by Kevin Walsh

You often see photos or artwork of NYC’s original City Hall station from 1904, when it first opened, or latterday photos when the Transit Museum allows people to make a foray into NYC’s first subway station.

This is a photo from December 27, 1945, just a couple of days before it closed for lack of ridership and dangerous spaces between the cars and platforms. The present day terminal is the Brooklyn Bridge station, but passenger trains on the Lexington local #6 still loop around here to go back uptown.

Photo from NY Municipal Archives.



bernie December 22, 2012 - 6:36 pm

For some reason, I think I was in this station sometime around 1972 when I was attending Pace University. Is this at all possible?

Zen December 22, 2012 - 6:42 pm

I was here earlier this year with a Transit Museum tour, pretty cool. But filthy, don’t touch anything if you go, and bring a flashlight!

Johnnie Queens December 23, 2012 - 7:39 am

About 20 years ago I asked the motorman if i could stay in the first car while he ran the loop. He said sure and I took the ride. Real cool perspective. Wish i had a smartphone then! Could of had an awesome vid and pics. They probably would not allow that now. Great site Kevin.

Larry December 23, 2012 - 8:42 am

Years ago, I forgot to get off a local at Brooklyn Bridge and ended up riding the loop around past the City Hall station….I had never known this existed until I saw it for the first time and then did some research

Someone December 25, 2012 - 6:33 pm

Isn’t that station right above the former Brooklyn Bridge station north?

tom January 7, 2013 - 7:47 am

no. It is at the south end of the brooklyn bridge station and it curves under the tracks

Tal Barzilai December 26, 2012 - 6:13 pm

It would have been nice if the MTA made it part of the current Brooklyn Bridge-City Hall Station rather than just close it down back in 1945.

Mitch February 27, 2013 - 7:35 pm

I see that the Board of Transportation put up gates along the platform edge to keep people from falling onto the tracks through the large gaps caused by the station curvature. Why can’t we have gates like these today? They would prevent people from getting pushed off the platform by psychopaths.

Ed Fenning April 9, 2013 - 10:18 pm

I know someone who remembers the station when it was open. He was a teenager then, and rode through it and /or got off there a couple of times.
I rode around it for the first time back in 1966 or so, before it was lit up or restored. A friend and I hid in one of the back cars.
Was there on a transit museum trip, and hung out there just digging the place for over an hour, when it was re-opened to the public on the hundredth anniversary – 10/27/2004.
For another cool ancient photo of this stop, go to the City Hall station page on & look for a picture that states was taken in 1925 – looks like it was taken earlier – before 1915, since the train pulling looks very much like it was IRT Composites….
The railing by the way, dealt with the curve – too wide for center doors. The gaps for people to get on and off were located at the positions of the end doors of those pre-war IRS cars.


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