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Guide to the Arthur D. Chapman Photograph Collection
1908-1922, 1953
  PR 15

New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024
Phone: (212) 873-3400

@ 2011 New-York Historical Society

Collection processed by Ashley Forrest Curran

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit on November 03, 2011
Description is in English.

Container List

Series IV: Miscellaneous Manhattan Scenes

Scope and Contents note

Series IV consists of twenty-one photographs. Many images feature the water, including "Boat Basin, Harlem Ship Canal" (1913) and "Harlem River, From the Washington Bridge at One Hundred and Eighty First Street, looking South" (1909). Chapman also took two photographs of Admiral Peary's ship, "The Roosevelt", in 1908, one at close range with a policeman in the foreground looking at her. A second photograph shows a scene of excitement as "The Roosevelt" embarks for the North Pole; the ship is shown alongside others that were perhaps giving her a send-off.

Madison Square is the focus of several photographs. Three entitled "Madison Square" show the Square in summer and again in winter with snow on the ground; two were taken in 1913 and the third in 1912. "Madison Square from Twenty Sixth Street" (1910) again shows the Square in winter with snow-covered trees creating a sharp contrast to the angular Flatiron building in the background. "Madison Square, Looking Out From Under the Colonnade of Madison Square Garden" (1913) is another of Chapman's photographs of Madison Square, taken from an interesting angle below a colonnade which overhangs and frames the square with the statue of Stanford White in the center. "Metropolitan Tower, Looking East Across Madison Square. The "Parkhurst" Church in the Background" (1914) employs both shadow and framing. The photograph has two tall buildings that are completely in shade. Between them is the Metropolitan Tower bathed in sunlight, with snow piled up on the sides of the street, and people hurrying past.

In "From Recreation Pier, 24th Street and East River" (1912) and "From a West Shore Railroad Ferryboat" (1916), Chapman's framing is exquisite. The first has a ship viewed through a doorway, a simple but effective composition. The second is of the cityscape, framed by men lounging casually. In "Boat Basin, Spuyten Duyvil" (1913), Chapman uses the same framing technique, but employing the branches of a tree.

Chapman's interest in construction is again seen in two 1916 photographs, "The 'Derrick' Close-up, Excavation on Madison Avenue," and "'The Derrick' Going Down, Excavation on Madison Avenue." Both show heavy equipment, men working and plenty of steam, with a particular focus on the equipment. "Excavation, 7th Avenue and 24th Street" (1912) is another photograph which shows construction, and the changing face of the city.

Dramatic use of shadow is once again evident in this series in "Madison Avenue, Looking North From 38th Street" (1916). Chapman focuses on a row of brownstone houses with a large building rising behind; one side of the street is in complete shade, but the brownstones and building behind are in bright sunlight.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 3 Folder : 40 Admiral Peary's Ship, "The Roosevelt", at East 24th Street Pier
Box: 3 Folder : 41 Admiral Peary's Ship, "The Roosevelt", Starting for the North Pole from East 24th Street Pier
Box: 3 Folder : 42 Blackwell's Island (Now Queensboro) Bridge, Under Construction
Box: 3 Folder : 43 Boat Basin, Harlem Ship Canal
Box: 3 Folder : 44 Boat Basin, Spuyten Duyvil
Box: 3 Folder : 45 Campaign Banner Strung across Fifth Avenue at Madison Square During the Taft-Bryan Presidential Contest
Box: 4 Folder : 46 The "Derrick" Close-Up, Excavation on Madison Avenue
Box: 4 Folder : 47 "The Derrick" Going Down. Excavation on Madison Avenue
Box: 4 Folder : 48 Excavation, 7th Avenue and 24th Street
Box: 4 Folder : 49 From Recreation Pier, 24th Street and East River
Box: 4 Folder : 50 From a West Shore Railroad Ferryboat
Box: 4 Folder : 51 The Garden Theatre, Night, from the Corner of Madison Avenue and Twenty-seventh Street
Box: 4 Folder : 52 Harlem River, from the Washington Bridge at One Hundred and Eighty-First Street, Looking South
Box: 4 Folder : 53 Madison Avenue, Looking North From 38th Street
Box: 4 Folder : 54 Madison Square
Box: 4 Folder : 55 Madison Square
Box: 4 Folder : 56 Madison Square
Box: 4 Folder : 57 Madison Square from Twenty Sixth Street
Box: 4 Folder : 58 Madison Square, Looking Out from Under the Colonnade of Madison Square Garden
Box: 4 Folder : 59 Metropolitan Tower, Looking East across Madison Square. The "Parkhurst" Church in the Background
Box: 4 Folder : 60 Pier on East River

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