CUNY Graduate Center Collection, 34th Street

This collection is a collaborative project between the Mina Rees Library, the Seymour B. Durst Old York Library, and the Gotham Center for New York City History, is a montage of 246 images of Thirty-fourth Street, past and present. Contemporary images were taken by photographer Jeanette O’Keefe during the summer of 2010. These color street shots contrast beautifully with the historic images of Thirty-fourth.

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The Astor Dining-Room, a restoration of the dining-room in the old Astor mansion, New Hotel Waldorf.
Erected by William Waldorf Astor on the site of the former home of his father, Northwest Corner Fifth Avenue and Thirty-third Street, New York. Cost $4,000,000.
The Ballroom of the Waldorf-Astoria, Arranged for an Entertainment.
Fifth Avenue and 34th Street. Print depicting the ballroom of the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel with the stage set for a performance and the floor filled with seating.
The Casino Theatre and Abbey's Theatre.
The caption reads: "The Casino and Abbey's Theatre, Broadway Thirty-sixth to Thirty-eighth Street." The Casino Theatre was built by Kimball & Wisedell for producer Rudolph Aronson. Managed by Canary & Lederer (1894-1903) the Shuberts acquired the lease. The theater was reconstructed after a 1905 fire and demolished in 1930. Abbey’s Theatre (white building) was built by J.B. McElfatrick & Co., and named for producer and theatre manager Henry Abbey. In 1896, Al Hayman and his Theatrical Syndicate group took control of the theater after Abbey’s death and renamed it the Knickerbocker. In 1906, the Knickerbocker became the first building on Broadway to have a moving electric sign. The building was sold after the 1929 stock market crash and was also demolished in 1930.
The Casino, The Home of Comic Opera.
Broadway and 39th Street. Illustrated advertisement for the Casino Theater's gala production of the operetta "Nadjy" starring Lillian Russell for Friday, April 26, 1889. Inscribed: "J. Ottmann Lith., Puck Bldg., NY."
The Court of the Park Avenue Hotel.
Park Avenue and 34th Street. A drawing of a waiter at the Hotel Imperior’s garden court yard preparing to serve guests.
The Court, Stewart's Hotel for Working Women.
Fourth Avenue, 32nd and 33rd Streets. Illustration of court of Women's Hotel. Stewart's Hotel for Working Women was commissioned by the wealthy merchant, A.T. Stewart. The hotel opened in 1877 to provide safe housing for the influx of working women into the city. It was soon reopened as a regular hotel in 1878 and renamed the Park Avenue Hotel. The building was demolished in 1927.
The Fourth Avenue Front, Stewart's Hotel for Working Women.
Fourth Avenue, 32nd and 33rd Streets. Illustration of street scene in front of the Stewart's Hotel for Working Women. Stewart's Hotel for Working Women was commissioned by the wealthy merchant, A.T. Stewart. The hotel opened in 1877 to provide safe housing for the influx of working women into the city. It was soon reopened as a regular hotel in 1878 and renamed the Park Avenue Hotel. The building was demolished in 1927.
The Home-going Crowds on West 33rd Street Making their way to the various Tubes, Subways, Elevateds and so forth.
Large group of pedestrians on West 33rd Street surrounded by buildings; in the background street-railroads are visible.
The Homes of the Poor, The Fever Nests in Thirty-Second Street.
"Fever Nests" refers to areas of the city, usually tenements, in which typhus fever, typhoid fever and smallpox flourished. Image shows Civil War era slums with animals in the streets and an industrial smoke stack in the background spewing smoke.
The Hotel Imperial, Broadway and 32nd Street.
A corner-facing exterior view of the classical nine-story structure with horse drawn carriages and pedestrians at curbside. It was designed by Stanford White of McKim, Mead & White in the style of a Florentine palazzo.
The Hotel Vanderbilt.
Park Avenue and 34th Street. Photograph by Van der Weyde. The Hotel Vanderbilt and on the right the entrance to the old Park Avenue tunnel. The image shows automobile, street-railroads and pedestrian traffic.
The Lambs' Clubhouse, 70 West Thirty Sixth Street.
From a photograph by Byron. Curbside image of the exterior of the Lambs' Clubhouse which was affiliated with the British organization by the same name. The Lambs Club in the US was founded in 1874 as the first American social club for the professional theatre community. In 1904, The Lambs moved their clubhouse to 44th Street to a building designed by Stanford White. Since the early 1970's, the Lambs Club has been located on 51st Street.
The Manhattan Abattoir.
This abattoir, commonly referred to as a slaughterhouse today, was on the site of the Manhattan Market building, 11th-12th Avenues, from 34th-35th Streets. Printed on image: "The company's dock." "Tunnel from dock." "Killing." "Cleaning." "Ice house." "Rendering room." "Sacking for shipment." "Exportation." Printed on border: "From sketches by V.L. Kingsbury. -- [See page 530.]"
