Michael T Keene

TALKING HART ISLAND PODCAST EPISODE 11

Episode 11 “Dawn Powell”: with Tim Page, Professor, Pulitzer Prize-winning music critic, writer, and editor. Does the name Dawn Powell mean anything to you? I thought so. But you’re not alone. Just as millions of people knew nothing about Hart Island, millions of people never heard of Dawn Powell, perhaps the greatest writer no-one has […]

TALKING HART ISLAND PODCAST EPISODE 12

Episode 12 “Bellevue”: with Dr. Danielle Ofri Essayist, editor, and practicing internist in New York City. How exactly did bodies end up on Hart Island? Their first stop use to be the Bellevue Hospital Morgue. During the 19th century, the Bellevue Morgue had become the first official repository of deceased New Yorkers. If a body […]

TALKING HART ISLAND PODCAST EPISODE 13

Episode 13 “Leola Dickerson”: with Peter Strauss, Senior Partner at Pierro, Connor, and Strauss. She lay on the floor for three days. A slip and fall had rendered her helpless, at the mercy of fate as neighbors came and went just feet from her door. Ii was the mailman who became concerned, she had not […]

TALKING HART ISLAND PODCAST EPISODE 14

Episode 14 “The Triangle Shirt Waist Factory Fire”: with Hasia Diner, Professor New York University. As historian Robert Hughes notes, “The Tenth Ward of Lower Manhattan—the Lower East Side—had by the 1890’s, the highest concentration of people in the world: 344,000 people packed into one square mile, or nine square yards each, including street and […]

TALKING HART ISLAND PODCAST EPISODE 15

Episode 15 “The Manly Arts”: with Elliott J. Gorn, Professor, Purdue University. Well before Hart island became New York City’s potters field, Hart Island, or Hart’s Island as it was then called, became a prime tourist destination for every rogue and scoundrel in town, when City officials banned boxing. Overnight, the ban turned the island […]

TALKING HART ISLAND PODCAST EPISODE 16

Episode 16 “Shelia Terry”: with Larry Powell, Professor, University of Alabama at Birmingham. American film actress Shelia Terry was a true Hollywood starlet of the 1930’s, starring in among other films, three with John Wayne before she ended her life, with an overdose of sleeping pills in 1947. Described as one of films first glamour […]

TALKING HART ISLAND PODCAST EPISODE 17

Episode 17 “The Great Arrival”: with Diane Vecchio, Professor, Furman University. Most of this generation of Italian immigrants took their first steps on U.S. soil in a place that has now become a legend—Ellis Island. In the 1880s, they numbered 300,000; in the 1890s, 600,000; in the decade after that, more than two million. By […]

TALKING HART ISLAND PODCAST EPISODE 18

Episode 18 “Leonard Melfi”: with Edward Berkeley, Professor, The Julliard School. Leonard Melfi was revered by his peers as one of the most respected and creative playwrights of his generation. He is most associated with the offbeat La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club, on East 4th Street in New York’s East Village, which produced twenty-two of […]

TALKING HART ISLAND PODCAST EPISODE 19

Episode 19 “Ship Ablaze”: with Edward T. O’Donnell, Professor Holy Cross University. There were few experienced swimmers, among the over 1,300 Lower East Side residents, who boarded the General Slocum on June 15, 1904. It shouldn’t have mattered since the steamship was chartered, only for a languid excursion, from Manhattan to Long Island Sound. But […]

TALKING HART ISLAND PODCAST EPISODE 20

Episode 20 “Ruth Proskauer Smith”: with Ian Dowbiggin, Professor at University of Prince Edward Island. Ruth Proskauer Smith, or Ruth P. Smith as she became more commonly known as, was a historic pro-choice reproductive rights, and pro-right to die advocate. Even after she was over one hundred years old, she spent much of her time […]