40 Amazing Photos That Bring the Streets of Century-Old New York City to Life

From the shanty town in Central Park to the crime-plagued slums of Lower Manhattan, these vivid images allow you to inhabit the streets of New York as they were a century ago.

A bootblack stands near City Hall Park. July 1924.

Lewis Hine/Library of Congress; Ryan Stennes

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5 thoughts on “40 Amazing Photos That Bring the Streets of Century-Old New York City to Life”

  1. I remember my aunt taking me to New York City in early 1950’s looking something like that..and the peanut vendors with those open carts…that were steaming hot in the winter times….nothing had changed too much in the early 1950’s or maybe 1950….

    Love those times…seems like I am over 100 years…but so much wonderful things happened…till now

  2. Great photographs, but they are really meant to be viewed as they were originally photographed – in black and white. ‘Colorizing’ does not necessarily work for archival photographs such as these. One looses the sense of a time gone by, and the images become more of a movie-set motif rather than a true moment in history. This is, of course, just my opinion, but I’m curious as to what other folks think….

  3. on the right side of the picture #27 the woman under the red awning looks like a time traveler. Her dress, shoes and hat doesn’t look that period.

  4. LOVED the photos!! I was born in Brooklyn in 1939 and have many wonderful memories of the city. I took drama lessons as a child at the Metropolitan Opera House and appeared in a “Babes in Toy Land” production at one of the theaters downtown around 1949.