Distinguished Professor Emeritus
Phone number
Room number
1973 PhD   Columbia University
1966 MA     Columbia University
1964 BA     Columbia University


Mike Wallace is co-author of the Pulitzer-Prize winning Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898, and author of A New Deal for New York, which examines the future of post September 11 Gotham in the light of its past.
He has published a series of essays that explore the ways history is used and abused in American popular culture; these have been collected in Mickey Mouse History and Other Essays on American Memory (1997).
He is Distinguished Professor of History at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. He is also founder of the Gotham Center for New York City History at the CUNY Graduate School, devoted to the study and popular promotion of the history of New York City (www.gothamcenter.org).
Wallace got his undergraduate and graduate degrees at Columbia University, studying with Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Richard Hofstadter, with whom he collaborated on a history of American Violence published by Knopf in 1970.
Wallace has taught history to police officers and others at John Jay since 1971. His courses include the History of New York City, and the History of Crime in New York City. He also offers reading seminars at the Graduate Center on New York history.
He has worked with museums, video and film makers, radio producers, and novelists to make the best new scholarship accessible to non specialists. He served as a senior historical consultant and talking head for Ric Burns’ PBS Special, New York: A Documentary Film, and most recently as Chief Historian for the New-York Historical Society and Museo del Barrio exhibition, Nueva York: 1613-1945.
Wallace is now working on the second volume of Gotham: A History of New York City.
Scholarly Work
Richard Hofstadter and Michael Wallace, eds., American Violence: A
Documentary History
(New York: Knopf, 1970).
Terrorism (New York: Arno, 1977).
Mickey Mouse History and Other Essays on American Memory (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1996). / Winner of the Historic Preservation Book Prize for 1997
Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898 [with Edwin G. Burrows] (New York: Oxford University Press, 1998). / Winner of 1999 Pulitzer Prize for History / Winner of 1998 New York Society Library Prize for Book of the Year / Winner of 1999 Brendan Gill Award from the Municipal Art Society / Book of the Month Club Selection / History Book Club Selection
A New Deal for New York (New York: Bell&Weiland/Gotham Center Books, 2002) [for reviews seewww.gothamcenter.org/newdeal/reviews.shtml]
Contributions to books
"Political Paternalism and Violence," in Philip P. Weiner and John Fisher, eds., Violence and Aggression in the History of Ideas (New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 1974).
"The History of the Democratic Party, 1793-1977," in Dizionario Critico Di Storia Contemporanea (Firenze: La Nuova Italia, 1977).
"Marxism and History," in Bertell Ollman, ed., The Left Academy (New York: McGraw Hill, 1982). [with Michael Merrill].
"Preserving the Past: Historic Preservation in the United States," in Susan Porter Benson, Steve Brier, Roy Rosenzweig eds., Presenting the Past (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1986).
"The Politics of Public History," in Jo Blatti, ed., Past Meets Present (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Press, 1987).
"Rethinking Industrial Museums," in Robert Weible and Francis R. Walsh, eds., The Popular Perception of Industrial History: Essays from the Lowell Conference on Industrial History (Lanham, Md.: AASLH, 1988).
"Mickey Mouse History: Portraying the Past at Disney World," in Warren Leon and Roy Rosenzweig, History Museums in the United States: A Critical Assessment (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1989).
"Changing Media, Changing Messages," in Eilean Hooper-Greenhill, ed., Museum, Media, Message (London: Routledge, 1995)
"Culture War: History Front," in Tom Engelhardt and Ed Linenthal, eds., History Wars: The Enola Gay and Other Battles for the American Past (Henry Holt, 1996).
"Presenting the Urban Past," in Elizabeth Frostick, ed., Making City Histories in Museums
"Censoring History at the Smithsonian," in Kaid Bird and Lawrence Lifschltz, Hiroshima's Shadow (Pamphleteer's Press, 1998).
“John Hoskins Griscom,” in Carnes, Mark C., Invisible Giants: Fifty Americans who Shaped the Nation but Missed the History Books (Oxford, 2002
“New York, New Deal,” in Michael Sorkin and Sharon Zukin, eds., After the World Trade Center: Rethinking New York City (Routledge, 2002)
“Assorted Chapter Notes” for New York 1850-2000: The Events And People That Shaped The City (The New York Times Foundation) (2004)
“Stieglitz in Steerage,” in International History of Photography (El Equilibrista, forthcoming 2005)
"Changing Concepts of Party in the United States: New York, 1815-1828," American Historical Review, 74 (1968). Selected as a Bobbs-Merrill reprint. Also reprinted in, among other places: Michael McGiffert and Robert Allen Skotheim, eds., American Social Thought: Sources and Interpretations (Reading, Massachusetts: Addison-Wesley, 1972); Frank Otto Gatell, Paul Goodman, Allen Weinstein, eds., The Growth of American Politics
"The Uses of Violence in American History," American Scholar (1971). Reprinted in, among other places: Nichoas Cords and Patrick Gerster, eds., Myth and the American ExperienceViolence: An Element of American Life (Boston: Holbrook Press, 1972); Philip Whitten, ed., Readings in Social Problems (Guildford, Connecticut: Dushkin, 1973).
