Brooklyn Historical Society Events

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Recently at BHS

Historian Jelani Cobb discusses Civil Rights, Ferguson, and race in America.

Calendar of Programs



Whose Park?Whose Park? Equity in NYC's Green Spaces
Wed, Mar 22, 6:30 pm
$10 / $5 for Members
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*Please note that the moderator for this event has changed, and a new participant has joined the discussion*
In our congested city, parks and green spaces aim to provide some respite for all. But do they indeed serve every New Yorker equally? Is sharing our green space more easily said than done? Tupper Thomas, former Executive Director of New Yorkers for Parks, moderates a candid discussion with Ford Foundation President Darren Walker, former Brooklyn Bridge Park President Regina Myer, and Brooklyn Deputy Borough President Diana Reyna about parks, equity, and the complicated mediation between users.

The MothThe Moth StorySLAM: Partners in Crime
Wed, Mar 29
7 pm doors; 7:30 pm show
America's favorite live storytelling competition returns to BHS! In connection with our exhibition Truman Capote's Brooklyn: The Lost Photographs of David Attie, the theme of the evening is Partners in Crime. Come and tell a 5 minute story about those who egg you on: the Harper Lee to your Truman Capote, the Thelma to your Louise. Regal us with tales of relationships that push you to the edge but get you out alive.


Family Play DayFamily Play Day
Sat, Apr 1, 10:00 am
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Come to BHS for a day of play and learning! We are hosting a FREE Family Play Day where families get to try hands-on activities and games that will be featured in a new exhibition about the history of the Brooklyn waterfront. Come build puzzles of the Brooklyn waterfront, color postcards of the Brooklyn bridge, draw waterfront murals, try on kid-sized uniforms, play with World War II-era tools from the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and more. By coming to play, you will have a key voice in what activities become a permanent part of our exhibition when it opens later this year. Games and activities are designed for children 2-12. Attendees will receive snacks and a BHS giveaway gift.

The Brooklyn AmericansScreening: Only the Dead Know the Brooklyn Americans
Mon, Apr 3, 6:30 pm
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Brooklyn hockey fans cheered when the Islanders moved to Barclays, but few realized that the borough was home to an earlier, little-known professional hockey team named the Brooklyn Americans. Join us for the premiere of director/producer Dale Morrisey's new documentary about this forgotten story, followed by a talk back with MSG sportscaster Stan Fischler and New York Times hockey reporter Allan Kreda.

Sam Roberts and Pete HamillSam Roberts in Conversation with Pete Hamill
Thu, Apr 6, 6:30 pm
$10 / $5 for Members
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Join The New York Times's Sam Roberts as he talks about life, writing, and coming home to Brooklyn with award-winning writer Pete Hamill.

Jackie Robinson Documentary Screening Part 1Documentary: Jackie Robinson, Part One
Introduced by filmmakers Sarah Burns and David McMahon
Wed, Apr 12, 6:30 pm
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On April 15, 1947 Jackie Robinson first put on a Brooklyn Dodgers jersey and broke the color barrier in professional baseball. To celebrate, we are screening Ken Burns’s documentary on the life and legacy of this American icon over the course of two nights. We’re honored to welcome co-directors, producers, and writers Sarah Burns and David McMahon to introduce Part One, which looks at Robinson’s journey from his birth in rural Georgia through his successful first season with the Dodgers.

Offered in connection with BHS’s exhibition on Jackie Robinson and his historic breaking of major league baseball’s color barrier.

Siri HustvedtPerson Place Thing
with Randy Cohen and Siri Hustvedt
Thu, Apr 13, 6:30 pm
$10 / $5 for Members
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Randy Cohen brings his popular podcast back to BHS, this time with special guest, award-winning novelist and essayist Siri Hustvedt.

Superfund BrooklynSuperfund Brooklyn
Tue, Apr 18, 6:30 pm
$5 / Free for Members
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Three major environmental remediation project sites lie within or on Brooklyn’s borders, and each at big development sites: Newtown Creek, Gowanus Canal, and Wolff-Alport. Join Jarrett Murphy, Executive Publisher of City Limits, as he talks to a panel of experts about the history of these sites, cleanup efforts, and what this means for the borough.

Documentary Screening Jackie Robinson Part 2Documentary: Jackie Robinson, Part Two
Introduced by WSJ columnist Jason Gay
Wed, Apr 19, 6:30 pm
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We conclude our screening of the Ken Burns production, Jackie Robinson, with Part Two, which takes us through Robinson’s career with the Brooklyn Dodgers and into his life beyond baseball, when he found new ways to fight discrimination. Wall Street Journal sports columnist Jason Gay introduces the film.

Offered in connection with BHS’s exhibition on Jackie Robinson and his historic breaking of major league baseball’s color barrier.

Debora Spar and Julie ScelfoA Conversation with Julie Scelfo and Debora Spar
Mon, Apr 24, 6:30 pm
$10 / $5 for Members
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Hear from two women who have, literally, written the book on women’s ongoing fight for equality and recognition in a landscape of contradictory expectations. Debora Spar is the new President of Lincoln Center, former Barnard College President, and the author of Wonder Women: Sex, Power, and the Quest for Perfection. Julie Scelfo returns to BHS with The Women Who Made New York, her work which chronicles dozens of untold stories of women who made New York City the cultural hub we know it as today. They discuss glass ceilings, sexism, and getting older and wiser in their fight to redefine "a woman's place" in society. **Please note that this event features Debora Spar's rescheduled spring appearance**

If These Walls Could TalkIf These Walls Could Talk
Sun, Apr 30, 2 pm
$50 / $35 for Members
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Elizabeth Call returns to BHS for her immensely popular introduction to Brooklyn house research. In this intensive workshop, you’ll gain hands-on experience using archival images, records, and documents to uncover the secret history of your Brooklyn home.

Brooklyn Heights Tours

Big Onion Brooklyn Heights TourHistoric Brooklyn Heights Walking Tour

Explore New York City’s first Landmark District on a special tour co-sponsored by Big Onion and BHS! End your excursion at BHS, where you'll receive free admission and a behind-the-scenes look at our magnificent 1881 building. Check out the schedule of upcoming tours HERE and start planning your next Brooklyn adventure!Big Onion


Brooklyn Historical Society requires 24 hours notice before the date of the event to refund a ticket. No refunds are provided after that point. This means no refunds are provided on the day of the event and all subsequent days.

Bank of AmericaPublic Programs are made possible, in part, by a generous grant from Bank of America. 

Additonal funding provided by The Agnes Varis Trust.