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 West Thames Street between South End Avenue and the Hudson River Esplanade (north side), Digital ID 504218, New York Public LibraryFrom "Drugstore Photographs, Or, A Trip Along the Yangtze River, 1999;" Lower Manhattan Block-by-Block by Dylan Stone. Block 084: West Thames Street between South End Avenue and the Hudson River Esplanade (north side), Digital ID 504218, New York Public LibraryWhere were you? Uptown, midtown, downtown. Queens, Staten Island, the Bronx. Brooklyn, Manhattan, New Jersey. On the ferry, on the train, in the air, below ground. At the library, at school, at home, at work. Maybe you were somewhere else, and you watched the events unfold from far away on television. 

Last year we offered an extensive list of books providing facts and analysis on the terrorist attacks, available from our collections in many languages. This year we also have a list of books to help you talk about this day with children. This Sunday, the tenth anniversary, it makes sense to look back and just remember. Listen and reflect on where we were, and where we are now.

Oral Histories and Archives

Personal Narratives in the NYPL Catalog

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9/11 Memories

I was engrossed at work in my home office on the morning of September 11, 2001, when my wife, a middle school teacher, called from her classroom: "Phil, the World Trade Center had been hit. Turn on the TV." As I watched the North Tower engulfed in flame, the South Tower was hit. I will always remember that moment--the human capacity for evil. I reflected on the nearly three thousand people who perished and the tens of thousands more who loved them and would be affected by this tragedy far greater than I. The mere thought of this crime made many flee from others, made them withdraw. Where can they go in safety? Whom can they trust? Why are they living in such a world? But what I will most remember from that day is our capacity for love. I immediately received calls from relatives all over the world: Malta, Australia, and England. Local friends, some knowing I was scheduled to deliver a presentation in the World Trade Center on September 13, called to see where and how I was. Even some people I'd forgotten checked in. I did the same, learning that my dearest family and friends who live and work in New York City were as safe as I was. I didn't know what world I would live in when the dust of the collapsed towers settled, but ultimately, September 11, 2001 taught me that we need each other more than ever.

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