The Bottom of the Harbor

The Bottom of the Harbor Cover

The Bottom of the Harbor

By Joseph Mitchell

Pantheon, Hardcover, 9780375714863, 320pp.

Publication Date: July 1, 2008

Description

On the centennial of Joseph Mitchell's birth, here is a new edition of the classic collection containing his most celebrated pieces about New York City. Fifty years after its original publication, The Bottom of the Harbor is still considered a fundamental New York book. Every story Mitchell tells, every person he introduces, every scene he describes is illuminated by his passion for the eccentrics and eccentricities of his beloved adopted city.

All of the pieces here are connected in one way or another--some directly, some with a kind of mysterious circuitousness--to New York's fabled waterfront, the terrain that Mitchell brilliantly made his own. They tell of a life that has passed--of vacant hotel rooms, deserted communities, once-thriving fishing areas that are now polluted and studded with wrecks. Included are "Up in the Old Hotel," a portrait of Louis Morino, the proprietor of a restaurant called (to his disgust) Sloppy Louie's; "The Rats on the Waterfront," which has inspired countless writers to attempt portraits of these most demonized New Yorkers; and "Mr. Hunter's Grave," widely considered to be the finest single piece of nonfiction to have ever appeared in the pages of The New Yorker.

Here is the essential work of a legendary writer.



About the Author

Joseph Mitchell came to New York from North Carolina the day after the 1929 stock market crash. After eight years as a reporter and feature writer at various newspapers, he joined the staff of The New Yorker, where he remained until his death in 1996 at the age of eighty-seven. His other books include McSorley's Wonderful Saloon, My Ears Are Bent, Up in the Old Hotel, Old Mr. Flood, and Joe Gould's Secret.