Even though New York City isn’t that old when measured against very ancient civilizations, there have been many changes in the City as each generation has built, torn down and then replaced structures that no longer served the purpose for which they were built. Replacing or adding to any structures in NYC these days usually requires extreme care so that precious historical remains of what was there before are not destroyed. In the video you can see how the extensions to City Hall are being handled and what archaeologoists can find when they get a chance to excavate old footings.
In another part of NYC Alyssa Loorya and Chrysalis Archaeology have been undertaking a dig on the site of the old ‘Atlantic Garden’ at 50 Bowery in Chinatown. Atlantic Garden was a beer hall and music hall set up in the 1850′s. It was built on the site of the old Bulls head Tavern, formerly headquarters for New York’s cattle market. By the time the Atlantic Garden was built many immigrants were living in the Lower East Side and Germans in particular used to go there a lot.
During the dig an old glass bottle was unearthed and the bottle’s label said it had contained ‘California Pop Beer’. Alyssa Loorya followed through and tracked down the original beer patent and then reproduced the beer using a home brewing kit. It’s a beer infused with ginger root, sarsparilla and wintergreen oil and reportedly has quite a kick, see Scientists Recreate Old Beer. You can try it yourself if you do the Historic Districts council ‘Historic Pub Crawl’ to be held Sept 6 at 1.00pm for just $10. Go here for tickets, Historic Pub Crawl. it’s not everyone who can say they ahve drunk aprt of New York’s past.