21 amazing pictures of New York City in the early 1900s

Old times squareLibrary of CongressAn eerily quiet Times Square.

New York, like most older American cities, has changed drastically over the centuries.

But one thing that hasn’t changed is its residents’ desire to photograph it.

A vast trove of photos in The Library of Congress gives us the opportunity to look back at New York just before it was entering the 20th century.

These images give us an idea of what life was like in the 1900s — how landmarks have changed or, remarkably, stayed the same.

Eric Goldschein wrote an earlier version of this story.

Federal Hall, which now stands as a museum and memorial, was originally home to the very first Congress, Supreme Court, and Executive Branch offices.

Manhattan's City Hall is the oldest such building in the United States.

Times Square wasn't yet bombarded with advertisements at the turn of the 20th century.

You can still buy flowers every week at the Union Square Greenmarket.

In late 1913, steers escaped from the New York Stock Company yards and ran rampant through Central Park. Here, a captured steer lies dead.

Library of Congress

A hot dog festival took place in Greenwich Village.

Even into the 1930s, Prospect Park was known for the white-faced sheep roaming the grounds with their caretakers.

Today you'd see a lot more bathing suits on Coney Island.

Grand Army Plaza, located at the northwest corner of Prospect Park, honours John F. Kennedy and Civil War generals.

The Harlem River is a narrow strait dividing Manhattan from the Bronx.

Pictured here, the Washington Bridge crosses the Harlem River between Manhattan and the Bronx. Below it to the left is Harlem River Drive.

Madison Square Park has been home to several temporary arches over the years. In 1899, the Dewey Arch was constructed in honour of Commodore George Dewey's victory over the Spanish.

Construction of the Brooklyn Bridge began in 1869 and was open for traffic by 1883.

Now a designated historic district, South Street Seaport is neighbour to Manhattan's Financial District.

Here's a somewhat dizzying image of the Statue of Liberty, taken from the torch.

Chinatown is still alive and well. Here's Mott Street in Chinatown.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art had humble beginnings. Here's what it looked like when it officially opened in April of 1870.

These days, 11th Avenue has a lot more traffic, both by foot and by vehicle.

The College of the City of New York, located in Harlem, was originally founded as the Free Academy of the City of New York back in 1847. By 1866, it was renamed to the College of the City of New York.

A man stands outside shops on 34th Street and 5th Avenue.

The City Hall subway station still has this incredible, long lasting architecture.

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