Archival Collections
Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library

Empire State Building archive, circa 1930-1969 

Empire State, Inc.
Phys. Desc: 
circa 15 cubic ft.
Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library
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Online information

Biographical Note

Construction on the Empire State Building was begun in March 1930 and was completed in May 1931. It was designed by Shreve, Lamb, and Harmon for their clients, Alfred E. Smith and Empire State, Inc.

Scope and Contents

This collection contains reprographic architectural drawings for the Empire State Building; photographs of the demolition of the original Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, which occupied the Fifth Avenue site; photographs of the Empire State Building under construction, circa 1930-1931 (one photograph shows former governor Alfred E. Smith standing in the building during construction), including 232 photographs by photographer Lewis Hine; photographs showing the building after completion, circa 1931-1956; scrapbooks of clippings of articles about the building, 1930-1957; and illustrations of the Empire State Building, circa 1930s-1960s. These subgroups of materials also have records in CLIO with more detailed descriptions of items; for these records, please search under "Empire State Building" or "Shreve, Lamb & Harmon" or "Hine, Lewis Wickes".