Photo of the Week: Urban Archive

[Stanley’s Lunch], 1958, v1974.4.914; John D. Morrell photographs, ARC.005; Brooklyn Historical Society.

[Stanley’s Lunch], 1958, v1974.4.914; John D. Morrell photographs, ARC.005; Brooklyn Historical Society.

Brooklyn Historical Society’s collections include more than 30,000 photographs—7,500 of which can be searched in our online image gallery. You can also view BHS’s photographic collections in a few other locations online: the Digital Public Library of America is a rich resource of over 18,000,000 materials gathered from institutions throughout the country; and the newly released Urban Archive app is a location-based mobile app that brings together digital collections from New York City museums, archives and libraries. Brooklyn Historical Society has contributed over 5,000 images (and counting!) from our collections to these resources.

The Urban Archive app is particularly notable because of its New York City focus. It allows you to access nearby historical content, walking tours, and curated collections throughout the five boroughs of New York City, as well as interpret the images in new ways. For example, the photo of the week by photographer John. D. Morrell depicts 5-7 Front Street in the Dumbo neighborhood of Brooklyn around 1958.  John D. Morrell was a former Long Island Historical Society (now Brooklyn Historical Society) librarian who donated thousands of photographs that he took while walking through Brooklyn neighborhoods. Since the collections are geo-tagged in the Urban Archive app, you can see some of Morrell’s walking patterns that show where he took photographs and the Brooklyn neighborhoods he frequented.

You can also learn interesting facts about the buildings depicted in the photographs. For instance, you can learn how 5 Front Street (seen here) is one of the oldest surviving office buildings in New York City. Long Island Insurance Company moved here in 1834.  We hope you will check out the Urban Archive app to explore Brooklyn history in a new way!

Interested in seeing more photos from BHS’s collection? Visit our online image gallery, which includes a selection of our images. Interested in seeing even more historic Brooklyn images? Visit our Brooklyn Visual Heritage website here. To search BHS’s entire collection of images, archives, maps, and special collections visit BHS’s Othmer Library Wed-Sat, 1:00-5:00 p.m. library@brooklynhistory.org

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One Response to Photo of the Week: Urban Archive

  1. This is one of the best articles I have come across. Keep up the good work.

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