Home > American Experience > Season 12 > Episode 2
New York: A Documentary Series - Order and Disorder (1825-1865)
"Order and Disorder: 1825-1865" (Part 2 of seven) recalls a period of tremendous growth and ferment. Most of the new arrivals were Irish immigrants (100,000 by 1842—and that was before the potato famine), and the subsequent overcrowding led to the construction of Central Park (1857-58). But that didn't quell the ferment, which exploded in 1863 with the racially charged draft riots. "It was the largest incident of civil disorder in U.S. history," notes historian Mike Wallace.
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