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Interpreting the Evidence

Modes of Transportation, New York Public Library, New York City, 1916

  • Documents in this Activity:
  • Historical Eras:

    Turn of the Century and WWI (1890 - 1930)

  • Thinking Skill:

    Historical Analysis & Interpretation

  • Grade Level:

    Lower Elementary
    Upper Elementary
    Middle School
    High School
    College University

  • Topics:


  • Primary Source Types:


  • Regions:

    New York City
    New York State

  • Creator:

    NYS Archives Partnership Trust Education Team

  1. Load Modes of Transportation, New York Public Library, New York City, 1916 in Main Image Viewer

Suggested Teaching Instructions

Document Description
Pedestrians, automobiles, trolley cars, and horse carriages outside of the New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue and 40th Street in New York City, 1916.
Historical Context
This photo demonstrates a time during New York City’s history when many forms of transportation were used. 
Essential Question
How does the availability of transportation affect the economic and cultural aspects of a society?
Check for Understanding
Describe the scene in the photograph and evaluate the impact of these different forms of technology on the local community.
Historical Challenges
When and where did the first automobile accident in the United States take place? What was the speed limit where the accident occurred?
Interdisciplinary Connections
English Language Arts: A friend has come to visit you in New York City and wants to ride "the best transportation in the city." What are you going to ride on? Support your answer with facts about the different modes of transportation.