English

Experiences at the Mermaid Parade
Naomi M, an 11 year old Brooklyn native, shares a story about an experience she had at the Mermaid Parade one year.
Content type: Oral History Item
Remembers Astroland Rocket
Louis has fond memories of riding Astroland's one-of-a-kind Rocket simulator, the very first ride to arrive at the space-age themed park in 1962. On January 28, 2009, Louis, who works at the Aquarium, was excited to see the 71-foot Rocket on a...
Content type: Oral History Item
Fond memories of Coney Island
Joseph Svehlak recalls two generations of stories from Coney Island. His mother grew up in lower Manhattan as a first generation American born to European parents in the early 1910’s. On Sundays after church, her father would take her and her sister...
Content type: Oral History Item
Born and raised in Coney and lived there for 18 years
Sam Berkley's 62-year-old father, Larry Berkley, grew up in Coney Island. He describes such things as working the balloon game and the umbrella and beach chair rentals, the three public pools that used to exist and the carefree times as a child...
Content type: Oral History Item
Grew up on 20th & Surf and 21st & Neptune
Shanna Rivera, Rita Fernandez and Pam DeGennaro grew up together in Coney Island. Rita's daughter, Keyniah Romero joins them as they share some of their memories. They all remember the chocolate factory that used to operate out of the Child...
Content type: Oral History Item
Great-grandson of strongman The Great Sandow
Chris's great-grandfather was strongman The Great Sandow, Eugen Sandow, who was born 1867 and died 1925. He describes how many bodybuilders in the 20th century, including the Mighty Atom, modeled themselves after his great-grandfather, who at...
Content type: Oral History Item
On her three year photo project
Karen Thumann is a photographer from Oklahoma who came to Coney Island on a recommendation from a workshop instructor. She was fascinated by what she found and quickly secured a grant to fund her return trips in the 2011 and 2012 seasons to take...
Content type: Oral History Item
Family owned the Shamrock Irish House and Eldorado Arcade
Sheila and her family owned and operated the largest arcade in Coney Island, the Eldorado. Her father, his two brothers and three sisters opened The Shamrock Irish House, a restaurant/cabaret/open-air bar, in the early 1940's, and her family...
Content type: Oral History Item
Lived through the Great Depression in Coney Island
The History Project returned to an 85-year-old Goldie Durlester in July of 2010. In this interview, Goldie recalls more of the details of her daily life as a child during the Great Depression and as a teenager at the start of the World War II era....
Content type: Oral History Item
Coney Island concessionaire
Arthur Melnick grew up in Coney Island in the middle of the last century. Here, he recounts his experiences working concession stands in the amusement district during the 1960s, a difficult period for Coney Island. He speaks specifically about rides...
Content type: Oral History Item