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Tuesday, April 13, 2010


The Grand Central Terminal Collection documents the history and construction of Grand Central Terminal and the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Terminal in Manhattan. The collection covers a wide range of activities, with the bulk of the material dating from 1900 through the 1920s. Some of the most exciting and fascinating materials include bound volumes of blue-line photographs documenting the construction progress of the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Terminal. In the collection are several black-and-white photographs, the most remarkable of which are four undated images depicting large crowds of New York Central Railroad employees at a celebration in Victory Way, featuring towering pyramids of captured German helmets. The collection also contains several drawings previously held by D.H. Morrison, a terminal engineer and this collection’s donor. These plans for a proposed 55-story office building to be erected above Grand Central Station are accompanied by Morrison’s notes. Several newspaper clippings, ranging from 1968-1979, detail the public debate over the conservation and preservation of the historic site. The conflict ended in a Supreme Court decision upholding the terminal’s historic landmark status, thus barring construction. Numerous blueprints of the main station and station building (1907-1920) are part of the collection.

Kimberley Rowe, Neendoniss Adams, and Alisha McCullick, University of Michigan interns, Archives Center, National Museum of American History

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