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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.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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At the Zoo: 1904

At the Zoo: 1904

New York circa 1904. "The goat carriages, Coney Island." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

The Scenic Railway

L.A. Thompson's Scenic Railway was in fact the earliest roller coaster-type ride, introduced by LaMarcus Adna Thompson in 1884 as a "switchback railway" in which the passengers would ride in their car from one tower to another and then be "switched back" for the return trip. A few years later it was converted to a looping ride after the introduction of the first roller coaster with a lift hill. It's not clear how long it operated in its original form but Thompson did patent his version of the scenic railway, which included painted backdrops and tunnels. The entrance to that ride is what we're seeing here and in the pony photo.


Hope the kiddies didn't beat those goats like a rented mule.

Low-steppin' strutters

You can purchase your new surrey equipped with propulsion ranging from 1 to 2 gp. Fringe extra.


Far right, guy under Young's Hats parasol is NOT wearing a hat! In 1905, wasn't that pretty much the next thing to running around nekkid?


To my googling amazement, abbreviation for Railway.

If you don't like pony ride


Look at all the kids!

Never crossed my mind

Being from the South and hearing about Coney Island all my life, I didn't think of it having a zoo. Always pictured a carnival atmosphere with a lot of rides, but not wagons pulled by goats.

West 10th street today

Those were the days.

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | 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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