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Showing posts from January, 2012

Louis Comfort Tiffany: More Than Lamps

Yesterday, I attended a wonderful lecture about Louis Comfort Tiffany, at the Cold Spring Harbor Library in Long Island. Although I researched Louis Comfort, along with his father, Charles Lewis, the famed jeweler, I learned a number of things about the family and took a new look at their modest gravestones in Green-Wood Cemetery.

It seems that Louis C. Tiffany was quite the party animal, throwing lavish parties--sometimes for 1,000 people --at Laurelton Hall, his 100 room estate set on 580 acres in Oyster Bay, LI. The invitations were proffered by scrolls, often written in hieroglyphics, and guests were --more often than not --requested to attend in costume.

Louis Comfort Tiffany died in 1933, but Laurelton Hall lived on, serving as a haven for artists as per Tiffany’s wishes. Sadly, in 1957, the mansion burned down in a mysterious fire, the origin of which has never been discovered. Much of the contents of Tiffany’s home were destroyed. One of these, (which can be seen above) was T…

Public Enemy No. 1

Once named America’s Number One Public Enemy,Johnny Torrio’sdeath, in 1957, went virtually unnoticed by the public or press. Torrio suffered a heart attack while in a barber’s chair on April 15th and died later that day in Brooklyn’s now defunct CumberlandHospital. It took a full three weeks after Torrio died before a short news item ran in the New York Times, referring to Torrio as “The man who put Al Capone into business…” Later that same year, rival mobster, Albert Anastasia, was gunned down in a barber’s chair while getting a shave.