This Illustrated 1926 Map of Manhattan Shows the City as It Was, Both Fanciful and Familiar

Posted On Tue, March 15, 2016 By

Posted On Tue, March 15, 2016 By In History, maps

This fascinating vintage map of “The Wondrous Isle of Manhattan” is an illustrated version of the island as it existed in 1926, when it was designed and illustrated by Charles Vernon (C.V.) Farrow (1896-1936) and published by Fuessle and Colman. The map, though not to scale, highlights scores of actual attractions like landmarks and parks. Familiar buildings and streets are labeled, as is the city’s transit system at the time, with elevated tracks running along the avenues.

Map, Historic Map, 1926, C.V. Farrow, historic illustration, historic drawing

The map labels “The Ghetto” as a swath of downtown north of Delancey Street, which, in a time before today’s connotations–the result of urban demographic shifts in the 1960s and ‘70s–refers to that area’s large Jewish immigrant population and possibly part of what was known as Little Germany (h/t Ephemeral New York). Though not an especially flattering term even then, it was used more openly and descriptively (note flying laundry in the neighborhood and hanging street decorations that still exist in places in Little Italy and the Lower East Side.).

Map, Historic Map, 1926, C.V. Farrow, historic illustration, historic drawing

Map, Historic Map, 1926, C.V. Farrow, historic illustration, historic drawing

Map, Historic Map, 1926, C.V. Farrow, historic illustration, historic drawing

Also of note: The “green witch” flying over Greenwich Village; water tower toppers depicted as top hats; and bags of money on the Upper East Side.


Map courtesy of David Rumsey. Use the slider to navigate and enlarge to show detail.

The map is part of the Geographical Society Library Digital Map Collection. You can buy prints from the David Rumsey Map Collection.

[Via David Rumsey via Reddit]

RELATED:

 

Tags :

  • D. Johnston

    I like the top hat and money bag water towers atop the buildings

MOST RECENT ARTICLES

  • Department of Health says it’s okay to eat Gowanus Canal fish in moderation and kayak in the water

    Department of Health says it’s okay to eat Gowanus Canal fish in moderation and kayak in the water

    The real estate community has been looking closely at Gowanus as of late thanks to rezoning plans that will likely ...
  • Ding uses your smartphone to revolutionize the doorbell

    Ding uses your smartphone to revolutionize the doorbell

    While smart home technology includes everything from turning on the heat to monitoring air quality, the simple job of a doorbell ...
  • City transit workers reach deal with MTA over wage increases

    City transit workers reach deal with MTA over wage increases

    After the Transport Workers Union and the MTA failed to reach a deal on Sunday night, the contracts for 44,000 ...
  • Tour Trump’s childhood home before it goes to auction tonight; Ambassador Grill interiors landmarked

    Tour Trump’s childhood home before it goes to auction tonight; Ambassador Grill interiors landmarked

    Seven places to go in NYC to hibernate from Inauguration Day. [Untapped] Donald Trump’s childhood home in Jamaica Estates, Queens is ...
  • UWS one bedroom asking $3,950/month is loaded with prewar charm

    UWS one bedroom asking $3,950/month is loaded with prewar charm

    In this Upper West Side cooperative at 245 West 74th Street, you can rent an apartment that embodies all that ...
  • CNN’s Don Lemon sells Harlem condo for small profit

    CNN’s Don Lemon sells Harlem condo for small profit

    Emmy Award-winning CNN news anchor Don Lemon picked up a somewhat modest condo a little over two years ago in Harlem‘s 2280FDB ...
  • A look back at the lost Grand Centrals of the late 19th century

    A look back at the lost Grand Centrals of the late 19th century

    Grand Central Station in the early 1900s Historic photos of the original Penn Station are almost as common as images ...
  • 128 tall buildings were constructed in 2016, a world record

    128 tall buildings were constructed in 2016, a world record

    Click here to enlarge infographic We’ve just been looking at the amazing growth of the skyscraper in its early years, ...
  • Trump to name New York developers Richard LeFrak and Steven Roth to oversee new infrastructure council

    Trump to name New York developers Richard LeFrak and Steven Roth to oversee new infrastructure council

    President-elect Donald Trump has previously outlined his $1 trillion infrastructure plan not just as a means to repair and build ...
  • $8.8M 20-room limestone Park Slope mansion was built in 1905 for a furniture tycoon

    $8.8M 20-room limestone Park Slope mansion was built in 1905 for a furniture tycoon

    Even in the land of many mansions otherwise known as north Park Slope, 106 Eighth Avenue is, as the listing ...
  • Helen Hayes’ former Nyack home asks $719K

    Helen Hayes’ former Nyack home asks $719K

    Helen Hayes‘ acting career spanned nearly 80 years, earning her the nickname “First Lady of American Theatre” and garnering her distinctions ...
  • TBD Architecture designs Tetris-like artist studios for an Upstate couple

    TBD Architecture designs Tetris-like artist studios for an Upstate couple

    TBD Architecture + Design Studio took on the challenge of designing two conjoined artist studios for a couple on the same property ...

SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTERS

Thank you, your sign-up request was successful!
This email address is already subscribed, thank you!
Please provide a valid email address.
Please complete the CAPTCHA.
Oops. Something went wrong. Please try again later.