Napoleon Sarony (1821-1896) was one of the leading portrait photographers of the latter part of the 19th century. Working from several locations around Union Square in New York City, Sarony, over a period of decades, artfully captured images of presidents, world-famous actors, theatrical productions, the famous, and the infamous.
In this talk, Jeff Richman shares the remarkable and world-class collection of Sarony photographs that he has put together for that cultural institution.
Richman is historian of Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, N.Y. Over three decades ago, he led his first tour at Green-Wood—a place that combines so many of his interests: 19th-century New York City and photography of it, landscape design, sculpture, rural cemeteries, contemporary photography, nature, and more. He became its part-time historian in 2001 (while practicing law, representing indigent criminal defendants for 33 years) and its full-time historian in 2007.
He is the author of Brooklyn’s Green- Wood Cemetery: New York’s Buried Treasure (1998), Final Camping Ground: Civil War Veterans at Brooklyn’s Green-Wood Cemetery, In Their Own Words (2007), and "The Gallant Sims": A Civil War Hero Rediscovered (2016). He also edited Green-Wood at 175 (2013).
He is currently completing work on his latest book, Building Brooklyn Bridge (1869-1883): Its Construction Illustrated in Original 3D Photographs, Drawings, and Prints.
Since 2002, he has been leading Green-Wood’s Civil War Project, which, through the work of hundreds of volunteers, has identified 5,200 Civil War veterans interred at Green-Wood, written an online biography for each, successfully applied to the Department of Veterans Affairs for 2,400 gravestones, and had them installed to mark formerly unmarked graves. He also blogs about Green-Wood and his latest discoveries.
Presented on October 17, 2020.