CTA Pullman-built PCC 4281 on Route 36 – Broadway-State. Andre Kristopans: “4281 is on 119th east of Morgan.”
It is fitting that our 200th Trolley Dodger blog post should appear on Thanksgiving weekend. There is always so much in life to be thankful for.
We are thankful for our relative good health (knock on wood), and thankful for friends and family. Since we began this venture in January 2015, we have made many new friends among our readers.
I am thankful to be able to share these classic images with you.
After wandering far afield recently to such exotic places as Milwaukee and Fairmount Park in Philadelphia, we are home for the holidays with an all-new post chock full of Chicago transit pictures.
We wanted to make this one something special. But that is our goal with every post… we want #199 to be as good as #200, and #201 to be as good as this one. We may not always succeed, but it is not for lack of trying.
PS- We threw in a few shots from outside the Chicago area, just because we liked them.
Meet the Author
Incredibly, this building, which served as the terminal for the Logan Square branch of Chicago’s “L” until 1970, is still there, although heavily modified, and now serves as the home of City Lit Books at 2523 N. Kedzie. (Chicago Transit Authority Photo)
FYI, this Saturday at 5 pm (11-25) I will be at City Lit Books (2523 N. Kedzie Blvd., Chicago) to discuss my new book Chicago Trolleys. Additional authors will be there as well. Their books are Cycling in Chicago and The Great Chicago Fire. I hope to see you there.
David, I want to let you know how much I enjoy your postings. I grew up in Chicago during and after World War II and was able to ride a lot of the streetcar and “L” lines as well as those interurbans still in operation through the 50s and 60s.
Your pictures bring back a lot of memories and show me things that I missed during that period of time as well. Please do know how much your work is appreciated and keep it going.
I appreciate that, thanks! I will do my best.
Another of our regular readers writes:
Creative writing has always been your skill, whether it was the CERA blog, the Trolley Dodger blog, as well as several CERA publications. Some of your postings on the Trolley Dodger blog are mini stories in themselves. Writing seems to come easily to you and you do it well. Such has never been the case for me. Although I have done some writing, maintaining a blog like you do would be boring to me.
I was extremely impressed with your postings on the Fairmount Trolley, the CA&E 400 series Pullmans, and Andre Kristopan’s analysis of the end of the Red streetcars (see our post The Fairmount Park Trolley, November 7, 2017).
Thanks… I think that everyone has a unique contribution to make in life, and we all need to find that “niche” for ourselves. I seem to have found mine with this type of work. No doubt there are other things you excel at that would leave me clueless.
While some might think working on a blog such as this would be a burden, I consider it a privilege and a responsibility. Like many other things in life, you get back out of it what you put in. I hear from so many people who are grateful to see our posts. Like The Beatles famously sang, “And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.”
It’s anything but boring to me, because in the process of researching these articles, I always learn so much. And when I do get things wrong, which does happen, our readers are quick to point that out, and I learn from that too. So, we all learn together and I feel that our readers are an integral part of what goes on here. So again, I am thankful to you.
If you challenge yourself to “think outside the box,” you can achieve more in life than you ever dreamed possible. There is so much to learn in life that I don’t see how it would ever be possible to be bored. There simply aren’t enough hours in the day to take it all in.
A westbound Garfield Park “Met” car crosses the B&OCT tracks in Forest Park.
In July 1965, a two-car train of flat-door CTA 6000s is on the ground-level portion of the Ravenswood route, todays’ Brown Line. (Roger Puta Photo)
CSL Small Pullman 891 is on north Lincoln Avenue, running on Through route 3 (Lincoln-Indiana). Cliff Burnstein adds, “The CSL small Pullman 891 is on the northbound track at the end of the line on Lincoln at Peterson near Kedzie. . The poles have been reversed and 891 will shortly cross over to the southbound track. The north suburban gas tower is seen in the distance to the right.”
CTA “Turtleback” 1702 is at Division and California.
CSL 584, a Milwaukee Avenue car, is at Madison and Canal, in front of the Chicago Daily News building.
CTA 6152 at Waveland and Halsted, north end of the Halsted car line in April 1952.
CTA 1801 at Kedzie and 67th Streets on March 28, 1948.
