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.
To see more photos from BHS’s collection, visit their online image gallery.Back to all blog posts