These amazing photographs depict New York City’s subway system from 1977 to 1984.
In 1979, statistics showed there were 250 serious crimes that took place in the subways on a weekly basis. In the first 2 months, there were 6 murders committed and no other subway system in the entire world had this level of crime or became more famous due to it.
The photographic project “Hell On Wheels” is an amazing and soulful journey into the past era of New York City’s subway system between the years of 1977 to 1984. These amazing photographs were taken by Swiss photographer Willy Spiller who was living in the city during that time.
As a curious foreigner, he documented his travels underground and was fascinated by the constant rushing around and total madness that seemed to encapsulate the life of a subway rider’s daily commute. This was a time of graffiti, rock, rap, and every other form of music clipping through the tunnels.
At the time of his photography, New York City had Ed Koch as Mayor, The Guardian Angels walking up and down the subway cars in a city that was seriously breaking down with the onslaught of crime.
Willy Spiller’s images are a visual documentation of this unbelievable domain. It’s an abridged, colorful Ode to the city of New York and a legacy to her amazing people who came through the tunnel into the light of a better day.
Step back in time and enjoy these photos of yesteryear!