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Posts by Valerie Wingfield

The Waldorf-Astoria Hotel

The Waldorf-Astoria Hotel is synonymous with luxurious accommodations. Guests expect excellence in surroundings, room service, food and entertainment. One hundred years ago, white glove service was also expected by guests at the first Waldorf-Astoria's Hotel located on 5th Avenue and 33rd Street.Read More ›

Bhaskar Roy Chowdhury, Prince Among Dancers

Bhaskar Roy Chowdhury Indian folk dance is a very broad term used to describe South Indian dance styles. There are many websites that give information about Indian folk dances and their interpretations.

Bhaskar Roy Chowdhury was one person who achieved a high level of success as an Indian folk dancer. Chowdhury was also an actor, choreographer, author and painter.

Chowdhury was born on February 11, 1930, in Madras, India (now Chennai, India) into a family of Indian royalty. He was the son of Devi Prasad Roy 

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The Adagio Dancers, the Ballroom Dancers and Richard Stuart

Today, the word adagio is rarely used to describe ballroom dancing. If you told someone that you were going adagio dancing, most likely, this would draw a blank stare. Substitute the words adagio dancing with ballroom dancing, the recognition factor would increase tenfold.

The widely accepted definition of adagio is acrobatic balance with counterbalance. It is 

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The Victory Book Campaign and The New York Public Library

World War II Posters Collections. Published by the U.S. Government Printing Office, public domain. Northwestern University LibraryDuring the month of November 1941, three organizations, the American Library Association, the American Red Cross and the United Service Organizations (USO) formed the Victory Book Campaign (originally named the National Defense Book 

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Whispering Column of Jerash

credit: Charles Kyriazos (onwatersedge on flickr)The Whispering Column of Jerash sounds very intriguing and mysterious. What does this mean, many will ask. Are you whispering to the column or is the column whispering to you? And, more importantly where exactly is this column located...

The Whispering Column of Jerash stands quietly in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens. Many people walk pass this ancient treasure not realizing that it dates back to 120 A.D. Many do not know that this column is the second 

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The General Slocum Disaster of June 15, 1904

Illustration by Samuel Ward StantonThe General Slocum Disaster occurred on June 15, 1904. This tragedy is much less well known compared to the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire of March 25, 1911, and the Titanic Disaster of April 15, 1912. Perhaps these two shocking events happening within a year focused people's attention elsewhere. But the aftermath of the sinking of the PS Slocum radically altered the 

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Blizzard! The March Snowstorm of 1888

Spring is ahead in the month of March. The anticipation is for the warmer weather to come and for Winter to leave. This was probably the same idea that New Yorkers and many others along the northeast seaboard believed during mid-March, 1888.

The weather forecasters reported slightly warmer temperatures and fair weather, followed by rain. Certainly, there would be nothing to worry about. This was a big mistake one hundred and twenty-three years ago...

The weather from March 11-14th, 1888, pounded the northeast with howling winds and bone chilling temperatures.  

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Before the Big Mac: Horn & Hardart Automats

115 East 14th Street. March 1933. credit: Robert Byrnes Collection of Automat MemorabiliaAsk anyone about the "Big Mac" and immediately one imagines an image of a double hamburger on a sesame seed bun. The golden arches are everywhere.  On Broadway and 42nd Street, New York City boasts one of the largest McDonald's in metropolitan America. 

Say the words "Horn & Hardart," you will probably get a different reaction.  Go back thirty years or more...

Horn & Hardart Automats were a common sight around the city.  

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Historical Fiction Review: My Name is Mary Sutter

"Get out," he said. "I'm staying." "I don't need you." "Don't be a fool. You need someone." "Not you." The boy lifted his head from the table. "Don't you talk like that to this nice lady," he slurred.

A decision had to be made.  This argument occurred during the United States Civil War, 1861-1865, in the historical fiction My Name is Mary Sutter by Robin Oliveira.  Her protagonist, Mary Sutter is a young midwife determined to become a surgeon in 

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The Brown Pelican: Reluctant Heroine of the Gulf Coast Oil Disaster

The Brown Pelican (Pelcanus Occidentalis) is described on many web sites as one of seven or eight species of pelicans with a wing span over 7 feet...

It is the smallest of all the pelicans. One of the features that make this brown bird so distinctive is its large bill; when resting, the neck bends in two places. Standing out from the pack, the Brown Pelican dives directly into the water, beak first, for its food. The habitant of the Brown Pelican is along coastal waterways.

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology captured the sights and sound of the

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