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Park photos of 19th and early-20th-century NYC

Check out black-and-white park photos of New Yorkers past taking the air (and walking the ponies) in New York City parks.

By Jenna Scherer; photographs compiled by Virginia Rollison |
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 (Photograph: Wurts Brothers/Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Wurts Brothers/Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesCentral Park Zoo
 (Photograph: Ewing Galloway/Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Ewing Galloway/Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesCentral Park, 1892
 (Photograph: John S. Johnston/Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: John S. Johnston/Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesBethesda Terrace, Central Park, 1894
 (Photograph: Detroit Photographic Co/Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Detroit Photographic Co/Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesCentral Park, 1904
 (Photograph: Detroit Photographic Co/Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Detroit Photographic Co/Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesCentral Park tennis courts, 1904
 (Photograph: Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesCentral Park
 (Photograph: Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesCentral Park, 1895
 (Photograph: Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesCentral Park Zoo, 1899
 (Photograph: Berenice Abbott/Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Berenice Abbott/Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesWashington Square Park, 1936
 (Photograph: Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesBryant Park, 1930
 (Photograph: Nathan Schwartz/Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Nathan Schwartz/Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesBryant Park, 1935
 (Photograph: Ewing Galloway/Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Ewing Galloway/Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesBryant Park, 1925
 (Photograph: Berenice Abbott/Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Berenice Abbott/Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesMadison Square Park, 1936
 (Photograph: Courtesy of the NYPL Archives)
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Photograph: Courtesy of the NYPL ArchivesEntrance to Prospect Park

Even old-timey folks liked to roll up their shirtsleeves and have fun outdoors in NYC parks. Check out these park photos of city dwellers of yesteryear playing outdoor sports, ogling cute animals at the Central Park Zoo and lounging on the grass in Bryant Park. We’ve got a question for those two crabby-looking young fellows leading the ponies, though: Why you gotta look so mad all the time?

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