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Catherine McNeur, History faculty, featured in Columbia University documentary "MANHATTANVILLE: A NEW YORK NEXUS Sheffield Farms, The Milk Industry, and The Public Good"
Author: Columbia University | Department of History
Posted: April 14, 2016

Catherine McNeur, Assistant Professor of Environmental History & Public History at Portland State University, was a featured exhibit scholar in the short documentary "MANHATTANVILLE: A NEW YORK NEXUS Sheffield Farms, The Milk Industry, and The Public Good" as part of Columbia University’s exhibit "Sheffield Farms, the Milk Industry, and the Public Good."

The Jerome L. Greene Science Center on Columbia University's campus in the Manhattanville neighborhood occupies land that in the early part of the 20th century was owned by Sheffield Farms, a historic private commercial endeavor that successfully addressed one of the most critical health issues of that time: the challenge of supplying healthy milk to expanding urban populations increasingly distant from rural dairy farms.

Drawing on the expertise of leading scholars and scientists this short documentary describes the rise of Manhattanville as a center of milk processing and distribution in New York City history. Positioned at a  nexus of transit networks, industry and population hubs, the neighborhood served a crucial role in the history of public health in the metropolis at a time when procuring healthy milk was literally a matter of life and death.