The History of the Brooklyn Bridge article takes a look at a fifteen million dollar project that took fourteen years to complete and claimed the lives of at least two dozen workers. This monumental project ran its course from the planning stages to the structural completion of this iconic landmark that graces the New York City landscape. It has served as the most significant link between the borough of Brooklyn and the borough of Manhattan since its 1883 opening. The impressive granite towers and steel cables have provided a safe and scenic passage for people who commute back and forth on the bridge without fail. Regardless of the transportation methods used, it is one of the nation’s busiest and sturdiest bridges ever built. On May 17, 1884, a herd of elephants was taken across it as a publicity stunt to show off the strength of the bridge.
In the Beginning
The concept, design, and creator of Brooklyn Bridge was John Augustus Roebling. He already had experience as a pioneering engineer with a niche in designing steel suspension bridges. This 1806 German-born immigrant from Berlin moved to the United States when he was twenty-five years old, first calling the western region of Pennsylvania his home. He attempted to start his chapter of the American dream as a farmer but that plan fell through and he moved to Harrisburg. Once there he began to work as a civil engineer. He soon earned a reputation as a designer with enough know-how to design solid suspension bridge structures.
In order to address issues revolving around structural concerns of older suspension bridges that faced structural integrity issues, Roebling suggested using similar elements that were used in previous bridge builds that included cable arrays and trusses. He earned the 1867 approval to commence with planning and developing the suspension bridge that would stretch across East River between Brooklyn and Manhattan. This particular project meant it would become the first bridge of its kind to stretch as long as 1,600 feet from tower to tower.
Just before construction began, John Roebling was taking final compass readings across East River. While there, a boat accidentally smashed his toes. On July 22, 1969, he died from tetanus, three weeks after the accident. This unexpected tragedy now had the bridge project fall on his son, Washington A. Roebling. Roebling was thirty-two years old when he took over as chief engineer, already experienced with other bridges while he worked with his father.
In order for this bridge to establish a solid foundation, there was a need to excavate the riverbed in caissons. These were made as massive wooden boxes with airtight chambers pinned to the river’s floor by very large granite blocks. The pressurized air was pumped to keep water and debris out. The workers involved were mostly immigrants that worked at a wage of two US dollars per day. They used shovels and dynamite to clear away mud and rock that was located at the bottom of the river.
Week after week, these caissons edged closer to its bedrock. When they reached the needed forty-four feet on Brooklyn’s side and seventy-eight feet on Manhattan’s side, the race was on to backfill the caisson with concrete and brick until it reached the surface. For workers that were under the water in the caisson, they were uncomfortable. Between stifling heat and lack of air, each of them experienced a series of relatively minor medical issues that didn’t give enough cause for concern to cease the project. However, in order to travel down in the caissons, workers rode in small iron containers and this ultimately proved to be the greater danger than working in the caisson itself.
Filled with compressed air inside the containers so that it was breathable for the worker also kept the water out, this gaseous substance eventually took its toll on each worker as the gas dissolved into the bloodstream. While the gas was eventually released from the system, over time this inflicted a condition known as caisson disease.
Caisson disease is a medical condition that brings forth a variety of symptoms that include convulsions, joint pain, numbness, paralysis, and speech issues. In worst case scenarios it can lead to a fatality. There were more than one hundred workers that labored on the Brooklyn Bridge that were diagnosed with this disease, including Washington A. Roebling. In his case, he became partially paralyzed that forced him to watch on while his wife, Emily, took over until the project’s completion. She already worked along with her husband since the beginning and was familiar with all of the details.
By the time the bridge was finished, over two dozen workers died. If it wasn’t complications from caisson disease it was due to construction-related accidents that witnessed collapses, fires, and explosions. In 1909, forty years after the construction of Brooklyn Bridge began New York passed USA’s first caisson-safety law to protect workers as they embark on future projects.
Brooklyn Meets Manhattan
The Brooklyn Bridge over East River, connecting Manhattan’s borough to Brooklyn’s borough was officially ready for travel on March 24, 1883. Thousands of residents from both sides gathered to witness the dedication ceremony. At the time, Chester A. Arthur was President of the United States and Grover Cleveland was New York’s governor, both of whom were in attendance. Emily Roebling was the first ride across the finished bridge. She had with her a rooster on her lab while traveling across as it served as a symbol of victory.
