New York Through The Lens Of Weegee

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A new book of photos by legendary photographer Weegee shows what industrialized, pre-gentrified New York looked like in the mid-20th century, before the city was crammed with towers and billboards. Weegee, whose real name was Arthur Fellig, was famous for sensational but artfully composed black-and-white pictures of crime scenes, fires and other urban mayhem. “The Weegee Guide to New York” includes a few of those tabloid-worthy photos of bodies sprawled on the pavement. But most of the book’s images are of ordinary neighborhoods and streetscapes with low-rise buildings, bulky cars, empty skies and remarkably uncluttered public spaces. Here: this combination shows the 1945 photo “Derelict sleeping on the sidewalk outside police headquarters” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York, and a woman walking on the same spot on Wednesday, March 18, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows the 1953 photo “Showing Tonite” of theater marquis on 42nd Street in New York by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York, and the same vantage point on Tuesday, March, 17, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows the 1943 photo “Empire State Bldg.” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York, and the same vantage point on Tuesday, March 17, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination of the July 27, 1940 photo “Striking Beauty” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography, and the same vantage point on Sunday, March 22, 2015 shows the lower Manhattan skyline near the Brooklyn Bridge. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows the January 17, 1941 photo “Chinatown fire” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York, and Doyers Street in New York on Wednesday, March 18, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This is a combination of the 1946 photo “Fire in a loft building” by Weegee provided by the International Center of Photography showing a fire in a loft building at the intersection of Fulton and Greenwich Streets in New York, and the same vantage point on Wednesday, March 18, 2015, with people lining up for the September 11 Museum. In the background is the World Trade Center transportation hub under construction. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows a crowd on Wall Street in the May 1945 photo “V-E Day” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York, and the same vantage point in New York on Wednesday, March 18, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows the March 18, 1943 photo “Wartime rationing: retail butchers await arrival of meat” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York, and at the same vantage point, the Atlantic Mall, right, and the Barclay’s Center, background, in the Brooklyn borough of New York on Monday, March 23, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows the August 1945 photo “Victory” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York, and a woman walking down the same staircase on Wednesday, March 18, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination of the September 21, 1939 photo “Fiesta turns into tragedy” by Weegee provided by the International Center of Photography shows a murder victim lying on Mulberry Street in the Little Italy neighborhood of New York, and from the same vantage point, pedestrians on Wednesday, March 18, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows a 1952 photo of “The Times building” provided by the International Center of Photography and the same vantage point on Thursday, March 19, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows the 1942 photo “Street scene, Yorkville Neighborhood” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York and East 86th St. on Monday, March 23, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows the September 1957 photo “Neon billboards on Times Square” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York, and the same vantage point on Thursday, March 19, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows the 1953 photo “The Ham n Egg” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York, and from the same vantage point, a Starbucks on Tuesday, March 17, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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This combination shows the August 10, 1945 photo “Celebration in the Garment District on Japanese offer to surrender” by Weegee, provided by the International Center of Photography in New York, and the same vantage point on Wednesday, March 18, 2015. (Photo by AP Photo/Copyright Weegee/The International Center of Photography, Mark Lennihan)

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