MY AMERICAN REVOLUTION
By Robert Sullivan
CITY OF PROMISES: A History of the Jews in New York
By Deborah Dash Moore (Author) , Howard B. Rock (Editor) , Annie Polland (Editor) , Daniel Soyer (Editor) , Jeffrey S. Gurock (Editor) , Diana Linden (Editor)
THE RICHEST WOMAN IN AMERICA: Hetty Green in the Gilded Age
By Janet Wallach
By Robert Sullivan
259 pages, Farrar, Straus & Giroux. $26.00
From the Macmillan website:
Like an almanac, My American Revolution moves through the calendar of American independence, considering the weather and the tides, the harbor and the estuary and the yearly return of the stars as salient factors in the war for independence. In this fiercely individual and often hilarious journey to make our revolution his, he shows us how alive our own history is, right under our noses.
1108 pages, New York University Press, $99.00
From the New York University Press website:
City of Promises: A History of the Jews of New York, a three volume set of original research, pioneers a path-breaking interpretation of a Jewish urban community at once the largest in Jewish history and most important in the modern world.
Volume I, Haven of Liberty, by historian Howard B. Rock, chronicles the arrival of the first Jews to New York (then New Amsterdam) in 1654 and highlights their political and economic challenges. Volume II, Emerging Metropolis, written by Annie Polland and Daniel Soyer, describes New York’s transformation into a Jewish city. Volume III, Jews in Gotham, by historian Jeffrey S. Gurock, highlights neighborhood life as the city’s distinctive feature.
Each volume includes a “visual essay” by art historian Diana Linden interpreting aspects of life for New York’s Jews from their arrival until today. These illustrated sections, many in color, illuminate Jewish material culture and feature reproductions of early colonial portraits, art, architecture, as well as everyday culture and community.
304 pages, Nan A. Talese / Doubleday, $27.95,
From the Publisher’s Weekly review:
Hetty Robinson Green (1834–1916) was as rich as Rockefeller, worth $100 million at her death. Born to an emotionally withholding Quaker family that instilled in her the value of both wealth and thrift, she grew her inheritance into a massive fortune through shrewd investments in greenbacks, struggling railroads, and real estate. Wallach (Desert Queen: The Extraordinary Life of Gertrude Bell) makes a strong case that Green’s Quaker family valued financial shrewdness over physical affection, shaping their daughter into a supremely confident woman who overruled her husband’s and children’s desires for independence and sued business adversaries as a matter of course. Green also defied expectations of a wealthy woman, dressing, eating, and living simply according to her “starched New England values.”