The Pennsylvania Station concourse photographed by Cervin Robinson, May 10, 1962. More than 100 years ago the railroad terminus opened and became an icon for New York City - until its demolition in the 1960s.
Weekend travelers crowd Pennsylvania Station July 2, 1954 in New York. Penn Station was the first glimpse of New York for millions of arriving passengers.
Digging out the site for New York's Pennsylvania railroad station, c. 1908.
Designed by architect Charles McKim, the Pennsylvania Railroad station covered more than nine acres.
Pennsylvania Railroad Station, under construction in New York City, October 1908.
Members of the American architect firm McKim, Mead and White are shown in this undated photo. From left: Charles Follen McKim, William Rutherford Mead, and Stanford White.
Pennsylvania Station opened on November 27, 1910. Here is a view of its 32nd Street entrance.
A bird's-eye view of Pennsylvania Station, taken between 1910 and 1920.
Looking like a Piranesi etching: The Pennsylvania Station waiting room, photographed by Cervin Robinson on May 10, 1962, as part of the Historic American Buildings Survey.
Its 150-foot-high waiting room was modeled on ancient Rome.
A crowd of 3,000 people fills the main waiting room of Pennsylvania Station in New York, April 3, 1949, as New York City council president Vincent Impellitteri (on rostrum at right) speaks in support of the United Jewish Appeal's "Caravan of Hope," a special railroad car carrying Israeli war heroes on a tour to mobilize nationwide support for the Appeal's $250,000,000 campaign.
Its soaring concourse over the underground tracks captured the spirit of the modern age in glass and steel.
Edward Popko photographed this roof detail in 1965.
A large group of travelers gather around the gates leading to their trains at Penn Station in New York in this file photo of May 28, 1948.
An ad for Penn Station.
The train concourse, at Penn Station is shown, June 8, 1955. The concourse could contain a regulation football field under its glass and steel roof.
The concourse and exit to 33rd Street at Pennsylvania Station, New York, N.Y., photographed between 1905 and 1915.
Track level at Pennsylvania Station, showing stairway and elevators, photographed between 1905 and 1915.
The Pennsylvania Station concourse, showing gates and indicators, photographed between 1904 and 1910.
Soldiers are seen in New York's Pennsylvania Station, photographed by Marjory Collins, c. 1942, for the Office of War Information.
Penn Station secured a place in our popular culture: The Glenn Miller orchestra celebrated it in the song "Chattanooga Choo-Choo."
The station was also a setting for the 1951 Alfred Hitchcock thriller "Strangers on a Train."
The facade of Penn Station at 31st Street, photographed by Cervin Robinson, May 8, 1962.
Faced with financial trouble, the Pennsylvania Railroad decided in the early 1960s to tear the grand old station down ... and build an office tower and a new Madison Square Garden in its place.
Architects and others protested the plan ... to no avail.
Demolition began in 1963, and after three heartbreaking years, Penn Station was reduced to what it remains today ... a windowless subterranean remnant of its former self.
In this view looking west from the Empire State Building, construction of Madison Square Garden at 34th Street can be seen, covering an area from Seventh Avenue to Eighth Avenue in Manhattan, September 13, 1964.
A ring of steel sprouts from the debris of New York City's old Pennsylvania Railroad station as the city's new Madison Square Garden starts to take shape on June 9, 1966. Madison Square Garden would be located above Pennsylvania Railroad Station between 31st and 33rd Streets on Seventh Avenue.
The new Madison Square Garden in New York City is shown under construction, Feb. 27, 1967.
New York's new Madison Square Garden, under construction on the site of the old Penn Station, in New York, March 2, 1967. The premier sports venue has had many locations since the first Garden was built in downtown Madison Square.
On a more positive note, Penn Station's destruction helped inspire the landmarks preservation movement, which has saved Grand Central Terminal and other famous New York City structures from tampering ... or worse.
As a New York Times editorial put in back in 1963; "We will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by the monuments we destroy."