The Granger Collection: A Partnership With The Museum Of The City Of New York

Jill Rahn's picture
Editor’s Note: When we first saw these images we were struck with a strong sense of history, of our own nostalgia for scenes and places long gone, and overall how photographers should, to paraphrase Walker Evans, photograph with a sense of history in mind. Some of the photos from this collection have the almost eerie calm of the best of Atget, while others are akin to street scenes casually snapped that would later become treasured mementos of an age. We thank The Granger Collection and the Museum of the City of New York for allowing us to share some of these images with you.

All photographs courtesy of the Museum of the City of New York

NEW YORK: PENN STATION. Interior of Pennsylvania Station, New York City, 1944.

Cavernous skylines, classic cars, design innovations, and lifestyles of the wealthy and working class are just some of the quintessential New York scenes now available at The Granger Collection through a new partnership with the Museum of the City of New York.

NEW YORK: LUNCHEONETTE. Interior of the Arcadia Luncheonette Soda Fountain at 45th Street and Vanderbilt Avenue, New York City, 1930.

“These photographs depict New York through a curious and idiosyncratic perspective,” says Lila Dlaboha, managing director of The Granger Collection. “You’ll see the bejeweled skylines and legendary landmarks, of course, but most of the images take place at street level, where the pulse of the city beats hardest: workers pushing racks through the streets in the Garment District; storefronts bulging with books; Coney Island sideshows; an el train screeching to a halt above a busy Brooklyn street; elegant operagoers greeting one another under a chandelier. You can almost hear and smell these images, they are so palpable and evocative of a time long gone, but still at the very heart of the city.”

The photographs span from the Gilded Age at the turn of the 20th century, through the days of Art Deco, to the 1940s. Further installments from the Museum of the City of New York’s distinguished collection are to come in the following months.

HAIR DRYER, 1904. A student at Teachers College, Columbia University, dries her hair in a locker room. Photograph, 1904.

CONEY ISLAND: RIDE, 1944. The “caterpillar” ride at Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York, 1944.

STATEN ISLAND: BEACH, 1898. Man and woman in bathing suits reclining at the edge of the water. Man has “Swimming Instructor” written on his shirt, Midland Beach, Staten Island, New York, 1898.

MADISON SQUARE GARDEN. Exterior of Madison Square Garden in its third incarnation on Eighth Avenue between 49th and 50th Streets, New York City, 1944.

“The strength of these images lies in their ability to evoke mood or memory so keenly. It’s for this reason the photographs bridge the potential for both creative and editorial uses,” Dlaboha adds.

The images are now available at: www.granger.com. A selection may be viewed in the Arts & Leisure galleries at: www.granger.com/searchresults.asp?gallery=mcny.

About The Granger Collection
For nearly a half-century as the most convenient and reliable source for the history of the world in pictures, The Granger Collection holds more than six million images spanning more than 25,000 years of world history, from prehistoric times through the mid-20th century. The Granger Collection specializes in the history of people, places, things, and events represented in a variety of mediums, including photographs, paintings, engravings, lithographs, and more.

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