One of the two brand-new North Shore Line Electroliners at the Milwaukee terminal in June 1941.
For the longest time, January 21 has been a dark day in the railfan hobby as this was when the Chicago, North Shore & Milwaukee ceased operations in 1963. That was 55 years ago today.
We run North Shore Line pictures all the time, all through the year. Every day is a day to celebrate that storied interurban.
But January 21st is also the anniversary of when we started this blog. We have been here now for three whole years, with 206 posts and 362,000 page views to date. We hope to be here for a long time to come. That is another reason to celebrate.
Here are some more great traction photos for your enjoyment. We thank our readers for sharing them.
In about 10 day’s time, our annual bill to fund this site and its web domain comes due. That comes to $400, or just over $1 per day for the entire year. So far, we have collected $370 of the required amount. If you have already contributed, we are particularly grateful.
Any additional funds collected over this amount will be used to pay for research materials for our next book, which we are currently hard at work on. We currently have a unique opportunity to purchase some rare images that would be wonderful additions to the book. This opportunity is fleeting, however.
If you make a donation towards research, we will make note of this in the book itself as our way of saying “thank you.” We expect the book will be published later this year.
If you enjoy reading this blog, and want to see it continue, we hope you will consider supporting it via a donation. You can also purchase items from our Online Store. With your help, we cannot fail.
“Former North Shore derrick car 607 and car 237, both now owned by Chicago Hardware Foundry Co., at North Chicago, Illinois, November 14, 1953.” Don’s Rail Photos adds: “237 was built by Cincinnati in May 1924, #2720, as a merchandise dispatch car. It was rebuilt with 2 motors and later as a sleet cutter,” and “607 was built by Cincinnati in November 1924, #2730. It was retired in 1949 and sold to Chicago Hardware Foundry in 1950 and renumbered 239.” North Chicago was also the original home of the Illinois Electric Railway Museum. (Photo by Robert Selle)
“Views of North Shore Line #189 and 150 at Highwood Shops, Saturday noon, August 7, 1955.” (Robert Selle Photo)
Chicago Aurora & Elgin car 403 “coming into Aurora from Wheaton (stopped to let off passengers).” This picture was taken on Wednesday afternoon, July 14, 1954. (Robert Selle Photo)
“CA&E freight train headed by loco 2001, to Wheaton from Aurora (taken at Batavia Junction), Saturday noon, April 25, 1953.” Notice all the platform extensions here have been turned up to provide the train with enough clearance to pass. They were flipped down for use by passenger trains. (Robert Selle Photo)
“CTA 1-man arched roof 3162 (in green and cream) on Lake Street, just west of Kostner (4400W), Saturday noon, November 28, 1953.” This was one of a handful of older streetcars that were repainted into a dark green by the CTA circa 195-54. (Robert Selle Photo)
Chicago Transit Authority PCCs 7229 and 7090 at 77th and Vincennes, along with salt spreader AA46. The date was May 16, 1954, when Central Electric Railfans’ Association held a red car fantrip. Don’s Rail Photos: “AA46, salt car, was built by St Louis Car Co in 1903 as CUTCo 4779. It was renumbered 1250 in 1913 and became CSL 1250 in 1914. It was rebuilt as salt car in 1931 and renumbered AA46 on April 15, 1948. It was retired on December 27, 1955.” (James C. Barrick Photo)
CTA 3093 encounters a flock of pigs at the Stock Yards on March 13, 1948. The streetcar is southbound on Throop at Hilleck Street on the Morgan-Racine line, which was abandoned on July 24 of that year. (Malcolm D. McCarter Collection)
“3 CTA Big Pullmans: #400, 295 and 374, in the yards at the end of the Kedzie barn (5th and Kedzie), August 9, 1953.” (Robert Selle Photo)