Within twenty-four hours of the bridge’s opening, over 150,000 people walked across, using the broad promenade John Roebling specifically designed for pedestrians. Brooklyn Bridge eventually led to January 1, 1898’s merger of Brooklyn into of City of Greater New York.
Since the opening of the Brooklyn Bridge on May 24, 1883, this has become so much more than a mere commute between communities that have traveled on it by millions of New Yorkers, out of towners, and tourists alike. This historical landmark has also served as a sculptor of New York City’s landscape as it also bridged a wave of new opportunities into Manhattan Island as well as the community known as Brooklyn. The East River connection was the first of its kind and is often regarded as one of young America’s “wonders of the world” as far as the beauty, science, and workmanship of this bridge are concerned. In America, only the Golden Gate Bridge of San Fransisco, California shares the same iconic status as the Brooklyn Bridge, which didn’t officially open itself to the public until May 27, 1937.
On average, the Brooklyn Bridge caters to approximately 120,000 motorists per day, as well as over six thousand pedestrians and cyclists. Each day, these people travel back and forth across New York City’s most important commute as they go about their business. So far, this has been slightly more than the Golden Gate’s daily commute of approximately 113,000 vehicles that travel to and fro as part of their daily routine.
From Brooklyn’s Fulton Ferry Landing to Manhattan’s City Hall, this bridge stretching across the East River took thirteen years to complete and was the first and largest of its kind. While the span of the Brooklyn Bridge is officially measured as 1,595.5 feet, the overall length is actually 5,989 feet. At the time, it was the longest suspension bridge ever built and the first to be built with steel cables. It was the first to make the connection to Long Island and remains the only stone passenger bridge stretching over the Hudson River or East River. Also, this was the first bridge of its kind to see a woman take on such a significant role in its development after her husband, Washington Roebling, was unable to physically continue the project.
For eleven years, she served as the primary go-between from his desk to the crew that continued to puzzle together all the pieces needed to complete the construction of the bridge. If there was ever a woman to celebrate as a true pioneer that helped shape New York into the city we know and love today, it would be Emily Roebling.
Paralleling Brooklyn Bridge
Thanks to the successful development of the Brooklyn Bridge, it spawned additional bridges to stretch across the East River. On December 20, 1903, the Williamsburg Bridge became the second bridge to stretch across the East River. On that day, the Williamsburg Bridge beat Brooklyn’s Bridge record as the longest suspension bridge with a span of 1,600 feet and a total length of 7,308 feet. This particular bridge connected Manhattan’s Lower East Side at Delancy Street with Williamsburg in Brooklyn.
This particular bridge served as a means to ease the congestion of the Brooklyn Bridge, which had served as the primary means of travel across the East River for twenty years. This bridge is the very same that has been referred to as the “Jew’s Bridge” as many families of the Jewish population relocated from the overcrowded Lower East Side of Manhattan and straight into Williamsburg, Queens. They, along with the Irish and German workers that were already working in this particular community of Queens, continue to heavily influence the cultural development that exists in the area.
As impressive as Williamsburg Bridge sounds, it does not share the same imposing characteristics the Brooklyn Bridge has. During the spring of 1988, however, it was closed off for two months as it was deemed too unsafe to travel as the state of the bridge was in dire need of structural repair and upgrades. From 1991 until 2006, this billion-dollar project essentially saw the replacement of every part of that bridge while the traffic continued to travel back and forth across the East River. It did, however, close for a week after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, allowing only emergency vehicles to pass through. On average, about 140,000 vehicles commute back and forth on this bridge.
After the Brooklyn Bridge and the Williamsburg Bridge is the mighty Manhattan Bridge and its magnificent blue metal arches opened up on December 31, 1909, with a span of 1,480 feet and a total length of 6,855 feet. Its creation is credited to Leon Moisseiff, the very same whose stellar reputation during the 1920s and 1930s was marred after the November 1940 collapse of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge, the infamous twin suspension bridge of Puget Sound in Washington’s Pierce County. Although that dramatic event is one for the history books it did serve as an opportunity to identify the problems so that engineers and scientists could move forward with the ongoing maintenance of these bridges to ensure what happened in the state of Washington does not repeat itself anywhere else.
