Alphabet Soup

LVT 1030 at Acorn Siding on August 19, 1951, less than a month before the Liberty Bell Limited interurban was abandoned.

LVT 1030 at Acorn Siding on August 19, 1951, less than a month before the Liberty Bell Limited interurban was abandoned.

Today, we take a bit of a spring break from our usual Chicago-area posts to head for other parts. In fact, we have a veritable alphabet soup of other properties to offer, with the most notable letters being LVT, DCT, and CO&P.

LVT

LVT stands for Lehigh Valley Transit, a Pennsylvania streetcar and interurban operator based out of Allentown. We have featured LVT photos on a couple of other occasions, and there are many great ones, LVT being one of the most well-documented transit networks of its time, the first half of the 20th century.

I would say that anyone who is a fan of the Chicago, North Shore & Milwaukee, the fabled North Shore Line, might very well like LVT’s Liberty Bell Limited too. They both operated at high speeds over long distances, but there were significant differences too. While the North Shore Line ran largely on flat Midwest plains, LVT had to contend with various hills and mountains, which presented numerous challenges.

LVT pulled off a very successful modernization between 1938 and 1941, which served them well during the difficult war years that followed. It’s a shame that they were only able to buy one of the Indiana Railroad lightweight high-speeds to go along with a dozen or so ex-Cincinnati & Lake Erie “Red Devils.” The IR cars could be coupled together and sometimes ran as many as three in a train, which LVT could not do with the C&LE cars.

The C&LE interurban had no use for multiple unit operation, as they barely had enough power supply to run the cars one at a time. But LVT would have benefited from them, as during World War II it often had to run multiple cars closely following each other in order to meet demand. Since the Liberty Bell Limited was mainly single track with numerous passing sidings, this was an accident literally waiting to happen. Some bad accidents did take place, which signaled the beginning of the end for the storied interurban, which ceased running in September 1951.

In our post Ringing “The Bell” (December 7, 2015) we offered a glowing review of Central Electric Railfans’ Association bulletin 147, which is about the Liberty Bell interurban. If you have had any difficulty in obtaining a copy of this fine book, we are pleased to note that it is now back in stock and readily available from CERA. (Trolley Dodger Press is not affiliated with Central Electric Railfans’ Association.)

If you like these LVT photos, we posted more here back on December 14. Railfan and Railroad magazine also gave B-147 an excellent review in their March 2016 issue.

While few LVT cars were saved, 1030 is lovingly preserved at the Seashore Trolley Museum in Maine.

DCT

Streetcars have finally returned to the streets of Washington, D. C. after an absence of 54 years. While this has surely been controversial, mainly because of some very protracted delays and testing that ran on for years, they are back and that is a good thing, since people in general like streetcars. They are increasingly seen as an urban development tool, and more often than not, new systems soon lead to line extensions.

However, it’s also good to remember the fine system that the District of Columbia once had. If we could only have kept much of what there was, we would probably be better off today. And this is a lesson that must be learned in order to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past.

So, we offer some fine photos of both DC Transit and its predecessor, Capital Transit. DC Transit wanted to keep running streetcars but was forced to abandon by Act of Congress.

Here also are some rare films of Capital Transit from the 1950s:

C&OP

Our last bit of “alphabet soup” is the Chicago, Ottawa & Peoria, which never actually made it to Chicago, except via a connecting interurban. Once it lost this connection, it could not survive the Great Depression, and service went out in 1934.

Therefore, it should be no surprise that photos of the CO&P are extremely scarce and many of the pictures we do have are post-abandonment. The railfan movement was in its infancy in 1934.

The CO&P had another alphabet connection, and that is to the IT, or Illinois Terminal. It was a part of the Illinois Traction System, later reorganized as the Illinois Terminal Railroad, although its interurbans did not connect with the others owned by its parent. Some of its equipment did find later use on IT, however, including IT city streetcar 415, now at the Illinois Railway Museum.