The New Gorham Building at Fifth Avenue and Thirty-Sixth Street.
390 Fifth Avenue. Exterior image of the Gorham Building which was completed in 1906. It was designed by Stanford White of McKim, Mead, and White in the early Florentine Renaissance style with double height Doric columns at street and roof levels. The building continues to occupy this space. It was designated as a Landmark Site by the Landmarks Preservation Commission in 1998.
The New Herald Building as seen from Broadway.
Exterior view of The New Herald Building from the corner of Broadway and 34th Street designed by architects were McKim, Mead & White.
The New Home of the Herald.
Sixth Avenue and 35th Street. The inset drawings captions read "Main entrance, 35th Street; The view from Mr. Bennett's window; Wind dial; The press room; in course of construction; a fragment of the exterior; In Mr. Bennett's room; the main staircase." The bottom caption reads "Formal possession of the new squat Venetian palace of the "Herald" at the junction of Broadway and Sixth Avenue at Thirty-fourth Street, was taken Sunday last, August 20. As finally completed it has not the fine appearance anticipated. A mistake was certainly made in not giving a greater altitude to the building."
The New York Dispensary for Diseases of the Throat and Chest. No. 1304 Broadway, between Thirty-Fifth and Thirty-Sixth Streets. (Incorporated December 11, 1869)
Broadway between 35th and 36th Streets. The image shows a mother and child at the door of the Dispensary along with pedestrians on the sidewalk and a horse drawn carriage at the curb. The New York Dispensary functioned as community health clinic. Pettit-Field Sr.
The Oldest House Foot of Murray Hill. Cor. 3d Av. & 34th St.
Corner of Third Avenue and 34th Street. Image taken from a book of a three-story, corner structure which appears to have retail and residential uses. A smaller store front next-door indicates the merchant sells coal. There is a vendor stand on the corner, a mother and child crossing the street and an unhitched wagon down the street.
The Palm Room of the Imperial.
A drawing of the tea room at the Hotel Imperial, Broadway and 32nd Street.
The Park Avenue Hotel, Park Avenue and Thirty Fourth Street.
Exterior image of the Park Avenue Hotel decorated with patriotic bunting and a horse drawn carriage parked at the main entrance. Designed by John Kellum and built by Alexander T. Stewart, the Park Avenue Hotel was originally conceptualized as The Working Women's Hotel to provide housing for the influx of single, middle class women working in the city. The experiment did not pan out. Opening in April of 1878, the hotel was closed in May and re-opened in June as the Park Avenue Hotel.
The Park Avenue Hotel.
View of two sides of the Park Avenue Hotel exterior from the corner of Park Avenue and 33rd Street. In the foreground are horses and carriages as well as dogs and people walking on the sidewalks. The hotel no longer exists.
The Stewart Art Gallery.
Image of the Stewart Art Gallery published in Harper's Weekly.
The Top of New York: Empire State Building Observatory Pierces the Clouds, 1250 Feet High (back)
The back of the postcard has a message addressed to Mr. and Mrs. Jesse Hilton of Tiffin, Ohio, "Am taking a mid-winter vacation here in New York and having a fine time." It is signed Leone Hines.
The Top of New York: Empire State Building Observatory Pierces the Clouds, 1250 Feet High.
350 Fifth Avenue, between 33rd and 34th Streets. Title from caption. The top third of the Empire State Building is visible through the clouds.
The Waldorf Astoria, 5th Ave. and W. 34th St.
Image shows a corner view of the Waldorf Astoria hotel, 34th Street and Fifth Avenue.
The Waldorf Hotel.
Caption reads: "The Waldorf - Northwest corner of Fifth Avenue and Thirty-third Street. H, J. Hardenbergh, Architect." Rare view of Waldorf before construction of the Astoria Hotel. Built by William Astor on the site of his father’s mansion and beside his aunt Caroline Webster Schermerhorn Astor’s home, Astor chose the site in part because of a feud with his aunt. (The side wall of Mrs. Astor's house visible on right-hand side of photo.) The hotel was torn down to make way for the Empire State Building.
The Waldorf-Astoria, Fifth Avenue and Thirty Fourth Street.
An exterior view of the hotel's ornate edifice on a corner busy with pedestrians and horse drawn carriages. Designed by architect H. J. Herdenberg, the original Waldorf-Astoria was constructed during the last 19th Century. World renown, the Waldorf-Astoria was one of the leading hotels of its day. The Empire State Building was erected on this site in 1931.
The White Mfg. Co., Globe Iron Works, 556 West 34th Street.
Black and white advertisement for the White Mfg. Co., Globe Iron Works.
