New York Public Library releases 180,000 images to public domain: Pictures

The New York Public Library has unlocked a digital vault of 180,000 historical images and made them free for the public to use.

They include Depression-era images from photographers, like Walker Evans and Dorothea Lange, as well as Lewis Hines’ documentary work of Ellis Island immigrants. There are also manuscripts from Walt Whitman and Nathaniel Hawthorne, sheet music of popular American songs and maps and 20,000 maps and atlases.

The NYPL also announced Wednesday that it is making the images available for programmers, journalists and other creative types to remix by allowing direct access to its database. The library said it would also choose someone for a remix residency to work with the NYPL on a project to transform a set of historical images. Learn more about the residency and the public domain images at nypl.org/publicdomain

We’ve taken a quick browse of newly available historic images of New York City, spanning decades. Here are some of our favorites so far.