The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

teetering sanity

with one comment

It’s National Pecan Day, in these United States.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The glorious IRT Flushing Line, or 7 line, opened in a couple of stages here in Queens. It wasn’t until 1928 that the line reached its modern terminal destination in Flushing, with the section in LIC between Manhattan and Queensboro Plaza having opened in 1915. The second section to open was the QB Plaza to 103rd st./Alburtis Avenue stop in Corona, and that happened on the 21st of April in 1917. That means that we have a centennial on our hands, lords and ladies, next Friday.

Luckily, a humble narrator and his friends are not the sort of people to allow such important matters to go unacknowledged.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

As you may or may not know, I’ve been hanging out and working with the folks at Access Queens of late, a community group dedicated to transit advocacy issues. Next Friday, we are going to be commemorating the opening of the line – and I’ll supply details of the event with you as soon as possible next week (everything is still forming up) – and I wanted to advise those of you inveterate fans of the NYC Subway system to start the process of getting the afternoon off on the 21st (next Friday) if you want to join us in celebrating the “international express” which, in many ways, built modern day Queens.

There’s going to be some pretty cool stuff going on, I tell you.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The plan, as it stands right now, involves the replication of a journey which the “hoi polloi” and politicians made a century ago, boarding the IRT Flushing Line at Grand Central at 2 in the afternoon. We are going to ride the line through the eleven stops after Queensboro Plaza to 103/Alburtis and then commemorate “our train.” Come with?

The history of Queens is often unacknowledged, ignored, or forgotten entirely. Not on my watch, however.

Upcoming Tours and events

First Calvary Cemetery walking tour, May 6th.

With Atlas Obscura’s Obscura Day 2017, Calvary Cemetery Walking Tour – details and tix here.

MAS Janeswalk free walking tour, May 7th.

Visit the new Newtown Creek Alliance/Broadway Stages green roof, and the NCA North Henry Street Project – details and tix here.

“follow” me on Twitter- @newtownpentacle

Written by Mitch Waxman

April 14, 2017 at 1:00 pm

One Response

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  1. My view on why many of us here in this borough don’t know the local history.

    Part of the problem of the collective and institutional amnesia is that Queens has always been the borough of neurotics and douchebags and I say this as a third generation native. I might boast that we have here the largest collections of such specimens as to be found anywhere in the state, if not the country.
    We therefore tend to incessantly whine about complete bullshit then afterwards crawl off to the polls on our bellies to re-affirm the lifetime sinecures granted to our political masters in a vain attempt to prove our loyalty and worthiness as debased slaves.

    Hence in utter contempt of whinging serviles, our theoretically elected, and our permanent bureaucratic masters will at best, tend to ignore us or as the more usual, piss all over us preparatory to performing a “rusty trombone” upon us. As our Managerial State Godlings see it, such pathetic creatures as we, who would tolerate such outrages as they visit upon us without throwing them out of office, would have no history or culture worth remembering or preserving. I really can’t say I blame them for taking this viewpoint.

    The other part of the problem is we have a large, transient and newcommer (we usually refer to these as out of towners but they could be from other boroughs) population not only from other parts of the city, state, or this country, but from around the world. Transients aren’t from around here and this isn’t really their ‘home’ therefore very few care about the local history and lore. They’re not really bad people for the most part, they’re just here for the money so why should they care especially if the natives don’t.
    Of course, not all transients and newcommers are like this as there are some very good people among them and they may yet learn to appreciate Queens and its history with the right encouragement. So on balance in this part of the equation, not all hope is lost.

    To be fair, there are some non-natives of Queens who do have a deep regard for this borough, more so than many multi-generational natives. This is why I appreciate your work here at the Newtown Pentacle, Humble Narrator as I do appreciate all your other efforts outside this blog although it may not always seem so. The Evil Black Raven holds those of intelligence and talent to high standards.

    Battle on good sir, battle on.

    Don Cavaioli


    April 14, 2017 at 3:17 pm

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