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New-York Historical Society (New York, NY 10024-5152)
Henry F. Raine (Project Director: July 2017 to present)
Digitization of the New-York Historical Society's Subway Construction Photograph Collection

The digitization of 66,000 photographs produced by the New York City Board of Transportation before and during construction of the New York subway system from 1900 to 1950, documenting people, buildings, streetscapes, and the construction process throughout the subway network across Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx.

The New-York Historical Society will digitize its Subway Construction Photograph Collection, dating from 1900-1950 and numbering 66,000 images, and make them publicly available through the use of its new Islandora digital portal, N-YHS Digital Collections, the Digital Public Library of America, and WorldCat. The photograph collection documents the construction of New York City's subway system in four boroughs including Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan, and Queens. The collection also documents the face of the city, including its built environment, streetscapes, and people during the first half of the 20th century. Many of the photographs are works of art completely unknown to researchers and the public alike. The digitized collection will facilitate their use for educational and scholarly purposes. The images will include enhanced metadata as well as geo-coding with latitude and longitude information.

Project fields:
Urban History

Humanities Collections and Reference Resources

Preservation and Access

$87,310 (approved)
$87,310 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2018 – 4/30/2020