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Grand Central Terminal through the years

Sunlight streams through the windows in the concourse

Sunlight streams through the windows in the concourse at Grand Central Terminal. Photo Credit: AP file, 1954

When William K. Vanderbilt, chairman of the New York Central Railroad, threw open the doors of his new 70-acre transportation palace at midnight on Feb. 1, 1913, nearly 150,000 people poured in to marvel at the Beaux Arts beauty that was as much an engineering triumph as an architectural wonder. Over the 100 years, some things have changed, others have remained remarkably the same.

Grand Central Terminal as viewed from the top,
Photo Credit: Craig Ruttle

Grand Central Terminal as viewed from the top, glassed-in walkway used by Metro-North personnel (Jan. 30, 2013)

People walk through Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan.
Photo Credit: John Collier/Library of Congress

People walk through Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan. (October 1941)

Commuters pass shops next to Grand Central Terminal's
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Commuters pass shops next to Grand Central Terminal's main concourse. (Jan. 24, 2013)

A photo mural to promote the sale of
Photo Credit: Arthur Rothstein / Library of Congress

A photo mural to promote the sale of defense bonds, designed by the Farm Security Administration, hangs in the concourse of Grand Central Terminal, circa 1941.

Grand Central Terminal is a hub of activity
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Grand Central Terminal is a hub of activity in Manhattan. (Jan. 24, 2013)

People walk by Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan,
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

People walk by Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan, circa 1920.

Grand Central Terminal, as viewed from the glassed-in
Photo Credit: Craig Ruttle

Grand Central Terminal, as viewed from the glassed-in walkway used by Metro-North personnel. (Jan. 30, 2013)

A view of Grand Central Terminal as seen
Photo Credit: AP

A view of Grand Central Terminal as seen between granite columns (Jan. 12, 2007)

Sunlight streams through the windows in the concourse
Photo Credit: AP file, 1954

Sunlight streams through the windows in the concourse at Grand Central Terminal.

A view from the west balcony looking down
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

A view from the west balcony looking down at the main concourse of Grand Central Terminal, circa 1913

A man buys a train ticket in Grand
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

A man buys a train ticket in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

People huddle against the information kiosk in Grand
Photo Credit: AP

People huddle against the information kiosk in Grand Central Terminal after being stranded by a power failure in the city, its boroughs and some neighboring areas. (July 14, 1977)

Reflections show in a window next to Metro
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Reflections show in a window next to Metro North train arrival timetables in Grand Central Terminal. (Nov. 1, 2012)

Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Gov. George Pataki and Police
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Gov. George Pataki and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly hold a press conference at Grand Central Terminal about the London bombings and New York security measures. (July 7, 2005)

A salesman arriving at Grand Central Terminal, circa
Photo Credit: Getty Images

A salesman arriving at Grand Central Terminal, circa 1950, makes his way toward 42nd Street.

Commuters pass through Grand Central Terminal during evening
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Commuters pass through Grand Central Terminal during evening rush hour. (May 19, 2010)

Commuters watch a laser show projected on the
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Commuters watch a laser show projected on the ceiling of Grand Central Terminal. (Nov. 19, 2001)

Dust and feathers fly as one of the
Photo Credit: Craig Ruttle

Dust and feathers fly as one of the famous chandeliers of Grand Central Terminal is cleaned and maintained after being lowered in a passageway. (Jan. 17, 2013)

Commuters pass by the information desk in the
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Commuters pass by the information desk in the center of the main concourse of Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

Shadows loom as people walk through Grand Central
Photo Credit: John Collier / Library of Congress

Shadows loom as people walk through Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan. (October 1941)

MTA personnel help commuters at the information desk
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

MTA personnel help commuters at the information desk in the center of the main concourse of Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

A view of the suburban concourse of Grand
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

A view of the suburban concourse of Grand Central Terminal, taken sometime between 1910 and 1920.

The interior of Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24,
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

The interior of Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

The main waiting room at Grand Central Terminal,
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

The main waiting room at Grand Central Terminal, circa 1913, has chandeliers and palm trees as part of its decor.

Commuters visit the Apple store in the main
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Commuters visit the Apple store in the main concourse of Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

A well-stocked, brightly lighter hosiery shop, one of
Photo Credit: AP

A well-stocked, brightly lighter hosiery shop, one of many underground establishments in Manhattan, attracts several prospective customers who have just stepped off the subway at Grand Central Terminal. (Feb. 13, 1962)

The newly built terminal can be seen from
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

The newly built terminal can be seen from the entrance on Vanderbilt Avenue at Grand Central Terminal, circa 1913.

