MCNY Blog: New York Stories

Iconic photos of a changing city, and commentary on our Collections & Exhibitions from the crew at MCNY.org

Category Archives: Photography Collection

Studio 54: Behind the velvet rope

Studio 54 opened on April 26, 1977, at 254 West 54th Street. The space initially served as a home to the Gallo Opera House (pictured to the left), which opened … Continue reading

June 16, 2015 · 1 Comment

Company Songs

While cataloging ephemera under the National Endowment for Humanities grant, I couldn’t help but notice how many companies, clubs, societies, and associations had songs written and printed for special occasions. … Continue reading

June 2, 2015 · 1 Comment

Banjos, Mandolins, Cats, and Dogs

In the 1950s and 1960s, Sunday afternoons were spirited times in Washington Square Park.  For several hours folk singers, accompanied by enthusiasts, performed in the public space.  In a convivial … Continue reading

May 19, 2015 · 5 Comments

Napoleon Sarony: Celebrity Photographer

  Before paparazzi and the celebrity media we all live with today, there were 19th century photographers, like Napoleon Sarony (1821-1896), who became internationally renowned for their celebrity portraits. Born in Québec, Sarony began his … Continue reading

April 28, 2015 · 2 Comments

Reblog via Untapped Cities ~ Saving Place: 50 Years of NYC Landmarks, Interview with the Curators

On April 21, 2015, the Museum of the City of New York will open Saving Place: Fifty Years of New York City Landmarks, exploring how the pioneering landmarks legislation, passed in 1965, … Continue reading

April 17, 2015 · 2 Comments

A Call to Serve: Scenes from the Henry Street Visiting Nurse Service

With fresh tears in her eyes, a young girl approached Lillian Wald, a graduate of New York Hospital School of Nursing. Concerned for the girl’s well-being, Wald followed the child … Continue reading

April 14, 2015 · Leave a comment

Benjamin J. Falk, photographer and master of light

It’s 1881. You’re an actor in the latest smash-hit sensation. Wanting to gain a little publicity for yourself, the show, and a potential national tour, the producers send you off to … Continue reading

March 24, 2015 · Leave a comment

From automobile maintenance to aeronautical engineering

New York City traffic jams have long been the source of iconic scenes in movies and television, as well as real-life frustration, perceived near death experiences, and a whole lot … Continue reading

March 17, 2015 · 1 Comment

Lunatics, Inmates, and Homeowners: The History of Roosevelt Island

The nurses plunged her into an ice-cold bath, pulled her out sopping wet, and threw a sheer flannel slip over her head. Large black letters spelled “Lunatic Asylum, B.I., H. … Continue reading

March 10, 2015 · 2 Comments

Members only: Private clubs in New York City

Clubs have been a part of New York City for centuries. How else are you expected to find like-minded people in such a bustling metropolis? In the early 19th century, the … Continue reading

March 3, 2015 · 1 Comment

Using the Museum’s Collections to Teach Photography

The Photography Collection at the Museum of the City of New York is an incredible resource for anyone interested in photography, architecture, social history, New York City, and any number … Continue reading

January 28, 2015 · Leave a comment

Buffalo Bill’s New York

Running up and down Brooklyn’s Seventh Avenue in 1894, little boys snatched their mothers’ clotheslines, fashioning them into lassoes to rope their younger sisters [1]. Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show was … Continue reading

January 6, 2015 · Leave a comment

Urban Woodsman: Theodore Roosevelt and his Buckskin Suit

Traversing the Dakota back country atop his horse, a young Theodore Roosevelt arrived at a “desolate, little mud-roofed hut” belonging to Mrs. Maddox [1]. She “had acquired some fame in … Continue reading

November 4, 2014 · Leave a comment

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