Posts Tagged ‘New York City Hall’

What’s the commotion at City Hall Park?

April 24, 2014

Something’s drawn a crowd downtown at the edge of City Hall Park, according to this penny postcard, stamped 1912. A tangle of wagons on the right, and adults and kids swarming the curb in front.

City Hall Park 1912 2

Just another spring or summer day in a park featured in many vintage postcards? Without a caption, we’ll never know.

There’s the kiosk for a City Hall subway stop, and the statue of Nathan Hale, relocated many times in its 120-year history.

The simple loveliness of New York’s City Hall

January 27, 2014

When City Hall opened in 1812, some New Yorkers feared it was too far north; after all, the city at the time was centered at the southern tip of Manhattan.


But the city quickly marched northward and this French-inspired Federal structure (the two designers who built it won $350 for their efforts) has been in use continually for more than 200 years.

Surrounded by stately city buildings and offices and often the site of riots and demonstrations, it maintains a simple elegance.

A lovely view of City Hall in 1912

September 6, 2011

Hard to believe that New York’s city hall building was already a century old at the time this vintage card was stamped with a postmark.

It’s also strange to think that when it was completed, New Yorkers thought City Hall was located too far north of the center of the city.

Construction was delayed for decades, thanks to some minor calamities like the Revolutionary War, labor disputes, and a yellow fever outbreak.

But for workers who stuck it out, the take-home pay was $1.50 a day.