Art, Astoria, Featured, News
Jul 21, 2015

Beautiful Vintage Photos of Astoria and Beyond from The Queens Memory Project

The Queens Memory Project, which has been running since 2012, “is a dynamic testament of collective memory for the residents of Queens, New York; the most diverse county in the (…)

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The Queens Memory Project, which has been running since 2012, “is a dynamic testament of collective memory for the residents of Queens, New York; the most diverse county in the United States.” The project is a collaboration between Queens College and Queens Library.

Community members can bring in their family photos, documents and other memorabilia, and they digitize the materials on-site. All scanning is handled by Queens Memory staff and volunteers, and they return the originals the same day. They even provide a free flash drive with the digital copies of the materials.

The website is a bit cumbersome to use in terms of browsing, but there are a lot of great photo gems to be found. Each image link includes a map showing where the photo was taken, the time period, and the summary of the photo. Below are some of our favorites.

Learn more about the project and browse the full collection at All photos via Queens Memory Project.



Broadway Subway Station

Time Perdio: 1922

Summary: This is a photograph of the west side of the Broadway subway station in Astoria.


Ash Dumps, Long Island City


Time Period: 1918

Summary: A dump site in Long Island City, believed to be near the Queensboro Bridge.


A Group of Teens on 41st Street

Time Period: 1952

Summary: Four teens named Lynn Stortz, Carol Kuller, Marilyn Stortz and Carol Travella are having fun in a sunny day, across from the Apartment building addressed 48-38 41 Street, Sunnyside, Queens.

41st Street and Skillman Ave

Time Period: 1933

Summary: View of 41st street between Skillman Ave and 43rd Ave, next to P.S. 150 Queens in 1933. Back side of card is labelled “Sunnyside”.


Queensboro Bridge Opening; Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Time Period: 1909

Summary: This Merry Christmas and Happy New Year card about the Queensboro Bridge opening was created by E. J. Juechle, a New York Realtor, in 1909. The postcard depicts the first “drive” (including horse drawn carriages and pedestrians) across the newly opened bridge.



Strand Theater

Time Period: 1976

Summary: The Strand Theater in Astoria. The theater opened in 1941, it closed sometime in the 1980s. Here the movie theater shows Greek and Italian films.



Soft Drinks at the Park

Time Period: 1951

Summary: Brothers Stephen (left) and Lawrence (right) Kappel having soft drinks at a park on Skillman avenue, which is now called Torsney Playground.


Map: The Borough of Queens

Time Period: 1918

Summary: Map and street index for the borough


Steinway and Sons Factory

Time Period: 1930s

Summary: Employee working on a piano at the Steinway & Sons Factory


Southeast view of LIC and Newtown Creek Industrial Area

Time Period: 1930 – 1940

Summary: This image shows the stark contrast of present-day Long Island City. Today, there are numerous green spaces and parks found all throughout Long Island City. This image depicts what the Long Island City of the past looked like depicting the industrial areas of LIC and Newton Creek. A portion of Greenpoint, Brooklyn can be seen at left. The H.J. Heinz factory can be seen in the center of this image.



Did you check out the site? Share any of your favorite finds in the comments!


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