Discover the Past at the NYC Municipal Archives Online Gallery

May 11, 2012 -- Posted by : admin

Ever watched one YouTube video only to find yourself clicking on more related videos for the next half hour? Believe it or not, the NYC Municipal Archives Online Gallery is possibly more addicting than any modern website. About three weeks ago the NYC Department of Records opened its Municipal Archives Online Gallery, a collection of over 870,000 photographs, maps, motion-pictures and audio recordings taken from its collection and digitized. Imagine trying to fit all of that into a book, or even a museum – it would be impossible. The gallery contains artifacts dating back to the mid-1800s, is accessible by the public, and can be shared on social media through the “Share This” tab. The cost and space efficiency of digital storage cannot be ignored, and the online archival of printed records is a task that many municipal and government agencies have been pursuing. This is perhaps the biggest undertaking so far, and the department has stated that is plans to continually add to the archives. Want to know what Times Square looked like a century ago, before the iPhone? Browse the collection’s array of building and street shots. Are you a war buff? Check out recruitment and propaganda posters from WWI and WWII. A fan of fashion? Browse shots of NYC citizens instead. Or, if you’re up for something more lurid, browse through mug shots and crime scenes from the police department and the District Attorney. There is something here to grab nearly everyone’s interest, and you just might learn some history lessons in the process!

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