The fashions may have changed, but snow was ruining New Yorkers' days a hundred years ago

By Nate Jones
Updated February 06, 2014 04:00 PM
Credit: Getty

It’s been a long, hard winter for New Yorkers, with winter storms Hercules and Janus slamming snow and sleet down on the metropolis just as the polar vortex sent temperatures into the teens.

But as rough as things have gotten, very few in the metropolis would want to switch places with the New Yorkers of 1902, who dealt with a blizzard that the New York Times said “held the whole community almost helpless in its icy feathers.”

Now, thanks to the New York Public Library’s Irma and Paul Milstein Division, we have our first footage of the storm, and potentially the earliest snow footage of any kind.

Originally uploaded to YouTube in 2011, the footage from the Edison Manufacturing Company shows turn-of-the-century Gothamites mucking their way through a pre-Shake Shack Madison Square Park, as the New York Fire Department struggles to get through the 15 inches of snow.

Watch the clip above, and be glad for modern inventions like motorized snowplows and Seamless.

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