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Foto #1.  Seth Tane took this from the WTC in the early 1980s.  From L to R, that’s the Statue, Ellis Island, and Communipaw Terminal of CRRNJ . . . with a lot of vacant space behind.  NOT shown but just to the right would be the Morris Canal and the Colgate Clock.

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Foto #2.  I took this grainy foto from the WTC in late December 2000.  NOT shown but just to the left is the CRRNJ terminal.   Notice the Morris Canal and the first set of high rise condos of Jersey City.  Anyone know the name?  Also notice that Goldman Sachs is not there yet.

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Foto #3.  Beyond QE2 leaving the sixth boro for the last time in October 2007, you see the CRRNJ terminal, Morris Canal, Colgate clock, and the Goldman Sachs with additional buildings to the right.   Foto taken by amica.

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Foto #4.  I took this foto in September 2009 from North Cove.

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Fotos  #5 and 6.  Amica took these in 2010 and 2011.

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Foto #7.  I took tis one last week from just north of North Cove, 18 floors up.

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Click here for some great views of Jersey City, mostly Morris Canal area, mostly in the early 80s.   Here for aerial shots emphasizing rail.

Click here for lots more . . . dating way back.

To reiterate what I said in part 9 of this series, the margins of the sixth boro have experienced a sea change from 30 years ago to now.  And stormy Sandy of seven months ago intimates that all this relatively rapid building on reclaimed land at sea level will again change.  But the difference is that since humans have walked and waded and floated here, we’ve never had construction of this scale.

Foto #8.  Shifting focus a bit, Seth took this shot of–I believe–South or North Cove from the same vantage at the same time as foto #1.

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Click here for images of the same, but from the mid 70s.  And still more here looking across what was then the plains of Battery Park City.   And the last one for now crediting Nelson Rockefeller for the concept.

As I did before, I’m inviting a sharing of more fotos showing the tremendous changes on the edge of the sixth boro.

Afterthought . . . if you want to witness further changes to the sixth boro margins, be in a viewing location that’ll show this building between 0700 and 0800 tomorrow morning.  The structure below might just implode . . .

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Recently I’ve read parts of Marc Levinson’s The Box:  How the Shipping Container Made the World Smaller and the World Economy Richer.  The book tells as much about shipping and more specifically the port of New York as it does about McLean’s box.   McClean aka “father of containerization,” started toward the box in 1934 when he bought a used pickup truck to ship tobacco products.  Read about his trajectory as shipping visionary in the link above.

In 1934 only the gray stone (I believe it’s 20 Exchange Place)  building (behind and just to the left of the white cupola) making up this skyline as seen from off Battery Park City existed.  On the waterfront were piers and more piers.  Danish vessel Adriatic ID, rather than sailing past Manhattan, would likely have docked there.    From Levinson, “the city’s piers–283 of them at mid century with 98 of them able to handle ocean-going vessels–were strung out along the Manhattan and Brooklyn waterfronts.”  Bowsprite has a foto (third image down) of all these piers in this post.

ROROs like Fedora didn’t exist before World War 2, but if they had, Bayonne would not have been where they docked.

Similarly, the piers and docks of Red Hook Brooklyn were strewn with easily-pilfered break bulk cargo:  cases, casks, cartons, bags, boxes of all sizes, bundles, packages, pieces, drums, cans, barrels, vehicles, crates, transporters, reels, coils, piles, and the kitchen sink.  The containers offloaded from Maas Trader may in fact “package” all those things and more, only the number of dock workers and the time they work would be exponentially different from pre-World War 2.

South African vessel Safmarine Oranje would not have turned westward here toward Port Elizabeth or Howland Hook;  it wasn’t until 1955 that the Robert Meyner, then governor of New Jersey,  and the Port Authority (established in 1921) signed a deal to transformed a marsh into the container port Port Elizabeth is today.

More history later . . . but today, the arrival and departure of “long trainloads” contained within 1000′ loa vessels is commonplace, OOCL  Oakland arriving and

APL Japan, departing.

Hong Kong bulk carrier Great Majesty anchors in

the Upper Bay along Sunset Park just off the Brooklyn Army Terminal and in the watchful eye of Our Lady of Perpetual Help.

Before leaving town, few mariners ever set foot on dry land.    IGA heads for sea under the bridge that wasn’t there until 1964.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

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My job . . . Summer 2014

Graves of Arthur Kill

Click to order your copy of Graves of Arthur Kill, by Gary Kane and Will Van Dorp. 3Fish Productions.

Seth Tane American Painting

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Tale of Two Marlins

Blue Marlin spent 600+ hours loading tugs and barges in NYC Sixth Boro. Click on image for presentation made to NY Ship Lore and Model Club, July 25, 2011.

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