An ad-free Educational Platform Offering Access to Restored Vintage Photographs and Prints Documenting New York's Rich History.
Expertly Curated by Joseph A. Gornail & Steven D. Garcia of Fine Print New York • 315 Madison Avenue • Email Us • 212.619.5446

History of New York City - 1950 to 1955

At the apex of its postwar recovery, New York City continues to prosper at an unprecedented rate. A collaboration of Allies was successful not just in winning the war, but building bridges as the city welcomed a record number of immigrants seeking a new life. Puerto Rico became a US territory in 1952, opening up a wave of migrant citizens from the island and ultimately leading to the first Puerto Rican Day Parade, along with pop/cultural representation in classic NYC films such as West Side Story.

Photograph of pedestrians scattering a flock of pigeons along the sidewalk in front of New York Public Library.

1953: Pedestrians at the New York Public Library

Photograph of pedestrians scattering a flock of pigeons along the sidewalk in front of New York Public Library.

1952 NYC Night Market Photo by Walter Albertin

1952: Walter Albertin Photo: Washington Street Market at Night in NYC

1952 NYC Night Market Photo by Walter Albertin

Photograph of Times Square showing advertisements and businesses such as the Crossroad's Cafe and Nedicks.

1953: Times Square Showing Advertisements

Photograph of Times Square showing advertisements and businesses such as the Crossroad's Cafe and Nedicks.

Photograph shows the interior of main concourse of Grand Central Terminal with sunlight streaming through windows of main concourse.

1953: Grand Central Sculpture of Light

Photograph shows the interior of main concourse of Grand Central Terminal with sunlight streaming through windows of main concourse.

Aerial photograph of Manhattan including the Chrysler Building and other midtown skyscrapers.

1952: Aerial view of Midtown Manhattan

Aerial photograph of Manhattan including the Chrysler Building and other midtown skyscrapers.

Aerial photograph of smog obscuring a view of the Chrysler Building from the Empire State Building.

1953: Midtown Smog Obscures View of Chrysler Building

Aerial photograph of smog obscuring a view of the Chrysler Building from the Empire State Building.

Photograph of a man standing in the doorway of a building in ruins against a backdrop of skyscrapers.

1952: Man Standing in Building Ruins

Photograph of a man standing in the doorway of a building in ruins against a backdrop of skyscrapers.

Photograph shows half-length portrait of an street artist working on a painting of Manhattan's urban landscape with the Empire State Building in the background.

1953: Street Artist Painting a Cityscape

Photograph shows half-length portrait of an street artist working on a painting of Manhattan's urban landscape with the Empire State Building in the background.

Photograph shows an aerial view of Manhattan including the East River featuring the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges.

1952: Aerial View of Downtown Manhattan

Photograph shows an aerial view of Manhattan including the East River featuring the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges.

Aerial photograph looking across the East River towards Brooklyn from Manhattan's perspective.

1954: A View across the Brooklyn Bridge

Aerial photograph looking across the East River towards Brooklyn from Manhattan's perspective.

Photograph shows view of Broadway looking south from above the 135 highway with large skyscraper in distance and subway tracks emerging from the ground.

1952: Aerial View of City Hall Park

Photograph shows view of Broadway looking south from above the 135 highway with large skyscraper in distance and subway tracks emerging from the ground.

Photograph of the Washington Square Arch located at Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village, with its iconic fountain in background, visible through arch.

1953: Washington Square Arch

Photograph of the Washington Square Arch located at Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village, with its iconic fountain in background, visible through arch.

Photograph of two women sitting on the Fountain steps of Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village.

1953: The Fountain Steps of Washington Square Park

Photograph of two women sitting on the Fountain steps of Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village.

Photograph shows two separate shots of women having a conversation on the curb in front of a New York City taxi.

1953: Two Women Talking on City Street

Photograph shows two separate shots of women having a conversation on the curb in front of a New York City taxi.

Photograph looking north at traffic along 7th Avenue facing Times Square with its many billboards and storefronts.

1954: Times Square Traffic

Photograph looking north at traffic along 7th Avenue facing Times Square with its many billboards and storefronts.


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Frequently Asked Questions

What Defines History101.nyc? Explore NYC's Historical Journey

Welcome to "History101.NYC," an unparalleled online gallery featuring the beginnings of New York City, exquisitely restored by the experts at Fine Print New York. This exclusive collection vividly resurrects key historical moments, celebrating the city's rich history and diverse cultural heritage. Each meticulously crafted piece in our gallery offers a genuine look into NYC's past, embodying exceptional artistic skill and meticulous attention to detail.

Dive into our archives for a selection of exclusive, premium-quality art prints, encompassing a range of vintage photos, historical images, and rare lithographs unique to our site. These curated artworks narrate the dynamic evolution of the Big Apple, providing history enthusiasts and art collectors with a rare opportunity to own a part of NYC's illustrious legacy. Don't miss the chance to explore and acquire these captivating representations of New York City's historical journey.

