In December 2012 my wife Delma and I travelled to the USA to visit our daughter Lydia in New York. She had recently acquired a job at Bloomsburg in Pennsylvania, a couple of hours drive along the Interstate 80 transcontinental highway.
Right now she was in the process of moving to an apartment in New York city to be closer to the airports, since flying was to be a major part of the job. This was going to be her first Christmas in the U.S. and we wanted to share it with her, especially since she’d not as yet had time to meet many people and make new friends.
On days when Lydia worked, Delma and I did a bit of sightseeing around New York, and visited nearby cities of Philadelphia and Washington. And on the way back to Australia we stopped to have a look around San Francisco. What follows is a record of this trip including some of the sights, and some interesting bits of history about people and places.
|Note: Unfortunately there’d been persistent problems with my camera and apologies are tendered in advance. There were two issues – one with focusing and the other with measuring ambient light. This is a selection of some of the better photos. Many potentially great shots have not been suitable to use.|
About New York
New York City – NYC consists of 5 boroughs or “neighbourhoods” – The Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island. There are many smaller islands but the three major islands are Long Island, Manhattan Island and Staten Island.
NYC It’s the most populous in the U.S. with around 9 million in the city and around 20 million people in New York State. Manhattan is the most densely populated. It’s estimated over 800 languages are spoken. Most people rent with only around 3 out of 10 housing units being owner occupied. According to one tour guide everybody lives in housing units or apartments on Manhattan Island.
New York was founded in 1624 by the Dutch who called it New Amsterdam. The English took it over in 1664. The original natives were various tribes of Algonquian Indians including the Lenapes. By 1700 their numbers were reduced to about 200 due to inter-tribal wars and introduced European diseases.
The biggest battle of the American Revolutionary War took place on the western end of Long Island entirely within the Brooklyn area in 1776. The Americans were defeated there.
Evidence of Clovis culture was discovered on Staten Island dating back 14,000 years, as well as evidence of the first permanent American Indian settlements from about 5,000 years ago.
Times Square Christmas Day 2012
|Above: Various streets scenes around the Times Square area.Above Right: Delma, Lydia and RussLeft: Lydia and Dad at lunch.|
The Empire State Building
A long day to get up to the top involving long queues and waiting. It’s 103 stories located in Midtown Manhattan. It was built at the start of 1930 at the beginning of the Great Depression involving 3,400 workers. It was completed roughly 1 year 4 months later in May 1931.
Interestingly a biplane crashed into the north side in 1945 killing 14 people on a Saturday. An elevator operator survived a 75 story plunge which is still in the Guinness Book of Records. The building resumed business on the following Monday.
The lights at the top are regularly displayed in different colour patterns to mark significant events. One example is green and gold to mark Australia Day.
New York Harbour and Foreshore
Scenes Around Manhattan
New Year’s Eve 2012
Philadephia to follow