Life on Broadway, continued

fers it to the other avenues, because it is straight and its pavement is good; and if he is going from any quarter east to any quarter west, he must intersect it at some point in gaining his destination. The country visitor coming from the Jersey and Long Island ferries feels secure when he reaches Broadway, and while he keeps to it he can not go very far astray, no matter what his destination is. It is not only a channel of commercial traffic, but a favorite promenade of the idler and pleasure-seeker, and though the acquaintances of a man may he few, a walk up or down Broadway is sure to confront him with somebody that he knows.

The crowd is not distinctively fashionable, though well-dressed people preponderate; workmen in fustian and poverty-stricken work-girls appear in the stream, besides threadbare adventurers and the abject devotees of the gutter. It is a crowd greater in numbers and steadier in its flow than any thing London can show in Fleet Street or the Strand, and it mixes up the most dissimilar elements of nationality and condition. The night is never so dark or so stormy that the footfall of pedestrians and the rumbling of vehicles are altogether hushed. The occupants of the front-rooms of the hotels, waking

Lower Broadway

Lower Broadway

[Note: Trinity Church is on the left. See this scene in 2005]
Photo by Llewellyn Lafford, © 2005, all rights reserved.

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