History and Culture Experience

New York is, famously, a city of immigrants, both from around the world and from other parts of America. Approaching New York through their experiences can provide
a different perspective on Manhattan.

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New York is, famously, a city of immigrants, both from around the world and from other parts of America. Approaching
New York through their experiences can provide a different perspective on Manhattan.

For many immigrants, their first stop was Ellis Island. The immigration processing center is now a museum where you can see the buildings where 12 million immigrants.

New York is, famously, a city of immigrants, both from around the world and from other parts of America. Approaching New York through their experiences can provide a different perspective on Manhattan. For many immigrants, their first stop was Ellis Island.

The immigration processing center is now a museum where you can see the buildings where 12 million immigrants first set foot on American soil from 1892 to 1924.Many Jewish immigrants passing through Ellis Island settled on the Lower East Side. Our guides will take you to the Tenement Museum and point out the synagogues that have been converted to other uses, the Forward Building (home to the first Jewish daily newspaper in the United States, originally published in Yiddish), and theother traces of a once thriving community.

Your guide can then take you to synagogues uptown that announced the success of New York’s Jewish community, like the elaborate Central Synagogue, modeled on Budapest’s Dohany Street Synagogue. Manhattan’s Chinatown is the country’s oldest, dating back to the 1860s. While in recent years the city’s Chinese population is increasingly moving to Brooklyn and Queens, the neighborhood around Canal Street remains the largest concentration of Chinese in the Western hemisphere. 

Our guides will take you to the historic sites, temples, and stores as well as the best noodle restaurants and dumpling shops. A different sort of immigration took place from roughly 1910 to 1930, when some two million African- Americans left the southern United States and headed north, many to Harlem. Langston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston, and W.E.B. Dubois were some of the most notable cultural figures associated with the Harlem Renaissance.

Arthur Schomburg was another key figure and our tours of Harlem include a visit to the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. At the Apollo Theater you’ll be able to see headliners and young performers take the stage. At the services at Abyssinian Church, the Gospel choir will soon have you on your feet. Harlem has been enjoying another renaissance in recent years, and our guide will take you to the bars and restaurants, like Marcus Samuelsson’s Red Rooster, that are bringing new energyto this historic neighborhood.