Somebody didn't realize this isn't New York in the 1970s

Defaced trolley at Boylston Streeet in Boston

Roving UHub photographer John Pellegrino was among many people this morning to notice the desecration of the historic MTA trolleys parked at Boylston station.

Transit Police in the past have come down pretty hard on any taggers they catch.

A T spokesman said detectives are already hunting for the tagger and will review video from the station's surveillance cameras.



Free tagging: 


How the Hell did a vandal get

By on

How the Hell did a vandal get in there? They should not only be fined for the restoration of the PCC car but forced to LICK Boylston Station clean. Lead paint, rust, oil, whatever that goo is that leaks from the ceiling, and all.

Through the Portals

I once walked from Kenmore to Copley through the GL tunnel at about 3 AM, having entered the system through the Blanford St. portal.

Energency Exit

I doubt the station was open. We actually went out through a staircase that was in the tunnel, which I assume was there either for maintenance access or emergency evacuations. I don't recall exactly where it exited at street level, as I was quite drunk at the time.

In years past

By on

I remember seeing emergency exits from the MBTA subway tunnels distinctly marked on the street level. Could be they're no longer used, as the Green Line tunnels now have distance signs at regular intervals pointing to adjacent stations, and not emergency exits.


By on

Vandal squad playin games with our tax dollars instead of doing their damn jobs


By on

plural noun: incompetents
1. an incompetent person.

1. inability to do something successfully; ineptitude.

Both sound like what you wrote, neither is what you wrote, and yet...

Whoa! Whoa! Not cool! That's

By on

Whoa! Whoa! Not cool! That's a vintage trolley! It's like tagging a car in an auto museum! How the hell could the T allow this to happen? Where was the station inspector?

Well that answers that question..... to whether security cameras are monitored live.

I know they can work quickly but how long would it take someone to make that work of art on the side of a trolley car, in a station?

The Colon Loop School

This artwork is clearly of the assthetic of the Colon School. As such, it probably took about as long as it takes to, well, you know.

Totally Useless

By on

Like the person that did this. This person better hope they don't get caught -guessing that's going to be an expensive repair and they are going to be made to pay for it.

Easy fix

By on

Replace this trolley with the one of the exact same trolleys that MBTA uses on the Mattapan *ahem* "high speed line." Problem solved.

The Mattapan cars are Wartime

By on

The Mattapan cars are Wartime PCCs from 1945. This one is a Picture Window car from 1951. Similar? Yes. The same? No.

To add to that, one of the

By on

To add to that, one of the reasons they don't run this one that often is the GE propulsion package wasn't very well liked - it would break down more often, and they didn't have as many parts for it, so it wouldn't get fixed as easily.

Not quite. The reason they don't run this car

By on

that often is because it doesn't belong to the MBTA. Rather, both the Picture Window PCC and the Type V car are the property of the Seashore Trolley Museum, who loaned them to the MBTA some time back for use on fan trips. However, several years ago, the T decided to stick both cars onto the unused track at Boylston eastbound. As the track switch has since been removed, it wouldn't be an easy feat to remove these cars for fan trip service even if they wanted to run them now.

However, until they make arrangements to move the Picture Window car for repainting, the least the T could do would be to put a tarp over it in the meantime.

Seashore only owns the Type 5

By on

Seashore only owns the Type 5, the 1951-built PCC is still owned by the MBTA and it does have a finicky GE MCM control system. The older PCCs (1945-46 built) that still run at Mattapan have a Westinghouse control system which is easier to maintain (and that's why the older PCC cars were chosen years ago to be rebuilt for continued service). The PCC was restored to its 1959 appearance by volunteer MBTA labor in 1979 for the 20th anniversary of the Riverside line and the Type 5 was leased from Seashore and brought back to Boston from the museum in Maine at that time. The PCC had a pantograph added in 1992. Both cars were first locked into Boylston St. in 1996. They were released in 1997 for the 100th anniversary of the subway. They were both locked away in the present Boylston location again in 1998 and have been there since.

A few things

By on

Would you feel the same if your 1964 Mustang was defaced? Just get another. It's easy, amirite? No. These cars belong to the system and its riders. People who care about the T (and it's marvelous history) should be very upset.

Oh, speaking of history, let's clear up some things that you are wrong about.

This car is not "exactly" like the ones at Mattapan although from the same builder. This car is about 5 years younger and of a very different aesthetic for a PCC car.

Just so you can be better informed for next time, the term "High Speed Line" is relative and is from a time when it took a streetcar 40 minutes to travel from Andrew to Ashmont via Dorchester Avenue.

Problem solved!

This is why we can't have nice things

By on

This is why we can't have nice things.

While I understand it's a thrill for these taggers to do, but seriously, go inside a T station, get behind some blocked off area, and then tag a some what "historic" trolley. What gives, man?

Let's see here

By on

A segment of the population still considers grafitti as "art" instead of what is is - willful destruction of property.
The tagger is most likely (and hopefully) a "juvenile". Which means, if caught, their identity will never be known to the public. And, if convicted, they'll get a slap on the wrist at most and a sealed record to boot.

