The Star of the MTA's 1962 Campaign for Subway Manners: A Damn Cat

In Depth

The ongoing campaign to combat manspreading and other offenses isn’t the MTA’s first attempt to encourage polite behavior on public transit. Did you know that back in the early 60s, the subways were once plastered with admonitions from “Etti-Cat”?

That’s according to Gothamist, which points to contemporary coverage from the New York Times: “Etiquette—pardon, Etti-Cat—is portrayed as a most polite creature advocating the authority’s campaign for courtesy. The first picture will be succeeded by others calculated to discourage defacement of walls and posters. The first shows Etti-Cat with his mouth open, as though speaking.” He delivered messages like, “I’m flabbergasted! All I did was to give my seat to a little white haired lady and they pinned a medal on me!” You can even see reproductions with your very own eyes in the decommissioned cars at the New York City Transit Museum, says this blog.

Cute, but no Miss Subway.

Photo via the truly delightful Times Machine.

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