Afternoon tea talks at the Salmagundi : Esther Crain

Having a Ball: The Gilded Age’s Most Outrageous Parties

Jan 19, 2023
3:30 PM | Interview and audience Q&A
4:30 PM | Tea reception
Carl Raymond
Moderated by Carl
Raymond, host of
history podcast

Open to the public
RSVP required

$40 | General admission
$15 | Salmagundi and affiliate members with promo code
The promo code will be sent in an email to all members, and can also be requested by contacting
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About the Talk

In Conversation: Esther Crain, author of “The Gilded Age in New York 1870-1910,” and creator of “Ephemeral New York”

Join us for an afternoon in the Gilded Age and a proper cup of tea!

Join Esther Crain, author and creator of “Ephemeral New York,”  in conversation with Carl Raymond, host of The Gilded Gentleman history podcast for a look at the social seasons of the Gilded Age and the most anticipated of events, the grand balls.  Esther and Carl will discuss what the social season was like, how a ball was organized and how even getting invited secured your social standing.  In addition, you’ll hear the inside story of several of the Gilded Age’s most outrageous and expensive balls such as Alva Vanderbilt’s costume ball of 1883, the Bradley-Martin ball at the Waldorf in 1897 and, of course, Mrs. Astor’s annual opera ball.

Carl and Esther will share details and images including actual photographs of some of the costumes and guests and copies of the menus from the midnight buffets.  Don’t miss this celebration of the Gilded Age social season!

There will be an interview and audience Q&A, followed by a reception featuring afternoon tea with sweet and savory treats.