I took this photo on Montague and Clinton Streets in Brooklyn Heights, where a quartet of old-style subway entrance lamps have been preserved (or, as I suspect, made new to match the old styles). At one time all subway staircase entrances carried lamps like this, with the BMT (Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit) marked with green and Interborough Rapid Transit (IRT) marked with dark blue. I was shooting for the ForgottenBook and was using black and white film.

In the 1980s, remaining lamps of this type were re-fitted with red or green globes or half-globes. Green meant the entrance was open 24/7, while red meant it was closed part of the time, as of the 1990s, you could get in with a MetroCard.

At first, there were also yellow lamps, which indicated you could get in part of the time, but after the rise of the MetroCard they were dropped.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Categorized in: One Shots Subways & Trains


  1. Old Skool says:

    Kevin, I like the B&W, very old school. Ha Ha.

  2. chris says:

    In 1966 that station was closed for a bunch of construction work.One night I snuck into the station and found these emergency stairs that zigzagged down and down and down………..and the workers drew obscene pictures on the walls!!!!
    I finally gave up and went back up the stairs to the street.Took me 10 minutes to finally reach streetlevel.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.