“8:05 am, Thursday morning, March 31, 1955: Chicago & North Western loco 654 (4-6-2), with commuter train, coming east toward camera at high speed at Oak Park Avenue, Oak Park, Il.” (Robert Selle Photo)
“Saturday afternoon, May 24, 1958: eastbound South Shore Line passenger train #109 at head end; has a silver roof. Michigan City, Ind.” The occasion was a Central Electric Railfans’ Association fantrip, using Illinois Central Electric cars on the South Shore Line. The IC train is just visible behind some poles in the center of the picture. (Robert Selle Photo)
These photos have been added to our previous post The Fairmount Park Trolley (November 7, 2017), which also featured several images from the Five Mile Beach Electric Railway:
The Five Mile Beach Electric Railway line truck on May 30, 1945, at the Wildwood car house around the time of abandonment. (Walter Hulseweder Photo)
A former Five Mile Beach Electric Railway streetcar at Wildwood, New Jersey in the late 1940s. The sign at left says, “Barbecued chicken our specialty.” (Walter Hulseweder Photo)
Here are some classic photos from the collections of William Shapotkin. We thank Bill for sharing these:
Chicago Transit Authority bus 9085 on Route 9 – Ashland on August 24, 1979. (Ron Sullivan Photo)
CTA car 6186, working a southbound trip on Route 9 – Ashland, has just arrived at the south end of the line at 95th Street in May 1951. The view looks northeast.
South Suburban Safeway Lines bus 458 in May 1971. (Richard R. Kunz Photo)
CTA 6213 at 95th and State Streets in 1949.
Chicago Surface Lines 6212 on 93rd near Blackstone on August 13, 1947.
CTA 745 at 4544 W. 26th Street in March 1950. The cross-street, described as Kenton, is not quite accurate as Kenton does not run in this area, which is the border between Chicago and Cicero.
CSL 5250 at 79th and Brandon.
CTA 3219 changing ends at 87th and Commercial.
CTA trolley bus 9584 at “Six Corners” (Cicero, Milwaukee and Irving Park) in April 1969, heading south on Route 54 – Cicero Avenue. Who would have thought when this picture was taken that this would someday become the very last Sears store in Chicago?
CTA 214 at Belmont and Western on December 31, 1948. At right is the famous Riverview amusement park, which closed abruptly after the 1967 season. The tall structure is the parachute jump, which I once rode on as a kid. It was a terrifying and exhilarating ride, especially since the harness was not especially tight.
CSL 2598 at 138th and Leyden in April 1934.
CSL 881 at Lawrence and Austin on Route 81 in March 1939. As you can see, this northwest side area was not very built up yet.
CTA 357 at California and Roscoe in March 1951 on Route 52.
The old Chicago and North Western station in July 1966. (Joe Piersen Photo)
Milwaukee Road loco 93A shoves an eastbound “Scout” under Lake Street. The view looks east-southeast.
CTA 4013is at the east end of Route 63 at Stony Island and 63rd on November 29, 1951. This was also the terminus of the Jackson Park branch of the “L”, which has since been cut back. I believe this is a Truman Hefner photo.
CTA 7011 is eastbound at 63rd and Western on June 4, 1950.
CTA 743 at Clinton and Adams on Route 60 in May 1948.
We previously ran another version of this photo in our post Surface Service (July 11, 2017) where it was credited to Joe L. Diaz. CSL 5094 is at Root and Halsted on Route 44 – Wallace/Racine in 1945. That’s the Stock Yards branch of the “L” at back.
CSL one-man car 3286 is at Montrose and Broadway on Route 78 in April 1942.
CSL one-man car 3116 is at 18th and LaSalle.
CTA 7027 is picking up a crowd of shoppers as it heads eastbound at 63rd and Halsted, sometime between 1948 and 1951.
CTA 177 is westbound on 63rd and State in March 1950, having just passed under the viaduct near Englewood Union Station.
CTA 478 is westbound on 63rd Street at Harvard in 1952. That’s the old Harvard “L” station on the Englewood branch at rear, which closed in 1992.
