I hope everyone is safe after the Great Blizzard of 2016. I have not been out since Friday evening and so have not yet seen it, but we got dumped with about three feet here in New York City. I took advantage of the weather yesterday by preparing the syllabus for the class I will be co-teaching this semester. It’s about 30% done. There are some holes to fill but it’s coming along. As I said the other day, I’m nervous and excited in equal measure. There’s that feeling of working without a net.
The other day I posted about the obscure Lincoln tablet affixed to the north face of Borough Hall. That same day I took this image of the World War II memorial in Cadman Plaza. Ironically, despite its size many people miss this one too because it is in a seldom-visited part of the plaza. The reason why it is so seldom-visited is something out students will learn and write about over the term. The way I understand it Robert Moses constructed this memorial in the early 1950s in response to what he saw as the excessive number of World War I memorials that sprung up throughout the city in the wake of the Great War. As Mark Levitch, the founder of the World War I Memorial Inventory Project notes, there are something like 10,000 Great War monuments of all types and sizes across the country. Every park in the five boroughs seems to have its doughboy and Moses was apparently determined that this not repeat itself after VE and VJ days. There is so much history surrounding us as we go about our daily lives. I will be writing more about the WW2 memorial as the semester goes along. The snow will hopefully have disappeared by then too!