From the Mad Men of the ad world to the riots in Harlem to the artists of Greenwich Village, this was New York in the 1960s.
New York's skyline sits in darkness during the 1965 blackout.Orville AndrewsFPG/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
The streets of Harlem. Circa 1960.Susan Schiff Faludi/Getty Images
A woman walks down the street, sporting the styles of the era. 1969.Vernon Merritt III/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images
Two terrified African-American girls flee police officers during a race riot in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn, itself sparked by the rioting over police brutality in Harlem. 1964.Bettmann/Contributor/Getty Images
On East 2nd Street, a man shows off his car. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
Andy Warhol at work in his studio. 1966.Herve GLOAGUEN/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images
Demonstrators clash with cops during the Stonewall Riots for gay rights. 1969.Joseph Ambrosini/New York Daily News via Wikimedia
Bullet holes mark the wall at the Washington Heights assassination site of civil rights leader Malcolm X. 1965.Library of Congress
The Beatles wave to fans after arriving at Kennedy Airport. 1964.Library of Congress
On the West Side, two young boys pass the time by throwing bricks in an abandoned lot. 1962.Library of Congress
Famed for his motto of "jazz is my religion, and surrealism is my point of view," poet and trumpeter Ted Joans was a fixture of the Beat scene in New York City. He was similarly famed for holding bohemian parties, like in this photograph taken at a costume party in Greenwich Village in 1960.ICP/Getty Images
Mary Wells Lawrence, one of the few female ad executives during the 1960s "Mad Men" era, sits in her office. 1966.Susan Wood/Getty Images
A woman walks down the street in a slum area of Harlem. 1965.Central Press/Getty Images
A young girl on a scooter stops to check her nails. 1965.J R/Flickr
A sanitation worker attempts to manage a mountain of garbage, which had accumulated during a citywide garbage strike. 1968.Bettmann/Contributor via Getty Images
Protesters take to the streets of Harlem, protesting police Lt. Thomas Gilligan, who shot and killed a 15-year-old African-American boy. 1964.Wikimedia Commons
In Harlem, the protest turns violent. Here, two police men beat a man with their nightsticks. 1964.Wikimedia Commons
Police in Harlem watch the action atop a building with their guns drawn. 1964.Library of Congress
Demonstrators taunt the police during the Harlem riot of 1964.Library of Congress
A young man chats with a girl in a bar. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
A fashionable young woman checks out a hat display in a store. 1969.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
Demonstrators from both sides stand on the sidelines of an anti-Vietnam War march. 1968.Harvey L. Silver/Corbis via Getty Images
A homeless man sits in front of a flop house on the Bowery. 1967.Richard Corkery/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images
On West 3rd Street, a young man smokes a cigarette while he leans against his car. 1968.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
Garment workers at the Abe Schrader Shop stop their work to listen to Martin Luther King Jr.'s funeral on the radio. 1968.Wikimedia Commons
Four girls in Chinatown who have, as the photographer notes in the original caption, heavily assimilated into American culture. 1965.Library of Congress
A mother holds her baby tightly. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
In the Bronx, a broken-down car lays forgotten on the streets. 1964.Wikimedia Commons
Two women hang out in the East Village, a hub for artists in New York. 1967.Wikimedia Commons
Lovers gather at Tompkins Square Park. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
A woman sits on a bench in Tompkins Square Park. 1967.Wikimedia Commons
A crowd of people go about their business on the streets of Manhattan. 1964.Library of Congress
A fruit stand on Avenue C. 1965.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
An old man comforts his crying grandchild. 1962.Library of Congress
On Avenue B, a man proudly holds up his baby. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
On the Lower East Side, a little girl peers over the balcony. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
A young girl in a bohemian part of town. 1968.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
Young people play in the rain in Tompkins Square Park. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
In downtown Manhattan, a woman makes her way through the downpour under the cover of her umbrella. 1967.Wikimedia Commons
Young people hang out in the East Village. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
A man leans against a convenience store window. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
A woman stands outside the New York Public Library. 1967.Wikimedia Commons
A couple sits on the curb. 1968.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
In Brooklyn, a group of protesters calls for an end to atomic weapons and the Cold War. 1962.Library of Congress
Two students who have been arrested on narcotics charges cover their faces with books because they're too embarrassed to have their photos appear in the paper. 1968.Library of Congress
On Wall Street, people celebrate during the ticker tape parade in honor of the New York Mets' World Series victory. 1969.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
The streets of Chinatown. Circa 1965-1970.Devin Hunter/Flickr
A man steps out of a fish market. 1966.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
In Little Italy, a vendor sells groceries out of a pushcart. 1962.Library of Congress
Young people stop for snacks at Coney Island. 1966.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
A man carries a large valentine to his sweetheart. 1968.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
A couple shares a kiss under an umbrella. 1964.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
A couple takes in a piece of artwork. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
A young man and a young woman check out the sitars in a music shop. 1968.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
In the East Village, a young man and an elderly woman share a dance. 1967.James Jowers/George Eastman Museum/Flickr
Before the recession of 1969 helped send New York spiraling into an era of drugs, poverty, and violence, the city had one last decade of mid-century glory, at least on the surface. New York in the 1960s was a city full of life and diversity, from the executives of Madison Avenue to the artists of the East Village – but it was also a time of turmoil.
Throughout the 1960s, a new wave of immigrants was starting to move in. As American immigration laws relaxed and white residents moved out to the suburbs, New York City was turning into a multicultural metropolis unlike the world had ever seen.
Meanwhile, early LGBT communities were starting to form in Greenwich Village and fight, for the first time, for their rights. By the end of the decade, on June 28, 1969, the LGBT demonstrators of the Stonewall Riots stood up against police oppression and launched the modern gay right's movement as we know it today.
Across the decade as a whole, people all over New York — and elsewhere — were fighting for change. New York in the 1960s saw countless strikes and protests. And, sometimes, protest boiled over into violence.
During the Harlem riot of 1964, for example, African-Americans rebelled against police brutality after an officer killed a 15-year-old boy. The ensuing riot roped in some 4,000 New Yorkers, leaving more than 100 injured and 450 arrested.
This was far from New York's only moment of upheaval during this tumultuous decade. As much as the 1960s was a time of vibrancy, culture, and wealth, it was also a time when little cracks started to slip into the background of daily life, usually left unnoticed, warning of the collapse to come.
Next, check out these photographs that show how New York changed even further in the 1970s and the 1980s.