Wednesday, March 28th, 2012


That great site How to Be a Retronaut pointed me at this great 1921 silent film of New York City by Paul Strand. It’s called “Manhatta” and provides a unique look at NYC at the early part of the 20th century. If the video doesn’t display, click here.

Also on the Retronaut recently was this 1925 “infographic” from Popular Science Monthly about how we may live and travel in 1950, and how this new world might solve congestion problems…..

Topics: Architecture and Design, Historic Preservation, Transportation
Cities: New York

3 Responses to “Manhatta”

  1. Eric O says:

    To that common refrain that Americans never loved their cities, Walt Whitman is a useful corrective.

  2. John Niles says:

    If I’m reading the painted letters on its side correctly, that big steamship around six minutes into the film is the Lusitania, but recall that ship was sunk in 1915. Is it actually the sister ship Mauretania? Didn’t seem to be what I read. So if it is the Lusitania, the shot was from some years earlier.

    Anyway, some terrific insights here and there into transportation back in that day.

  3. N__B says:

    John –

    At about 7:04, I swear I see the “Q” that would make the name (and the ship) the Aquitania. The profile is about right, although the graininess makes it hard to be certain:

The Urban State of Mind: Meditations on the City is the first Urbanophile e-book, featuring provocative essays on the key issues facing our cities, including innovation, talent attraction and brain drain, global soft power, sustainability, economic development, and localism. Included are 28 carefully curated essays out of nearly 1,200 posts in the first seven years of the Urbanophile, plus 9 original pieces. It's great for anyone who cares about our cities.

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Aaron M. Renn is an opinion-leading urban analyst, consultant, speaker, and writer on a mission to help America’s cities thrive and find sustainable success in the 21st century.

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