If you can’t get enough of watching cat videos on the Internet, you might want to take a break and read a book about cats and people in New York’s history. In 1893, multiple cats and kittens were brought to the naval yard as mousers to protect the rigging from rats.

Sailors fervently believed in the luck a ship cat brought. So when Olaf the Viking Cat went overboard on the Norwegian ship the Sud Americano, “Cat overboard!” was called and the ship captain ordered an “immediate rescue.” At least seven sailors rescued Olaf and a large party was thrown in his honor that evening.

To learn more about “The Cat Men of Gotham” book, click here.