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Mike Wallace

Mike Wallace, Chair of Advisory Board

Mike Wallace, co-author of the Pulitzer-Prize winning Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898, is Distinguished Professor of History at John Jay College of Criminal Justice (City University of New York). His most recent book - A New Deal for New York - examines the future of post September 11 Gotham in the light of its past.

Wallace was born and raised in New York City and its environs. He got his undergraduate and graduate degrees at Columbia University, studying with Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Richard Hofstadter, with whom he collaborated on a history of American Violence published by Knopf in 1970.

Wallace has taught history to police officers and others at John Jay since 1971. His courses include the History of New York City, and the History of Crime in New York City.

He has published a series of essays that explore the ways history is used and abused in American popular culture, including pieces on Disney World, Colonial Williamsburg, the Enola Gay controversy at the Smithsonian, and historic preservation; these have been collected in Mickey Mouse History and Other Essays on American Memory (1997). He helped found and for thirty years helped publish and edit the Radical History Review (now affiliated with Duke University Press).

Wallace has worked with museums, video and filmmakers, radio producers, and novelists to make the best new scholarship accessible to non specialists. He served as a senior historical consultant and "talking head" for Ric Burns' PBS Special, New York: A Documentary Film, and has advised many local museums, notably the New York Historical Society and the Museum of the City of new York. He has lectured on historical issues in many parts of the country and around the world.

Wallace is now working on the second volume of Gotham: A History of New York City. The forthcoming book, which he is writing on his own, will cover the history of New York City from 1898 through the Second World War.

He is married to Carmen Boullosa, one of Mexico's most acclaimed novelists, poets and playwrights, and currently Distinguished Lecturer at City College, CUNY.

For Wallace's C.V., click here.

Suzanne Wasserman, Director

Suzanne Wasserman is an historian and award-winning filmmaker. She has a Ph.D. in American History from New York University. Wasserman lectures, writes and consults about New York City history, especially the history of the Lower East Side. She has published widely on topics such as the Great Depression, Jewish nostalgia, housing, restaurant culture, tourism, pushcart peddling, the Jewish silent screen actress Theda Bara, 19th century saloons, and 21st century street fairs. She was an historical consultant on Ron Howard’s, Cinderella Man. She is the co-author of Life on the Lower East Side, 1937-1950: the Photographs of Rebecca Lepkoff (Princeton Architectural Press).

Her 2003 award-winning film, Thunder in Guyana, is about her cousin, Janet Jagan, who became President of Guyana in South America. The film aired nationally on PBS as part of the Independent Lens series in February, 2005. The film won Best Documentary at the Boston Jewish Film Festival and a Cine Golden Eagle in 2004. She has received grants from the director John Sayles, New York State Council on the Arts, NY Women in Film and Television, and others. Her second film, a short documentary, titled Brooklyn among the Ruins premiered at the Coney Island Film Festival in 2005 and was broadcast on PBS/WNET’s series REEL New York in 2006. Her third film, released in 2010, is a new, short documentary Sweatshop Cinderella, about the immigrant writer Anzia Yezierska. Sweatshop Cinderella and Thunder in Guyana are distributed by Women Make Movies. Her fourth and most recent documentary, Meat Hooked!, is about the rise and fall (and return) of butchering in NYC.

To read an interview of Suzanne Wasserman by poet, journalist and photographer Brian Berger, click here.

For Wasserman's C.V., click here.


Julie Maurer, Education Director

Julie Maurer is an art, history and museum educator who specializes in architecture and design education. For thirty years, Ms. Maurer has been designing programs, publications and exhibitions for cultural institutions and community groups in New York City and the tri-state area. Her work combines disciplines to create innovative programs for all ages. Some highlights include developing Henry Street Settlement’s award winning "Architecture & Design and Community Studies Project.” Ms. Maurer organized school improvement programs with elementary schools, architects, artists and classroom teachers. The program received the 2000 President’s Art and Humanities Award for Youth. A second project was in partnership with the National Design Museum and Learning By Design, NYAIA. She was on a team of design educators who initiated and implemented the nationwide program "City of Neighborhoods: Bridging School and Community." She was also a faculty advisor for the Museum’s Design Summer Institute. In 1998, she was awarded an independent grant from the Architecture, Planning and Design Program of the New York State Council on the Arts. Ms. Maurer researched youth involved in making design changes in communities resulting in an exhibition and public programs titled ”Making Our City Livable: Community Design Projects By and For Youth”. Ms. Maurer is author of My Preservation Journal, an architecture, design and preservation book for children published by Landmark West; co-writer of the Historic District Council’s Community As Classroom, and other K-12 curriculums with museums and arts organizations. Ms. Maurer served as the Director of Education at the South Street Seaport Museum and also at the Central Park Conservancy in New York. She has a Masters of Science in Education from Queens College and Bachelor of Fine Arts from Pratt Institute


Peter-Christian Aigner, Graduate Assistant

Peter-Christian Aigner is a Ph.D. Candidate at The Graduate Center, CUNY, specializing in modern American political and intellectual history. He has presented research on the early anticommnist Left in New York and the book history of various Cold War liberal and U.S. Enlightenment texts to a number of professional conferences. His dissertation is a biograhy of Daniel Patrick Moynihan, exploring the career of the late contested figure in the context of changing dynamics in twentieth century Democratic politics and policy. It will be the first large-scale academic treatment of the statesman to date. A native of Queens and Long Island, Aigner lives in Brooklyn and has taught or studied in all five boroughs. He is also the Assistant Editor for the Journal of the History of Ideas.


Phil Acosta and Jonathan Hooper, Web Developers

Phil and Jonathan are Tinyboxer productions, the firm that's responsible for the design, functionality, databases, and discussion boards on this site. Tinyboxer specializes in building internet-based solutions for non-profit organizations.

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Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898
By Edwin G. Burrows, Mike Wallace

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