The Queensboro Bridge, also known as the 59th Street Bridge as well as the Ed Koch Bridge, is a stretch across the East River that connects Long Island City and Midtown East as it directly crosses over Roosevelt Island. It is the only major cantilever bridge and was designed to serve heavier loads, serving its purpose as a commercially accommodating bridge. Of all the bridges belonging to New York City, this is the busiest with an average daily commute of 180,000 vehicles per day. The span of the Queensboro Bridge measures 1,162 feet with a total length of 3,724 feet. Completed in the exact same year as the Manhattan Bridge, this important commute first opened to the public on March 30, nine months prior to the official opening of the Manhattan Bridge.
Renamed the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge, the Triborough Bridge is the fifth commute across the East River and is the most northern. Unlike the other four bridges, this one is not simply a single stretch commute between two destination points. It is linked to Manhattan, Queens, and The Bronx and was one of the biggest projects New York City has ever undertaken since its original development as a populous. The historical impact of this bridge includes the day Mayor Jimmy Walker broke ground in 1929 as this was the day after Black Tuesday’s events that resulted in the Great Depression.
Due to the financial, political, and social issues the American population went through at the time, the development of this particular bridge was slow-going. There was a lack of funds to keep the project going until Robert Moses generated interest as it was his quest to improve accessibility between The Bronx and Westchester to Long Island’s city parks. After lobbying to gain control of the development of this bridge, along with funding from the newly formed Public Works Administration, the teamwork of Mayor Fiorella La Guardia, Governor Al Smith, and Robert Moses saw to it the Triborough Bridge was completed, which was on July 11, 1936.
The bridge got its original name from the three-way connection it has with Manhattan, Queens, and The Bronx. On November 19, 2008, it was renamed the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge, complying with the request made by the Kennedy Family, forty years after the June 5, 1968 assassination of presidential hopeful RFK. On average, approximately 95,000 vehicles travel along this bridge on a daily basis. Unlike the other bridges, in order to cross this one, there is a tool that needs to be paid, an agreement that came about as a means to pay back the loan issued to ensure the construction of this bridge was completed. This money is also used to keep up with the bridge’s need to maintain itself as a safe means to travel back and forth for New Yorkers and out of towners alike.
Each of the four bridges mentioned is directly tied with Brooklyn Bridge as far as the historical development of New York City goes, especially as key connections spanning across the East and Hudson Rivers. Starting with the Williamsburg Bridge, then the Queensboro Bridge, the Manhattan Bridge, and finally the RFK Bridge, each of them learned the examples and lessons taught by the legacy belonging to the Brooklyn Bridge. Interestingly enough, like a suspension bridge, even though Brooklyn Bridge was created first, it has encountered fewer structural integrity issues than the others, perhaps with the exception of the RFK/Triborough Bridge. Despite this, it wasn’t as if the Brooklyn Bridge didn’t encounter a few safety issues of its own.
These concerns came about in 1898 as traffic congestion caused by the death of a horse on the bridge proved to be too much for one of the truss cords. This was also the same year trolley tracks were added. Leading into the dawn of the twentieth century, there were several million travelers using the Brooklyn Bridge per year. With this much traffic relying on what was the only dry-ground means to travel, the need to build at least another bridge became a priority. In the meantime, twelve suspender cables belonging to the Brooklyn Bridge snapped in 1901 and it was enough to appoint five inspectors to examine the bridge every single day to ensure there would be no more structural surprises. Due to the cost of having these individuals hired to perform this duty, the need for a now municipally unified New York City to be charged a toll each time they used the bridge became a reality until 1911 when the populous put an end to this highly controversial subject among New Yorkers.
For the first fifty years of the Brooklyn Bridge’s lifespan, there were numerous proposals to retrofit facilities and structures to accommodate various interests. Some were approved while others were not acted on. Among the ones approved, various fees paid by the consumer help offset the operational costs of the bridge, as well as any maintenance issues that come about as a means to keep the bridge safe and as a New York City iconic landmark for many years to come.
Brooklyn Bridge Jumpers
The Brooklyn Bridge is rich with history that features a mixed bag of awesome historical events that should put smiles on the faces of history buffs, as well as tearful moments that sum up the amount of drama that has given this stretch of road across New York City’s East River. Not only are bridges known for their ability to allow access for travelers to trek across the water as if on dry ground, but it is also known as a good place to simply take a dive from it and straight into the water. For some, this is an awesome stunt to pull off as a story while others do so as a means to end a life.