309 W. 63rd Street today. Additional steel was placed under the “L” when 63rd was widened.
Jeff Marinoff writes:
I’ve been meaning to contact you for a long time, but I never seem to get around to it. I have a huge collection of original 8 x 10 transportation photos and vintage post cards. Many of which are from the Chicago area. Attached is just a ‘very small’ sample of what I have.
Well, we are certainly very appreciative of this. Thank you for sharing these great pictures with our readers.
Wes Moreland’s Chicago in 1/4″ Scale
Eric Bronsky recently posted this video, featuring some incredibly detailed models made by Wes Moreland:
We recently sent Mr. Bengston a suggestion for an article, covering filming locations for the 1941 W. C. Fields film Never Give a Sucker an Even Break. There are some shots of the Pacific Electric in this film, in particular the Glendale-Burbank line, and also the Hollywood Freeway, which was new at the time.
He does a tremendous job with his research, and he certainly took the ball and ran with it.
Part two has just been published and can be found here. You can find part one here.
Jack Bejna writes:
Congratulations on your third anniversary. I’m happy that I get a chance to enhance your fine posts once in awhile. I hope that there are many more posts to come.
Here’s a few winter shots on the CA&E. You’ll notice on the plow shots that they would put a plow on
just about any motor when they needed to clear the yard, and, probably along the main line if needed.
Ingenuity in action on the “Roarin’ Elgin!”
Don’s Rail Photos: “”Carolyn” was built by Niles Car in 1904. It was rebuilt as 209, a trailer coach, in 1924 and rebuilt in May 1939. It was retired in 1959.” From Ed Halstead’s blog Modeling Insull’s Empire in O Scale: “Parlor-buffet service was initiated in 1904. The parlor-buffet car Carolyn, although built after the original series of cars, was built much to the standards of the original cars. The Florence was built in 1906 and was slightly longer then the cars built before it. The Carolyn was a trailer while the Florence was a half-motor.” A half-motor car had two motors instead of the usual four. It could run in a train at normal speeds, but reduced the power consumption on the line.
CA&E car 308, built by Niles in 1906.
CA&E car 309, built by Hicks in 1908.
CA&E cars 315 and 207. Don’s Rail Photos: “315 was built by Kuhlman Car Co in 1909, #404. It was modernized at an unknown date and sold to Rockhill Trolley Museum in 1962. 207 was built by Niles Car in 1904. It was rebuilt in September 1940 and retired in 1955.”
CA&E suburban streetcar 500, built by St. Louis Car Company in 1927.
CA&E loco 2002 with snow plow attached. It was built by G. E. in 1920.
Again, CA&E loco 2002 with snow plow attached. It was built by G. E. in 1920.
Don’s Rail Photos says CA&E 3 “was built in the company shops in 1909 as a plow.”
CA&E locos 3003 and 3004 were built by Westinghouse in 1923.
At left CA&E 453, built by St. Louis Car Company in 1945, and at right, 413, built by Pullman in 193.
As always, we thank Jack for sharing these wonderful pictures.
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.
This book makes an excellent gift and costs just $17.99 plus shipping. That’s $4.00 off the list price.
Help Support The Trolley Dodger
This is our 206th 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 362,000 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.
16 thoughts on “Our Third Anniversary”
The photo of 3113 was taken looking north on Morgan St at roughly 38th Place. The H. Graver Co. packing plant seen in the right edge background was located at 3815 S. Morgan. Since Graver was located so close to USY, it appears they simply drove their hogs from the yards across Pershing Road to the packing plant. I have another photo taken at the same location showing hogs in the street.
Thanks for the correction.
3113 is at the end of the line – Morgan and Pershing
6213 at west end of 93 route on 95th west of State (now would be middle of Dan Ryan Xway
2598 turning off Indiana onto Leyden SB
881 at Lawrence/Austin – doubt it is 1939, more likely 1947. Note destination sign has a route number. This is something that started circa 1947.