Here are four rare CO&P photos for your enjoyment.

-David Sadowski

PS- We have three new audio CD collections available for your listening pleasure. See more details at the end of this post.

The former Indiana Railroad car 55, newly transformed into LVT 1030, at 8th and St. John streets on September 17, 1941. This is the rear of the car. Presumably, it's making a backup move. The success of LVT's 1938-39 modernization program encouraged management to buy one more car, which became the jewel of the fleet. Note the rounded rear end as opposed to the squared-off ends of the similar ex-Cincinnati & Lake Erie cars. The difference is that the IR lightweights could operate in multiple units, and hence needed more clearance for turning.

The former Indiana Railroad car 55, newly transformed into LVT 1030, at 8th and St. John streets on September 17, 1941. This is the rear of the car. Presumably, it’s making a backup move. The success of LVT’s 1938-39 modernization program encouraged management to buy one more car, which became the jewel of the fleet. Note the rounded rear end as opposed to the squared-off ends of the similar ex-Cincinnati & Lake Erie cars. The difference is that the IR lightweights could operate in multiple units, and hence needed more clearance for turning.

LVT 1002 picks up some passengers on Washington Street on April 1, 1951. Note the dent on the front of the car.

LVT 1002 picks up some passengers on Washington Street on April 1, 1951. Note the dent on the front of the car.

Don's Rail Photos says, "1102 was built by Cincinnati Car in August 1929, #3025, as D&TRy 203. It was returned to Cincinnati Car in 1932, and in 1938 it was sold to LVT as 1102. In 1949 it was sold to Speedrail, but was not rehabilitated until March 1951. But it only ran for 3 months as 66 before the line was abandoned and then scrapped in 1952." Here, LVT 1102 is shown on a flatcar at Riverside in late 1949 for its trip to Speedrail. This was a Cincinnati curved-side car, and had been used on LVT's "other" interurban, the Easton Limited, where these cars proved to be underpowered for the hilly terrain and had difficulty maintaining schedules kept by the cars they replaced.

Don’s Rail Photos says, “1102 was built by Cincinnati Car in August 1929, #3025, as D&TRy 203. It was returned to Cincinnati Car in 1932, and in 1938 it was sold to LVT as 1102. In 1949 it was sold to Speedrail, but was not rehabilitated until March 1951. But it only ran for 3 months as 66 before the line was abandoned and then scrapped in 1952.” Here, LVT 1102 is shown on a flatcar at Riverside in late 1949 for its trip to Speedrail. This was a Cincinnati curved-side car, and had been used on LVT’s “other” interurban, the Easton Limited, where these cars proved to be underpowered for the hilly terrain and had difficulty maintaining schedules kept by the cars they replaced.

LVT 702 is "at speed" southbound at West Point in this wintry February 11, 1951 view.

LVT 702 is “at speed” southbound at West Point in this wintry February 11, 1951 view.

Either this April 1, 1951 picture of LVT 1020 was taken with a fisheye lens, or it demonstrates the kind of hilly terrain that LVT had to navigate through, unlike the Midwest interurbans. This broadside was taken at Jordan and Washington streets.

Either this April 1, 1951 picture of LVT 1020 was taken with a fisheye lens, or it demonstrates the kind of hilly terrain that LVT had to navigate through, unlike the Midwest interurbans. This broadside was taken at Jordan and Washington streets.

It's April 21, 1952, seven months after abandonment of the Liberty Bell interurban, and work cars #1 and 548 are in the scrap line at Bethlehem Steel on Daly Avenue. By this point, anything not needed for the city streetcars, which continued to run for another year, was being gotten rid of.

It’s April 21, 1952, seven months after abandonment of the Liberty Bell interurban, and work cars #1 and 548 are in the scrap line at Bethlehem Steel on Daly Avenue. By this point, anything not needed for the city streetcars, which continued to run for another year, was being gotten rid of.