The first known jumper who took that fateful leap off the Brooklyn Bridge was Robert Odlum, whose sister was Charlotte Odlum-Smith of the women’s rights movement at that time. On May 19, 1885, just two years after the Brooklyn Bridge first opened to the public, he jumped off and fatally injured himself after plunging into the water. He did this to prove the point that people simply don’t die by falling through the air. While death by air may not have been the cause, it was the impact that proved to be the actual killer. When Odlum jumped, there was no intention to commit suicide. He simply wanted to make a visual demonstration but apparently didn’t think the entire matter through as the internal injuries he sustained once he crashed through the water was enough to put an end to his life just a few days later.
Seven years later, the first documented suicide attempt off the Brooklyn Bridge was in 1892 when Francis McClarey. Over the stretch of time, the Brooklyn Bridge earned a reputation due to the number of suicide jumps that were either attempted or made by a multitude of people who felt their lives were no longer worth living. It is believed every fifteen days witnesses a person jumping off the bridge with suicidal intent and is suspected there could be well over a thousand people who have chosen this location as an end to their personal life journey.
Perhaps on a slightly more positive note, the infamous bridge jumper, Thierry Devaux, used the Brooklyn Bridge as a platform to pull off a series of unauthorized bungee jumps in 1993.
Brooklyn Bridge Flyers
In 1919, Italy’s pilot, Austro-Hungarian-born Giorgio Pessi of World War I fame flew the heavy bomber airplane, Caproni Ca.5, under the Brooklyn Bridge as a publicity stunt. This feat was pulled off near the Brooklyn Tower. After his feat, Viola Gentry did the same thing on March 14, 1926, but with a rented Curtiss Oriole. She actually flew under both the Brooklyn Bridge and the Manhattan Bridge, a stunt she needed to pull off in order to be taken more seriously as a capable pilot able to handle any flight-related challenge that came her way. Although she was the second pilot in history to fly under both bridges (the first was Frank Coffyn in 1912), she is the first documented female pilot to perform this impressive feat.
On a more recent note, the U.S. flags perched on top of the imposing towers of the Brooklyn Bridge were replaced with white flags, which is the international symbol of surrender. As soon as these flags were discovered, they were promptly removed so that the appropriate flags could be positioned back in place. Upon closer look at the white flags the police confiscated, it appeared they were bleached white. Whether or not this gag was intended as simply a joke or an insult, many political officials were not laughing about the matter as they saw this as jeopardizing the public’s safety since city landmarks like the Brooklyn Bridge make ideal terrorist targets.
These flags waved over the Brooklyn Bridge on July 22, 2014, and it was a front-page feature in the New York Daily News on July 23, 2014. This stunt made quite an impact on not just New Yorkers, but on the American population as it served as an eerie reminder of just how vulnerable we all are as a society, living in a world that doesn’t always seem as secure as it seems. This event took place less than thirteen years after the September 11, 2001 attacks which still feel like yesterday among the population who witnessed the nightmare unfold before their very eyes.
Brooklyn Bridge – Pre-WWII
First off, the history of the Brooklyn Bridge wouldn’t be complete without the mention of conman George C. Parker. It was he who fraudulently sold landmarks like the Brooklyn Bridge to people who didn’t realize they were handing money over to a thief. This was a scam that lasted for years and many victims fell for it. They had to be removed by the New York Police Department while they were attempting to set up toll booths, assuming they were rightful owners to do such a thing. Parker, under the guise of many aliases, would use fake information to dupe his buyers to fork out money on what they thought was a legitimate business deal.
The first time he was arrested was in 1908 but managed to escape custody by simply donning a sheriff’s coat and hat and walking out of the courthouse. After his fourth conviction in 1928, he was sentenced to life in prison. While behind bars, he impressed his collective audience of guards and fellow inmates with his stories of how he was able to swindle so many people out of so much money.
Historians who know a thing or two about the Brooklyn Bridge may be aware of the liquor vaults that add to the dynamic of this landmark’s rich history. Underneath the bridge is cool and dark caverns that serve as home to wine crates and other alcoholic beverages. The first of these vaults came about in 1876, seven years before the bridge itself was completed and ready for travel.
