What You Find on a Stroll Through New York City’s Macabre Past

What You Find on a Stroll Through New York City’s Macabre Past

Life in modern-day NYC sure ain’t what it used to be—and thank god for that, because living here used to be downright hellish. From its beginnings as a fur trading outpost and ensuing rise to the top of the global metropolitan heap, the Big Apple has always kept its metaphorical hands dirty. The pages of our fair city’s biography are filthy—waterlogged with splashes from the poisonous East River, the stinking Gowanus canal, and their floating corpses; streaked with blood from murderers, serial killers, cops, and politicians alike; splattered with bile from the city’s many pestilential epidemics, from yellow fever and cholera to Spanish flu and HIV/AIDS; stained with tears from the disenfranchised, the hoodwinked, the desperate, the dead.

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