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Percement de l'avenue de l'Opéra: Butte des Moulins (Construction of the avenue de l'Opéra: Butte des Moulins)
Albumen silver print, from glass negative
20.5 x 36.1 cm (8 1/16 x 14 3/16 ins)
The Butte des Moulins (“windmill hill”) was a small hill—part natural, part built up—that had existed in Paris since ancient times. Dotted with windmills, the working-class neighborhood was dominated by small trades until the mid-1870s, when its population was cleared and the hill was leveled to construct the avenue de l’Opéra, which would become celebrated as the most glamorous street in Paris.