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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • CRUISE THE GREAT LAKES, 1930s

Rising Star: 1913

Rising Star: 1913

New York circa 1913. "Broadway, looking north from Cortlandt Street and Maiden Lane." Starring the Woolworth Building, in the final stages of construction. 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

 
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Grandpa's bricks

My grandfather, a master brick layer from Wales, was sent to come on the Queen Mary with his wife and two sons, all passage paid, to supervise the laying of the bricks. Woolworth apparently drew on state of the art craftsmen from around the world.

Today, it's private property and you can't really visit this cathedral of early commerce any more.

Still in business

William Barthman is still in business but has relocated to the middle of the block on Broadway between Maiden Lane and John Street.

Mourning Jewelry

Back when mourning was a dictated social occasion, evidently women and men needed Mourning Jewelry to go with their black, grey or pale purple outfits (black for 2-3 years after death of the loved one, followed by an easing up to lighter colors as the years pass). This article from Collectors Weekly gives an idea of the materials employed in the making of Mourning Jewelry.

195 Broadway

This picture must have been taken just before construction started on the new AT&T headquarters building at 195 Broadway the first phase of which completed in 1916.

Brand Longevity

Nice to see that the Shorpy Company, which had its offices at Maiden Lane and Broadway over 100 years ago, is still extant. Crouch and Fitzgerald across the street lasted almost as long.

Small World

My great-grandfather had a haberdashery at 1 Maiden Lane in about the same time period.

Maiden Lane

Where my great-great-grandfather's jewelry manufacturing business was located in the same time period. Blancard & Co. was founded by Christian Blancard after he emigrated from Germany in 1871. His business was located at several locations in the city, but eventually ended up at 161 Maiden Lane. I can imagine him and his sons walking in that crowd.

Hats

The statue silhouetted against the sky may have the only head in this photograph not covered by a hat.

Zooming in at 300%

I still can't find a man or woman without a hat.

A Woolworth life

In 1917, my great uncle was 19 and joined the army to go fight in WWI. After training in Alabama, he headed to New York City to board the Leviathan for France. In a letter he wrote to my future great-aunt, he said that his one big goal while in NYC was to go and see the Woolworth building in person.
After he returned in 1919, he got an internship with Woolworth and then managed stores all over northern Ohio for the next 30 years.

 
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Shorpy.com | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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