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americantheaterweb.comHistoric Photos of Broadway: New York Theater 1850-1970 from Turner Publishing, a truly beautiful book that chronicles over a century of events on the Great White Way using some 240 photographs from the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts' Billy Rose Theatre Division. It's truly a marvelous book and many of the photographs are ones that I've never had the privilege of seeing before. For example, there's a swell rehearsal shot of Ethel Merman dancing with a couple of the toreadorables at the top of act two in Gypsy. Just two pages before this, there's a photograph of the original company of Long Day's Journey Into Night . . . The book does not simply bring the world of Broadway with photographs of the stars who have graced the stage. Included in "Historic Photos" are glimpses of interiors and exteriors of theaters, and even some photographs of promotional materials, for example, the program from the final performance of the record-setting Peg O' My Heart) . . . . I want to say that the text in "Historic Photos" is amazingly comprehensive. Each short paragraph beside the pictures does an exceptional job of not only contextualizing the photo, but also delivers a particularly deft mini-history of the theater "Historic Photos" is a book that should be on every theater lover's bookshelf. Most likely before it ends up on the shelf, though, you'll savor it in two ways: by both casually flipping through the pages and by reading it cover-to-cover and revisiting 120 years of Broadway history.