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Did alligators ever really live in New York's sewers? What's it like to explore the old aqueducts beneath the city? How many levels are beneath Grand Central Station? And how exactly did the pneumatic tube system that New York's post offices used to employ work?
In this richly illustrated historical tour of New York's vast underground systems, Julia Solis answers all these questions and much, much more. New York Underground takes readers through ingenious criminal escape routes, abandoned subway stations, and dark crypts beneath lower Manhattan to expose the city's basic anatomy. While the city is justly famous for what lies above ground, its underground passages are equally legendary and tell us just as much about how the city works.
1. Introduction 2. A City Built on Treacherous Rock Part 1: Utilities 3. Struggling for Fresh Water 4. In the Wake of the Croton Maid 5. An Alligator Marks the Sewers 6. A Maze of Pipe Beneath the Streets Part 2: The Subway System 7. The Secret Subway of Alfred Beach 8. Welcome to the Subway Crush 9. Ghost Stations 10. Silent Tunnels Part 3: Trains into New York 11. Moving Trains Below the Hudson 12. The Rise and Fall of Penn Station 13. The Mysteries of Grand Central Part 4: Historic Rail Tunnels 14. An Overview 15. The Lost Tunnel of Atlantic Avenue 16. The Freedom Tunnel Part 5: Underground Passageways 17. Playgrounds of the Underworld 18. Tunnels for the Masses 19. The Tunnels of Seaview Hospital 20. The Labyrinth Below Columbia University 21. The Graffiti of Dead Soldiers Part 6: Building Foundations 22. New York's Largest Foundation 23. Unusual Foundations 24. Breweries, Speakeasies, and Wine Cellars 25. The Crypts Beneath New York's First Cathedral 26. The Attraction of the Underground Bibliography, Index, Image, Credits, About the Author
Julia Solis is a writer and photographer who lives in New York City. She is the founder of two arts organizations: Dark Passage and Ars Subterranea, both of which are dedicated to exploring and exposing New York's underground passages.
"Want to know what's amazing underneath New York City? Want to know about all the stuff that you'd never guess is below Manhattan, including everything from secret subway stations to cave crickets? Then start digging into Julia Solis' anatomical report on the Big Subterranean Apple, which is dark and deep and, despite eight million people living on top of it, largely unknown." - Robert Sullivan, Author of Rats: Observations on the History and Habitat of the City's Most Unwanted Inhabitants