CTA 407, signed for the Museum Loop, is on Roosevelt Road in August 1949.
CTA535 on Milwaukee at Paulina in April 1951 (this is the date that I received with this negative, however it must be wrong). Milwaukee was converted to buses on May 11, 1952. George Trapp: “The photo at Milwaukee and Paulina looks to me to be earlier than 1951, auto at far right looks like it dates to late 1920’s early 1930’s and no post war autos are in sight so I guess the photo is from the late 1930’s early 1940’s.”
CTA 363 at the Pennsylvania Railroad viaduct at Ashland and Arbor in March 1951. Andre Kristopans notes, “363 Ashland north of Fulton – bridge has three railroads over it, closer behind car is PRR with Milwaukee Road also using the same tracks, beyond is C&NW. Note that street under bridge is much narrower than rest of street. Ashland was widened relatively late, and the bridges were never widened out to this day.”
CTA 415 at Cermak and Kenton. The date given is August 2, 1949, but that must be wrong, since there is a Chicago & West Towns streetcar at left and the 415 still has a CSL logo. So perhaps 1947 would be more like it as the West Towns streetcars quit in April 1948.
CTA Sedan 3358, still sporting a CSL logo, is at Cottage Grove and 115th, south end of the Cottage Grove line, in May 1948.
CTA 6168, signed for Route 38, is on the Wabash Avenue bridge in October 1951.
CSL Sedan 6316 is on Wentworth and 73rd Street, running on Route 22, Clark-Wentworth.
CSL 3318 is at Damen and 74th on November 28, 1946.
CTA Pullman 585 is signed for Halsted and Waveland in February 1954, which suggests it is running on Route 8 – Halsted, which was bussed three months later. Andre Kristopans: “585 is on Emerald south of 79th.”
CTA 6172 is at Lawrence and Austin on February 26, 1950, running on Route 81.
Some passengers are getting off CSL 3312, which is running on the Damen Avenue extension. This gives you an idea of how some men dressed back in the 1940s when it was cold out.
CSL work car S-53. Not sure of the location.
CTA 4380, signed for Clark-Wentworth, on June 30, 1955. This may be South Shops.
CTA Postwar PCC 7053 is signed for Route 38 in this November 1952 view. This designation was used for Route 4 – Cottage Grove cars to indicate they were terminating at Grand and Wabash. As you can see, some postwar cars were used on Cottage, and this one appears to have been converted to one-man operation.
CSL 7054 in the late 1940s, running on Route 22, probably near the south end of the line. Andre Kristopans: “7054 is AT the south end of 22 – 81st and Halsted about to turn north into Halsted.”
CTA 4008, in “tiger stripes,” is on Route 20 – Madison in March 1948. Notice the sign advertising the Chicago Herald-American, which at this time was owned by the Hearst Corporation. It was sold to the Chicago Tribune in 1956.
North Shore Line wood car 300,in the days circa 1939-42 when it was used as the “club car” for the fledgling Central Electric Railfans’ Association.
North Shore Line “Birney” car 333 circa 1947. (Donald Ross Photo) Larry Sakar says this is “southbound at 5th & Chase.”
North Shore Line wood car 201, which looks like it is headed for the scrapper (probably in the late 1940s). (Donald Ross Photo)
South Shore Line car 107 at the South Bend terminal near the LaSalle Hotel in 1954. (Walter Hulseweder Photo)
Chicago Rapid Transit Company “L” car 328 at Indiana Avenue in September 1936. It is signed as a Stock Yards local.
CRT “Met” car 2847 at Canal in August 1938. Riders could change here for Union Station. This station remained in service until June 1958, when the Congress rapid transit line opened.
CTA Pullman 908 is at Navy Pier, east end of Route 65 – Grand.
South Shore Line car 110 is in South Bend, not far from the LaSalle Hotel which was its east terminus until 1970. I presume it is heading into a storage yard.
CSL experimental pre-PCC 4001 at South Shops in 1934. Like its counterpart 7001, it was used in service that year to bring people to A Century of Progress, the Chicago World’s Fair.
CTA PCC 4168 is seen in 1949, signed for Route 42 – Halsted-Downtown (note the side sign says Halsted-Archer-Clark). There is a Route 8 – Halsted car behind it. The location is on Emerald south of 79th.
