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Posts from Hudson Park Library

The Drillmaster: Biography of Baron de Steuben

Von Steuben has been a figure of pop Revolutionary War mythology for too long. This excellent 2008 bio places him firmly within the context of the 1700s. With family connections close to the Hohenzollern Monarchy, Steuben should have been placed to rise pretty high in the Prussian officer hierarchy. He saw active service in the beginning of the Seven Years War and witnessed the bloodshed of the first heavy battles of the war at Prague in 1756. He saw further service commanding Free Batalion Mayer, 

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A Fun Thing: Book Discussion at Hudson Park Library

You still have time to read A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again by David Foster Wallace before Hudson Park's next book discussion on Saturday, June 9, at 10:30 a.m.

Called by many the greatest writer of his generation, Wallace can be challenging, especially his 1079 p. novel Infinite 

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You Can't Do It Alone: John Cheever in the Village

John Cheever lived at 61 Jane Street when The New Republic published his first short story. His birthday is May 27.

Here are some words from the 

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A Worse Crime than Burning Books: Joseph Brodsky in the Village

Joseph Brodsky was a Russian poet, born in Leningrad, who became the American Poet Laureate in 1991. He lived at 44 Morton Street and his birthday is May 24.

Like Dylan Thomas, Brodsky wrote a birthday poem. His is called May 24, 1980, and was published in

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The Thing That Makes You Exceptional: Lorraine Hansberry in the Village

Lorraine Hansberry lived at 337 Bleecker Street. Her birthday is May 19.

A Raisin in the Sun was the first play written by an African American woman to be produced on Broadway. Here are some quotes:

A Raisin in the Sun (1959)

I look at 

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Miracles Are Instantaneous: Katherine Anne Porter in the Village

Katherine Anne Porter's 1962 Ship of Fools was the best selling novel of the year and assured her financial security. She is generally more admired for her shorter works, however, such as Pale Horse, Pale Rider and her collections of short stories.

She lived at

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The Premise of Meaning: Archibald MacLeish in the Village

Archibald MacLeish was the Librarian of Congress from 1939-1944 as well as an accomplished poet and dramatist. Not surprisingly, he was a huge advocate for libraries. 

He lived at 182 Sullivan Street and his birthday is May 7.

Here’s a great idea! Celebrate his birthday by

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Jane Jacobs and the Hudson Street Ballet

I read Jane Jacobs's The Death and Life of Great American Cities years before I moved to New York, back when I wrote for community newspapers in my home state of Delaware. Jacobs wrote sensibly, without pretense. She observed things closely, and drew logical conclusions. She obviously cared about her subject passionately, but her arguments were not emotional. They 

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Is Private Life Relevant? May Sarton in the Village

May Sarton lived a little bit out of Hudson Park's area at 42 E. 11th Street, but still, close enough. She was a poet, novelist and memoirist. May 3rd is her birthday.

She is credited with saying "the deeper you go, the more universal you 

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A Poet's Poet: Gregory Corso

Gregory Corso was born at St. Vincent's Hospital in New York City. His family lived near Bleecker and MacDougal streets at the time of his birth.

His birthday is March 26.

His famous poem "Marriage" can 

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Who's Afraid? Edward Albee in the Village

Edward Albee's birthday is March 12. He resided at 238 West Fourth Street (near Tenth Street) in New York City.

In September, Hudson Park Library's Book Discussion Group read

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Genius Row: Frank Norris in the Village

So many remarkable writers lived in New York City at 61 Washington Square South and the adjoining homes that the structures became known as Genius Row. Frank Norris, a writer mostly associated with San Francisco, lived here for a time (as did Willa Cather

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The Mortality of Books: William Dean Howells

William Dean Howells was known as the "The Dean of American Letters." He died in 1920. I wonder who would have that title now?

Howells lived at 1 Washington Square in New York City and was born March 1, 1837.

In a letter to 

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First Fig: Edna St. Vincent Millay in the Village

The house is for sale again, apparently — One of the most famous in Greenwich Village, 75 1/2 Bedford Street, otherwise known as the skinniest house in New York.

Formerly, it was the home of

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Life is a Stream: Amy Lowell in the Village

Amy Lowell was a poet who lived for a time at 61 Washington Square in New York City. February 9 is her birthday.

Here is a short selection from her work:

Life is a stream On which we strew Petal by petal the flower of our heart.

"Petals," from

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Call It Sleep: Henry Roth in the Village

Henry Roth was living at 61 Morton Street in New York City while writing his classic novel of the immigrant experience, Call It Sleep, published in 1934. His birthday is February 8.


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Priggish and of Dubious Virtue

Sinclair Lewis, like many writers who lived in the Village, came from elsewhere — from Sauk Centre, Minnesota, in fact, whose citizens did not care at all for how they were depicted in his phenomenally popular novel Main Street.

Lewis lived for a time at

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Lunch, Anyone? Burroughs in the Village

William S. Burroughs was born in St. Louis, Missouri, on February 5, 1914, but became involved with the Beats in the Village in the 1940s. He lived at 69 Bedford Street in New York City.

Here are some quotes from his best-known novel Naked 

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Revolutionary Road or Seventh Avenue?

Richard Yates, born February 3, 1926, lived at 27 Seventh Avenue South, at the corner of Bedford Street in New York City, just steps from Hudson Park Library.

Yates is best known for Revolutionary Road, a finalist for the

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The Voice of the Village?

Norman Mailer, best known for The Naked and the Dead and The Executioner's Song, was born on January 31. He lived at 73 Perry Street in New York City.

Perhaps his biggest contribution to the 

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