When New York kept its liberalism ‘underground’

I love my hometown but it wasn’t the most progressive during the Civil War. Check out my latest for Smithsonian on the Underground Railroad in New York City.

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Think New York Is Crazy Now? It Was Much Wilder in 1647

When New York City’s Municipal Archive posted the first digitized translations of Peter Stuyvesant’s decrees, I jumped online to read about life in mid-17th century New Amsterdam, later known as my hometown. What I found made 1970s New York look almost bucolic. And it was pretty darn amusing, too. So, of course, I pitched a story to National Geographic. You can read about it here.

Also on the menu Tuesday: corporate cash and the food you eat

While everyone was focused on the Republican takeover of Congress, there were some important ballot initiatives decided as well on Tuesday. Two states and a couple of counties weighed in on the hot-button issue of genetically modified foods. Read what happened in my latest for National Geographic, GMO Food Critics See Losses at Ballot Box — and a More Hostile Congress.