70 for 70 at IRM (Part Two)

Wooden Chicago "L" car 1754, as part of a four-car train at the Illinois Railway Museum on July 1, 2023.

Wooden Chicago “L” car 1754, as part of a four-car train at the Illinois Railway Museum on July 1, 2023.

Our previous post 70 for 70 at IRM (Part One) featured still pictures we took of the July 1, 2023 Trolley Pageant. This was also a rich opportunity to shoot videos, so this post features no less that 45 different ones, most lasting one minute or less. We hope that you will enjoy them.

Part One included historical information on many of these cars. Information on nearly all the cars from the Illinois Railway Museum‘s extensive collection can be found here or here.

Before the end of this month, the Trolley Dodger blog will reach one million page views. We thank all our readers for their support.

-David Sadowski

PS- You might also like our Trolley Dodger Facebook auxiliary, a private group that now has 1,328 members.

Our friend Kenneth Gear has a Facebook group for the Railroad Record Club. If you enjoy listening to audio recordings of classic railroad trains, whether steam, electric, or diesel, you might consider joining.

FYI, the Hoosier Traction Facebook Group celebrates electric transit in Indiana and the Midwest. It also supports the activities of the annual Hoosier Traction Meet (although not affiliated with the North American Transit Historical Society, which organizes that event).

The 2023 IRM Trolley Pageant Videos

North Shore Line Electroliner 801-802:

Placing the trolley pole of 251 back on the wire, as part of the North Shore Line 5-car train:

The North Shore Line 5-car train:

North Shore Line line car 604 and Merchandise Despatch car 229:

North Shore Line city streetcar 354 and Illinois Terminal 101:

Chicago Surface Lines 1374 and 3142:

Chicago Surface Lines 144:

Chicago Transit Authority 4391 backs up:

An Illinois Terminal 3-car train, with 277, 518, and 234:

Indiana Railroad car 65 making a backup move:

Chicago Transit Authority 4391:

Chicago Surface Lines 144:

Chicago Surface Lines 3142:

Chicago Surface Lines “Matchbox” 1374:

The Illinois Terminal 3-car train:

Illinois Terminal 101:

North Shore Line city streetcar 354:

North Shore Line box motor 229 and line car 604:

Electroliner 801-802:

The five-car North Shore Line train, with 749, 757, 714, 160, and 251:

Shaker Heights Rapid Transit car 18:

Cooperativa de Transportes Urbanos y Sub-Urbanos (Veracruz, Mexico) open car 19:

Chicago and West Towns 141:

Sand Springs Railway car 68:

The four-car train of Chicago Aurora & Elgin woods included 319, 36, 309, and 308:

The four-car train of Chicago Aurora & Elgin steels included 431, 409, 460, and 451:

A four-car train of wooden Chicago “L” cars included cars 24 (aka 1024), 1797, 1268, and 1754:

A four-car train of CTA 4000s, including cars 4290, 4412, 4410, and 4146:

SEPTA Broad Street Subway car 55, operating for the first time since 2011:

A 7-car CTA “L” train, made up of cars 41, 22, 6655-6, 30, and 6125-26:

The 7-car “L” train finally gets cleared to pass:

A six car train of 1960s/70s CTA rapid transit cars, made up of 2153-4, 2243-44, and 2433-4:

Municipality of East Troy box motor/line car M15 (formerly Milwaukee Electric):

Milwaukee Electric work car D13:

The trolley freight train, led by Commonwealth Edison loco 4:

Three South Shore Line cars (34, 40, and 504), hauled by a diesel locomotive:

South Shore Line line car 1100:

Illinois Central cars 1380 and 1198:

The 7-car train of CTA 6000s and single car units:

The train of CTA 6000s and single car units moves out of the way, allowing Illinois Central Highliners 1630 and 1637 to be seen as they pass the Depot:

Electric locos South Shore Line 803, Pennsylvania Railroad GG-1 4927, and Amtrak 945 finish up the Trolley Pageant:

Our Latest Book, Now Available:

The North Shore Line

FYI, my new Arcadia Publishing book The North Shore Line is now available for immediate shipment. My publisher decided to expand it to 160 pages, instead of the usual 128. That’s a 25% increase, without any change to the $23.99 price. I am quite pleased with how this turned out.

