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Where Can I Find Historical Photos of Queens, New York?


Question: Where Can I Find Historical Photos of Queens, New York?
Answer: Many folks have written to Queens.About.com hoping to find photos of their old neighborhood.

One of the best sources for Queens photographs, especially from the 1940s and earlier, is New York City's Department of Records.

The Department's NYC Municipal Archives has photographs of every residence in Queens and all of NYC from 1939 to 1941 (originally used for tax records). Send in a request for a photo of a specific house or building that you or a family member lived in, and you'll receive a print of the home in the mail. It's a great gift to stir childhood memories, and only $35 or $50 depending on print size.

Unfortunately, a lone commercial dealer -- Queenspix.oom -- that specialized in Queens, sells prints of historic photos of Queens seems to be on hiatus.

The Queens Library's Long Island Division has a local history collection, including over 100,000 photographs, but unfortunately, they're not available online except in small doses. Prints can be made from the collection. Contact the Long Island research librarian for more information (718-990-0770).

Local historical societies are another resource. Check this list for their websites and contact info, and call them up.

The Greater Astoria Historical Society has just published a books of historical Long Island City photographs and has a great photo gallery online (collection is mostly pre-WW2 photos).

Good luck with your hunt, and email me if you find any troves of Queens photographic treasure.

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