"The American Revolution: The Ideology and Psychology of National Liberation," Perspectives in American History, 6 (1972). [With Edwin Burrows]. Reprinted in, among other places: Robert J. Brugger, ed., Our Selves / Our Past: Psychological Approaches to American History (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1981).
"An Interview with William Appleman Williams," Radical History Review, 22 (1980). Reprinted in MARHO, ed., Visions of History (New York: Pantheon, 1984).
"Visiting the Past: History Museums in the United States," Radical History Review, 25 (1981), reprinted in Susan Porter Benson, Steve Brier, Roy Rosenzweig eds., Presenting the Past (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1986).
"Mickey Mouse History: Portraying the Past at Disneyworld," Radical History Review, 32 (1985).
"Interview with Nicaraguan Historians, Radical History Review 33 (1985).
"Script for Slide Show on the History of Wall Street," Time Travels: New York City Public History Project (funded by the New York Council for the Humanities) (1986).
"A Short History of Wall Street," Pamphlet for the New York City Public History Project
"Ronald Reagan, Ellis Island, and Popular History," History," Newsletter of the Organization of American Historians (1987).
"Hijacking History: Ronald Reagan and the Statue of Liberty," Radical History Review, 36 (1987).
"Ronald Reagan and the Politics of History," Tikkun (1987).
"Industrial Museums and the History of Deindustrialization," The Public Historian, (1987).
"Two Philadelphia Stories," In These Times (July 8-21, 1987).
"The Future of the Past," History News (1989).
"Exhibiting Controversy: A Round Table," Museum News (November/December 1989).
"William Appleman Williams: An Obituary," The Nation, 250:14 (April 9, 1990).
"Boat People: A Review of the Ellis Island Museum," Journal of American History
"History Musems and the Prison of the Past," Culturefront 1:1 (May 1992).
"Razor Ribbons, History Museums, and Civic Salvation," Radical History Review (1993).
"Serious Fun: Reflections on Disney's America," The Public Historian (Fall 1995).
"On the Warpath," Museums Journal (1995)
"The Battle of the Enola Gay," Museum News (1995)
"The Battle of the Enola Gay," Radical Historians' Newsletter (1995).
"Die Schlacht um die Enola Gay: Szenen aus dem amerikanischen Kulturkrieg," Blatter fur deutsche und internationale Politik (1995)
Book Reviews
Review of Anthony M. Platt, ed., The Politics of Riot Commissions, 1917-1970, and David Boesel and Peter H. Rossi, eds., Cities under Siege, in Commonweal, 97 (October 20, 1972).
Review of Richard Buel, Securing the Revolution, in Political Science Quarterly (1973).
Review of Richard Brown, Strain of Violence, in William and Mary Quarterly (1976).
Review of Linda Gordon, Woman's Body, Woman's Right, and James Reed, From Private Vice to Public Virtue, in Feminist Studies, 5 (1979). [with Elizabeth Fee].
Review of Peter Karsten, Patriot- Heroes in England and America: Political Symbolism and Changing Values over Three Centuries, in Journal of American History (1980).
Review of Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States, in Monthly Review (1980).
Review of Charles B. Hosmer, Jr., Preservation Comes of Age, in Technology and Culture (October 1982).
Review of Toby and Gene Glickman, The New York Red Pages, in In These Times
Review of New York City Commission on the Bicentennial of the Constitution, Where the Experiment Began: New York City and the two Hundredth Anniversary of George Washington's Inauguration, in The Public Historian (1990).
Review of Max Page, The Creative Destruction of Manhattan, 1900-1940, in Civilization
Review of Ralph Blumenthal, The Stork Club in The New York Times (2000)
“Panorama and Pointillism on 9/11,” Review of Out of the Blue: The Story of Sept. 11, 2001, New York Times (August 29, 2002).
“Green, Rocky Road,” Review of Books on Bronx Ecology, New York Times (August 17, 2003).
“Combing the Ashes of Another New York Disaster,” Review of Triangle: The Fire that Changed America, New York Times (October 3, 2003).
“Babylon on the Subway,” Review of books on Times Square, New York Review of Books
“Wall Street over the Centuries,” Review of Everyman a Speculator, The Nation (2005).
“Review of CCB: The Life and Century of Charles C. Burlingham,” The New York Review of Books (forthcoming, 2005).

(Leicester University Press, 1998). (New York: Oxford University Press, 1972). (New York: The Glencoe Press, 1973); Karl K. Taylor and Fred W. Soady, Jr., eds., (1987). (December 1991). (February 6-12, 1985). (December 1999/January 2000). (2004)