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Photos: Manhattan before the Twin Towers

Published 8:42 AM ET, Tue September 11, 2012
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Classic photographs from LIFE.com depict a Lower Manhattan before it was anchored by the Twin Towers. A German zeppelin appears to float above the Woolworth Building in 1928. Herbert Orth—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images
An aerial view, from the south, of Lower Manhattan, Governor's Island, the harbor, the Hudson and East Rivers and New York City's surroundings, 1939. Margaret Bourke White—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images
Pedestrians walk down Nassau Street past the Federal Reserve Building, 1944. The New York Stock Exchange can be glimpsed at the foot of the image. Andreas Feininger—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images
The Brooklyn Bridge arches toward Lower Manhattan, 1948. Andreas Feininger—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images
Aerial view of Manhattan with the new, nearly completed World Trade Center's Twin Towers dominating the southern rim of the island, 1971. See the complete gallery on LIFE.com. Henry Groskinsky—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images