Monday, January 6, 2014

Sounds of the Sixth Boro: Environment, Law, and History

David Schorr points to an archive of the sounds of the City.  New Yorkers have been complaining about the noise and the smoke and the dirt for a long time.  The truth is that things have gotten a lot better.  Except for the subway platforms, and the sirens.  But those sounds are distant eough now to evoke nostalgia.  I particularly recommend clicking on Horns in the harbor section of this audio archive - for videos of a fog horn and a McAllister tug. - gwc
Environment, Law, and History: The hidden histories of environmental law:
by David Schorr
NYC smog 1966
 "Thanks to the Legal History Blog and Slate's "The Vault", I came across "The Roaring Twenties", a digital history site self-described as "an interactive exploration of the historical soundscape of New York City". The site has historical newsreel footage of all kinds of loud noises from early twentieth-century New York, along with published materials and hundreds of original documents from the municipal archives relating to noise complaints (see the explanation of sources under "Info"), all organized by date, by type of noise, and accessible by location on a historical map of the city. In addition to the material on noise, other environmental issues pop up as well, such as in a 1930 video of a staged confrontation between two boys over a banana peel thrown on the sidewalk in Manhattan's Lower East Side (check it out for its great accents and slang). (And if you want to understand why New Yorkers for years turned their back on their waterfront, watch some movies of tugboats and other watercraft at work.)"

'via Blog this'