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Coney Island, 1903-1909

DATES June 06, 1940 through September 22, 1940
ORGANIZING DEPARTMENT American Art
COLLECTIONS American Art
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  • June 6, 1940 The first showing of photographic prints from a gift made to the Brooklyn Museum of 27 negatives of scenes of Coney Island from 1903 to 1909 will be put on view at the Brooklyn Museum on Thursday, June 6, and will run through the summer, closing Sunday, September 15th. These pictures were taken by Eugene Wemlinger, a resident of Brooklyn, in his “thirties.” The group is now known as the Wemlinger Collection.

    In the gallery in which the prints will be hung, several costumes of the period from the Museum’s collection will be set up.

    The collection constitutes a valuable record of Coney Island in the period of its best days of showmanship. Many of the pictures were taken when there were large crowds on hand.


    Brooklyn Museum Archives. Records of the Department of Public Information. Press releases, 1939 - 1941. 05-06/1940, 096.
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  • June 6, 1940 Coney Island in photographs and recreation costumes will be the subject of one of the entertaining summer exhibits at the Brooklyn Museum. The occasion is the first showing of photographic prints from a gift made to the Museum of 27 negatives of scenes of Coney Island from 1903 to 1909. It will open Thursday, June 6th and run through the summer, closing Sunday, September 15th.

    These pictures were taken by Eugene Wemlinger, a resident of Brooklyn, in his “thirties”. The group is now known as the Wemlinger Collection. It constitutes a valuable record of Coney Island in the period of its best days of showmanship. Many of the pictures were taken when there were large crowds on hand.

    The Museum is giving the exhibition three dimensional variety with 1903-1909 clothes from its costume collection. The most ambitious exhibit, taking up a third of one wall, will be a beach scene with four figures, marine life such as star fish, bucket and shovel and a sand castle. Several bushels of sand from the south shore of Long Island have been contributed by the Department of Parks which does not guaranty that this part of the scene is strictly of the period. However, the costumes on the mannequins are definitely related to the photographs.

    Two bathing girls will be shown in the typical early 19th century modest outfits in the form of black costumes with red trimming. Strolling on the beach is a mother and child, the mother in a white pique suit, with a train skirt, wearing a natural straw, broad brim pan-cake hat covered with pale blue ribbon trimming and carrying dark green silk parasol. The child carrying a doll is in a white cotton dress with pink satin sash and bows.

    In the five bays on the opposite wall, between panels of photographs, there will other mannequins including one in a white tennis skirt and heavy white turtle neck sweater; another in a white eyelet cotton, summer afternoon dress and carrying a pink parasol; a Gibson girl costume of black, silk skirt and green, plaid silk shirt waist trimmed with green velvet; and two figures in lavendar organide, one carrying a purple parasol with fringe. These five costumes all have high collars and the hair-dos are high pompadour made of different colored papers.

    (Note to Editor: Mr. Wemlinger can be reached at 560 Decatur Street, Brooklyn; telephone , Jefferson 3-0312)


    Brooklyn Museum Archives. Records of the Department of Public Information. Press releases, 1939 - 1941. 05-06/1940, 110.
    View Original