Lunch Atop A Skyscraper

#TogetherWeBuildSTL

The most perilous yet playful lunch break ever captured in a photo: 11 men casually eating and chatting away as if they weren’t 840 feet above Manhattan, NY with nothing but a thin beam keeping them aloft. That comfort is real; the men are among the thousands of workers who helped build Rockefeller Center. But the picture, taken on the 69th floor of the flagship RCA Building (now the GE Building), was staged as part of a promotional campaign for the massive skyscraper complex. While the photographer and the identities of most of the subjects remain a mystery—the photographers Charles C. Ebbets, Thomas Kelley and William Leftwich were all present that day, and it’s not known which one took it. Most tradesmen of the era see the photo as a badge of honor by thumbing their nose at both danger and the Depression, Lunch Atop a Skyscraper has come to symbolize American resilience and ambition at a time when both were desperately needed. Cee Kay chose to commission the life size statue “Together We Build” by New York artist Sergio Furnari on it’s 70th anniversary as a tribute to the dedicated and hard working customers, employees and vendors that have contributed to it’s success over the years. The statue was unveiled on June 15, 2018.

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