Albany

The ladder truck

A brief note in the totally wonderful “The New Albany” from 1891: “The fire in the telephone office, the other day, five stories above the street, gave opportunity for an illustration of the value of the extension truck, by which ladders were speedily run to the upper stories. Its value, where life was in danger, …

Treadwell Seal Skins

The importance of the fur trade to the very existence of Albany cannot be overstated. Although Killian van Rensselaer tried to promote agriculture and tobacco-planting, and the Dutch East India Company tried to maintain strict control over the fur trade, it was river transport and an abundance of beaver within two hundred miles or so …

John Ferris Brushes

From 1940, an ad for John Ferris Jr., manufacturer of brushes since 1833. He was one of what seems to have been simply hundreds of businesses on Broadway at the time. It’s hard to imagine how different it must have been. It’s still a very busy place, but it’s all office work. No one’s making …