A Photographer in 1911 Captured New York’s Fifth Avenue Like ‘Google Street View’

By Ingrid Longauerová, Epoch Times
April 19, 2016 1:35 pm Last Updated: April 29, 2016 2:23 pm

About 200 years ago, Fifth Avenue was a mere country road leading to Yorkville, which was a small village at the time. But as New York City grew, so did the city’s famous artery. 

At the turn of 20th century, the avenue perfectly reflected the huge changes that were happening in the city, and Fifth Avenue became synonymous with fashionable life, expensive mansions, as well as the city’s cultural and social institutions. 

Photographer Burton Welles decided to capture Fifth Avenue with his wide-angle lens—from one end to the other.

In 1907, Fifth Avenue was earmarked as a factory hub, but its residents and fellow New Yorkers formed a movement to save the special character that the avenue had. And it was around this time photographer Burton Welles decided to capture Fifth Avenue with his wide-angle lens—from one end to the other.  

Click on the plus sign to enlarge the photos.

From Washington Arch to West 8 Street. (NYPL)
From Washington Arch to West 8th Street. (NYPL)

 

To East 7th St. Duncan, with famous historic Hotel Brevoort, which was demolished in 1954. (NYPL)
East 7th St. Duncan, with the historic Hotel Brevoort, demolished in 1954. (NYPL)

 

From East 14th Street to West 18th St. (NYPL)
From E. 14th S. to W. 18th St. (NYPL)

 

West 18th Street. (NYPL)
W.18th St. (NYPL)

 

Fifth Ave. between West 10th and 11th Street, with The Old First Presbyterian Church. (NYPL)
Fifth Ave. between W. 10th and 11th St., with The Old First Presbyterian Church. (NYPL)

 

Madison Square Garden with the Metropolitan Tower. (NYPL)
Madison Square Garden with the Metropolitan Tower. (NYPL)

 

East 29th Street. (NYPL)
E. 29th St. (NYPL)

 

Overlooking West 34th Street. (NYPL)
Overlooking W. 34th St. (NYPL)

 

Waldorf Astoria, open in 1893, brought commercialization to the whole Fifth Avenue. (NYPL)
The Waldorf Astoria (on the left), opened in 1893 and brought commercialization to the whole of Fifth Ave. (NYPL)

 

Bussines around East 35th Street. (NYPL)
Businesses around E. 35th St. (NYPL)

 

A look at East 43rd and 44th, with the Temple Emanu-El of reforemd Jewish religion, which was demolished in 1927, after the temple was moved to the Upper East Side. (NYPL)
E. 43rd St. with the Temple Emanu-El of Reform Judaism, which was demolished in 1927 after the temple was moved to the Upper East Side. (NYPL)

 

The New Public Library at  West 42nd Street. (NYPL)
The New Public Library at W. 42nd St. (NYPL)

 

Busy bussiness area around W 46th Street, with a florist, jeweler, art dealer or women's apparel importer. (NYPL)
The busy business area around W. 46th St., with a florist, jeweler, art dealer, and women’s apparel importer. (NYPL)

 

Home of S.R. Guggenheim at East 58th Street. (NYPL)
Home of S.R. Guggenheim at E. 58th St. (NYPL)

 

St. Patrick Cathedral at East 51st Street. (NYPL)
St. Patrick’s Cathedral at E. 51st St. (NYPL)

 

The Metropolitan Museum of Arts. (NYPL)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. (NYPL)

 

Apartments at East 85th Street. (NYPL)
Apartments at E. 85th St. (NYPL)

 

Andrew Carnegie's residence at East 90th Street, which remained the same until today. (NYPL)
Andrew Carnegie’s residence at E. 90th St., which remains the same today. (NYPL)

See the whole collection at the NYPL website.