Incredible Photos of NYC in the ‘60s

The Big Apple looked almost good enough to eat! ?


    New York City is known as one of the most popular destinations in the world. The Big Apple boasts everything you could possibly want – lights, buildings, islands, parks and yummy food. But as the years change, so do the cities. So if you want to see what New York looked like in the past, check out these incredible photos of NYC in the ‘60s.

    On Strike

    In 1968, actors from the Actors’ Equity Association undertook a three-day strike because of their contracts and pay. Here, two actors picket outside a Broadway theater, much to the dismay of the audience members on the left who traveled to see the play. All in all, this strike affected 700 actors and caused the cancellation of 19 shows.

    The ferry

    Nowadays, you can simply drive over to Staten Island by crossing the bridge. However, this bridge was only built in 1964. Before this, the only way to get there was to cross by ferry from Brooklyn or Manhattan. This photo shows cars queuing at the dock for the next ferry in 1961.

    Oh, snow you don’t

    New York is notorious for its snow and blizzard in the winter months. In 1969, the snow caused disruption on the Grand Central Highway, and rendered some cars completely stuck. Two men try shoveling their way out of the snow, to no luck.

    China Town

    New York is known for their enormous and extremely popular Chinatown. This picture shows the Chinese New Year celebrations on February 2nd, 1965. Chinese dancers and dragon dancers dance in the streets to bring in the new year – the year of the Serpent.

    Central Park

    Central Park is the perfect meeting place or chill out space for anyone who visits or lives in New York City. In the ‘60s, many people used to congregate here to watch the skateboarders create their incredible shapes, movements and show off their skills, or skateboard themselves

    What a view

    If you travel to New York City, you just have to visit the Empire State Building and admire the city from above. That’s exactly what these German and Brazilian tourists did in January, 1964. These men stand atop the 85th floor of the building on the observation deck and look through the lenses.

    Unfair Labour Practice

    In 1967, the Playboy Club entered into a strike due to complaints about unfair labour practice. This lone Playboy Bunny walks up and down the Manhattan Playboy Club strike picket line on February 6th, 1967.

    A victory

    The Mets are a huge part of life in New York, and are one of the most popular baseball teams in the US. Back in 1969, confetti starts to fly throughout the Shea Stadium after the team win the National League Division title after their win against the St.Louis Cardinals.

    A hard day’s work

    The Empire State Building officially opened in 1931, but even the biggest of buildings needs a lick of paint here and there. Here we have Jack Engleman and Harry Dane standing on the light enclosure, and getting ready to paint the outside of the building on August 2nd, 1962. Not a job for the faint-hearted…

    Barbra Streisand

    Back in the ‘60s, many movie premieres had their debut in New York City. On September 18, 1968, Barbra Streisand and her husband, Elliott Gould make their way to her premiere for ‘Funny Girl’ at the Criterion Theater at Broadway and 43rd Street.

    Old Penn Station

    Old Penn Station was known for being hugely popular, and the decision to demolish the building in 1963 was not taken lightly and suffered huge consequences. The public weren’t happy with this decision, and can be seen protesting outside of the building in 1962.

    New York International Airport

    I bet you’re thinking – no such airport exists? Before JFK Airport became JFK airport, it was called the New York International Airport. This photo shows the outside of it in 1960. Three years later, it was renamed to honor the president, John F. Kennedy.

    The sanitation strike

    In February 1968, garbage companies went on strike. This strike resulted in chaos. Garbage trucks lay idle in the streets, garbage cans lay in the streets, and bags and bags of garbage pile the streets of New York.

    A religious affair

    This picture was taken on March 17, 1964 and shows Cardinal Francis Spellman leaving St. Patrick’s Cathedral to greet some of the members of a St. Patrick’s Day march. It’s lovely to see so many people coming together as one.

    Looking dapper

    Everyday citizens always have the best stories – you just have to look at Humans of New York to know that. This man rides the subway in New York in the ‘60s, and you have to wonder where he’s going, why he’s dressed like that, and what he’s holding in his hand.

    Feeling folky

    Folklore, folk music and the folk genre became increasingly popular during the ‘60s in New York – so much so that there were even protests about the abolition of folk singing in certain parks across the city. Here we have five men standing in front of the New York Folklore center in the ‘60s.

    Riding the subway

    Like any major city, getting around it can be an issue, as it can get so crowded. In New York, the subway is a staple form of transportation. Many people used it to get to work, to socialize, to do their odd jobs or to get home. However, many of the subway carriages in the ‘60s were extremely graffitied.

