Winter in the City

In case you missed it, winter descended on New York City last week. Freezing temperatures (the coldest in two years), snow, and wind made many New Yorkers remember why they love the summer.  To observe the late arrival of winter, and the snow that’s falling as this is being written, here are some of our favorite winter images.

There is something undeniably magical about New York in the winter. The fall of snow on skyscrapers muffles the usual street noises until you can almost believe you’re walking in an earlier time. Blankets of snow transform the hard geometries of familiar sights like Herald Square and the Flatiron Building with the soft brush-like strokes of impressionist art.

Byron Company (New York, N.Y.) Broadway North from 34th Street. 1899. Museum of the City of New York. 93.1.1.17918

Byron Company (New York, N.Y.). Broadway North from 34th Street. 1899. Museum of the City of New York. 93.1.1.17918.

Jessie Tarbox Beals. Flatiron Building. ca. 1905. Museum of the City of New York. 91.53.38.

Jessie Tarbox Beals. Flatiron Building. ca. 1905. Museum of the City of New York. 91.53.38.

Central Park has been the place to enjoy winter in Manhattan since it opened in 1857. Generations of New Yorkers have skated, sledded, had snowball fight,s and simply enjoyed nature in its 843 acres. (If you want to see an amazing 1898 short film by Edison depicting the splendor of Central Park in the winter, especially sleighing, go here.)

Currier & Ives. Central Park in Winter. ca. 1885. Museum of the City of New York. 57.100.5.2

Currier & Ives. Central Park in Winter. ca. 1885. Museum of the City of New York. 57.100.5.2.

While this Currier and Ives print has sleighing in the forefront, New Yorkers have found ways many ways to enjoy the snow throughout the boroughs.

The ever popular sledding in Central Park:

Unknown. Sleigh riding in Central Park. 1897. Museum of the City of New York. X2010.11.1313.

Skating with friends:

Wurts Bros. (New York, N.Y.). Brooklyn Friends Seminary – ice skating. 1940. Museum of the City of New York. X2010.7.1.12630.

And proving that New Yorkers are nothing, if not intrepid:

Unknown. Bicycle in the snow, C. W. Hadley at the handlebars. 1898. Museum of the City of New York. X2010.11.13336

Unknown. Bicycle in the snow, C. W. Hadley at the handlebars. 1898. Museum of the City of New York. X2010.11.13336.

In all the five boroughs, during winter, you can feel like you’re in the depths of nature and not in one of the largest cities in the world.

Irving Underhill (d. 1960). Central Park Snow Scene. 1923.Muiseum of the City of New York. X2010.28.362

Irving Underhill (d. 1960). Central Park Snow Scene. 1923.Museum of the City of New York. X2010.28.362.

George Miller, Jr. When Winter Comes - Riverdale - N.Y. City. ca. 1930. Museum of the City of New York. X2010.12.152

George Miller, Jr. When Winter Comes – Riverdale – N.Y. City. ca. 1930. Museum of the City of New York. X2010.12.152.

Enjoy the rest of the of winter, whatever it might bring!

Click here to view more images of winter and New Yorkers having fun in the snow from the Museum’s collection.

One response to “Winter in the City

  1. Wonderful scenes of NY winters!

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