Under the El

Under the El

c. 1932

Berenice Abbott

(American, 1898-1991)

Gelatin silver print

Image: 19.9 x 24.4 cm (7 13/16 x 9 5/8 in.); Matted: 40.6 x 50.8 cm (16 x 20 in.)

Edwin R. and Harriet Pelton Perkins Memorial Fund 1992.241

Description

Best known for New York architectural scenes, Abbott sometimes photographed the city’s inhabitants like this “Bowery Bum,” the alternative title that Abbott used for this image. The term was used to describe the people who flocked to the Bowery, a Lower East Side street and neighborhood that became the city’s skid row. This man sleeps in the shade of the elevated train that ran above the Bowery.

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