Although signed for Clark-Wentworth, this shot of 4160 is actually on Madison in Garfield Park. (CSL Photo) George Trapp says he got this picture from the late Robert Gibson.
This is the third of four installments featuring Chicago PCC pictures from the collections of George Trapp. You can find Part One of the Chicago PCC series here, and Part Two here. We also posted some of Mr. Trapp’s photos of historic Chicago buses here.
Thanks to Mr. Trapp’s generosity, we now have at least another 150 additional images of Chicago PCC streetcars. Nearly all of these are previously unknown to me. Mr. Trapp has been collecting these type of pictures for nearly the last 50 years, and has let us borrow some of them so that we might feature them here and add them to our electronic book Chicago’s PCC Streetcars: The Rest of the Story, available through our Online Store.
The fourth and final batch of Mr. Trapp’s PCC pictures will feature both the prewar Chicago PCCs and the experimental cars that preceded them. We will have those posted in the next few days, so check this space.
We also wish to thank the great photographers who took these pictures originally. We have provided attribution for each photo where we have the information.
Of course, the deluxe hardcover book Chicago Streetcar Pictorial: The PCC Car Era 1936-1958, published in June by Central Electric Railfans’ Association, is the premier volume covering the rise and fall of the modern streetcar in the Windy City. That book contains hundreds of great color photos and is a must-have for anyone who is interested in the subject, or even anyone who is interested in knowing what Chicago’s disparate neighborhoods looked like in a bygone era. While I am proud to be a co-author of that work, B-146 is available directly from the publisher. I would be remiss if I did not mention that Trolley Dodger Press is not affiliated with CERA.
In my humble opinion, B-146 is a fantastic bargain and a great value for the money, and I urge you to get a copy if you have not already done so.
My more recent E-book, available on a data disc in PDF format, is intended as a very unofficial supplement and companion to that noble work. One advantage that an electronic book has over a printed one is that more information can be added to it as things become available. We have already added numerous photos, maps, etc. to it, and the material from the Trapp Collection is a tremendous addition, which we are very grateful to have.
On top of that, we are adding another section of photographs to the book covering Chicago’s rapid transit system as it appeared early in the CTA era. That will give the reader a very clear idea of how badly the system was in need of improvement and modernization, a factor in the process by which CTA ultimately decided to eliminate streetcars.
With the E-book, we are not attempting to duplicate anything covered in B-146, which mainly showcases color photography. But there are still lots of great black-and-white photos that deserve to be seen, and lots of other information which could not be included even in a 448-page book. Chicago once had the largest streetcar system in the world, and chances are it will be a long time, if ever, before anyone has the “last word” about it.
If you have already purchased our E-book, and wish to get an updated copy with the additional information, this can be done at little or no cost to you. We always intended that it would be improved over time and offer an upgrade service to our purchasers on an ongoing basis.
As always, clicking on each photo with your mouse should bring up a larger version of the picture in your browser. You may be able to magnify this if you then see a “+” on your screen.
Chicago’s postwar PCCs were built by Pullman-Standard (310 cars) and the St. Louis Car Company (290 cars). You can readily tell which ones are which, since the Pullmans are more squarish in appearance, especially the windows, and the St. Louies have more curved lines.
Finally, if you have any interesting tidbits of information to share about the photos you see here, don’t hesitate to let us know, either by making a comment on this post, or by dropping us a line to:
Thanks to the generosity of George Trapp, all of the photos in today’s post are being added to our E-book Chicago’s PCC Streetcars: The Rest of the Story.
Car 7089 at South Shops.
PCC 7090 at 81st and Halsted.
St. Louis-built 7071 at 81st and Halsted. (Joe L. Diaz Photo)
PCC 7096 at 81st and Halsted. (Joe L. Diaz Photo)
PCC 7068 at 81st and Halsted on June 9, 1947. (James J. Buckley Photo, Krambles-Peterson Archive)
CSL 7068 on Western. A woman with a very striking 1940s outfit has just gotten off. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
A close-up of the previous picture.
7062 as new at St. Louis Car Company.
A St. Louis Car Company photo of 7062’s interior.
Another St. Louis Car Company photo of a 7062’s interior.
