Times Square Circa 1936

Times Square – A little peek at the past.

times square

This picture is of the legendary New York destination, Times Square all the way back in 1936. You can see as the Times Square we know today is beginning to form from this rather mundane New York street.

Billboards are beginning to show up, and pedestrians are traveling in packs, but it just isn’t quite to the scale in which we see these things in today’s Square. This spot of and was known in the 1800’s as Long Acre and it was originally used as a horse exchange site. There was nothing particular about it, just a few streets with some run-down apartment buildings. Then came the introduction of mass transportation in the city.

With the station for city’s first rapid transit system nearby, a flood of travelers began to poor through Long Acre as they tried to make their daily commute. Investors and advertisers were quick to realize that this made the location prime for posters and signs showing off products.

The owner of the New York Times especially saw this opportunity and built his newspaper’s base on the sight. The Times Tower as it was called became the second tallest building in the city and gave the square its now famous name. The Times has since moved location, but its name still remains in the legendary location.

The popularity of the site continued to grow, however, bringing in more and more billboards to advertise and eventually large electric signs that are no a staple of the site. One of New York’s most famous sites constructed from the humble beginnings of a horse exchange.