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Family Businesses on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, Then and Now

Marcus Hillman, Masters of Arts in Liberal Studies
Faculty Advisor: Cindy Lobel

Family Businesses on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, Then and Now

With this project I intend to speak with the owners of a few family owned businesses with long histories below 14th street and east of Broadway in Manhanttan. I would like to get representatives from mass migrations of formerly marginalized groups to discuss how the businesses that they own helped their families and other members of their immigrant community connect to their ancestral homelands while simultaneously giving them a foothold in America which ultimately aided their assimilation.

These conversations will be recorded and edited into a long form radio piece which will include scholarly details about ethnic migration in New York City as well as about the constantly changing demographics of the Lower East Side. I will also discuss the rewards and challenges of existing for so long and still thriving today.

I am looking forward to telling the stories of these businesses and the greater story that they tell about American immigration and assimilation in New York City.