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Grant number like: PW-234749-16

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New York University (New York, NY 10012-1019)
Jonathan Milton Soffer (Project Director: July 2015 to June 2019)

Humanities Collections and Reference Resources
Preservation and Access

[Grant products]

$260,000 (approved)
$260,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2016 – 8/31/2018

Digitizing The City Record 1873 to 1998: Making Transparent New York City Government Infrastructure and Political Economy

The digitization of the City Record, an official publication providing a detailed record of political, social, and economic developments in New York City during the period from 1873 to 1998.

This project will digitize the City Record, the New York City equivalent of the Federal Register, at a cost of 350,000 dollars. We will ultimately produce searchable pdfs of the 1723 volumes, which is about one million images covering the period 1873 through 1998, and make the data freely available on a specially designed public portal on This is one of the most frequently accessed websites in the United States. An accessible and searchable City Record will aid many scholars studying the city and more generally studying US history after 1873 because of the breadth and depth of the data it contains. No other major city offers comparable data. It is not too much to claim that it will alter both the qualitative and quantitative study of urbanization as much as searchable digitized newspapers have transformed the study of literary evidence. And it will provide a treasure trove for public users investigating the historical development of New York property and their family history.