Publications

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Books

New York Recentered: Building the Metropolis from the Shore (The University of Chicago Press, 2019)

Historical Studies of Urban America

The history of New York City’s urban development often centers on titanic municipal figures like Robert Moses and on prominent inner Manhattan sites like Central Park. New York Recentered boldly shifts the focus to the city’s geographic edges—the coastlines and waterways—and to the small-time unelected locals who quietly shaped the modern city. Kara Murphy Schlichting details how the vernacular planning done by small businessmen and real estate operators, performed independently of large scale governmental efforts, refigured marginal locales like Flushing Meadows and the shores of Long Island Sound and the East River in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The result is a synthesis of planning history, environmental history, and urban history that recasts the story of New York as we know it.

Articles

“Rethinking the Bronx’s ‘Soundview Slums’: The Intersecting Histories of Large-Scale Waterfront Redevelopment and Community-Scaled Planning in an Era of Urban Renewal,” special issue of the Journal of Planning History: “The Histories of New York City’s Parks,” 16, Issue 2 (May 2017), 112–138.

“‘They Shall Not Pass:’ Opposition to Public Leisure and State Park Planning in Connecticut and on Long Island,” Journal of Urban History 41, no. 1 (Jan. 2015), 116-142.

Online

Read an excerpt on the engineering of the Harlem River and late-nineteenth-century debates about northward urbanization from Chapter 2 of New York Recentered on Gotham: A Blog for Scholars of New York City History

“Sanitizing Playland: Establishing Expectations for Public Behavior in Greater New York’s Parks,” The Gotham Center For New York City History Blog, The Graduate Center, City University of New York (July 4, 2017) Gotham: A Blog for Scholars of New York City History

Playland, Rye Beach: Westchester County, New York. Maps of New York City and State collection, New York Public Library.

Playland, Rye Beach: Westchester County, New York. Maps of New York City and State collection, New York Public Library.