Museum Closure

The New-York Historical Society will be closed on Tuesday, April 21. For details, please visit our calendar.

What was the "Barnes Dance"?

 In 1962, Traffic Commissioner Henry Barnes instituted a short-lived traffic management system that required cars to stop at both cross-streets and intersections to allow pedestrians to cross diagonally from corner to corner. The ensuing confusion was called by some critis the "Barnes Dance." Others insisted that the name resulted from the joy felt by newly-safe walkers who danced in the streets.

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