Hamptons Subway Newsletter: Week of August 8–14, 2019

Hamptons Subway Golden Spike
Have you seen the Golden Spike? Photo: Brian Weed/123RF

Week of August 8–14, 2019
Riders this past week: 48,813
Rider miles this past week: 182,822

Kim Cattrall was seen traveling from Bridgehampton to East Hampton last Friday afternoon, on her way to her yoga class, she said. Steven Spielberg was seen sitting in one of the 12 plush parlor car chairs set on the Georgica platform on Monday appearing to contemplate the Turkish rug that occupies most of the floor there. After 20 minutes, a security guard escorted our spotter up the escalator in spite of her showing the guard her subway credentials. Security is tight at Georgica, as it is elsewhere on the system.

Due to necessary track repairs this week, the L train local westbound from Southampton will be operating on the express tracks through the middle of next week. For riders heading for Montauk from Quiogue, transfer at Hampton Bays to the Q train eastbound, then transfer again to the 7 train in Water Mill and thence onward to Montauk. After 10 p.m., the 7 train will only be stopping at the Montauk Plaza station until closing time.

At the request of the Southampton Lifeguard crew, the normally moderate volume of the Beach Boys music that accompanies riders from the Jobs Lane stop along the dead end spur to Coopers Beach will be turned up to full volume between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. every Saturday and Sunday morning as these kids who protect us while we swim scan the horizon for trouble from their lifeguard stand there every day, come down to work to do their morning sprints, pushups and stretches. At 8 a.m., the volume will return to normal. A sign at the Jobs Lane stop will announce this activity.

When the Hamptons Subway system was constructed in the late 1920s, workmen started from Westhampton digging the tunnel and laying down tracks heading east while other workmen started in Montauk digging the tunnel and laying down tracks heading west. When the two crews met up between Shinnecock and Southampton on July 17, 1929, a great golden spike celebration was held in the tunnel. With the ringing of a bell by President Woodrow Wilson who officiated, the two crews drove down a golden spike with alternating sledgehammer blows as planned, then shook hands when it was done. According to newspaper reports of the event published at the time, the final and most resounding blow caused the awakening of a coven of ten thousand bats who flew off in both directions which was taken as a sign of good luck by those in attendance.

Every year since then, workmen doing maintenance during the early morning of July 17 have checked on the exposed top of the golden spike to see that it was in order, but this year they made an astonishing discovery. The spike in there now is made of iron. Somebody between last July 17 and this year’s July 17 has replaced the golden spike with an iron one. Surveillance camera videos show two men wearing ski masks in the tunnel this past June for some reason.

But we cannot identify who they are. Anyone with any knowledge of the theft of the golden spike is urged to report their information to any Hamptons Subway employee, who have all been briefed.

Whoever committed this theft should be ashamed of themselves. We can tell them that the spike, when melted down, would be worth no more than $15,000, a modest sum. Bring it back to our office and we will receive it no questions asked while staring at the floor so to be unable to identify the returnee.


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