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While today's Meatpacking District is mostly known for chic restaurants, avant-garde art galleries, and the Whitney Museum of Art, it had been New York's meat packing hub for over a century. At its height, the neighborhood was home to around 250 meat purveyors that helped put America's finest meat on the tables of New York's restaurants — from small mom & pop eateries to America's top steakhouses like Delmonico's and Peter Luger. But what exactly did these companies do, and how did they evolve from purveyors of meat to local eateries into exporters of meat throughout the world? It's time to explore one of the most important industries in New York City history, from one family of butchers who called the neighborhood home for over seven decades.
Join New York Adventure Club as we unpack the rich history of New York City's Meatpacking District, with a focus on one of its premier meat purveyors responsible for processing, packaging, and distributing meat throughout New York, the greater metropolitan area, and eventually the world.
Led by native New Yorker Jacquelyn Ottman, a fifth generation member of one of New York City’s pioneering family of butchers, our virtual experience surrounding the transformation of the meat packing industry in New York's Meatpacking District will include:
- The early history of New York's Meatpacking District , and what influence other neighborhood markets like the Fulton Market (South Street Seaport) and Washington Market (World Trade Center/ Tribeca) had on its evolution
- The inside story of the Ottman family’s meat-purveying business , which started in 1859 delivering fresh meat in horse-drawn carriages to America's finest hotels, steamships, and wealthy private families
- How technological advancements such as vacuum packaging changed modern society , from helping transform restaurant kitchens across the world, to catapulting the NYC market into a top global meat exporter, to forever changing the way consumers buy meat in supermarkets
-The importance of the now-famous “High Line” to the meat packing companies, long before it became an elevated park
- Rare historical photos from the Ottman family's private collection , and untold stories handed down from previous generations of Ottman family members who worked in the Meatpacking District's West Washington Market and the Fulton Market since 1859
- Why so few meatpacking facilities are left in the neighborhood , and the role they still play in supplying NYC's restaurants with high quality meat
Afterward, we'll have a Q&A with Jacquie — any and all questions about New York's meat packing industry are welcomed and encouraged!
Can't make it live? Don't worry, you'll have access to the full replay for one week!
See you there, virtually!
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***A full replay of the experience will be available to all registered guests for up to a week
Jacquelyn Ottman is a native New Yorker and a fifth-generation Ottman, who worked at Ottman & Company since age 13, literally starting in the mailroom. A member of the Culinary Historians of New York, she is the author of three books on her personal culinary history, including "Ottman and Company: One Daughter Remembers" (KDP 2017), the story of her family's 150-year old NYC meat purveying firm.
A graduate of Smith College with a degree in Art History, for 30 years, Ottman pioneered the field of green marketing, authoring five books, advising the U.S. Energy Star label, USDA, and Fortune 500 firms. An engaging and accomplished speaker, she shared her insights and strategies with audiences in North and South America, Europe and Asia. You can find her at Twitter, @JacquelynOttman, Linked in https://www.linkedin.com/in/jacquelynottman/
, and at her website, http://www.WeHateToWaste.com
"Loved the genuineness of Jacqueline. She was really great. What a story. So interesting the entire history of the company and evolution of the area. Loved the old pictures. So personal yet also really universal and totally relatable." -Noelle
"I loved getting to know the family history of the meat packing district." -Joan
"I enjoyed hearing the family stories especially behind the maid packing company. Very lively leader good photos, And I appreciated hearing the evolution of the region in the repurposing of many parts of the city there." -Sharon
"Depth, engagement, Jacqui's personal involvement, relationship to the subject and its players, relevance to the city now." -Sally
"Speaker personally knowledgeable, smart, funny, cool, and very well prepared. Slides were diverse and great. The asides and off the cuff remarks were welcome." -Susan
"Fun to learn the history of a family, an industry, a neighborhood and NYC all in one!" -Leslie
"History is fascinating; photos were great. Fun for NYC history nerds!" -Jude
"The speaker was extremely knowledgeable about the topic, was a very good speaker, had excellent photos, was enthusiastic about her topic." -Sarah
"History of company tied with the history of New York neighborhood." -K
"I learned so many new things. I loved the anecdote of the metal detectors!" -Liz
"Deep knowledge of the presenter, well organized and presented." -Sean
"Excellent presentation clear fascinating great pictures." -Gwen
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Categories: Virtual, Neighborhoods