‘Our Vanishing Legacy’

The New York skyline circa, I would imagine, 1950. (hdc.org)

The New York skyline circa, I would imagine, 1940. (hdc.org)

Making the revival rounds of historical organizations in New York City is a fascinating film not shown in decades. Originally released on Sept. 21, 1961, “Our Vanishing Legacy” was the first documentary promoting historic preservation in the city. This was after the demolishing of Pennsylvania Station was announced but before it was accomplished. Produced by Gordon Hyatt and narrated by Ned Calmer, the 32-minute film will rouse sad memories in many old enough to rue what was being inexorably lost in that era. Penn Station and Grand Central are featured here, but several other historic buildings at risk then (and surely long gone) are also shown. The sad tone raises memories a well. There are some brief but excellent remarks, too, on what was tending to replace them.

My thanks to Kristen Richards, maestro of ArchNewsNow.com, for sending the video to me.

About David Brussat

This blog was begun in 2009 as a feature of the Providence Journal, where I was on the editorial board and wrote a weekly column of architecture criticism for three decades. Architecture Here and There fights the style wars for classical architecture and against modern architecture, no holds barred. History Press asked me to write and in August 2017 published my first book, "Lost Providence." I am now writing my second book. My freelance writing on architecture and other topics addresses issues of design and culture locally and globally. I am a member of the board of the New England chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art, which bestowed an Arthur Ross Award on me in 2002. I work from Providence, R.I., where I live with my wife Victoria, my son Billy and our cat Gato. If you would like to employ my writing and editing to improve your work, please email me at my consultancy, dbrussat@gmail.com, or call 401.351.0457. Testimonial: "Your work is so wonderful - you now enter my mind and write what I would have written." - Nikos Salingaros, mathematician at the University of Texas, architectural theorist and author of many books.
This entry was posted in Architecture, Architecture History, Old Video, Preservation and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.