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About the Photos

Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • STAY ONE JUMP AHEAD OF TROUBLE, 1945

Williamsburg Bridge: 1902

Williamsburg Bridge: 1902

New York circa 1902. "New East River bridge from Brooklyn." The Williamsburg Bridge under construction. Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

 

The missing people

There are quite many people in the picture if you look close enough. The scale of the bridge is just so vast that the humans are lot smaller in the picture than you would first assume. Easiest three to spot are on left side of the pier at the front, where are some gravel mounds next to them.

Tiny Tank Locomotive

Appears to be standard gauge.

A Handsome Structure

Next to the Brooklyn Bridge, I've always regarded this crossing to and from Manhattan to be the handsomest. Others will say it can't hold a candle to the GW Bridge, but that was built in an entirely different era.

Must be Sunday

I didn't spot a single human figure in the photo.

Former record holder

When it was built it had the longest span for a suspension bridge. Held that record until the Manhattan Bridge was finished.

Loop da loop

When I opened Shorpy today I only saw part of this picture and thought it was a cool old roller coaster. I'm a little disappointed it's only a cool old bridge.

View is of, not from, Brooklyn

Contrary to the caption this photo was taken from Manhattan, not Brooklyn.

[It depends on how you look at it. The caption is Manhattan-centric -- saying this is the new bridge from Brooklyn. - Dave]

How did they do that?

Engineering projects like this are way beyond my imagination and I usually don't question what I don't understand but how did they build this without any workers? Are they invisible?

 
THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG
Shorpy.com | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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