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Note:  an unrelated “cursed” note appears at bottom of this post.

I incubated this post about North Brother Island while paging through the NY Times Style Magazine WinterTravel 2008. The inside front cover featured a Disney ad with the prominent words “The world is a magical place.”  Well, sometimes.  A few pages on, an ad for Sir Richard Branson’s “private” island beckoned as “Not just any island…”


The sixth boro has some surprisingly haunted islands, off limits to all but birds.  And of course . . . some of my best friends are birds, but how can a densely populated space like NYC not exorcise such islands as Hart Island and North Brother?  Foto above shows south side of North Brother.


Above is the abandoned ferry landing on the north side of North Brother.  The island identified with such horrors as the General Slocum fire and Typhoid Mary is relegated to oblivion, as if that alone can remove these blights from our memory.


Meanwhile, look at the abandonment of the buildings to nature.  Opacity has on-island fotos here.  Anyone know of stories of Second World War vets living there?  Anyone know of art spawned by the Slocum fire such as the Gericault’s “Raft of Medusa” painting?

Unrelated except in “cursedness,”  here’s today’s Manchester Guardian story about pirates hijacking Sirius Star 450 miles off the Kenyan coast.  Sirius Star is less than a year old.   Check out the links also.  An interesting detail–chilling really–is the fact that this Saudi tanker is described as three times the size of an American aircraft carrier!  That’s a lot of oil.

Details also at Eaglespeak and kennebec captain.

Photos, WVD.

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November 2008