"Audubon Park’s Journey from Farmland to Cityscape"

​Available from

Fordham University Press / Barnes & Noble / Amazon

The Neighborhood Manhattan Forgot: Audubon Park and the Families Who Shaped It
Matthew Spady
Safe houses and other structures used in the fight against slavery were often clandestine, and survivors today can be difficult to document. But there’s a 19th-century house in Washington Heights …

"Preserving New York’s Ties to the Underground Railroad"
John Freeman Gill
​January 2, 2021

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Audubon Park might not be a familiar destination to many New Yorkers, but uptown resident Matthew Spady is seeking to change that. Independent historian Spady has completed a new book that examines the little-known history of a section of Washington Heights that was known as Audubon Park from about 1850 to 1910.

"A Forgotten Farm"
Gregg McQueen
​July 28, 2020

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The story of the area’s evolution from hinterland to suburb to city is comprehensively told in Matthew Spady’s fluidly written new history, “The Neighborhood Manhattan Forgot: Audubon Park and the Families Who Shaped It” (Empire State Editions, Fordham University Press).​

"Audubon Park, From Hinterlands to Urban Density"
John Freeman Gill
​October 2, 2020

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A Chuckatuck native released his first book about the history of his current neighborhood in New York. Matthew Spady grew up in Chuckatuck, where he went to Chuckatuck Elementary School and later graduated from John Yeates High School. Growing up, his architect father and librarian mother would load Spady and his four siblings in the car and visit the many historical sites around Virginia. As his parents built his love for history, Spady feels like he was almost destined to write a history book.​

"Chuckatuck Native Publishes First Book"
Rachel Wartian
October 2, 2020

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Find your corner of the world and fight for it. That’s an underlying message behind Spady’s immersive and carefully tended history of Audubon Park, the small neighborhood just to the north of uptown’s Trinity Cemetery where its namesake — the naturalist John James Audubon — is buried. Today’s Audubon Park is obviously 
unrecognizable as a farm but it retains something of a wild spirit along its bendy grid-busting 
streets and its proximity to the waterfront and cemetery. Spady’s definitive look at this 
forgotten neighborhood’s history honors the naturalist’s vision just as surely as Audubon’s 
own paintings paid tribute to the fine, feathered world. 

"History in Amber"
Greg Young
December 3, 2020

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