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Municipal Library Notes - January 2022


Spotlight on: Board of Commissioners of Central Park

By Christine Bruzzese, Director, Municipal Library

The Board of Commissioners of Central Park was established in 1857 by New York State law. Its central mission was to oversee the development of Central Park and uptown Manhattan. The Board held a contest to decide who would design the park and the winners were Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux.

1863 Hand drawn image of the boat landing on the lake with a man and woman in a gazebo.An image of the boat-landing from the 1863 Annual Report.

Chart showing barometric readings from 1868.Weather data from the Meteorological Observatory from the 1868 Annual Report.

Balance sheet from 1868.1863 Summary of the Treasurer's Accounts.

Four drawings showing different views of the wall both horizontally and vertically.Diagrams for the building of the inclosing wall adjacent to 59th Street.

The New York City Department of Parks was established in 1870 and took over management of Central Park. However, the reports from the Commissioners offer a unique glimpse of the early history and management of the park.

Facts about New York City 100 Years Ago
By Christine Bruzzese, Director, Municipal Library

Municipal Reference Library Notes published for January 4, 2022 featured a description of a pamphlet about New York City. This forty-page pamphlet was published by the Chamber of Commerce of the State of New York.

Here is a description of the "City of New York" as published in Municipal Library Notes:

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"City of New York" or "A few briefly stated facts of an economic, historical and descriptive character about the City of New York" is part of the Municipal Library Collection. Below is the front cover:

Text with a black and white picture of the Chamber of Commerce building at 65 Liberty St. in 1922.

An example of information included is this List of Banks in the City of New York:

Text with a list of banks in NYC, their address and capital surplus.

New York City Government Web Archives at DORIS
By Pauline Toole, Commissioner

The Department of Records and Information Services (DORIS) harvests content from City government websites and social media accounts. These records are available in the online Municipal Library.

Websites: DORIS harvests three levels of content from all websites on a quarterly basis. The end-of-year harvesting began on December 16, 2021, and will conclude on December 31. We have been conducting this "crawl" since 2018, and the contents are accessible through the Municipal Library:

Social Media: All posts to/from official City social media accounts that have been listed with us are harvested by ArchiveSocial and made available via the Municipal Library. Posts go back to 2011 and will continue to be harvested under the existing citywide contract. They can be found at

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