Brooklyn History Photo of the Week: Flatbush Toll Booth

Flatbush Toll Booth, ca.1890, v1973.4.645; Postcard Collection, v1973.4; Brooklyn Historical Society.

This photograph features a toll booth that stood on Flatbush Avenue between Fenimore Street and Winthrop Street in what is now Prospect Lefferts Gardens. Built in the 1850s by the Brooklyn, Flatbush, and Jamaica Plank Road Company, the booth was used to collect tolls on Old Flatbush Turnpike, one of the main thoroughfares connecting the town of Flatbush to the city of Brooklyn. The road’s plank surface made it easier for wagons and carriages to travel on the dirt road. When the road company went out of business in 1893, the booth was gifted to John Moore, the last Flatbush Road Commissioner, who placed it in his backyard in East Flatbush. Today, the booth stands in Prospect Park, near the Lefferts Historic House and the carousel.

Among the major investors in the Plank Road were members of the Lefferts family. You can learn more about them and their role in developing the town of Flatbush from An American Family Grows in Brooklyn, BHS’s new digital exhibit.

Interested in seeing more photos from BHS’s collection? Visit our online image gallery, which includes a selection of our images. To search our entire collection of images visit BHS’s Othmer Library Wed-Fri, 1:00-5:00 p.m.


About Carolyn

Carolyn is the Project Map Cataloger on a grant-funded project until May 2012. When not reveling in all things cartographic, she enjoys knitting and exploring Brooklyn.
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5 Responses to Brooklyn History Photo of the Week: Flatbush Toll Booth

  1. Kath says:

    I’m curious if anyone knows what the toll cost? I’ve looked a lot of places online and can’t seem to find anything.

  2. Michael says:

    Unfortunately, it seems the photo the post is meant to show is no longer available at the linked location.

  3. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    I passed this spot often from 1959 to 1962, on the way to and from Erasmus.

  4. This is unbearably cool.

  5. Robin says:

    Very cool. Flatbush Ave. looks so different today, but it’s great to know that its roots go deep. Thanks for this.

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