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Title [Paving a street]
Object Name Print, Photographic
Date ca. 1900s-1920s
Collection Staten Island Geographic Collection
Description Original B&W print on embossed tan cardboard mount. View of a group of men paving an unidentified street, most likely on Staten Island. A house is in the background. The street is partially paved with rectangular blocks. Additional blocks are stacked at the edge of the paved area at left. Three men are bending to lift blocks from the stacks, while another man stands and leans on a shovel. Ten other men stand on the street and sidewalk; all are looking toward the camera. Additional blocks and what appear to be sandbags or cement bags are stacked at the edge of the sidewalk. The house behind the group has a fire escape outside a second-floor side window. Laundry is hanging on a line outside a rear window; other houses are visible in the background. A vehicle is partly visible at far left; it appears to be a truck or wagon containing blocks similar to those being used to pave the street. Inscription on the side of the vehicle: "JOHN E. DONOVAN".
(Keywords: New York City, Early Twentieth Century)
Print size 6 x 8.25
Acquisition Gift of Timothy Sullivan
Ownership and History In the early 1900s, the Richmond County Advance newspaper reported a wide variety of road paving materials being used on Staten Island, including granite block, Belgian block, iron slag block, asphalt, asphalt block, broken limestone, macadam, and brick.

John E. Donovan, whose name appears on the vehicle in this photo, was a contractor based in Port Richmond, Staten Island.
Earliest Date 1900
Latest Date 1930
Subjects Roads
Road construction
Lexicon Sub-category Documentary Artifact
Associated People Donovan, John E.
Catalog Number 76.013.0007
Support Acknowledgment Online Collections Database record made possible by the Staten Island Historical Society, May 2016.
Legal Status Items represented here are from the collections of the Staten Island Historical Society. Materials reproduced for personal non-commercial use must credit the Staten Island Historical Society. Commercial licensing is available.