Back in 1980, then engineering student Bob Diamond rediscovered the Atlantic Avenue tunnel, a railroad access way built in the mid-1800s to help keep Brooklynites from getting struck by LIRR trains, which at the time, traveled on street level tracks.
With a permit and assistance from the DOT, he dug out some dirt and broke through the sealed tunnel that was rumored to house John Wilkes Booth’s lost diary pages. Alas, the pages were never found, but the beaming historical treasure was and after some renovating, the city allowed him to run tours into the subterranean cavern.
Over the years, he guided thousands down a manhole and and according to Diamond, no one was ever hurt. But now, the fun-killing FDNY says its unsafe and officials have refused him entry, so he’s suing for the right to do what he has legally been doing for the last three decades. The City of New York really has a funny way of saying thanks.