The original construction of these vaults came about when Washington Roebling made an agreement with the liquor distributors on the Manhattan side of the project to set something up that would be beneficial for both parties. For Roebling, it helped offset the costs of this multi-million-dollar project. For Brooklyn’s Rackey’s Wine Company and Manhattan’s Luyties & Co., this was a great opportunity to cater to the needs of thirsty New Yorkers. At least this was the case until the prohibition of liquor sales which took place from 1920 until 1933 by government order. During the summer of 1934, the Brooklyn Bridge wine cellars were back in business through the ownership and operations of Anthony Oechs & Co.
Brooklyn Bridge – Post-WWII
1948 marked the first year the Brooklyn Bridge underwent major upgrades to meet the rising demands of New Yorkers who used this commute to travel to and fro between Brooklyn and Manhattan. The intent was to double the bridge’s capacity to accommodate motorists and pedestrians as this bridge remained the major hub between the two districts of the evergrowing New York City. In 1959, this massive renovation project was completed, along with fallout shelters as the memory of WWII’s events still remained fresh enough in people’s minds to consider setting up provisions should the event of another major incident erupt take place. This includes the possibility of in-country sabotage committed by members of society that share radical political and social views that work against the best interest of New Yorkers.
In 1960, the company best known for the creation and distribution of baseball trading cards, Topps, dumped out boxes into the East River near the Brooklyn Bridge as they were cleaning out their warehouse. At the time, these cards were not great sellers and Topps felt justified in simply trashing them into the water. This included a Mickey Mantle card that currently sells for $500,000 today at an auction.
Designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1964, the Brooklyn Bridge kept its iconic status and was later named a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark in 1972. In 2017, the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization recognized the Brooklyn Bridge as a World Heritage Site. It has since remained one of the most important landmarks of New York City, as well as the world, and is also a major tourist attraction that draws in visitors from all over.
Simply from the Brooklyn Bridge alone, awesome views of the city’s skyline, as well as the East River, and the Statue of Liberty can all be seen here. It is also regarded as one of the most romantic spots as the scenic stroll across the East River of its pedestrian level and many businesses have used this as a means to win over the interest of local consumers and tourists.
There are rumored and confirmed bomb shelters near and beneath the Brooklyn Bridge. In 2006, there was a discovery of food, water, and supplies after maintenance crews were performing a structural inspection of the bridge. This particular cache of goods suggests the era of this setup occurred during the timeline of the Cold War. With a city as prominent as New York is, as well as the significance the Brooklyn Bridge represents, this will remain a hotspot of activity. For a week, this bridge was closed for security reasons after the terrorist attack struck down the World Trade Towers in 2001.
This was the same bridge that had Rashid Baz opened fire upon members of an Orthodox Jewish group while traveling in their van on March 1, 1994, which was a few days after the massacre of Palestinian Muslims in the ancient city of Hebron, Israel. This incident wasn’t the first time the Brooklyn Bridge has served as a location of choice to carry out criminal activity. Sometimes, the attempt is successful while other times it was met with failure. Despite it all, the Brooklyn Bridge is still standing, just like a proud New Yorker that has earned just as much right to be there as part of the American dream.
Over the years, as the demands of New Yorkers change according to the sign of the times, plus the population growth, the need for the Brooklyn Bridge to keep up means there is no such thing as putting an end to the renovation projects required. Regardless of whether the subject of the matter is controversial or not, the focus has always dwelled on how can the Brooklyn Bridge best accommodate the needs of those who use it and those who happen to either live or work close to it. However, in 1981, there was an incident where a couple of diagonal cables snapped, striking and fatally wounding a pedestrian who simply was at the wrong place at the wrong time.
When the 2007 bridge in Minneapolis collapsed, this sparked enough public outrage to demand all the bridges across the United States of America receive better attention in order to make sure they are safe for travel at all times. As it turned out when the Brooklyn Bridge was evaluated that year it did not receive favorable reviews as there were issues with the ramps needing to at least be restored to their former glory.
Brooklyn Bridge Milestones
May 24, 1933, saw the celebration of the Brooklyn Bridge at fifty years old since it first opened up for public travel across the East River. This event brought on an airplane show, as well as an assembly of ships and a firework display. All of this also featured a banquet among the most prominent citizens of New York, as well as a multitude of smaller-scale celebrations that spanned throughout the city, especially among the districts of Brooklyn and Manhattan.