Who Are the Founders of History101.nyc? Discover the Creators

Joseph Gornail, a printer/photographer and founder of Fine Print New York, grew up in SoHo, Manhattan. Part of a long lineage of NYC printers, he learned the craft of printing as a teenager. Joseph's pivotal role in the New York printing industry began while working for Dolo Records/Stretch Armstrong in 1996. He then founded All City Marketing & Printing, and in 1999, co-founded the iconic streetwear brand "Orchard Street" with Benjamin Holloway and Greig Bennett. In 2004, Joseph established Fine Print NYC, a top-tier commercial printing company in New York. It launched with a major project for Nike, showcasing resilience and innovation in the digital age.

Steven Garcia, esteemed designer/illustrator and creative director at Fine Print New York, hails from Bushwick, Brooklyn. An alumnus of Fashion Industries High School and F.I.T., Steven's impressive career trajectory includes his tenure as a sought-after professional retoucher and storyboard artist at Saatchi & Saatchi in 1995. His entrepreneurial spirit led to the inception of ShinyDesign in 1998, later aligning with Fine Print in 2004 as their primary design partner. Steven's portfolio boasts collaborations with high-profile brands like Snapple, The Waldorf Astoria, and Sony, making him a prominent figure in New York's advertising and design landscape.

Together, Joseph & Steven spearhead the History101.nyc project, a groundbreaking digital archive since 2006. Their longstanding partnership dates back to 2001, when Joseph managed The New York City Urban Experience, an influential art gallery & museum at 85 South Street, and Steven curated, both contributing to New York City's vibrant cultural scene. This venue, owned by Mike Saes of the Nike Bridge Runners and True Yorkers, was a cornerstone for urban art and history enthusiasts.

What Time Periods, Eras, Decades of NYC History are available?

We cover a vast span of New York City's history, from its inception as New Amsterdam to the vibrant late 1980s. Our artists are actively working on expanding our collection to include photos from the 90s up to the present day.

Here's our current coverage list, showcasing the city's evolution:

Dutch Era: When New York Was New Amsterdam

NYC in the 1600s

Georgian Era

NYC in the 1700s • NYC from 1800 to 1840NYC in the 1840s • 

Victorian Era

NYC in the 1850s • NYC in the 1860s • NYC in the 1870s • NYC in the 1880s

Progressive Era

NYC in the 1890s • NYC from 1900 to 1905 • 1905 to 1910 • 1910 to 1915 • 

World War 1

NYC from 1915 to 1920

Art Deco

NYC from 1920 to 1925 • NYC from 1925 to 1930

Depression Era

NYC from 1930 to 1935 • NYC from 1935 to 1940

World War 2

NYC from 1940 to 1945

MidCentury Modern Era

NYC from 1945 to 1950 • 1950 to 1955 • 1955 to 1960 • 1960 to 1965 • 1965 to 1970

Energy Crisis

NYC from 1970 to 1975 • 1975 to 1980

Reagan Era

NYC from 1980 to 1985 • 1985 to 1990

Each period is richly represented through a variety of art mediums, offering a comprehensive and immersive historical journey of NYC. This chronological approach provides enthusiasts and scholars a unique lens into the city's architectural, cultural, and social developments.

How many historical Images are on this site?

There are currently 755 photos, lithographs, illustrations and maps on this site. Each one has been digitally restored and cleaned up by hand, which makes this collection truly unique.

Can I License Any of These Images?

Digital licenses are available for educational institutions (schools, universities, non-profit organizations). Please contact legal@fineprintnyc.com to discuss conditions for licensing.

NOTE: Any form of commercialization or redistribution of these images, either as tangible goods or third party licenses, is expressly forbidden.

Can I purchase prints of the historical images available on the site?

History101.nyc is an ad-free and non-profit learning resource. We do not sell prints of these images. All operational costs are covered by Fine Print NYC

Do you accept admissions to this collection?

Absolutely! Feel free to send us an email with a preview of the image and we will let you know if it's a good fit for the archives.

How do you handle feedback or corrections regarding the historical context of images?

We welcome any feedback that you may have. If it proves to be historically accurate the changes will be reflected on the site shortly after our correspondence.

Do you collaborate with other historical societies or archives?

We have collaborated with NYC's Municipal Archives, The Tenemant Museum, Bronx Historical Society and a number of prominent NYC photographers to produce a series of limited edition postcards which free of charge, but only available via street distribution, primarily in Manhattan.

Do you also provide image restoration as a service for personal photos?

Yes, we can repair, restore and cleanup your old family photos, slides and negatives. You can either send us the digital files or the original photos to be professionally scanned.

Can you repair any type of image damage?

We can restore just about any level of damage or signs of aging, within reason. As long as most of the photo is intact we cn work with it. The one flaw we cannot fix is source material that is blurry. A poorly take photo can only be improved so much.

@History101NYC

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History101.NYC is an ad-free learning resource available to the public at no charge.
This project is dedicated to exploring New York’s fascinating heritage through the restoration of vintage photographs and prints.