The Skyscraper Museum is devoted to the study of high-rise building, past, present, and future. The Museum explores tall buildings as objects of design, products of technology, sites of construction, investments in real estate, and places of work and residence. This site will look better in a browser that supports web standards, but it is accessible to any browser or Internet device.


These photographs show the full floor of the composing department of the World, probably in 1909, just after the annex building was completed. The composing room of a newspaper was typically located at the top of the building and had large windows and high ceilings to maximize sunlight, making it easier for compositors to see and pick out the very small individual "sorts," or letters. The letters were kept in large drawers or cases --giving rise to the terms "uppercase" and "lowercase"-- such as the example seen inside this vitrine. Skilled workers set type for headlines by hand, even after linotype machines mechanized the process of creating columns of text.

The lines of type were arranged in columns and placed with images in a frame, which held a complete page and was used as a mold for the flong. Afterwards, pieces of type were returned to their cases.

"Men posed at their workstations in the composing room in the Pulitzer Bldg."

"Men posed at their workstations in 'The World newspaper print shop.'" Despite the Library of Congress title of the photograph, the image shows the composing room of the New York World in the Annex Building, c.1909. Retrieved from Library of Congress, Library of Prints & Photographs Online Catalog.