HISTORIC IMAGE COLLECTION

Visual documentation includes over 75,000 photographs and slides (1850s-present), a rare glass negative collection (4,000 images, 1880s-1917, with prints and copy negatives), and 1,500 postcards and stereocards (1870s-present). The photograph collection documents The Bronx (1856-present) with extensive image categories, e.g., communities, personalities, the development of street, highway and parkland systems, the built environment, and events. Approximately 40% of the collection documents the late 19th- early 20th century period of regional consolidation with the city of New York. Rapid economic and structural development followed after The Bronx’s parks and parkway system was established, and the city’s new rapid transit lines were created, which generated a 400% increase in population with mass migrations of populations coming from such overcrowded areas as the Lower East Side in Manhattan. The photographic collection represents an important and unique body of regional documentation spanning almost 160 years – an invaluable tool for historical, geographical, and social study. These images serve as reference materials for borough/regional studies in a number of disciplines, and have been utilized for exhibitions, programs and publications.