CTA 7052 appears to be in dead storage at South Shops on June 30, 1955. Note the lack of overhead wire.
CTA 4025 at South Shops on June 30, 1955.
A train of CRT steel 4000s emerges from the brand-new State Street subway in late 1943.
Cable cars are shown here using the LaSalle Street tunnel under the Chicago River some time before they were replaced by streetcars in 1906.
CTA 4035 on Cottage Grove in 1953. Not sure of the exact location. (Walter Hulseweder Photo)
CTA 4004 running on State Street, signed for Route 4 – Cottage Grove, in the early 1950s. (Walter Broschart Photo)
CSL 4039 at the Madison and Austin Loop in August 1941.
CSL 7018, a Madison-Fifth car, heads west near Union Station in August 1941.
CTA 7067 at South Shops on June 30, 1955. The “Enter at Rear” sign indicates this was a two-man car and was thus not one that had recently been assigned to Western Avenue. However, chances are the date I received is wrong, since George Trapp notes: ” The photo of PCC #7067 at South Shops shows the car brand new, note CSL logo, so should be dated around May 18, 1947 when that car was delivered, for some reason St. Louis Car cranked the side signs to HALSTED on there first order of Post War cars when shipping. I have a photo of car #7089 just delivered with same side sign.”
CTA 7225 at South Shops in 1956.
Don’s Rail Photos says that North shore Line wood car 131 “was built by Jewett Car in 1907. It was rebuilt in 1914 and rebuilt as a plow in 1930. It was retired in 1935 and scrapped in 1942.”
CTA 7060 on June 30, 1955, possibly in dead storage.
CTA 7041, possibly in dead storage at South Shops on June 30, 1955.
CSL 7025 is downtown and signed for Madison-Fifth, which was a branch line of Route 20.
CSL 7090 is at 81st and Halsted, south end of Route 22, in the late 1940s.
CTA 7156 is signed as a one-man car (but appears to be convertible to two-man) at South Shops in October 1956. (Walter Hulseweder Photo)
CTA 4022 heading east on 63rd Street in the early 1950s.
CTA 4094 in dead storage at South Shops on June 30, 1955. Postwar Pullmans were an endangered species by then, practically all having been scrapped as part of the CTA’s “PCC Conversion Program.” I believe the date is correct; however George Trapp says, “Last Pullman PCC’s to be sent off to St. Louis were the oldest while the newest were sent first, 150 cars in series 4172-4371 went in 1953 with the rest in early 1954.”
CTA 4401 on October 21, 1950.
CTA 4401, with 4376 trailing, is heading north on Dearborn via Route 22 in 1955.
CTA 7268 is signed for Route 36 – Broadway-State and appears to be near Devon Station (car barn) in 1955. (Walter Hulseweder Photo)
CTA side dump car N-1 at South Shops on May 16, 1954. A CERA fantrip was held on that day, over the last remaining streetcar lines that used the old red cars, which were retired from service two weeks later. (James C. Barrick Photo)
CTA side dump car N-1 at South Shops in October 1956. (Walter Hulseweder Photo)
Capital Transit Company pre-PCC 1053 is on line 42 – Mt. Pleasant in Washington, D. C. on September 26, 1948. This was probably on a fantrip.
CTA 6163 is at Lake and Austin in the early 1950s. The Park Theater has already been closed, which would probably date this to circa 1952-54. (Walter Hulseweder Photo)
Lehigh Valley Transit car 702 is part of a three-car fantrip circa 1950 or 51 at stop #96 in Quakertown, Pennsylvania. This was in the waning days of the Liberty Bell Limited interurban between Allentown and Norristown. The “Bell” stopped running on the Philadelphia & Western’s Norristown High-Speed Line in 1949.
CTA salt spreader AA-105 (ex-2854) at the North Avenue car barn in February 1952. Don’s Rail Photos: “2854 was built by South Chicago City Ry in 1907 as SCCRy 340. It was rebuilt in 1907 and became C&SCRy 839 in 1908. It was renumbered 2854 in 1913 and became CSL 2854 in 1914. It was later converted as a salt car and renumbered AA105 in 1948. It was retired on February 17, 1954.”