A glittering lamp shines down in Grand Central
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

A glittering lamp shines down in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

Two men stand on the incline from subway
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

Two men stand on the incline from subway to suburban concourse at the newly built Grand Central Terminal, circa 1913.

A detail of the Tiffany clock at Grand
Photo Credit: Craig Ruttle

A detail of the Tiffany clock at Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 30, 2013)

Grand Central Terminal's Tiffany clock. (Jan. 30, 2013)
Photo Credit: Craig Ruttle

Grand Central Terminal's Tiffany clock. (Jan. 30, 2013)

An upclose look at the Tiffany clock at
Photo Credit: Craig Ruttle

An upclose look at the Tiffany clock at Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan. (Jan. 30, 2013)

The facade of Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

The facade of Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan is unchanged from 100 years ago. (Jan. 24, 2013)

An entrance to Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24,
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

An entrance to Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

Excavations and construction in rebuilding the present Grand
Photo Credit: Library of Congress, 1908

Excavations and construction in rebuilding the present Grand Central Terminal took place between 1903 and 1913 and included the electrification of the three railroads.

Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

Supporters of the Committee to Save Grand Central
Photo Credit: AP

Supporters of the Committee to Save Grand Central Station, from left , architect Philip Johnson, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Bess Myerson and congressman Ed Koch leave Grand Central Terminal after holding a news conference in an attempt to prevent the construction of an office tower over the city's landmark train station. (Jan. 30, 1975)

Commuters dine at the food court area, which
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Commuters dine at the food court area, which is relatively new to Grand Central Terminal's downstairs. (Jan. 24, 2013)

The ceiling in Grand Central Terminal's food court
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

The ceiling in Grand Central Terminal's food court area remains as it was 100 years ago. (Jan. 24, 2013)

One of the places rarely seen at Grand
Photo Credit: Craig Ruttle

One of the places rarely seen at Grand Central Terminal, the inside of the main information booth that graces the center of the main hall at the train station. Slots that once held tourist and travel info of another age still remain behind curved doors. (Jan. 30, 2013)

Dan Brucker, a docent with Metro-North, talks about
Photo Credit: Craig Ruttle

Dan Brucker, a docent with Metro-North, talks about a rarely seen place at Grand Central Terminal, the deep basement. (Jan. 30, 2013)

Visitors look at a model in the New
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Visitors look at a model in the New York Transit Museum Gallery Annex & Store in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

Visitors look at a model in the New
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Visitors look at a model in the New York Transit Museum Gallery Annex & Store in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

Old posters on display at the New York
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Old posters on display at the New York Transit Museum Gallery Annex & Store in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

The Campbell Apartment, once the office of financier
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

The Campbell Apartment, once the office of financier John W. Campbell, is a bar and lounge on one of the upper floors of Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

The Campbell Apartment bar and lounge in Grand
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

The Campbell Apartment bar and lounge in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

Raul Ortiz prepares a Prohibition Punch at the
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Raul Ortiz prepares a Prohibition Punch at the Campbell Apartment bar in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

Patrons dine at the main dinning room of
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Patrons dine at the main dinning room of the famous Oyster Bar in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

The Grand Central Terminal restaurant, circa 1913, was
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

The Grand Central Terminal restaurant, circa 1913, was housed in a mid-lower level of Grand Central Terminal where the current Oyster Bar is.

Tito Kavallero stands among patrons at the Oyster
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Tito Kavallero stands among patrons at the Oyster Bar in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

The Oyster Bar in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan.
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

The Oyster Bar in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

Fresh oysters are served at the famous Oyster
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Fresh oysters are served at the famous Oyster Bar in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

The Oyster Bar in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan.
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

The Oyster Bar in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

People buy lunch at the take-out counter of
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

People buy lunch at the take-out counter of Oyster Bar in Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

Commuters pass through the main concourse of Grand
Photo Credit: Natan Dvir

Commuters pass through the main concourse of Grand Central Terminal. (Jan. 24, 2013)

The incline from the subway to suburban concourse
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

The incline from the subway to suburban concourse at Grand Central Terminal, circa 1913.

The ladies' room at the newly built Grand
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

The ladies' room at the newly built Grand Central Terminal in New York City, circa 1913, has rocking chairs, tables and the demeanor of a private club.

The view from underneath the southwest corner of
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

The view from underneath the southwest corner of 45th Street and Lexington Avenue, at track level. Above this is the post office annex.

Trunks are piled up in Grand Central Terminal.
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

Trunks are piled up in Grand Central Terminal.

Excavations begin at Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan,
Photo Credit: Library of Congress

Excavations begin at Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan, circa 1908.

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