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Baker Library Exhibit Includes Early American Year Book--Cut Illustrates May Day Moving Confusion

NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED

The above cut is taken from one of a group of early American year books which have lately come into the possession of the Baker Library. It is illustrative of the custom, which is still with us, of moving on the first day of May which had become a great evil: "May Day being proverbial for confusion, amounting to partial suspension of business. The first of these year books in point of time is "The Picture of New York or the Traveller's Guide," dated 1907. This gives a full description of the situation and harbor, history, geography, and geology, government and institutions and amusements of New York, and of the various pleasant excursions which could be made in that vicinity. The gazette states that although "the streets of the ancient or lower part; at the south end of the island, were irregular, many of them are narrow and crooked, with little adaptation to the ground, or to the convenience or elegance of the city, the northern part was laid out in much better taste. Many of these streets were very spacious, ran in right lines, and were intersepted by others at right angles. And the quays and wharves were far extended into the original waters that almost surrounded the town." Little Old New York in the early eighteen hundreds was already the forerunner of the present metropolis.

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