New York of Today
During the nickelodeon era, various film companies made short films showing tourist scenes of New York City. When a French company released SEEING NEW YORK in 1908, Variety found it "rather odd" that such pictures were not made by the "many native manufacturers eager for new subjects." Such films, it felt, would be very popular, at least outside New York City. This print was made for the German market and shows Columbus Circle, Times Square, Coney Island, Wall Street, the Lower East Side, Fifth Avenue, the Plaza Hotel, the new Metropolitan Life Insurance Building and the Flatiron Building. A happy couple, clearly tourists, is "Seeing New York" and they (or their sightseeing car) appears in most (though not all) of these scenes. This film was not part of Edison's regular U.S. release schedule but was meant principally for sales overseas. Europe, particularly Great Britain and Germany, had become a crucial market for the Edison Manufacturing Company.