These photos were taken at Ground Zero, the World Trade Center site in New York, in September of 2001.
They were taken by someone named "Ed" who was allowed into the area by a member of the emergency response crew, at a time when all civilians -- including most journalists -- were forbidden to enter the area. As a result, these photos are among the few close-ups ever taken of the World Trade Center site so soon after the 9/11 attacks.
The person who submitted these pictures had originally been under the impression that they were taken on September 13, 2001, but recent examination of other Ground Zero photos suggest that in fact the photos on this page were taken later in September, perhaps ten days after 9/11.
This satellite photo, for example, was taken on September 15, 2001 and shows that the West Side Highway, which runs alongside the west edge of Ground Zero, had still not been fully cleared of debris at the time the photo was taken. Yet the photos on this page show the same street substantially cleared of debris, which means they must have been taken several days afterward.
This image of Ground Zero taken by photographer Joel Meyerowitz and published in his book Aftermath was taken on September 23 and shows the debris cleared away to a somewhat greater degree than in the photos here, meaning that the Meyerowitz photo was taken perhaps a couple of days later. Other rare Ground Zero images from the time also suggest that these "Ed" pictures -- while still unique -- were most likely taken nearer to September 21, 2001, and not on September 13 as was originally reported.
We apologize for the confusion. In any event, here are the photos, which remain a powerful testimony to the destruction of 9/11: