Early 20th century New York was a lot like the city of today.
The skyscraper era was dawning, business was booming, and development was rampant. Many of the city’s low-rise buildings were being bulldozed in favor of steel-frame office towers topping 20 stories.
On Lower Broadway, new office buildings were going up up up. This real-estate madness is the likely inspiration for this Puck illustration from 1907, by Albert Levering.
Levering gives us a Trinity Church — until 1890 the tallest structure along the city’s skyline, which welcomed ships coming into New York Harbor — almost entombed in glass and steel, its graveyard chopped away.
I wonder how many developers took this cartoon seriously?
[Image: Library of Congress]