From the back cover:

As late as 1963, it was possible to board high-speed electric trains on Chicago’s famous Loop “L” that ran 90 miles north to Milwaukee. This was the Chicago North Shore & Milwaukee Railroad, commonly known as the North Shore Line. It rose from humble origins in the 1890s as a local streetcar line in Waukegan to eventually become America’s fastest interurban under the visionary management of Midwest utilities tycoon Samuel Insull. The North Shore Line, under Insull, became a worthy competitor to the established steam railroads. Hobbled by the Great Depression, the road fought back in 1941 with two streamlined, air-conditioned, articulated trains called Electroliners, which included dining service. It regained its popularity during World War II, when gasoline and tires were rationed, but eventually, it fell victim to highways and the automobile. The North Shore Line had intercity rail, commuter rail, electric freight, city streetcars, and even buses. It has been gone for nearly 60 years, but it will always remain the Road of Service.

Each copy purchased here will be signed by the author, and you will also receive a bonus North Shore Line map.  Books will ship by USPS Media Mail.

01. Beginnings
02. The Milwaukee Division
03. The Shore Line Route
04. The Skokie Valley Route
05. The Mundelein Branch
06. On the “L”
07. City Streetcars
08. Trolley Freight
09. The Long Goodbye
10. The Legacy

Title The North Shore Line
Images of America
Author David Sadowski
Edition illustrated
Publisher Arcadia Publishing (SC), 2023
ISBN 1467108960, 978-1467108966
Length 160 pages

The price of $23.99 includes shipping within the United States.

For Shipping to US Addresses:

New Compact Disc, Now Available:

The Last Chicago Streetcars 1958
# of Discs – 1
Price: $15.99

Until now, it seemed as though audio recordings of Chicago streetcars were practically non-existent. For whatever reason, the late William A. Steventon does not appear to have made any for his Railroad Record Club, even though he did make other recordings in the Chicago area in 1956.

Now, audio recordings of the last runs of Chicago streetcars have been found, in the collections of the late Jeffrey L. Wien (who was one of the riders on that last car). We do not know who made these recordings, but this must have been done using a portable reel-to-reel machine.

These important recordings will finally fill a gap in transit history. The last Chicago Transit Authority streetcar finished its run in the early hours of June 21, 1958. Now you can experience these events just as Chicagoans did.

As a bonus, we have included Keeping Pace, a 1939 Chicago Surface Lines employee training program. This was digitally transferred from an original 16” transcription disc. These recordings were unheard for 80 years.

Total time – 74:38

Help Support The Trolley Dodger

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8 thoughts on “70 for 70 at IRM (Part Two)

  1. There were some interesting mashups that you will never see again to get the total to 70. The IRM Electric Car Dept. must have been working for months to get some of those. cars either operable or able to be pushed and pulled.

  2. Sorry for the partial off topic, but can you please tell me in which post there is the roster of the streetcars that made it into the cta?

      • Thanks, let me ask another question: do you have a list of the cars (or at least red cars) repainted into cta green?

      • Andre Kristopans writes:

        25 old cars are known to be painted green:

        1723, 1728, 1733, 1740, 1742, 1749, 1757, 1764, 1775, 1777, 1779, 3122, 3127, 3163, 3167, 3207, 3208, 3228, 3250, 3366, 3381, 6160, 6163, 6172, 6178

        Note two Sedans above, repainted as two man cars. In addition 21 Sedans were rebuilt as one man and painted green, but never ran as such:

        3325, 3347, 3348, 3349, 3351, 3352, 3354, 3355, 3357, 3360, 3361, 3362, 3363, 3368, 3372, 3378, 3379, 6303, 6305, 6310, 6319

        From (James J.) Buckley notes

    • There are some that are operational, but since they have pantographs, there are certain places where the pans have to be lowered, since the museum’s wire is set up for trolley poles instead. Otherwise, the pans would snag on the wire and take it down. Those cars were set up to run on 1500v instead of the 600v that IRM uses, so they would also run at a slower speed. For the purposes of the 70th anniversary event, it was expedient to have them towed by a diesel engine, as everything had to be done quickly that day.

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