Theo. P. Huffman & Co., Commission Merchants in Hay, Straw, Grain, Feed, etc., 648 and 650 West 34th Street.
Black and white advertisement for Theo. P. Huffman & Co., Commission Merchants in Hay, Straw, Grain and Feed.
Thirty Fourth St., NE from 8th Av., N.Y.C.
34th Street and Eight Avenue. Aerial view depicting Macy's, Saks & Company in background; brownstones, tenements, row houses and factories in foreground including laundry drying on lines. Hotel Navarre in middle, right. Two signs for printers and publishers far right.
Thirty-third Street and Broadway.
Image of 33rd Street and Broadway toward the end of the 19th Century showing an elevated train station and horse drawn carriages facing the area that later became Greeley Square.
Tiffany & Co. Building façade.
401 Fifth Avenue and 37th Street, SE corner. Tiffany & Co. Building Fifth Avenue designed by McKim, Mead and White.
Tiffany & Co., Fifth Ave at 37th Street, architects, McKim Mead & White, date TK.
Tiffany & Co., Fifth Avenue and 37th Street under construction. Builder's sign visible: "Charles T. Wills, Builder."
Train pulling into 34th St Station of 3rd Ave el.
View of passenger and arriving train on elevated platform; Chrysler and Chanin buildings visible in distance. Caption on back indicates this was the last el in the city, and was slated to be torn down.
Tunnel connecting New Yorker Hotel to Pennsylvania Station.
Eighth Avenue and 34th Street. Old tunnel connecting the hotel to Pennsylvania Station. Now used for storage in the hotel.
Vanderbilt Hotel, 4 Park Avenue between 33rd & 34th Streets.
Building designed by the architectural firm Warren & Wetmore in 1913; converted to an apartment building in 1965. The Empire State Building is featured in the background.
View of Park Avenue from the Park Avenue Hotel, showing the Grand Central Railroad Station at the north end.
Park Avenue between 32nd and 33rd Streets. The view from the Park Avenue Hotel shows the rooftops of the buildings across the street as well as part of Park Avenue stretching up to Grand Central Railroad Station at the north end. Originally built as the Grand Central Depot, this Grand Central was remodeled, expanded and renamed. Nonetheless, plans were made to tear down the station and build one that could handle electric locomotives--the current Grand Central Terminal. Horses and carts can be seen going up and down the avenue. The hotel no longer exists.
View of the railroad tracks on the West Side.
37th Street, North side, between Tenth and Eleventh Avenues. This area is currently closed off as a construction site. A wooden wall blocks the view of the railroad tracks.
Wallack's Theatre, New York City During the Record Making run of 'His Honor the Mayor' ca. 1907.
Broadway and 30th Street. Wallack's Theatre was built in 1882 and demolished in 1915.
Watching the Great Presses of the New York Herald. A familiar night scene at Thirty-fifth Street and Broadway.
A crowd of fashionable pedestrians peering through the windows of the New York Herald Building; there is a news boy behind the crowd trying to get a glimpse.
Watson's Guide Map to Summer Resorts Around New York.
This colorful map shows New York City before it was incorporated into the five boroughs. Westchester County stretches down into what is now the Bronx, Brooklyn appears as an independent city, and Queens is only a county.
West Side Improvement.
Conditions which will be eliminated by construction under new financial program. View at 11th Avenue and 32nd Street showing northbound freight train emerging from the New York Central West Side Yard, as a southbound train is entering same.
William Sloane House, Y.M.C.A.
360 West 34th Street (Southeast corner of 34th Street and Ninth Avenue). Founded in 1930 to provide cheap housing for members of the Armed Forces, the William Sloane House was named after William Sloane (1873-1922), chair of the Army and Navy International Committee through World War I and of the National War Work Council of the YMCA. This building on West 34th Street was the largest YMCA residential program in the city of New York. Designed by New York architects Cross and Cross, the William Sloane house opened with 1,595 rooms, but remodeling and changes in programs eventually reduced the rooms to 1,400. By the 1940s, changing demographics forced the William Sloane to refocus. As the number of servicemen needing housing dwindled, women and girls could stay in the building, and the William Sloane began providing long-term accommodations to college students and welfare recipients. After a fire in 1974 that killed four people and several attempts at fundraising in the 1980s, the William Sloane closed in 1993. The building was eventually purchased for five million dollars and remodeled, becoming the 360 West 34th Street, a building of affordable rental apartments for young professionals new to New York.
William Sloane House, Y.M.C.A. - 366 West 34th Street - New York, N.Y.
Color postcard depicting the William Sloan House (Y.M.C.A) on the right and a map of midtown Manhattan on the left featuring such well-known landmarks as: the Empire State Building, Pennsylvania Station, the New York Public Library and the Metropolitan Opera House.

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