Larry Sakar writes:
I just glanced thru the anniversary posting and saw that picture of the South Suburban Safeway red and white bus taken by the late Richard Kunz. I knew Richard very well. He acted as the go-between when my Speedrail book was being produced. He was working for Interurban Press in some capacity but I can’t remember what the connection was. I know he had to go out to Glendale, CA. every now and then. Quick question; Is that Soldier Field in the background of that picture? It looks like it but I can’t be sure.
I think that’s the south side of the Field Museum of Natural History, which is just north of Soldier Field.
Our resident South Side expert M. E. writes:
This streetcar is at the end of the line, because its trolley indicates the car will switch tracks and head outbound. The end of the line nearest the Stock Yards was at 39th (Pershing) and Morgan. Google maps shows a Hillock (not Hilleck) St. crossing Throop St. north of Archer Av., probably two miles from 39th and Morgan. Finally, the picture shows car 3113, not 3093 as the caption says.
The C&NW was (and the UP that succeeds the C&NW still is) a left-handed railroad. But in this picture the train is running right-handed. Undoubtedly this is the C&NW west branch along Lake St. in Oak Park, so how come the train is running right-handed?
It looks as though the South Suburban Safeway Lines bus is parked near the Museum of Science and Industry. That’s really a Special!
This picture is not actually on 93rd St.; it is on Blackstone south of 93rd.
Where the picture was taken, the route wiggled quite a bit. Even today you can see on Google maps where the tracks ran. The wiggling was necessary so that the east/west streetcars could cross the north/south railroad that ran west of Blackstone.
Let’s imagine riding a westbound car on 93rd. The westbound car turned southbound onto Stony Island (a digression: the Stony Island car terminated just north of 93rd, so the trackage on Stony Island south of 93rd was used only by the 93rd/95th line). The 93rd/95th car then turned westbound using private right-of-way south of 94th St.; then turned southbound east of Blackstone; then turned westbound just north of the east/west railroad, in order to cross the north/south railroad. (After crossing the railroad, the streetcar tracks went further west a bit, then northwest on Kenwood, back to 93rd, west past the carbarn at Drexel, continuing west to Cottage Grove, south to 95th, and west to the terminal at Perry (just west of State).)
Because the streetcar in this picture is headed eastbound (to 90th and Avenue O), I say this car was headed north on the private right-of-way just east of Blackstone.
The road in the background is the road that still shows up in Google maps. I must add that my father took me to where the streetcar crosses the north/south railroad to watch all the action. We drove there from the west. I don’t recall the road crossing the north/south railroad.
The trackage at this junction confirms the location as Belmont and Western. Because of the view of Riverview Park, I say this is a Belmont car heading eastbound.
Looking at Google maps, I see that Leyden intersects Indiana Ave. at 137th St. rather than 138th St. I think this picture was taken looking north on Indiana Ave. at 137th. Notice in Google maps that there are railroad tracks right in the middle of the junction of 138th and Indiana. That is probably why the streetcar line had to turn southeast on Leyden rather than to continue farther south on Indiana.
What I find interesting in this picture is the absence of a second streetcar track heading back north. In the few pictures I have seen of the CSL Riverdale line, there is only a single track going under the railroad at 130th St. So apparently the single trackage continued south on Indiana all the way to 137th, then on Leyden to 138th. Somewhere there had to be a passing track south of 130th St. If there was no passing track, then there would have been very sparse service along the single trackage south of 130th.
This picture was taken on Stony Island Ave., south of 63rd St., facing north. The Greyhound depot was on the west side of Stony Island south of 63rd. (On the east side of Stony Island is Jackson Park.) This streetcar had just turned from eastbound on 63rd to southbound on Stony Island. It then will travel one block south to 64th St., turn west on 64th, then north on Blackstone back to 63rd to head west. In the picture, the building north of the L station is Hyde Park High School, across from which will be the Obama Presidential Library. This picture epitomizes how busy this intersection was.
