High School Studio Lesson
Blue collar doesn’t have to mean drab and dull. At least, not to Troy, New York, historian Mike Esposito, who is a member of a neighborhood revitalization movement seeking to celebrate the
people and events that brought diversity, prosperity, and
vitality to this upstate New York community more than
100 years ago.
Located on the east bank of the Hudson River, approxi-
mately 150 miles north of New York City, Troy was a bus-
tling manufacturer of consumer and industrial goods for
more than a century. Immigrants from Quebec and Europe
built and staffed the factories, which produced iron goods,
pottery, textiles, and scientific instruments.
The financial resources from these activities funded a
large number of elegant architectural structures. Today
these residential and retail gems attract newcomers seek-
ing a small, yet urban environment. While welcoming
these new neighbors, long-time residents think it impor-
tant that new residents understand the character and his-
tory of their new community.
“Troy is like Philadelphia, a city of neighborhoods,” says
Esposito. South Troy is one of those cities, and an impor-