We tend to think that long commutes are something recent, but for as long as people in cities have had to go to work, there has been rush hour.
This photo is from January 1970, on Manhattan’s IRT subway line. It is from LIFE/Time Inc.’s website. Manhattan has long had a need for public transportation to ease the congestion of people going to and from work. As early as the mid-1800s, NYC was beginning to make elevated steam railroad tracks (or Els).
Some fun facts about the NYC subway:
– The first portion of the underground track opened in 1904, and it ran from City Hall to the Bronx.
– No private company was willing to pay for the underground excavations needed, so the city of New York paid for and owns the system today.
– The city of New York leases the subway system to the NYC Transit Authority.
– It cost 5 cents to ride the NYC subway when it opened.