LATEST PAPER
55° Good Afternoon
55° Good Afternoon
Transit

Brooklyn's first complete subway line turns 100: photos

One hundred years ago, the Fourth Avenue subway line welcomed passengers and opened up new neighborhoods of Brooklyn to New Yorkers.

It's difficult to describe how life-altering the introduction of the Fourth Avenue line was to Brooklyn, which at that time was served by trolleys and elevated trains but not by an entire subway route from Manhattan. The Fourth Avenue line opened on June 22, 1915. The inaugural trip was said to have taken less than an hour from Chambers Street to Coney Island.

The MTA marked the line's centennial on Monday and will put vintage subway trains in service on June 27 and 28 to continue the celebration. The trains will terminate at the Brighton Beach Q station.

Here's a quick look back at the construction of the line and some of the early train cars that ran on it.

Ashland Place from Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn

The Majestic Theater, now Brooklyn Academy of Music's
Photo Credit: Courtesy of the New York Transit Museum

The Majestic Theater, now Brooklyn Academy of Music's Harvey Theater, can be seen in the distance in this 1911 photograph of the construction of the BMT Fourth Avenue Line.

Ashland Place, 1911

Taken six months later, this photo shows the
Photo Credit: Courtesy of the New York Transit Museum

Taken six months later, this photo shows the progress of construction on the BMT Fourth Avenue Line at Ashland Place.

9th Street and Union Street, Brooklyn

Construction of the BMT Fourth Avenue Line pictured
Photo Credit: Courtesy of the New York Transit Museum

Construction of the BMT Fourth Avenue Line pictured circa 1912.

1914 landslide

In 1914, a landslide temporarily delayed subway construction
Photo Credit: Courtesy of the New York Transit Museum

In 1914, a landslide temporarily delayed subway construction on the BMT Fourth Avenue Line.

77th Street and Fourth Avenue in Bay Ridge

This 1916 photograph shows the
Photo Credit: Courtesy of the New York Transit Museum

This 1916 photograph shows the "dual decorative cast-iron lamp posts" that were unique to the BMT Fourth Avenue Line.

A BMT Triplex Car

The Pressed Steel Car Co. manufactured this type
Photo Credit: Courtesy of the New York Transit Museum

The Pressed Steel Car Co. manufactured this type of car in 1927.

Interior of a BMT standard

Seating in the BMT Standard, built by Pressed
Photo Credit: Courtesy of the New York Transit Museum

Seating in the BMT Standard, built by Pressed Steel Car Co. between 1920 and 1922, was tested to ensure proper ergonomics for passengers.

Comments

We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

News photos & videos