Issue 3 of Blackwell’s Almanac, RIHS Newsletter – Available now

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Roosevelt Island Historical Society’s August Newsletter

 Vol 1 No 3 Blackwell’s Almanac   Click link to view.



Monarch Event on Roosevelt Island Saturday, July 18th

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Click MonarchEventSatJuly182015 to see the colorful flyer.

iDig2Learn hosts a free Monarch Butterfly Corridor planting on Roosevelt Island this SAT July 18th from 11 AM to 3 PM Rain or shine.  Meet at RI Community garden main gate at 11 AM.
In partnership with RIOC, RIGC, RIHS, RIYP and the Girl Scouts, iDig2Learn will host a planting of the milkweed plant that monarch butterflies, which have suffered a severe loss of habitat, heavily depend upon.  These destinations will serve as a flight corridor for monarch butterflies on their migrations south to warmer weather every fall.
Thanks to generous grants provided by Citizens Committee for NYC, City Gardens Club of NYC and Grow to Learn NYC, and fiscal sponsors 217PTA and RI Youth Program, this event is free.
Please join us as we form a managed milkweed haven together and restore wildlife micro-habitats here on Roosevelt Island.




The Rocky History of Roosevelt Island

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Here’s a link to an article by Judith Berdy, which was published on on Saturday, June 13, 2015.

The Rocky History of Roosevelt Island

At its heart, this American landmark is a a living, historical embodiment of the major issues Hillary Clinton wants to champion. By Judith Berdy




Blackwell’s Almanac (Vol 1 No 2) Now available

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Roosevelt Island Historical Society’s Newsletter

Blackwell’s Almanac (Vol1,No2) Click link to view



Link to Blackwell’s Almanac – RIHS Newsletter

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Roosevelt Island Historical Society’s Newsletter

2015  Blackwell’s Almanac (click to view)



“The Roosevelt Island Tram” Video by Allison Pichert Walker

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In a video produced by documentary filmmaker Allison Pichert Walker, Judith Berdy, president of the Roosevelt Island Historical Society, discusses the importance of the Tram to the Island. Says Ms. Berdy: “Without the Tram, we’d be a very boring, subway-oriented community.” (Visit Ms. Walker’s website to learn about her work with nonprofits.)

This is “The Roosevelt Island Tram” by ap on Vimeo, the home for high quality videos and the people who love…




Fisher Landau Center for Art – Special Exhibit

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The Roosevelt Island Historical Society

Invites you to visit the

Fisher Landau Center for Art,

Long Island City, N

Special Exhibit:

2014 Fisher Landau Center for Art

Fisher Landau Center for Art – website

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

Meet at 11:30 a.m.

Transportation to be advised.

Donation: $25- members, $35- non-members

Reservations: 212-688-4836,

Join us for an optional lunch following the visit at a local restaurant.



Tour of the City College of New York Campus

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The Roosevelt Island Historical Society

Tour of the City College of New York Campus

With Tour Leader Dalton Whiteside

Tuesday–September 30, 2014 (rain date October 7)

Our tour will begin at 10:30 a.m., starting at the north end of the campus at the crossing of 141st Avenue, just near the Hamilton Grange National Memorial (at 414 W 141st St, New York, NY 10031).

After a stroll by the historic home of our nation’s first Secretary of the Treasury, we will continue on to City College’s iconic Perpendicular Gothic campus and its subsequent buildings that were later built to house various disciplines of the college. Along our tour, we will visit the Great Hall, Lincoln Corridor, and a Shepard’s grand Reception Room.

Additionally, we will cover the history of several significant buildings that preceded some of the present campus structures, their importance in the community, and untimely ends.

Next, we will arrive at what is sometimes known as the “South Campus” where you will have the opportunity to visit the Architecture Library and view the Spitzer School of Architecture’s newest exhibit on the renowned architect, Antoni Gaudi.  Some original models have been brought from Spain especially for this exhibit that highlight his unique works. If the weather holds we can ascend to the building’s roof for great views of the city.

Lastly, we have the wonderful opportunity to explore the newly constructed Science Research Center buildings whose land holds a fascinating history of being the former home of the Manhattanville College of the Sacred Heart.


To register for this tour e-mail

Fee is $25- for RIHS members and $35- for guests

For more information call (212) 688-4836

(lunch will be optional at local restaurant)



Lost and Found in Goldwater – A Photographic Record

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Lost and Found in Goldwater

A Photographic Record

2014 Charles Giraudet Photo of Goldwater                                                ©Charles Giraudet 2014


6:30 p.m.

Roosevelt Island Branch, New York Public Library

524 Main Street, Roosevelt Island

Goldwater Hospital’s closing gave photographer Charles Giraudet the opportunity to photograph for posterity this 75-year old building. Built by the WPA, Goldwater is a showplace of creative and forward-thinking architecture.  Join Charles Giraudet and the Roosevelt Island Historical Society for a photographic walk through the now silent halls, byways and passages of this architectural masterpiece.

Charles Giraudet’s earliest memory takes place in his father’s photo studio in Paris, France.  After completing his architecture studies, he moved to New York and worked on projects large and small for over 15 years.   Giraudet came back to photography when he started to look at the camera itself as an architectural artifact—a room that captures light and fragments of life. A small camera collection ensued, with which he has taken images around the globe. Lately, his projects have been revolving around concepts familiar to architects (perception, identity, memory, scale, transformation, the body in space, etc.), and the documentation of the human experience as it is manifested in space. He is currently documenting Goldwater Hospital on Roosevelt Island, New York, which is being demolished to make room for the new Cornell Tech campus.


            Roosevelt Island Historical Society

The New York Public Library Roosevelt Island Branch          

This program is free and open to the public.



“Forgotten Queens”

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Forgotten Queens Book cover clip_image002The Roosevelt Island Historical Society


“Forgotten Queens”

Join Historian Robert Singleton for a Fascinating Journey thru our Neighboring Borough


6:30 p.m.

Roosevelt Island Branch, NYPL,

524 Main Street, Roosevelt Island

In the early years of the 20th century, Queens County underwent an enormous transformation.

The Queensboro Bridge of 1909 forever changed the landscape of this primarily rural area into the urban metropolis it is today. Forgotten Queens shows New York’s largest borough between the years 1920 and 1950, when it was adorned with some of the finest model housing and planned communities anywhere in the country.

Victorian mansions, cookie-cutter row houses, fishing shacks and beach-side bungalows all coexisted next to workplaces and commercial areas. Beckoning with the torch of the new century and a bright promise for those who dared to pioneer its urban wilderness, Queens flourished as a community.

Robert Singleton, Executive Director of the Greater Astoria Historical Society will take us on a journey thru these neighborhoods, moments from Roosevelt Island.