Greenwich and Fulton Streets, 1914

Greenwich and Fulton Streets, 1914

In this black and white photograph, taken in 1914, we see a man walking beneath the elevated train line at the intersection of Greenwich and Fulton Streets in Lower Manhattan. There's a lot of detail in this old picture, from the guy getting a nickel shoe shine on the left to the storefronts across the street. But perhaps the most intersesting thing about this photograph is that Greenwich and Fulton Streets no longer intersect. Their union was broken in the 1960s when the designers of the World Trade Center carved out a Super-Block in Lower Manhattan.

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A Walk in the Rain, 1938

A Walk in the Rain, 1938

In this sweet old picture from the late 1930s, a mother and daughter walk hand in hand down a Manhattan avenue during a rain shower. The mother holds an umbrella overhead; the daugher holds a rose in her hand, oblivious to the rain.

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Grand Central Depot, 1885

Grand Central Depot, 1885

There have been three structures at East 42nd Street and Park Avenue, bearing the name Grand Central. In this black and white photograph taken about 1885, we see the first one, Grand Central Depot. This station, which opened in 1871, brought the lines of the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad, the New York and Harlem River Railroad, and the New York and New Haven Railroad together under one roof. In this view, looking north from Vanderbilt Avenue, we see horse-drawn streetcars and carts ambling past.

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Metropolitan Life Tower Under Construction, 1909

Metropolitan Life Tower Under Construction, 1909

In this black and white photograph from 1909, we see a group of men and ladies with parasols standing in Madison Square Park, observing the construction of the Metropolitan Life Tower. The main building had been constructed over a decade and half before.  The architectural firm of Napoleon LeBrun & Sons modeled the tower after the Campanile in Venice, Italy. It was the world's tallest building for three years, until 1913, when it was surpassed by the Woolworth Building.

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Photographing New York City, 1905

Photographing New York City, 1905

In this black and white photograph taken in 1905, a man with a camera perches on a steel girder at East 19th Street and Fifth Avenue. The viewer looks north, towards the Flatiron Building, while photographer shoots west. Lord & Taylor can be seen between the girder and the photographer's dangling leg. Lord & Taylor, which is the oldest upscale retail department store in the United States, moved to the Ladies' Mile location you see here in 1870, more than three decades before the construction of the Flatiron Building three blocks north.

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The Flatiron Building after a Snow Storm, 1906

The Flatiron Building after a Snow Storm, 1906

In this view south from East 26th Street and Fifth Avenue, the Flatiron Building looks like it is plowing through the snow. It looks like a substantial amount of fresh snow has blanketed the city, all of which has been shoveled by hand. The streets are as clear as they are likely to get until the hooves of the horses tramp it into slush. But luckily for us, some anonymous photographer captured the clean beauty of this moment forever.

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Censored in Times Square, 1948

Censored in Times Square, 1948
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A Crowd of Men Ogles Enormous Breasts in Times Square, 1948

A Crowd of Men Ogles Enormous Breasts in Times Square, 1948
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Gansevoort Street and 11th Avenue, 1930

Gansevoort Street and 11th Avenue, 1930

In this black and white photograph, taken on March 21, 1930, we look north at the Gansevoort Market, the West Side Piers, and the beginning of the construction of the West Side Highway. The photographer was probably grateful it was March, since the smell of the slaughterhouses in summer could be overwhelming. If you look to the right, below the Lamb and Mutton sign, you can see the row of sheep carcasses hanging.

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Gansevoort and Washington Streets, 1903

Gansevoort and Washington Streets, 1903

This black and white photo of Gansevoort and Washington Street, taken in 1903, shows a bustling market. At this time, the area was the Meat Packing District, home to over 250 slaughterhouses and packing plants. The area has for the past several years undergone a renaissance and is now the home of numerous fashionable boutiques and the beginning of High Line Park.

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