at grand army plaza, it makes a right turn and comes in this direction. why eastern parkway was built where it was built. and there is prospect park in elbow, the crook of the terminal. the first thing that they could they could not do in new york. east of flat bush avenue, they a triangle piece of the majorll of cultural institutions of this great city of brooklyn and library,y brooklyn brooklyn museum, brooklyn gardens. one of the great civic the dodgershere played. all of this could go on and be park.ndent of prospect they did not want buildings in their parks. live ind, look, we cities full of buildings. we don't need buildings in parks. they got this triangle of cultural institutions on the other side of flat bush avenue.
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then they also could build in brooklyn -- they couldn't in parkways, linear green belts that took you from prospect park, across the flatlands of brooklyn. they purposely did not build it along the ridge. wanted you to feel the landscape of the flatlands of brooklyn. and at the northern end of the park, another parkway, ran eastwareastward along the ridgee eastern parkway. it ended at ralph avenue, because that was the city limits brooklyn at the time the parkway was built. parkways were meant to extend the feeling of countryside you had when you got to prospect park. this is eastern parkway, in the 1890's. looks a little different today. the whole point of the parkway linear strip of countryside. it was not a boulevard. this is a boulevard.
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in this photograph, it's a so they put sod over the roadway. thethis is generally roadway. it is an urban street, a it'siful urban street but an urban street. for those not familiar with ands, between the trees buildings are wide sidewalks for caf├ęs, wide sidewalks strolling and enjoying the city. this is yo urban. and this is a green belt. two different ways of approaching city planning. anglo.ery we wanted to get to the country, and that's what we did. parkway,ove eastern the brooklyn museum -- hmm. of focus. anyway, the brooklyn museum rising up. wasn't meant to be a city building. it was meant to rise out of a country setting. the brooklyn museum, which it kind of does, even to this day. ablether thing they were to do in brooklyn, create a
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three-tier park system. the motherrk was park. designed,d park they green park. it would give everybody up in the northern neighborhoods of inoklyn what they could get prospect park. they couldn't walk to prospect park that easily. so a wooded ramble, meadows they in.d play and you had it all in green park. and then they created what neighborhood's -- they created two tiny squares. saratoga park. that would simply serve the neighborhood. prospect park, fort green park and the two little squares. 1890's, without using the the builders, they built second mid-sized park. they called it sunset park,
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of greenwood cemetery, called su sunset park it's on top of the terminal ridge with beautiful sunsets. the fifth avenue l-train was built in the 1880's, they called the neighborhood sunset park, after the park itself. these neighborhoods basically were able to benefit that olmsted gave template fores a ite greening themselves. saratoga square as well. and showing you the neighborhoods that some of you neighborhoodse i've just mentioned, sunset park and park slope, built off the fifth avenue l. they both benefited from the olmsted.of brooklyn by fort green and east of it, clinton hill, benefited from the
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myrtle avenue l. as well as the northern end of heights. prospect gardens and flat bush from the brighton line. had transportation, they had the bridge. but they had a green framework that brooklyn could grow around. and as a matter of fact, olmsted when he worked on brooklyn, that this was his life's work. the mid-1870's, balk separated. that green belt, it actually is a green belt thal, well, it's not exactly a continuous but it runs throughout the brooklyn-queens area. on the left, ocean parkway you to the beaches of the atlantic ocean where the green line makes a right turn. is eastern parkway. northeast,ns to the
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eastern parkway extension, not exactly landscaped like the original but it's kind of in the the original. that takes you to the new edges of the city of brooklyn. 1890's, with the advice of fred olmsted, the city a green beltreated between itself and the rural county of queens. that included highland park, cemeteries inf between. moses put the jackie robinson parkway through that green belt in the 1930's. from those cemeteries, you have magnificent views of the manhattan skyline. people always wonder why they the cemeteries the best views. but remember, the cemeteries semi public parks. and on summer weekends, you picnic in thea cemetery, around the grave of a deceased relative, somebody you they would be part of the picnic. we don't do that anymore.
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we have a very different view of death. i can't say it's an improvement but we have a different view of death. you can ignore the interchange, you can access twoows park, the site of world's fairs. field just north of it. queensu a access the botanical gardens, cunningham cunningham park you have the old vanderbilt motor highway. in the 1900's, one of the vanderbilts built america's first road that was tailored to the car, meant to take the out along theners race courses, car race courses. the vanderbilt -- i but wanting to say parkway it wasn't. the vanderbilt roadway, now a you path and a hiking path, access the park. and that gives you access to
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mcbay, bay side on the west. runningave a green belt through a piece of land to boroughs of new york. you have fiveher, million people. so that green belt is something to notice. and to think about, maybe to improve in the future. when we come back, in a couple of weeks to take a look at brooklyn after the bridge, remember, even though brooklyn was annexed in 1898 to new york, it still thought like a city. and for about a dozen or more years after the annexation, until world war ii, brooklyn is going to give us some magnificent cultural institutions, including the museum, brooklyn library, brooklyn academy of botanicd the brooklyn garden. all of these institutions either created or rebuilt or expanded in a major way, after the annexation. brooklyn continued to think like city. but after world war i, the subway came to brooklyn.
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brooklyn. came to and brooklyn would change again. i'll see you in a couple of weeks. [applause] >> well, barry, you've done it again. and he will be coming back again and again and again. we have great programs, as i've mentioned. everyone, have a very happy thanksgiving! have a wonderful thanksgiving. we'll see you all again. thank you very much. [applause]
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>> you're watching american history t.v. weekend, on every c-span 3. to join the conversation, "like" us on facebook, at c-span history. >> author robert girardi talks about the role and reputation of union general gouverneur k. warren during the civil war. he examined some of the criticisms against warren and compares rumor to evidence in primary sources. talk was hosted by pamplin historical park and is about 40 minutes. of technical issues, we join the program just after it got under way. >> he recented the youngster's to corps command. warren was the youngest corps commander in the army. warren has so puffed up in his


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