Ghosty Men

Ghosty Men

The Strange but True Story of the Collyer Brothers, New York's Greatest Hoarders : An Urban Historical

Book - 2003
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Baker & Taylor
Examines the live of eccentric hoarders, brothers Homer and Langley Collyer, who lived in isolation and squalor in a Harlem brownstone for years before the discovery of Homer's body in March 1947 and the search for his missing brother.

Blackwell North Amer

A true tale of changing New York by Franz Lidz, whose Unstrung Heroes is a classic of hoarder lore.
Homer and Langley Collyer moved into their handsome brownstone in white, upper-class Harlem in 1909. By 1947, however, when the fire department had to carry Homer's body out of the house he hadn't left in twenty years, the neighborhood had degentrified, and their house was a fortress of junk: in an attempt to preserve the past, Homer and Langley held on to everything they touched.
The scandal of Homer's discovery, the story of his life, and the search for Langley, who was missing at the time, rocked the city; the story was on the front page of every newspaper for weeks. A quintessential New York story of quintessential New York characters, Ghosty Men is a perfect fit for Bloomsbury's Urban Historicals series.
Praise for Unstrung Heroes:
"Unusual and affecting...[a] melancholy, funny book, a loony tune played with touching disharmony..."-New York Times

Publisher: New York : Bloomsbury, 2003
Edition: First U.S. edition
ISBN: 9781582343112
Branch Call Number: 974.7104 COLLY LIDZ
Characteristics: 161 pages ; 19 cm


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sharonb122 Feb 25, 2014

Having read E.L. Doctorow's "Homer and Langley," which was facinating and very well written, I was curious to know the non-fiction story. This book by Lidz filled in many of my questions and the author's personal experience with his uncles added understanding. Lidz writing is colorful, but straight forward with added humor. Read it.

Aug 24, 2012

Short, enjoyable read. The depiction of one of the author's relatives who was a modern day pathological collector helped paint a clearer picture of how such people really behave. This added to the main thread about the Collyer brothers. The book made no attempt to explain, scientifically or otherwise, what causes such behavior. It's goal was story-telling only, and it that it succeeded well.


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