Urban Archive is a technology nonprofit that creates new connections between people, places, and historical institutions. We develop fun, informative, and interactive mobile applications that give New Yorkers a historical perspective on the sites that they pass every day. Our mission is to inspire learning that is rooted in what’s  local — the architecture, culture, and unique stories of New York City.

Urban Archive is a 501(c)(3) public charity working out of a Lower East Side tenement. We’re passionate about history, technology, and data. We love New York and want to uncover its history.

Since launching the beta version of the app in February 2017 and App Store Version 1.0 in July 2018, we have had 30K downloads.

Other Stats:

We are working with 40 institutions across the city.

To date, we’ve mapped 80,321 images across 32,850 locations, published 5,724 contextual posts, curated 67 walking tours, assembled 79 thematic collections, profiled the lives of 95 historical New Yorkers, and co-hosted 26 scavenger hunts.

In 2018 alone our users:

  • viewed 1.5 million images

  • checked in to 49,114 locations

  • received 86,184 push notifications

  • recreated 15,415 then-and-now photographs

Selected Quotes

“At its heart, the app is designed to be a centralized resource for collections — allowing museums and libraries to expand their reach and make materials they already create for exhibits and educational programs available beyond the walls of the institutions.”

“This democratization of images has the potential to allow communities to articulate untold urban histories in a new forum of public engagement.”
—Arch Paper

“When I found out about Urban Archive, it made me see NYC in a whole new way…”
—UA user

“I’ve had this app for less than 24 hours but I can already say, as a New York City history enthusiast (who has lost many hours to NYPL archive wormholes) this app incorporates history into my everyday life in an easy, exciting manner, through its bountiful features.”
—UA user

Some of our previous press:


Urban Archive, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) charitable nonprofit.

We accept funding from individuals and organizations who seek to promote education, historical research, and technological innovation.

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