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Library Highlights

The New-York Historical Society's manuscript collections contain over two million items of archival materials, including family papers and organizational and business records. This website presents a selection of collections that document the lives of important New Yorkers and Americans as well as average citizens.

The New-York Historical Society's rich collections that document the Civil War include recruiting posters for New York City regiments of volunteers; stereographic views documenting the mustering of soldiers and of popular support for the Union in New York City; photography showing the war's impact, both in the North and South; and drawings and writings by ordinary soldiers on both sides.

The New-York Historical Society holds fifteen important manuscript collections relating to slavery in the United States and the Atlantic slave trade. With over 12,000 pages of text dating from the 18th, 19th, and early 20th centuries, these collections constitute a rich archive of primary source materials that will be of value to anyone researching the history of slavery, the slave trade, and the abolitionist movement.

The New-York Historical Society Quarterly (1917-1980) is an outstanding resource for the study of nearly every aspect of New York and American history and material culture, especially as illustrated through the far-ranging collections of the N-YHS Library and Museum. The New-York Historical Society Quarterly was digitized with support from the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation and the Pine Tree Foundation.

The extensive photograph collections at the New-York Historical Society are particularly strong in portraits and documentary images of New York-area buildings and street scenes from 1839 to 1945, although contemporary photography continues to be collected. This website presents photographic prints and negatives depicting New York City in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

This collection contains digital images of historical documents from the New-York Historical Society Library that preserve the words of hundreds of eyewitnesses to the American Revolution in and around New York City. The digital archive includes the collection of maps by George Washington's cartographers, Robert Erskine and Simeon DeWitt, the William Alexander Papers, and all broadsides published from 1776 and 1783 in the Library’s collections.