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Surf Avenue West, Coney Island

Irving Underhill

The west end of Coney Island attracted up to five hundred thousand people on weekends and holidays about 1900, and in 1909, perhaps the most successful year ever, about twenty million visitors arrived. Luna Park alone charged thirty-one million admissions between 1903 and 1908. The phenomenon of Coney Island was the epitome of mass culture. Dancing pavilions, concert halls, and restaurants like Stauch’s provided new opportunities for people to meet and contributed to changing the dynamics between the sexes at the turn of the twentieth century. The newly gained recreational time for the working classes was available to most people, and the new forms of mass entertainment and leisure activities created unprecedented possibilities for more informal mingling between the sexes.
MEDIUM Gelatin dry glass plate negative
DATES 1912
DIMENSIONS 11 x 14 in. (27.9 x 35.6 cm)  (show scale)
ACCESSION NUMBER 1996.164.8-B19036
CREDIT LINE Brooklyn Museum/Brooklyn Public Library, Brooklyn Collection
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CAPTION Irving Underhill (American, 1872–1960). Surf Avenue West, Coney Island, 1912. Gelatin dry glass plate negative, 11 x 14 in. (27.9 x 35.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Museum/Brooklyn Public Library, Brooklyn Collection, 1996.164.8-B19036. © artist or artist's estate (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 1996.164.8-B19036_glass_SL1.jpg)
IMAGE overall, 1996.164.8-B19036_glass_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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RIGHTS STATEMENT © Estate of Irving Underhill
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