Designed by the late German born John A. Roebling, an innovator of steel suspension bridges, the Brooklyn Bridge opened on May 24th, 1883. After fourteen years of construction and spanning almost 1,600 feet in length across the East River, it was the largest suspension bridge ever built and served to connect the then cities of New York and Brooklyn. Twenty-first United States President Chester Arthur and New York Governor Grover Cleveland presided at the opening ceremony, drawing thousands to marvel at this feat of engineering and take further steps. The next day it is estimated that as many as 250,000 walked across the bridge -- foot traffic which prompted minimal charges for pedestrians, while spurring plans to grow Manhattan into a larger metropolitan area that included Brooklyn and Staten Island. As engineering positively shaped urban development in heavily populated boroughs, the landmark Brooklyn Bridge, originally named the New York and Brooklyn Bridge and then the East River Bridge, signified human connection and scientific achievement in a new era.
The following articles are drawn from Proquest Historical Newspapers, which informs and inspires classroom teaching and learning.
- Bridge Tolls Arranged: One Cent To Be Charged For Foot Passengers. (1883, May 15). New York Times (1857-1922)
- The Brooklyn Bridge. (1883, May 24). San Francisco Chronicle (1869-Current File)
- The Bridal Of Two Cities: Brilliant and Imposing Ceremonies Over the New York and Brooklyn Bridge. (1883, May 25). The Austin Daily Statesman (1880-1889)
- Crossing the New Bridge: Its Capacity Fully Tested By a Great Traffic. (1883, May 26). New York Times (1857-1922)
- City Will Celebrate 50th Year Of Brooklyn Bridge May 24 (1933, May 14). New York Herald Tribune (1926-1962)
- Pageant Marks Half-Century Of Brooklyn Span: Thousands Gather For Ceremony On the Bridge, More At Borough Hall. (1933, May 25). New York Herald Tribune (1926-1962)
- Ingraham, J.C. (1950, Jan 23). As Brooklyn Bridge Was Closed Completely For First Time Since Opening In 1883. New York Times (1923-Current File)
- Time Fails To Shake the Brooklyn Bridge. (1951, Jun 17). The Washington Post (1923-1954)
- DeWan, G. (1983, Jan 13). The 100 Years Of the Brooklyn Bridge: Building the Great Bridge. Newsday (1940-1992)
- Reiter, E. (1983, Apr 24). Medal Marks Brooklyn Bridge Centennial. New York Times (1923-Current File)
- A Complete History of the New York and Brooklyn Bridge From Its Conception In 1866 To Its Completion In 1883. With portraits and Sketches Of the Lives of John A. Roebling, Washington A. Roebling, Henry C. Murphy, J.S.T. Stranahan, William C. Kingsley, Seth Low; Copiously Illustrated With Original Drawings Never Before Published. New York : S.W. Green's Son, 1883. ebook.
- New York (N.Y.). Board of Trustees of the New York and Brooklyn Bridge. Opening Ceremonies of the New York and Brooklyn Bridge, Thursday, May 24, 1883, Commencing at 2 o'clock p.m. at the Brooklyn Approach. [Brooklyn] : Eagle Print, . e-book
- Whitehead, Colson. The Colossus of New York: A City in Thirteen Parts. New York: Anchor Press, 2007. e-book
- Brooklyn Bridge, by Dylan MacDonald, Hippo_px, Creative Commons CC1.0 Universal
- Special News Slide, Courtesy of the Gottesman Libraries
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