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Colorized Photo of One Times Square Under Construction, 1903
This photo of Times Square under construction was taken in 1903 by an unknown photographer. The narrow building being constructed in the center of the photo was designed by architects Cyrus L.W. Eidlitz and Andrew C. McKenzie to serve as the headquarters for The New York Times.
After completion of the building in 1904, The New York Times thought it would be a great idea to stage a massive New Year’s Eve fireworks display to celebrate. Only problem was, fireworks were outlawed in New York and it would be illegal. Fortunately, The New York Times‘ chief electrician Walter Palmer came up with the idea to drop a lighted ball from the top of the tower instead. Although not nearly as exciting as fireworks, the first New Years Eve ball drop in Times Square attracted roughly 200,000 people. The New York Times didn’t stay long in their fancy new building and stayed only ten years before moving into an annex with larger space.
The building on the right with the gold signage is Hammerstein’s Victoria Theatre of Varieties. At the time of this photo, Willie Hammerstein had taken over management of the theater from his father and began to book various unknown performers of all kinds. Willie kept the ticket prices low and gave unknown illusionists, exotic dancers, comedians and performers of all kinds a venue for showing their talents to the masses. The low-brow vaudeville acts, dark humor and cheap ticket prices drew in large crowds and the Victoria Theatre became the most popular vaudeville venue in New York.
It has been awhile since I posted a new colorization. Not only is the colorization process time consuming, but I have also been quite busy with photo editing and retouching projects for several editorial publications. Now that the brunt of that work load is complete, I anticipate having much more time to share some of my photo colorization work here on Metacolor.