Car 7052 heading north on Clark near Lincoln Park. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
7047 at 81st and Halsted. (James J. Buckley Photo, Krambles-Peterson Archive)
7094 southbound on Wentworth at about 44th. That’s the old Stockyards “L” in the rear. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
7047 at 81st and Halsted.
CSL 7047 at 77th and Vincennes. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
CSL 7035 at South Shops in 1947. (CSL Photo, Krambles-Peterson Archive)
A St. Louis Car Company picture of 7035. With some retouching and airbrushing, it was used in the photo that follows.
4160 northbound at Clark and Illinois in 1948. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4158, a southbound Broadway-State car, at Clark and Armitage in 1949. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4158 entering the Clark-Howard loop on July 15, 1953. (Thomas H. Desnoyers Photo, Krambles-Peterson Archive)
I can’t make out the car number (41xx) but this is a Pullman heading southbound on route 36 on Broadway and Rosemont, with the old Granada Theatre in the background. The Granada, one of the great Chicago movie palaces, was built in 1926 and demolished around 1990. It was located at 6427 N. Sheridan Road and had 3,443 seats. To the right, just out of view, would have been a Chicago Motor Coach bus garage. This picture was taken in 1948. (Ed Frank, Jr. Photo)
4157 southbound on Clark at Lincoln Park. (Chicago Transit Authority Photo)
4157 and 4156 being delivered to South Shops. CSL records indicate the date is January 18, 1947. (Joe L. Diaz Photo)
Another view of 4157 and 4156 being delivered to CSL on January 18, 1947. (Joe L. Diaz Photo)
4151 northbound at Clark and Webster in 1947. Not sure what a French laundry does. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4109 southbound on Clark and Lincoln Park. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4122 northbound at Clark and Surf in 1947. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4144 southbound on Clark near Irving Park. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4137 is southbound on Clark near 16th, going under the St. Charles Air Line. (Joe L. Diaz Photo)
4162 heads south on the Wabash bridge over the Chicago River, most likely in 1948. A new bridge on State Street opened in 1949.
4112 at the Madison-Austin loop in 1948. (Krambles-Peterson Archive)
4132, newly repainted in Everglade Green and Cream, leaves the Madison-Austin loop on June 17, 1951. Note the difference in the roof treatment between this and some other cars in this paint scheme. (Krambles-Peterson Archive)
4112 southbound at Clark and LaSalle in early 1947. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4112 going through track work northbound at Clark and Victoria, most likely in the summer of 1947. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4097 southbound at Clark and North Avenues in the spring of 1947. The building at rear is the Chicago Historical Society, now the Chicago History Museum. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4089 at the Madison-Austin loop on November 17, 1951. Note the unusual off-center placement of the car number. George Trapp says these are the same sort of “fuzzy” numbers that were applied to buses as well. (Thomas H. Desnoyers Photo, Krambles-Peterson Archive)
George Trapp thinks this photo of 4076 is either on Vincennes or the wide part of Clark. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
CSL 4076 at 81st and Halsted in October 1946. (William A. Raia Collection)
CSL 4075 at Clark and Granville in late 1946. George Trapp notes, “(This) car has (the) cream standee window band, all cars delivered like this (were) repainted in early 1947 to match later deliveries.” (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4079 westbound on Madison at either Sangamon or Morgan. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4067 on October 8, 1946 at the Pullman plant. It was delivered to CSL on the 24th.
CSL 4067 southbound on route 22. (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
CSL 4065 southbound at Clark and Pratt. The car at right is a body style known as a “fastback.” (Edward Frank, Jr. Photo)
4066 crosses the old Milwaukee Road freight tracks near Wrigley Field. (Joe L. Diaz Photo)
CSL 4062, the first postwar PCC delivered, as new at 77th and Vincennes, most likely in September 1946. (Joe L. Diaz Photo)
4065 being delivered at South Shops. The date would be October 19, 1946 according to CSL records. (Joe L. Diaz Photo)
A CSL photo of brand new 4062. It was put into “preview” service in the Loop for a few days in September 1946 to introduce the postwar PCCs to Surface Lines riders.
4062 at the Pullman plant on September 3, 1946, just prior to being shipped to Chicago. It arrived there on the 9th.
A CSL photo showing the interior of 4062 as new.
A Surface Lines photo showing a side view of 4062, built by Pullman.