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Kaufman’s Brooklyn: 11 photos of ‘The top 50 and the man who made them’

October 29, 2020 Phil Kaufman
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My father, Irving Kaufman (1910 – 1982), was a professional photographer who started in Brooklyn in the mid 1930s working for the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. He captured thousands of images of Brooklyn through the 1950s. I have recently digitized a great many of them. My father’s profile can be found here.

This week’s theme:

Six months, 26 weekly collections, and nearly 700 photographs. That’s quite a tally. It has been a privilege and a pleasure to display my father’s work to so many of you Brooklynites and others. To me, and I hope to many of you, it brought 1930s and ’40s Brooklyn to life, and brought my father to life.

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My focus has been on the first decade or so of my father’s career, his Brooklyn years, from the mid-1930s to the late ’40s. I’ve displayed the best from those years (and some that I snuck in from later and elsewhere), so it’s time to say thank you, and close with a week of looking at the highlights.

Choosing 50 “best” is obviously a subjective process. I’ve picked photos that I especially love, but that’s just me and that’s just for now. Another time I’d certainly have some different choices. The 50 are not arranged in any particular order. I tried to make sure each day’s selection had some variety, but other than that it’s all pretty random.

My title for the week includes not just “Top 50” but also “The man who made them.” After each day’s 10 photos, I’ve added one more of Irving Kaufman at different times in his life and career.  He is, after all, responsible for all this, and he’s the one this project is meant for.

Thanks Dad.

Note: At any point in the future, you can search the Eagle for “Kaufman’s Brooklyn” and find these posts. Using the index at the end of any day’s selection will enable you to visit any of the 26 weeks of photos.

Today’s photos:

Each day’s selection includes ten photos from the ones that have been shown here over the past six months. An 11th photo each day features my father.

The group on the roof, from the Hotel St. George roof, Lower Manhattan skyline in the background, 1942


Joyful kids on a bus, June 26, 1947


Four, eight, forty: People, feet, toes, undated


Shadow and sunlight, unidentified and undated Brooklyn street


Gull stands guard, Fulton Fish Market, Jan. 1941


Checkers in the park, Sunset Park, Aug. 30, 1940


Busy sidewalk, typical shopping scene; lots of eyes on the cameraman, undated


Standing watch over his domain, Manhattan Bridge, Feb. 12, 1948


Prom night, Packer Institute, mid-1940s


View from the Heights, c. 1935


The professional in his studio: Irving Kaufman, late 1960s

An index of Kaufman’s Brooklyn posts may be found here.

Irving Kaufman’s profile may be found here.

I invite you to submit comments, memories, images of Brooklyn, and especially any additional background information you can supply about the photos posted here to [email protected]. I’d also be glad to supply information about buying prints of any of the images seen here. Many of my father’s images are also available for viewing and purchase at All prints purchased will be the product of professional scanning and editing.

Weekly collection 26: Photos of ‘The top 50 and the man who made them’

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