New York in the Old Days
Time and Again, by Jack Finney.
I guess this is a classic. Mild on science fiction, heavy on historical tourism. A great read for any New Yorker. Si Morley, our cool chill protagonist, found languishing in a NYC ad firm in the 70s, gets recruited into a top secret government project to travel back in time. The G-men decide to send him back to 1882 Manhattan, using the Dakota apartment building as the time machine.
It’s a very clever story, and serves up a wealth of information on life in Manhattan back then.
Students, if you have to read up on the 1880s for class, read this first. It’s a history book with a plot. All history books should be written this way.