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Published on Feb 25, 2009
New Brooklyn to New York via Brooklyn Bridge, no. 2 Sept. 22, 1899. Edison Manufacturing Co.
The B.M.T. train ride from Brooklyn to Manhattan. In 1898, the modern City of New York was formed with the consolidation of Brooklyn (until then an independent city), Manhattan, the Bronx, Queens County, and Richmond County (Staten Island). The opening of the Brooklyn Bridge in May of 1883 did for the city what railroad expansion and the Erie Canal did for the nation. The population was expanding due to immigration, industry and commerce were booming. In less than five years the need for several more bridges would be apparent as Williamsburgh and the rest of Brooklyn also grew in population. On Manhattan "uptown" was moving quickly past 14th Street. Soon, people would be calling it "downtown." The electric subway system, which would eventually connect all of it, was well on its way.
July 29, 1898 At six o'clock in the evening a traffic jam near the Brooklyn end of the Bridge ties up wagons and trolleys all the way back to the Manhattan entrance. Suddenly the Bridge sags a few inches at two points, approximately 250 feet on both sides of the Manhattan tower. On examination, engineers find that several trusses buckled under the roadbed, but they conclude that the damage is harmless, and make no attempt to straighten the kinks. For a few days after the incident the ferries running across the river (eleven now compared with the fourteen that had existed during bridge construction) do a brisk business.*
The ad for Chas. H. Fletcher's Castoria visible on the side of the building at 0:17 (a children's laxative) was advertised heavily in its day. There are still fading reminders on the sides of buildings in various locations around New York. Here's a photo of one I took near the entrance to the 59th Street Bridge in Manhattan: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb...
New York City in 1899: The newly formed 'City of Greater New York' splits Queens County, Hempstead, North Hempstead, and Oyster Bay from Nassau County on Long Island / Sept. 9th, Henry H. Bliss steps off of a streetcar at 74th St. & Central Park West and gets struck by a vehicle becoming New York City's first automobile fatality / Dec. 2nd, trolleys begin running between Jamaica and Flushing in Queens
Recommended reading: * The Great East River Bridge 1883-1983 - The Brooklyn Museum