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'Friendly Pigeons,' Noise Defined Tourism in Mid-Century NYC

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From the depths of the Prelinger Archives comes this little blast from the past, a short film titled "Vacation City" about a typical tourist's experience in the 1950s and 1960s. Clocking in at 7:30, a chirpy voiceover contains explanatory narration about myriad major sights in what's called (without a hint of irony) a "strange cosmopolitan paradise." It's undated, but alludes to the recent completion of the FDR Drive, which was fully constructed by 1966, and also shows the old Penn Station, which was demolished in 1963. From scenes of Chinatown's "Orientals" and "much noise and weird dancing" and the Lower East Side's pushcart market to a pan of Park Avenue ("street of wealth, social prestige, and ultra-smart shops") and a glimpse of exoticized Harlem ("where the world learns to sing and dance"), the black-and-white mini documentary is a quaint introduction to the New York of yore. Back then, the pigeons who resided in front of the NYPL were apparently friendly; kids still do play in fire hydrants, though.
· Prelinger Archives [official]
· History Lessons archive [Curbed]