CTA Pullmans 482, 584, and 518 on the scrap line at South Shops in March 1955. (Walter Hulseweder Photo)
CSL R-202 was a single-truck sand car. It is seen here on February 20, 1943.
CSL 4000 was a 1920s experiment in articulation that did not work out. It is seen here on the scrap track in the early 1940s.
With gas and tire rationing during World War II, CSL 2840, which had been in storage for ten years, was put back into service. Here, we see it on September 13, 1942.
CSL 2779 at South Shops on October 23, 1938. On this day, the Surface Lines held a fantrip that helped garner new members to the Central Electric Railfans’ Association, which was just getting started. (LaMar M. Kelley Photo)
Chicago Aurora & Elgin 407 and 432 in Forest Park in April 1955.
CA&E 413 at Wheaton on July 26, 1942.
South Shore Line cars 109, 39, 353, and 103 are on west Chicago Avenue at Northcote Avenue in East Chicago, Indiana on July 16, 1956. Not long after this, street running in East Chicago came to an end, as the South Shore began using a new bypass route parallel to the Indiana Toll Road. (James C. Barrick Photo)
South Shore Line “Little Joe” freight loco 803, with a train of 25 cars, is in the 1100 block of west Chicago in East Chicago on July 9, 1956. (James C. Barrick Photo)
South Shore Line cars 107, 37, 27, and 5 are on east Chicago Avenue at Whiteoak Avenue in East Chicago on July 16, 1956. (James C. Barrick Photo)
CRT 294 is signed as a Kenwood Local on July 21, 1934.
CTA 4109 at Madison and Austin in August 1948.
CTA 4383, I would assume, is turning from Clark onto westbound Devon as it is to run on Route 49 – Western.
CTA Sedan 6317 is running on Route 4 – Cottage Grove in the south Loop.
CSL Birney car 2000 in 1927.
CRT 1048 is a Jackson Park Local on July 21, 1934.
CRT 1763 is at Cermak Road on September 19, 1934.
CRT 337 at Indiana Avenue in September 1936.
Queensboro Bridge car 534 on January 16, 1949.
Queensboro Bridge car 534 on January 16, 1949.
North Shore Line 719 is northbound on the Loop “L” at Adams and Wabash in June 1940.
North Shore Line car 181 in Winnetka.
North Shore Line car 409 at the Milwaukee terminal yard in February 1952. (Donald Ross Photo) Don Ross adds, “North Shore 409 at the Milwaukee station yard is interesting. That car had no smoking area and it was completely open. We used that car for our ERA meetings and the North Shore people helped to make sure it was set up.”
North Shore Line cars 720 and 747 in Milwaukee on October 12, 1941.
North Shore Line car 725 in Milwaukee in June 1940.
North Shore Line 170 at the Highwood Shops on July 5, 1949.
North Shore Line 250 in Wilmette on July 11, 1939.
CSL 3210 on the 51st-55th route, probably in the late 1930s.
North Shore Line Electroliner 803-804, which was new at the time, on a February 8, 1941 fantrip, making a photo stop at South Upton Junction.
On the Cover: Car 1747 was built between 1885 and 1893 by the Chicago City Railway, which operated lines on the South Side starting in April 1859. This is a single-truck (one set of wheels) open electric car; most likely a cable car, retrofitted with a trolley and traction motor. The man at right is conductor William Stevely Atchison (1861-1921), and this image came from his granddaughter. (Courtesy of Debbie Becker.)
Check out our new book Chicago Trolleys. Signed copies are available through our Online Store.
Help Support The Trolley Dodger
This is our 200th post, and we are gradually creating a body of work and an online resource for the benefit of all railfans, everywhere. To date, we have received over 341,000 page views, for which we are very grateful.
You can help us continue our original transit research by checking out the fine products in our Online Store.
As we have said before, “If you buy here, we will be here.”
We thank you for your support.
In order to continue giving you the kinds of historic railroad images that you have come to expect from The Trolley Dodger, we need your help and support. It costs money to maintain this website, and to do the sort of historic research that is our specialty.
Your financial contributions help make this web site better, and are greatly appreciated.