I was three-years-old in 1987, blissfully unaware of the decrepit yet sort of awesome state that the New York City subway was in at that time. Back then, the mass transit system was grimy, covered in graffiti and a little more dangerous.
The video above, filmed by Nelson Sullivan on June 20, 1987, captures a beautiful summer day on the subway as the train cruises all the way from Union Square to Coney Island. It is sure to bring back memories for some New Yorkers, who remember those times, and fascinate folks like me who were too young to see what the subways used to be like.
Through the windows of the subway car, you can see some old Bensonhurst commercial corridors and landmarks, including the Loew’s Oriental Theatre, where Marshalls is now. What else do you spot?
Also featured in the video is famed Village Voice writer Michael Musto, photographer Liz Lizard and her family, and cross-dresser Albert Crudo. Thanks to the folks on the forums of City Data for posting it and to 5ninthavenueproject for uploading the video.