The clarity of the images is stunning, more than 50 years later, and their content might tell viewers a great deal about the construction process and materials, the safety precautions of earlier times, the working conditions, the organization of contracting and subcontractors, and any number of other facets of the process that I've scarcely imagined. But how to structure the presentation? How, even, to begin to create an organization for so rich and sprawling a body of images?
I had completely free access to the site, needing only to don a hard hat and wander around with camera in hand. I shot entirely on spec, and submitted contact sheets to the main contractor (Gilbane and Co., still very much in business) and then a few days later delivered prints of the images selected. I think I was paid $4 per print, which at the time seemed munificent. The vast majority of my images were of no interest to Gilbane (I never did figure out what they really wanted pictures of), but I happily exercised my eye and hand with whatever seemed visually appealing. I did a lot of pictures of workmen, and frequently made 4x6 prints to give to them (they were delighted).
Among the facets I notice as I turn the body of images this way and that:
the site on 30 March 1964 | raising the first column, 1 April 1964 | 7 April | 8 April | 10 April | 13 April | 15 April | 17 April | 21 April | 23 April | 24 April | 27 April | 29 April | April and May undated | 1 May | 6 May | 9 May | 12 May | 18 May | 21 May | 5 June | 10 June | 18 June | 23 June | 29 June | 6 July | 10 July | 17 July | 23 July | 31 July | 7 August | 17 August | 24 August | 28 August | 1 Sept | 8 Sept | 11 Sept | 22 Sept | 30 Sept | 6 Oct | 13 Oct | 20 Oct | 27 Oct, Topping Out | 5 Nov | 19 Nov | 24 Nov | Feb 11 1965 |
| American Bridge | welders | rebar | concrete | carpenters | stone setters | raising a crane | going about their business | bosses |