The first Manhattan-to-Coney Island subway ride took place 100 years ago this week, as a train left Chambers Street, crossed the East River on the Manhattan Bridge, and headed south along 4th Avenue, to the cheers of 10,000 school children and other onlookers.
It was the inauguration of the 4th Avenue Subway line, opened by the Brooklyn Rapid Transit Company, which a few years later would become the Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit Corporation — the BMT. (The photo above shows the tunnel being built between 9th and Union streets, circa 1912.)
This weekend you can celebrate the 100th anniversary of the subway’s arrival in Brooklyn with rides on a quartet of vintage trains, which will run continuously from the Brighton Beach Station from noon to 4 pm, both Saturday and Sunday. There will be a handful of different car models to ride on, the oldest being the BMT Standard cars, put into use in 1917.
Running on the express platforms, the trains will take loops to Ocean Parkway and Kings Highway, though passengers won’t be able to get on or off there — the only boarding point is Brighton Beach. There will be children’s activities and a Transit Museum pop-up retail shop at the station. And there’s no charge beyond the usual metro-card entry.
For more info on the ride and the BMT’s 100th anniversary, click here.
Photos via New York Transit Museum