Local store Freebird books recently posted a great history of Columbia St. on their blog, which they got by digging through old Brooklyn Eagle clippings from the Brooklyn Public Library. Here's a snippet of their post:
One hundred and twenty two years ago (almost to the day), an intrepid Eagle reporter going by the byline "E.R.G." traveled the length of Columbia on a comparably chilly day. What he recorded was a bit of a flourish, a mix of poesy and taxonomy, but it does serve as a counterpoint to what the street became, and what was lost after Robert Moses dropped the BQE in our midst, containerization made stevedoring obselete, and the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel split Red Hook into two.
To compare the present Columbia St. with the historic one in this article, they also shot video while driving along the Northern and Southern ends of Columbia St (the Northern side now Columbia Place)
I highly recommend reading Freebird's whole post here and seeing these videos in the context of the street's history that they discuss.