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Guide to the New York Chamber of Commerce Collection
1768-1976 (bulk 1900-1950)
 PR 277

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


© 2011 New-York Historical Society

Collection processed by Kelly McAnnaney

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit on December 13, 2011
Description is in English.

Descriptive Summary

 
Title: New York Chamber of Commerce Collection
Dates: 1768-1976 (bulk 1900-1950)
Abstract: The New York Chamber of Commerce Collection spans the period from its fouding in 1768, until 1976, and primarily contains photographs of the Chamber of Commerce building, as well as images of members and events.
Quantity: 1.13 Linear feet (2 boxes plus 1 mapcase drawer)
Location note: Department of Prints, Photographs, and Architectural Collections
Call Phrase: PR 277

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Historical Note

The New York Chamber of Commerce was founded on April 5, 1768 by a group of merchants interested in the trade and commerce of New York City. The stated purpose of the organization was "promoting and encouraging commerce, supporting industry, adjusting disputes relative to trade and navigation, and procuring such laws and regulations as may be found necessary for the benefit of trade in general." The group received a royal charter from King George III in 1770, becoming the "Corporation of the Chamber of Commerce in the City of New York in America."

During the Revolutionary War, the membership was divided. Patriots left New York City during the British invasion while their loyalist colleagues remained, holding meetings and conducting business. Following the evacuation of the British in 1783, the patriot membership returned and quickly regained control. The group received a new charter and were renamed the "Corporation of the Chamber of Commerce of the State of New York."

Through the years the organization has counted some of the most powerful men in New York among its members, including more than half of the city's mayors between 1872 and 1901. The influential members of the Chamber played a large roll in shaping both New York City and the United States. The New York Chamber of Commerce campaigned for the building of the Erie Canal, supported Abraham Lincoln's campaign for president, organized the "Committee of Seventy," which helped drive the Tweed ring from power, and played a key role in creating the city's first subway system.

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Scope and Content Note

The New York Chamber of Commerce Collection spans the period from 1768-1976 and primarily contains photographs of the Chamber of Commerce building, as well as images of members and events.

Arrangement

The collection is divided into three series: Printing Blocks; Documents; Images.

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Access Points

Subject Names

  • Li, Hongzhang, 1823 - 1901
  • Lindsay, John V. (John Vliet)

Document Type

  • Broadsides
  • Certificates
  • Ephemera
  • Gelatin silver prints
  • Photographic prints
  • Posters
  • Printing blocks

Subject Topics

  • Boards of trade - New York (State) - New York
  • New York Chamber of Commerce - History
  • New York Chamber of Commerce - Pictorial works

Subject Places

  • Lower Manhattan (New York, N.Y.)

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Administrative Information

Provenance

Gift of Partnership for New York City, 29 April 2008.

Access Restrictions

Open to qualified researchers.

Photocopying undertaken by staff only. Limited to twenty exposures of stable, unbound material per day. See guidelines in Print Room for details.

Use Restrictions

Permission to reproduce any Print Room holdings through publication must be obtained from:
Rights and Reproductions
The New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024
Phone: (212) 873-3400 ext. 270
Fax: (212) 579-8794

Preferred Citation

This collection should be cited as: New York Chamber of Commerce Collection, PR 277, Department of Prints, Photographs, and Architectural Collections, The New-York Historical Society.

Related Material at the Department of Prints, Photographs, and Architectural Collections

Additional images of the Chamber of Commerce Building can be found in the Geographic File (PR 024) and the George P. Hall & Son Photograph Collection (PR 024).

Columbia University holds the archives of the New York Chamber of Commerce.

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Container List

Series I: Printing Blocks

Scope and Contents note

Series I. Printing Blocks is comprised of eleven printing blocks, ranging in size from 2 1/4x 1/4 inches to 4 x 5 1/2 inches, from various companies, including the American Maize-Products Company, Chase National Bank of the City of New York, and the March of Dimes. There are no printed positives from these blocks in the collection. The blocks are identified by a title, taken from the block's text, and listed individually in the box list.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : [The Greater New York Mutual Savings Bank in Brooklyn]
Box: 1 Folder : [Orvis Brothers Co.]
Box: 1 Folder : [General Reinsurance Company]
Box: 1 Folder : [American Surety Company, New York Casualty Company]
Box: 1 Folder : [Pease & Elliman Inc.]
Box: 1 Folder : [Geo. E. Mallinson Importing Co., Inc.]
Box: 1 Folder : [American Maize-Products Company]
Box: 1 Folder : [The Chase National Bank of the City of New York]

General note

includes an image of Rockefeller Center

Box: 1 Folder : [Chase Banking Facilities in New York City]

General note

includes an image of 18 Pine Street & 11 Broad Street

Box: 1 Folder : [A Bicentennial Evening, The Great Hall]

General note

includes an image of the Chamber of Commerce Building, 65 Liberty St.

