Tag Archives: 1900s

Old New York In Photos #141 – Children’s Recreation On Rooftops

Children On New York’s Rooftops 1909-1910

Children playing on a roof in New York City April 28, 1910 from the series Living On (A) Skyscraper photo George G. Bain Collection Library of Congress (LOC)

In the early twentieth century the roofs of New York would offer a respite from hot days in New York. While roofs could be dangerous, the streets were full of peril with horses, trolleys and filth.

The news organization headed by George G. Bain sent its photographers up to the roofs to see life from this perspective. Continue reading

Old New York In Postcards #26 – Broadway 1895-1915

Views Along Broadway From Bowling Green To Washington Heights

Broadway and 62nd Street – The Colonial Vaudeville Theater is on the left, 1913

Broadway means New York City. Sure there are other Broadway’s in the United States, but none have the same clout that New York’s Broadway does. It is the longest street in Manhattan and one of the oldest. What the Dutch called De Heere Straat and later De Heere Wegh, became Great George Street under English rule. The street was paved in 1707, but only from Bowling Green to Trinity Church at Wall Street. After the Revolution, New York’s citizens began renaming streets and Great George Street became Broadway.

Here are some postcard views of Broadway dating from 1895 – 1915 Continue reading

Old New York In Postcards #25 – Night In The City

New York Night Scenes

Let’s start by saying in general most of these postcard scenes of New York are not really night scenes. The postcard companies would take a daytime scene and simply transform it into a night view.

Out first view of the Bowery at night circa 1905 is a prime example of day turned into night.

On the extreme left a small portion of the facade of the Bowery Savings Bank can be seen. Above the street is the Third Avenue El.

Continue reading

Old New York In Photos #135 – Curling In Central Park

Curling, “The Roarin’ Game” At Central Park Circa 1900

Curling in Central Park circa 1900 photo Detroit Publishing

It may not be the most popular sport but curling may get the most television airtime during the 2022 Winter Olympics. Continue reading

Old New York In Photos #134 – “White World” Coney Island

The White World – Coney Island c. 1904

The Coney Island attraction The White World is a chance to “see” the northern regions of the globe. Since most people at the turn-of the-century rarely ventured more than a few miles from home, this experience promises to be the next best thing. Continue reading

New York City Celebrates New Year’s Eve – 1908

New Year’s Eve In New York City 1908

New York City New Years Eve Times Square 1907 Leslies Magazine Dec 26 drawn by Sigurd SchauThis December 26, 1907 cover of Leslie’s Illustrated Weekly magazine shows what the scene would be like on New Year’s Eve 1908.

How “the merry crowds in New York welcome the new year” has not changed all that much in 114 years.

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Celebrating The Opening Of The Williamsburg Bridge December 19, 1903

118 Years Ago The Williamsburg Bridge Opens With Great Festivities

Fireworks opening Williamsburg Bridge December 19 1903 photo Library of Congress

Fireworks Williamsburg Bridge 12/19/1903 photo: Library of Congress

On December 19, 1903 the second bridge to join Manhattan and Brooklyn opened.

Since May 24, 1883, for over 20 years, the Brooklyn Bridge, provided the only means of crossing between the two boroughs besides boat. Continue reading

How A Poor Mailman Built A Palace – The Postman’s Palace

It Took Over 33 Years, But Postman Ferdinand Cheval Built Himself A Palace

Ferdinand Cheval photo via Bonkersclutterbucks.com

As a postal carrier in southern France, Joseph Ferdinand Cheval could only dream of owning a mansion. Cheval would spend his free time looking at pictures and reading books about palaces and castles.

In his postal duties Cheval would pass by a magnificent castle-like home, admiring it every day. But what sparked his imagination and lead to taking action was an accident. Continue reading

When New York City Schools Taught Kids How To Be Good Citizens

NYC Schools Used To Teach Kids The Responsibilities Of Citizenship

Something We Apparently Fail To Do Now

Teaching Civics, Respect & Unity, Not Divisiveness

Boys Club of PS 62 Hester and Norfolk St with policeman c 1907

Originally this piece was going to be about how dysfunctional the New York City school system is.

Then I realized that a critique of all the political correctness and hypocrisy that dominates decision making at the Department of Education and what kids are actually learning would require a book rather than an article.

Instead it would be better to examine what children used to learn in grammar school. The main focus was of course on reading, writing and arithmetic. A primary education as it should be.

The established standards applied to all children, regardless of religion, ethnicity, race or income level. But something else was taught that has been lost today: how to become useful and good citizens.

Simply put, Civics.

To understand this better let’s turn to a book that was in use in New York City schools during the early part of the twentieth century.

The book is called Good Citizenship by Julia Richman, Continue reading