Notice the Bowman Dairy wagon at the right.
Yes indeed, this picture shows 63rd and Halsted facing west on 63rd. There were two furniture stores spanning Green St. (one street west of Halsted) — L Fish on the northeast corner of 63rd and Green, and Spiegel on the northwest corner. At Halsted and 63rd, on the southwest corner was S S Kresge; on the northwest corner, W T Grant; on the northeast corner, a big Sears store with a Hillman’s grocery in the basement; and on the southeast corner, a Stineway drugstore. Within a few blocks of 63rd and Halsted were several movie theaters. I have read that 63rd and Halsted, the center of Englewood, was the busiest shopping and entertainment area in Chicago outside the Loop. Between this picture and the one at 63rd and Stony Island, you can see why there were always two-man streetcars on 63rd St. til the very end.
This picture is not exactly at 63rd and State. In fact, it was taken facing eastbound from just east of Wentworth Av. (200 west). In the picture, the westbound car is emerging from under the Pennsylvania RR trackage, which was on the westernmost of the three viaducts over 63rd St. The next viaduct to the east was for the Rock Island. Then came Englewood Union Station itself on the south side of the street. Then came the New York Central viaduct (which also carried the Nickel Plate). That was by far the longest stretch of viaduct on 63rd St.; east of the NY Central trackage there was a huge freight yard spanning 63rd St. almost to State St.
This is an interesting picture of the Halsted at 63rd Place L station. The view is to the northeast. The interurban car belonged to the Chicago & Southern Traction Co., as depicted in the preceding picture, https://thetrolleydodger.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/chicago-to-kankakee-trolley-chicago-southern-traction-co-jbm.jpg . That line’s northern terminal was at the 63rd/Halsted L station. The South Suburban Safeway Lines bus company took over the Kankakee car’s route heading south on Halsted from 63rd Place.
Nice to hear from you again. I hope you are doing well.
I will update the photo captions later today and will try to fix all the mistakes.
However, on the C&NW, there were I think about five tracks at that time, and the train is on one of the middle tracks. I think the two tracks to the south were eliminated in the late 1950s so that the CTA could relocate the Lake Street “L” onto the embankment.
I am not sure how the five tracks were operated bi-directionally, other than the left-hand running which dates back to the 1850s.
I figured the Riverview car was running on Belmont, since the Western route would have used PCCs at this time.
Thanks for your comments and corrections.
Actually there were FOUR tracks thru Oak Park. The train is on the eastbound “express” track. To the left is a small fence to discourage track crossing. Note there is a platform to the left of the train, so a train on the express track could stop. When CTA was put on the embankment, the WB express track was apparently moved over a bit, making it closer to the former EB express track, where there had been a fairly wide space, and then CTA took over the space where the EB local track had been, and laid new tracks closer to the edge than the two CNW tracks had been.
Thanks for the correction.
Regarding the color photo of 6212 on the 93rd/95th St line, it is eastbound on a private RoW which paralleled 94th St/Kenwood Ave. The railroad that the car line and street crossed was the Nickel Plate. Their Stony Island Yard and shops were immediately north of the crossings, and were the reason the car line and road meandered rather than going straight through. Some of the shop buildings were sold to Verson All Steel Press after Calumet Yard was expanded. The Verson water tower is seen in the photo.
Calumet yard was built in the 1940’s brand new to replace Stony Island, which was small and could not be expanded. Calumet also supposedly had the very last real “roundhouse” built in the US. The city had been planning to extend 93rd across the railroad and make that, not 95th, the “main street”, but never did because Verson (now the new Finkl Forge) was in the way.
The oldest part of Calumet Yard, the classification yard, dates back to the 1920s. The engine terminal and coach yard were added in the early 1950s.
Hi Trolley Dodger, are there any videos on Chicago streetcars? can’t find any on Youtube
Yes, there are some:
FYI, CA&E 453 is currently at the ECTM in Scranton, awaiting restoration.