Box: 1 Folder : [The Fight is Yours, Join the March of Dimes]

General note

includes an image of a soldier and a child with crutches

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Series II: Documents

Scope and Contents note

Series II. Documents include certificates, correspondence, posters, and other printed ephemera related to, or published by, the New York Chamber of Commerce. Material in this series is first organized by size then sorted by subject.

Subseries I. Boxed Files contains material measuring 9 x 14 in. and smaller. Organized by type, material includes Chamber of Commerce monthly bulletins, two New York City guidebooks published by the Chamber of Commerce from 1950, and several programs from dinners and events such as the Citizens Preparedness Parade in 1916. A number of typed pages from the Grant Monument Association detail the completion of the monument. Also included is one copy of the Catalogue of Portraits in the Chamber of Commerce of the State of New York: 1768-1924 and a supplement published in 1941. These books contain reproductions of the portraits hanging throughout the Chamber of Commerce building.

Subseries II. Flat Files contain a letter from Herbert Hoover, a poster advertising a 1976 street fair and a 1939 map of lower Manhattan illustrated with depictions of historic landmarks, people and events. Certificates include membership certificates to the Chamber of Commerce, a memorial certificates for Joseph Conrad Simmons and Francis T. Walker, and a certificate celebrating the Chamber of Commerce's 200th anniversary. Also included is a broadside, printed in 1768, announcing the Chamber's creation. This is the only known extant copy.

BOXED FILES

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 2 Folder : 1 Chamber of Commerce Bulletins
1929, 1962
Box: 2 Folder : 2 Chamber of Commerce Portrait Catalogue & Supplement
1924, 1941
Box: 2 Folder : 3 Grant Monument Association
1928-1929
Box: 2 Folder : 4 New York City Guides
1950
Box: 2 Folder : 5 Programs
1901-1976

FLAT FILES

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: Folder : FF-1 Certificates
1866-1921, 1967
Box: Folder : FF-2 Correspondence
1949
Box: Folder : FF-3 Broadsides & Posters
1768, 1938, 1976

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Series III: Images

Scope and Contents note

Series III. Images contain primarily gelatin silver photographs of the Chamber of Commerce as well as portraits of members and events. The series has been divided into two subseries: Photographs and Non-Photographic Images.

Subseries I. Photographs contains albumen and gelatin silver prints ranging in size from 6 1/4 x 8 1/4 inches to 16 x 21 inches. Many of these are mounted on board and are extremely fragile. Among these photographs are images of the Chamber of Commerce Building at 65 Liberty Street, including exterior images by Pach Brothers and a large number of interior photographs. Portraits include both individual and group portraits. Individual portraits show Edward VIII, Prince of Wales during his visit to the Chamber of Commerce in 1919 and Georges Clemenceau, former prime minister of France, at a Chamber of Commerce meeting in 1922, as well as John Lindsay delivering a speech in the Great Room. Group portraits include member banquets and images of Li Hung Chang's visit to Grant's Tomb. Events show both the dedication of the Washington statue at the Sub-Treasury Building as well as the celebration commemorating the 150th anniversary of the inauguration of George Washington. Miscellaneous photographs contain a single aerial view of Jones Beach, including the water tower.

Subseries II. Non-Photographic Images contains two portraits. One, a reproduction of an etching, is a portrait of Isaac Low. The other is a painted portrait of an unidentified man.

PHOTOGRAPHS

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: Folder : FF-4 Chamber of Commerce Building - Exterior
undated
Box: Folder : FF-5 & FF-6 Chamber of Commerce Building - Interior
undated
Box: Folder : FF-7 Merchants' Association - Offices
[ca. 1930s]
Box: Folder : FF-8 Events - Misc. Ceremonies at the Sub-Treasury Building
1883, 1939
Box: Folder : FF-9 Portraits
1887-1922
Box: Folder : FF-10 Miscellaneous
undated

NON-PHOTOGRAPHIC IMAGES

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: Folder : FF-11 Portraits
undated

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