You don’t need your imagination to picture what city streets were like in the 1920s. Thanks to this colourised and restored video footage we get a rare glimpse of city life in cities around the world. You don’t need to be an expert in classic cars to appreciate just how unique traffic was almost 100 years ago.
In today’s congested city streets, it’s hard to imagine that a similar scene was taking place over 100 years ago. From London to New York, cars were filling city centres in the 1920s, and based on the footage we’ve never quite figured out how to remedy traffic issues that plagued people for over a century. It’s quite obvious that the cars of today are far different than the sculpted wing/fender-clad machines of the 1920s.
This restored footage was created by YouTuber NASS who specialises in the restoration of films that show city streets from the past. NASS has shared footage of 1940s London and California during the 1950s and 1960s. These unique films give us a glimpse into the past to see exactly what everyday life looked like.
In this video, we can see the interesting differences between car-centric cities like London and New York compared to walking cities like Stockholm and Amsterdam. Many of these cities still have similar preferences that have clearly been entrenched in their cultures for over 100 years.
Some horse-drawn carriage transportation can still be seen across all cities but this is dwarfed by the wide-scale adoption of lorries as the main way to move goods. Buses including London’s famous double-decker buses are present in the footage as well.
As we dive back in time with the restored footage we can draw links to our past and how much things have changed while also staying the same. Sure our cars look different than those from 100 years ago, but we’re still driving the same roads and even worse traffic than our ancestors, except this time we have Bluetooth.