New York City 1940's Street a View Old City Tax Photos #usa #general #announcements #photographs

Jan Meisels Allen




A website maps depression-era tax photographs of every building in New York City-making it easier to navigate hundreds of thousands of snapshots of buildings from the 1940s. The photos were taken between 1939-1951 by the City Tax Department and the New Deal- era Works Progress Administration. This historic page may be found at


In 2018, the NYC Department of  Records and Information Services digitized 700,000 of the functional black and white photos in 35 mm film, but the website was difficult to navigate according to the person who created this website.


Those who would like to purchase a high quality print or digital copies can from the NYC Department of  Records and Information Services can do so at:


“The 1940s New York City images stem from the initiative which sent photographers around the Five Boroughs to photograph every single building, which officials hoped would improve property tax assessments. The photos exhibit a city at the tail-end of the Great Depression, before the great urban renewal programs and the dawn of the automobile era that would come to reshape the urban landscape.”  See: for more information.


Jan Meisels Allen

Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee


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