Click to search the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library Skip Navigation

The New York Public Library will be closed August 30th through September 1st in observance of Labor Day.

Blog Posts by Subject: New York State

September Author @ the Library Programs at Mid-Manhattan

The centrality of sunshine… the most fascinating New York Times obits of the year… the riddle of the

... Read More ›

Boost your Budget with Help from a Food Program!

The following post was written by guest blogger Vanna Valdez, Benefits Outreach Worker, NYC Hunger Free Communities Consortium.

The New York City Hunger Free Communities Consortium (NYCHFCC) is a collaboration of New York City’s leading anti-hunger, nutrition, and aging organizations (AARP Foundation, City Harvest, Council of Senior Centers and Services of NYC, Food Bank 

... Read More ›

Government Information: Guides to Official New York State Resources

Some may regret the passing of libraries receiving goverment information in paper form. But the goal of digitization isn't sensory deprivation; and anyway, paper materials started to disappear before the Internet came along — think microfiche, microfilm, even microcards (and yes, we have some of those at NYPL). Maybe someday all official goverment documents will be available online. However, not yet — there are still paper, and microform, collections here at SIBL.

... Read More ›

Beyond 311: How to Direct Complaints to NYC, State or Federal Agencies

Landlord-Tenant Disputes: Heat and Hot Water, Eviction, Foreclosure Complaints with the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTA) Consumer Fraud and "Rip Offs" Discrimination based on Race, Gender, Sexual Orientation Landlord-Tenant Disputes: Heat and Hot Water, Eviction, Foreclosure

Landlord-tenant disputes are a fact that a large percentage of New York City residents must confront at one time or another if they live in this 

... Read More ›

The Ticketless Traveler: Into the Woods

"We just passed two huge black bears on the trail. They're not cute."

Photo by Kerri WallaceMy hike in Harriman State Park started off with the only concern being the chance of rain and ticks. I had packed my 99 cent rain poncho and doused myself in OFF bug spray to the amusement of my friends. I could handle seeing snakes, bucks, and other wild animals, but ticks were the last thing I wanted to find on my body or in my hair. My fears soon changed when we passed a father and daughter who mentioned 

... Read More ›

Start Traveling with the Help From NYPL’s Periodical Collections!

Sick of NYC’s cold weather?  Got the traveling bug in you?  Why not stop by the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building to check out our latest travel magazines for the newest tips, trips, and activities abroad?  With over 100 international, regional and local traveling magazines, the DeWitt Wallace Periodicals Division can help you plan your next destinations! 

We have magazines from

... Read More ›

American Rags-to-Riches Mythos: The Madam C. J. Walker Saga, Part 1

"I am a woman who came from the cotton fields of the South. From there I was promoted to the washtub. From there I was promoted to the cook kitchen. And from there I promoted myself into the business of Manufacturing hair goods and preparations. I have built my own factory on my own ground. Madam Walker National Negro Business League Convention, July 1912." Bundles, A'Lelia. Madam C.J. Walker, 2009.

Almost every school child has heard of

... Read More ›

History of the St. George Library Center

Photo dated 1915, showing the now gone entrance and stairway leading up from the bottom of Hyatt Street. To the right is the long since demolished Tiedeman mansion, currently the site of the St. George Theater.A brief history of the St. George Library Center from pamphlet "St. George Library Center," 6/89:

"Ferry service between the Battery and Staten Island began in 1886. Soon afterward, a town developed around the ferry landing and up the slopes of Fort 

... Read More ›

Changing the Changing City

Seeking further enlightenment into the city we call home, I recently took a class on the literary and cultural history of New York City. Among the many themes common to New York City novels we discussed was the portrayal of the city itself as a character with power to shape the lives of its citizens.

Many of us New Yorkers have felt this pressure in our own lives: we choose where to live based on our budgets, our hobbies, our family situation, and often our ethnic, linguistic or religious 

... Read More ›

A Clue to a Cue

“I’m looking for a pool hall that used to be on 14th street on the east side. I’m not sure what of its name. It was open at least as late as 1989, and it was next to a nightclub. Can you tell me the name of the hall?”

This was an interesting reference challenge. Normally when one is faced with a business name question, it’s as simple as heading to the yellow pages or reverse directory (also known as an address directory) for the time period in question. Without an exact 

... Read More ›

A Mystery in Astor Hall

I recently received a research question that posed a bit of an unusual mystery. The question was why John Jacob Astor, a founder of the library, was listed as a benefactor on one of the Astor Hall marble columns not once, but twice.

The question sent me over to Astor Hall to investigate, where I found the first four benefactors listed as John Jacob Astor, William Backhouse Astor, James Lenox, and John Jacob Astor, in that order. Hmm, a mystery indeed.   To answer the question, I began with the first issue of the ... Read More ›

The City of Light Before the Advent of Electricity: New York City Travel Writing, 1600s

Gotham. The Big Apple. The City of Light. Crossroads of the World. And my personal favorite: the City of Superlatives. These are all sobriquets that have been applied to New York City at one time or another.

The city that has insinuated its way into the hearts of so many travelers has inspired an incredible outpouring of travel guides and literature.

Travel writing at its best is half reporting and half myth-creating by the adventurer fortunate to visit an unknown, perhaps exotic destination. These treatises offer a 

... Read More ›

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving from The Lionel Pincus and Princess Firyal Map Division! Come see Willem Janszoon Blaeu's Nova Belgica et Anglia Nova in person at the fabulous Mapping New York's Shoreline 1609-2009 exhibition, open today and the Friday and Saturday following Thanksgiving in the Gottesman Exhibition Hall located on the first floor of the

... Read More ›

Chat with a librarian now