A visual history of Times Square from the late 19th century to today, rich with rarely seen photographs of the neighborhood's shimmering, pre-World War II electric advertising signs.
In Times Square Spectacular, Darcy Tell traces the 100-year story of Times Square using rare photographs and hand-colored lantern slides, maps, restaurant menus, theater programs, magazine covers, postcards, sheet music, and archival documents. Presenting even the most familiar elements of Times Square lore with fresh, eye-catching detail, she pays special tribute to ad man extraordinaire Douglas Leigh's arrival in the early 1930s, which brought a stunning new era of electric brightness and innovation. Leigh dominated the Broadway streetscape for nearly 50 years, stopping traffic with special-effects billboards such as the legendary Camel cigarettes "smoke rings" sign.
Covering both Times Square's infamous decline as well as its hard-wrought, present-day revival, Times Square Spectacular is the first pictorial history of the legendary American landmark.