We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Clement Moore (1779-1863) inherited his grandfather's estate, named Chelsea, which now constitutes NYC's wonderful neighborhood of Chelsea where the gays walk their mini dogs, the moms push their strollers, the hipsters do their hipster thing, the Pearl Theater produces lots of cool dance concerts and other good things, the old Chelsea Hotel which sheltered so many artistic and musical luminaries like Bob Dylan - and where Dylan Thomas died - is still there, and everybody in that neighborhood has a fine youthful, ambitious, capitalist time. Ha - including one of my artistic and literary daughters - and one fierce capitalist daughter who did live there in the past.
Wonderful city. If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere.
Moore led a movement to block the running of 9th Ave. through the middle of his rural estate, but NYC progress could not be stopped. He hated Jefferson for his apostasy. His summer house was in Newport, RI. He was buried in the Trinity Church graveyard.
His dad was a bishop and president of King's College, now Columbia University.
Writing The Night Before Christmas was the least of his academic and cultural accomplishments and generosities, but it did end up inventing an American version of Santa Claus which has endured until now. He's the guy who made Santa fat and jolly.
An email from a daughter:
I've walked by that park a million times. The blocks on either side of 9th avenue on 22nd are some of the prettiest in the whole city in my opinion - I think 22nd between 8th and 9th is actually the most beautiful block in Manhattan. 24th between 9th and 10th is really nice, too (until you hit Gristedes and see diapers in the window). I miss living there! :(
You know the words of his delightful doggerel, so I do not need to print them out. Like people such as Conan Doyle or Lewis Carroll, inventive people never know what they will be remembered for.
Moore's house in Chelsea -
Moore founded St. Peter's Church in 1838 on his estate. It is still there, on W. 20th St. I've been there for performances of the Chelsea Opera. Lovely old Anglican church, now sort-of Episcopalian.
Moore was also responsible for the establishment of the General Theological Seminary, which stands on a portion of his own estate. While not a clergyman himself, Moore was a theologian of some note. Almost a century later, my great-grandfather occupied the Clement C. Moore Chair of Oriental Languages at General.
"Wonderful city. If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere."
I don't meant to be a canker, but if you can make it on the plains of - pick your favorite state in the cold and desolate Midwest - then you can make it anywhere. I very much doubt the reverse is true. New York obtained its greatness as a trading city, for the most part. That's fine. But the real work was done elsewhere.
Aside from that, Merry Christmas to everyone at Maggies.