When May 24, 1983, came around, then-president Ronald Reagan led a convoy of cars across the Brooklyn Bridge as part of its centennial celebration. This event also saw planes, ships, and fireworks celebrate the occasion. There were concerts and festivals held, along with the public reveal of how the bridge went from the minds of the Roeblings to a reality that has graced the New York City landscape since its 1883 completion
. From May 22 until May 28 in 2008, this five-day celebration celebrated the occasion with a live performance by the Brooklyn Philharmonic, as well as highlighted bridge towers and a magnificent fireworks display. Leading up to this celebration there was a series of upgrades and activities-related features that were added such as a miniature golf course and the Telectroscope that worked as a video link connecting the Brooklyn Bridge to the Tower Bridge located in London, England.
Brooklyn Bridge Park
To talk about the Brooklyn Bridge without mentioning Brooklyn Bridge Park simply will not do when it comes to covering the history of this landmark. This park is Brooklyn’s equivalent to Manhattan Island’s Central Park. Measured at eighty-five acres, the location of this park stretches along from the southern part of Atlantic Avenue, under the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, and past the bridge to Jay Street just north of the Manhattan Bridge.
This is a 1.3-mile stretch that features the empire-Fulton Ferry and Main Street Parks. The historical Fulton Ferry Landing is here, as well as a number of playgrounds and residences. Empire Stores and the Tobacco Warehouse call Brooklyn Bridge Park their home and are part of the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway and its series of parks and pathways that serve as a brilliant display of the district’s picturesque landscape.
The first portion of this park, classified as Pier One, first opened in 2010 and was followed by five additional piers that have seen its progress through the management of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation. This world-class park is designed to serve as a cultural, environmental, and recreational destination to be enjoyed with as much enthusiasm as Manhattan’s Central Park. Prior to the decision to make this a park, the historical Fulton Ferry Landing served as a port in 1642 and later became a strategic location during the American Revolutionary War on August 29, 1776, when George Washington’s Continental Army managed to evade the advancing British Army across the East River from Brooklyn to Manhattan. Historians will remember this as the Battle of Long Island. When the Americans won the war, establishing the United States of America as an independent nation, Brooklyn rapidly grew as a community as one of the most densely populated cities. Even today, if New York City broke apart and each of the districts became its own independent city again, Brooklyn would still hold the mantle as one of the largest and most diversified cities in the nation.
When the Brooklyn Bridge was installed in 1883, this needed link between Brooklyn and Manhattan this reduced the desirability and need for ferry traffic. This, however, was the point as the bridge serves as a faster and more convenient means of travel for people to commute back and forth across the East River. When the Manhattan Bridge opened in 190, the ferry service, as well as Brooklyn’s waterfront, began to suffer as there was more focus poured on inland development. As a result, the Fulton Ferry Landing ceased operations in 1924.
Over time, Brooklyn’s waterfront would remain neglected until Friends of the Fulton Ferry Landing became the Brooklyn Bridge Park Coalition in 1989 and embarked on an ambitious project to restore this historical landmark back to its former glory and beyond. What Brooklyn Bridge Park does is add even more dynamics to the Brooklyn Bridge itself. Independently, both landmarks are awesome as it is. Pair them together and one would be hard-pressed to find an accurate word to properly describe it.
The Brooklyn Bridge
Not only is Brooklyn Bridge a historical landmark, but its magnificent design and strategic location have also served as a source of inspiration to become one of the all-time favorites as a portrait centerpiece or as the perfect background. Whether it is for a commercial, documentary, movie, music video, or television production, there are very few man-made structures that can measure up to the awesomeness of filming the Brooklyn Bridge. As one of the most photographed landmarks in American history, this bridge continues its reign as one of New York City’s greatest assets as an infrastructure necessity and as a tourist attraction.
If one was ever to best describe the Brooklyn Bridge in song format, Frank Sinatra’s “The Brooklyn Bridge” is a definite gem for the ages. This was a song featured in the 1947 film classic, It Happened in Brooklyn, which is one of many feature films that beautifully highlight this iconic piece of architecture that will forever remain as a New York City landmark.