This is Boston. There are

By on

This is Boston. There are plenty of blank concrete surfaces that are so ugly that graffiti can only improve them. These trolleys, however, way not cool.

Great idea

By on

Let them go paint city hall - can only be an improvement. Hands off the rest of the city unless the Christian Science people want you to paint their property.


By on

doesn't improve any surfaces, regardless of how blank or dull they may be. If you doubt me, take a look at the abutments from the commuter rail or Orange Line views the next time you pass through Sullivan Square.

Punishing Idea

Put them in The Stocks. Not only a suitable level of punishment, but a historical tourist attraction.

Semi-rotten vegetables provided by local farmer's markets, of course. Get spoiled with a farmer!

Better yet

Take the little (expletive's) paint can and spray the rest of the contents into his/her mouth.

That's no fun

That's just LA cop bullshit. Toxic, too.

You also lose the historic interpretation value.


By on

quite the reaction ....don't screw with the transit nerds.... They'll go all Bradley Clarke on yer ass....

They pay taxes too

By on

Technically the people who painted these trains financed then as well, everyone pays taxes

The Stocks

By on

Seconding the Stocks.

From the article

By on

To reach the monument, the vandal, or vandals, would have had to jump over a small gate into about a 15-foot deep hole, said Plymouth Historic District Commission spokeswoman Tracy McCarthy.

As seen in every basic parkour video ever.

“It would be difficult to do,” she said.

For the elderly? Sure.

Plymouth Rock is a small piece of a larger rock that was in Plymouth at the time the Pilgrims settled, according to a Plymouth Hall Museum report.

That is usually how rocks work. I bet there's a good chance there are lots of small pieces of a larger rocks that were in Plymouth at the same time nearby as well.

ETA: I think the photo of the

I think the photo of the graffiti actually encourages it by letting the tagger get publicity for the tag. Is there a way to take this post out of Google Image search results, so at least we aren't contributing?


By on

This morning I was devastated to see this monstrosity on my commute to work. Growing up in Boston and knowing many whom have been graffiti artists in the city, there is an unspoken "gentleman's" rule to tagging and that is to not tag historic monuments and important landmarks. This moron kind of did both at once.

I work with Boston history on a day to day basis (digitizing collections at various archives) and must say the historian inside me wept when I saw this. In fact, it pretty much ruined my day.

Again: Agh.

This, this, this.

By on

I'm not blanket anti-graffiti--in fact I was just marveling at the artwork at Bartlett Yard this morning--but this is just lousy. A man's gotta have a code.

Sadly, I see historic

By on

Sadly, I see historic monuments and markers tagged many times. The Soldiers and Sailors and the 54th Regiment monuments in the Common and the Longfellow Bridge are frequent targets. These idiots have no idea what kind of damage they do. Since when is defacing public art 'art' in itself?

Not that I know much about graffiti but

By on

I guess I distinguish between the idiots who just spray dinky, useless crap on every mailbox and the folks--arguably idiots too--who have more talent and higher aspirations. This just seems like a lot of effort to put into something that's so clearly in the wrong place, destroying something really cool, AND that's going to get whisked away and cleaned up really quickly. What a jackass.


By on

The problem here is that the vandal was likely motivated by a desire for attention, fame, notoriety, etc. By reporting this, you give him exactly what he wants, and feed others who might want to achieve the same (criminal consequences be damned).

I don't know what the answer is - I recognize that news is news, interesting stories are interesting stories, and am not calling for blanket censorship or anything like that.

Let's give them plenty of

By on

Let's give them plenty of we follow a time honored New England tradition and burn them at the stake.

Look at the bright side

By on

Once again the vandals outsmart the T's million dollar security system. Thank the lord they only spray paint trains.These pranksters could destroy the whole station before anyone realized they were there.

Pranksters? I'd be more

By on

Pranksters? I'd be more worried about crazy people, terrorists, or plain scrap metal thieves.

my three year old niece could

By on

my three year old niece could spray a better piece than this in a harder spot. way to go, toy.

Much. much worse in person

By on

Rode by on a trolley tonight and it looked truly abysmal.

I'm not anti-graffiti and I like to see art push boundaries but there's no need for this. The perp should step forward and clean these cars.

You paying for it?

By on

I mean, you like it so much and it will cost public money to fix.

If you think engorged worms are art, you're sad.

the T doesnt own these

By on

As I recall, these trolleys are owned by the Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunk, Maine. I believe the MBTA pays a $1 a year rental fee to have these cars on "display"

As of

By on

3:25 this afternoon, a tarp was indeed placed over the PCC to cover the "artwork". Unable to get a photo, as I was running to catch that rarest of rare birds - namely a Lechmere train that actually had space on it.

failed parents

By on

Whitmans most rugged adopted priveledged kid got tired of his backyard pool and came to the city to ruin some history