The New York Transit Museum is presenting a photo exhibit featuring images taken on the last day the Myrtle Avenue El in Brooklyn was in operation, all taken by noted photographer Theresa King. You can revisit the past starting September 29th at the museum (running through the end of February), but here's a sneak peek and a little history.
The Myrtle Avenue el line began running in 1888, from downtown Brooklyn to Queens, passing through Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Bushwick, Ridgewood, and Middle Village. After eighty years, it shut down in 1969 to the dismay of many, and was demolished the following year.
King recalls: “At midnight on October 3, 1969 over a thousand people eagerly awaited a train—not just any train, but the final train to run on Brooklyn’s Myrtle Avenue elevated line. These people were taking the last ride on this historic elevated train. As soon as they crammed on, the train rolled along from Brooklyn’s Jay Street station to the Metropolitan Avenue station in Queens. At the end of this sad journey, some passengers took artifacts to remember this very special old timer and bid a fond farewell. The pictures were taken during this last day at various stations along the Myrtle Avenue el in Brooklyn. During my childhood, I rode this train daily and loved the look of the station stops and the train itself. When I realized the line was due for demolition, I wanted to document a part of Brooklyn’s past that would be no more.”