    The blackout

    On November 9th, 1965, New York city suffered a city-wide blackout. People struggled to get home from work, contact their loved ones, or were completely stranded. Many people waited for taxis or buses to get home – but there were a lot of people who all wanted to get home and once, and the buses became extremely crowded.

    The World’s Fair

    On April 21st, 1965, the New York World’s Fair opened in Flushing Meadows – Corona Park. The fair attracted thousands upon thousands of visitors, and even welcomed a visit from the Duke and Duchess of Windsor.

    Greenwich, New York City

    During the ‘60s, New York City was one of the best places to hang out with friends, meet up for drinks, or go out for dinner. During the nighttime, Greenwich Village proved incredibly popular, and the streets would always be lined with groups of people making the most of the Big Apple.

    USS Duluth

    This photo was taken on February 1st, 1966. On this day, the USS Duluth (which was the last ship constructed at Brooklyn’s New York Naval Shipyard) hit the dock as she was being tugged along by a tugboat. The ship was partially damaged but was easily fixed. A few months later, this same dock was closed completely, after 146 years of business.

    Sally Steele at Dinoland

    This photo shows one of the Dinosaur exhibits at the World’s Fair in 1965, on July 2nd, 1965. This Dinosaur was one of the two dinosaurs that were stolen from the fair by three college men, who stole them as a prank. They were eventually returned and took their place back at the fair.

    The Mayor on the Subway

    On November 6th, 1967, the Mayor of New York City at the time, John Lindsay and his president of the City Council, Frank O’Connor rode the subway after a news conference. They traveled back to City Hall using the subway to support a proposition involving transportation bonds.

    Strong minded people

    The people of New York City have always been strong minded people. They have always been strong-willed and they will always speak their minds. Because of this, the city was full of protests during the ‘60s. This woman is protesting in a pro-Vietnam war campaign.

    ‘60s fashion

    Fashion in New York City has always been important. This woman walks down the street in the ‘60s in her best outfit, and receives jealous glances from others walking down her street. In this city, you dress to impress.

    Bleecker Street

    This photo depicts Bleecker Street in 1967. In a city full of color, light, music and art, it’s no surprise that the walls are covered in posters, artwork, grafitti and everything else you could possibly imagine. You expect nothing less from NYC.

    A place to visit

    New York City has always been a place to visit, and during the ‘60s, the city attracted some of the best and most talented celebrities. One of those visitors was Pier Paolo Pasolini who visited the city in the ‘60s. Pasolini is one of the most celebrated Italian film directors.

    On the inside

    This photo depicts the inside architecture of the Penn State Train Station that was demolished in 1993. The station was extremely popular for travelers, and the outrage because of this demolition affected demolition legislation after this.

    Sing us a song

    New York City is known primarily for being a concrete jungle. But there are parks and wide open spaces scattered in between the high-rise buildings. During the ‘60s, many people congregated in these parks to hang out with friends and play music together – not only to entertain themselves, but to entertain others in the parks.

    Riding around town

    If you didn’t want to take a taxi, the subway and you didn’t want to walk, you had other options. You could skateboard, or you could roller skate. Many young people took to skateboarding through the streets of New York to go about their day in the easiest, and the most fun way possible.

    Let’s go shopping

    As previously stated, fashion was a huge part of life in ‘60 New York City. Down all of the side streets and off the beaten track, garment stores like this one littered the streets. These store held piles upon piles of all of the best clothes for you to peruse at your leisure.

    Just chilling out

    During the ‘60s, cars were a status symbol. If you had the latest model, people would stop and stare, they’d ask questions and think you were the bee’s-knees. Many people used to show off their new rides, and often sit on them or hang out by them to get the most attention – like this guy and his car.

    A life of luxury

    Many of the high-class members of the ‘60s believed that having money meant showing off. You could always tell who had more money than others, especially if they had their own private car and personal chauffeur to drive them around…

    A helluva town

    New York City has always been known as busy, hectic and ready 24/7. It was no different in the ‘60s. This picture shows the adverts, the billboards ,the cars and the people all crammed into one small space that is NYC.

    A true New York

    New York City has always been remembered as having a particular aesthetic – and this ‘60s photo perfectly sums it up. Yellow cabs, block apartment buildings, and fire escapes. Some things never change.

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