Newly Digitized Photos Take You Back To Central Park In The 1980s


When the Central Park Conservancy fashioned and commenced reworking the park in 1980, the group additionally began documenting all the pieces that was taking place within its perimeter partitions. These early years have been all captured with black & white movie, and extra just lately they have been digitizing the previous photographs, which quantity within the tens of hundreds.

“Discovering and digitizing these pictures is the primary a part of the method,” Falguni Smith of the CPC instructed Gothamist. “From there, our workers search for clues within the pictures, like landmarks or vogue selections, to determine the place and when a picture was captured to assist us write correct, up to date descriptions when attainable.”

The Central Park Conservancy was fashioned by a bunch of involved residents who needed to enhance the park — on the time, Belvedere Citadel was tagged with graffiti, lawns have been principally filth, and damaged benches have been simply unhappy reminders of a time when the park was crammed with life. (See earlier than and after pictures of their work right here.)

Whereas the newly digitized pictures should not but in a searchable portal, the Conservancy shared a newly digitized choice with us, principally from the early Eighties.

These have been nonetheless early days for the group — Doug Blonsky, former president of the Central Park Conservancy, instructed Gothamist that in 1985, after a three-year research, they printed Rebuilding Central Park: A Administration and Restoration plan, “which was principally a 15 yr plan for the restoration of Central Park.” On the time these pictures have been taken, that research was nonetheless underway, although they already noticed early successes by way of smaller tasks.

Belvedere Castle, 1980s


Belvedere Citadel, Eighties

Courtesy of the Central Park Conservancy

“By digitizing these pictures we’re in a position to protect a number of the Park’s historical past,” Smith famous. “With a lot of our lives transferring to the digital realm through the pandemic, we’ve seen elevated curiosity with our on-line choices, particularly as we join the Park expertise with the historical past of the Metropolis.”