1895—The Iron and Steel Institute (now called the Institute of Materials, Minerals, and Mining) awards the annual Bessemer Gold Medal to Professor Marion Howe—a pioneer in determining the phase diagram of steels—for “outstanding services to the steel industry.”
In February 1896, following Wilhelm Roentgen's November 1895 discovery of "new kind of rays," Professor Michael Pupin discovers a rapid method of X-ray photography that uses a fluorescent screen, supplied by Thomas Edison, between the object of the photograph and the photographic plate. This shortens the exposure time from about an hour to a few seconds, and is the method now in universal use. Shown, the first X-ray photograph Pupin took—lead shot in a hand—the famous “shot in hand” image.
The front page of the New York telephone directories before and after the 1896 merger that forms the New York Telephone Company. This name survives until the 1984 breakup of the Bell System. The first New York telephone directory had been issued in 1878. It listed fewer than 200 subscribers and fit on a single page.
1896—The Bowery. Shown, a steam train on the Third Avenue “El.”
1896—The year before moving uptown to the Morningside campus, the School of Mines is renamed the School of Mines, Engineering, and Chemistry, and the Mines faculty becomes the Faculty of Applied Science.
A Systematic Treatise on Electrical Measurements, by Dr. Herschel C. Parker, 1897, based on lectures given to Columbia EE students, is used in Advanced Laboratory. An astatic galvanometer is shown here.
The School moves to the Morningside Heights campus in 1897, residing in the new Engineering Building (now known as Mathematics) before expanding into the new Mines Building (now known as Lewisohn) when it is completed in 1905. Shown: Low Library and the bucolic campus on October 1, 1897.
Low Library and the new Morningside campus in 1897, shown in detail.
1897—Electric vehicles find their first commercial application in the U.S. as a fleet of electrical New York City taxis. Left: A fleet and a taxi from 1901. Right: G.E. charging station with a Baker Electric car, from circa the early 1900’s. US electric car sales peaks in 1912; they are rarely used by the 1930s.
The Mechanical Engineering Department is established in 1897. Professor Frederick F. Hutton, who had taught the first mechanical engineering courses in 1882, is the founding chair.
1898—The City of New York is formed.
1898—The City of New York is formed: One set of views. Top left: Fifth Avenue in front of the Plaza. Bottom right: Canned goods counter at Macy's Department Store in Herald Square (c. 1898).
1898—The City of New York is formed: A very different set of views (Lower East Side). Left: Orchard Street. Right: Aguilar Branch of the New York Public Library.
Summer in the City, Midland Beach in Staten Island in 1898.
Professor M. I. Pupin's design of loading coil, “Pupin coils.” These loading coils (upper images) are inserted to increase circuit inductance (as in the iron box, lower image), and extends the range of long-distance telephone calls. United States Patent 652,231 (1899).
The Bronx Zoo opens in 1899. Right: Final plans for The Bird House in the Bronx Zoo, from 1898.
1899-1907, Student enrollments across Columbia, including at the School of Mines, Engineering, and Chemistry.
Mulberry Street, c. 1900.
1900—Broadway and 119th Street. 2999-3035 Broadway; between 118th and 120th Streets.
Construction of the New York City Subway, at Columbia University. Photo taken at (under) Broadway and 118th Street on July 23, 1901.
1902—Subway construction at City Hall.
1903—The Baltimore team moves to the American League and relocates to Hilltop Park (shown) and is renamed the New York Highlanders. 1913—It is later renamed the New York Yankees en route to 27 World Series titles (and counting). The first Yankee Stadium is home to Columbia engineering student Lou Gehrig from 1923-1939.
Inspection of the Hudson Tunnel by faculty and engineering students on March 22, 1904. This, the first tunnel under the Hudson River, begins in 1874 and is completed on March 11, 1904. On February 25, 1908, train service begins between 19th St. at Sixth Ave and Hoboken. The former Hudson and Manhattan Railroad is operated today as PATH, which runs trains westbound from 33rd St. to Hoboken and Jersey City through this old north tunnel.
In 1904 the Interborough Rapid Transit (the IRT) becomes the first New York City Subway company, with its official opening on October 27, 1904. Shown, inspecting City Hall Station and tracks prior to the opening.
May 1904—Columbia Fire Testing Station is established at 116th Street and Claremont Avenue. Two large buildings are used for testing floors. Dead weight and hydraulic tests are made on standard size floors and girders of reinforced concrete. The building on the extreme right is for testing partitions. Shown: The site in 1907.