Lonely Planet Writer

Hundreds of vintage photographs of New York City have been made available online

A series of vintage images depicting New York City between the early 1960s and 1990s have been archived and made available online in a brand new collection, offering viewers a fascinating glimpse back through time.

West Broadway & Broome Street, taken in the mid 1980s by carole teller
West Broadway & Broome Street, taken in the mid-1980s. Image by Carole Teller / GVSHP

Taken by Carole Teller, an East Village artist and photographer who has lived in downtown New York for over fifty years, the new collection includes over 100 images archived by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, while a total of 500 images are due to be eventually made public as part of the ongoing project.

The analog photos depict just how drastically some areas of the city have changed over the years. The photographer’s keen interest in documenting the evolution of the urban environment is apparent throughout the series, as she concentrates on shooting buildings set to be demolished, fading wall signs and neighbourhood shop fronts, as well as the people that stroll around the different areas.

Accordion Player & Crowd, Washington Square Park taken in the 1970s.
Accordion Player & Crowd, Washington Square Park taken in the 1970s. Image by Carole Teller / GVSHP

A long-time supporter of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, the artist donated the collection, entitled, “Carole Teller’s Changing New York” to the online database, which can be accessed by the public via a dedicated webpage. Many of the photographs were undated and without noted locations, requiring months of lengthy research work in order to establish the exact time and place of each one. Some images in the collection still remain a mystery, while others show drastic changes to streets and skylines.

Ices vendor on the Lower East Side in the 1960s. Image by Carole Teller / GVSHP

“These images tell an important story of what about our city has changed and what has remained the same over the last half century. They remind us of what we once took for granted and thought permanent, but which has now disappeared or fundamentally changed,” Andrew Berman, Executive Director of Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation told Lonely Planet Travel News.

The filming of "The Godfather" on East 6th Street in 1971.
The filming of ‘The Godfather’ on East 6th Street in 1971. Image by Carole Teller / GVSHP

The collection includes everyday scenes such as the downtown skyline taken in the early 1960s, street vendors selling chickens on canal street in the 1980s, and crowds crossing the road at West Broadway and Broome in the mid-80s.

The collection is available now to view at the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation website.