The Hall of Records, a landmark Beaux Arts municipal building at 31 Chambers Street, is
home to the NYC Department of Records and Information Services (DORIS), which operates
the Municipal Archives, Municipal Library and Records Center. Designed by John Rochester
Thomas, the building was completed in 1907 at a cost of $7.8 million. It is a fine
example of Second Empire architecture, popular in the late 1800s as American cities
competed culturally with the great cities of Europe. On October 19th, guests may tour a
number of exhibits on the city’s history and cultural life, including the Central Park
Drawings, a rare selection of the original designs and illustrations for the great urban
park; The Language of the City: Immigrant Voices - a multimedia exhibit based on oral
histories gathered by the Brooklyn College Listening Project – juxtaposed with
historical photographs, audiovisual recordings, and other material from the collections
of the Archives and Library; and a preview of an upcoming exhibit on the relationship
between water and financial instruments, co-produced with the Museum of American
Finance. Guided tours of the iconic building lobby will be offered at 1 p.m. and 2.p.m.
The tours are approximately 45 minutes in length.