LVT 702 passes one of the ex-C&LE lightweights in the 1000-series at Seller's Siding on February 11, 1951.

LVT 702 passes one of the ex-C&LE lightweights in the 1000-series at Seller’s Siding on February 11, 1951.

LVT 812 at Allentown in August, 1947. (C. Edward Hedstrom Photo)

LVT 812 at Allentown in August, 1947. (C. Edward Hedstrom Photo)

An interior view of newly renovated LVT 812, as it looked on November 11, 1939. It is a shame that this car was not saved.

An interior view of newly renovated LVT 812, as it looked on November 11, 1939. It is a shame that this car was not saved.

Most of the Liberty Bell route was single track with numerous passing sidings, such as this one, where 1020, on a fantrip, has to telephone in to the dispatcher and wait for instructions before proceeding. This type of operation, once so common among early interurbans, resulted in some terrible collisions over the years.

Most of the Liberty Bell route was single track with numerous passing sidings, such as this one, where 1020, on a fantrip, has to telephone in to the dispatcher and wait for instructions before proceeding. This type of operation, once so common among early interurbans, resulted in some terrible collisions over the years.

LVT 912, dressed in bunting at Fairview car barn for the last run of an Allentown streetcar, on June 7 1953.

LVT 912, dressed in bunting at Fairview car barn for the last run of an Allentown streetcar, on June 7 1953.

LVT express freight motor C-16 near 69th Street terminal in January 1951. Even though LVT stopped running passenger service over the Red Arrow in 1949, freight service continued over the line as it helped pay the bills.

LVT express freight motor C-16 near 69th Street terminal in January 1951. Even though LVT stopped running passenger service over the Red Arrow in 1949, freight service continued over the line as it helped pay the bills.

LVT freight motor C-17 approaches Norristown terminal on the Philadelphia and Western in January 1951. Although the Liberty Bell Limited cars stopped running on the P&W in 1949, freight operations continued right up to the time of the September 1951 abandonment.

LVT freight motor C-17 approaches Norristown terminal on the Philadelphia and Western in January 1951. Although the Liberty Bell Limited cars stopped running on the P&W in 1949, freight operations continued right up to the time of the September 1951 abandonment.

LVT 1006 heads from Norristown to Philadelphia over the P&W in June 1949.

LVT 1006 heads from Norristown to Philadelphia over the P&W in June 1949.

DC Transit 1101 in front of the Capitol Building on January 21, 1962, shortly before the end of streetcar service, for 54 years, anyway. Sderailway adds: "car 1101 (St. Louis Car 1937) heads west on Pennsylvania Ave. NW from the Navy Yard at 8th and M sts SE. The car has just passed the Peace Monument seen between the back of the car and the US Capitol Building."

DC Transit 1101 in front of the Capitol Building on January 21, 1962, shortly before the end of streetcar service, for 54 years, anyway. Sderailway adds: “car 1101 (St. Louis Car 1937) heads west on Pennsylvania Ave. NW from the Navy Yard at 8th and M sts SE. The car has just passed the Peace Monument seen between the back of the car and the US Capitol Building.”

DC Transit 1122 on Pennsylvania Avenue at 14th St. NW on March 2, 1956. Sderailway writes: "car 1122 is completing its turn from south on 14th to south east on Pennsylvania Ave. NW on its way to the rt. 54 terminal at the Navy Yard carbarn. The ornate beaux-arts Willard hotel (1901) looms in the background."

DC Transit 1122 on Pennsylvania Avenue at 14th St. NW on March 2, 1956. Sderailway writes: “car 1122 is completing its turn from south on 14th to south east on Pennsylvania Ave. NW on its way to the rt. 54 terminal at the Navy Yard carbarn. The ornate beaux-arts Willard hotel (1901) looms in the background.”

Capitol Transit 1051, a 1935 pre-PCC car, stops for photos on a 1950s fantrip. Looks like the young man in front of the car has just taken a picture of the passing PCC. That odd line on the front of 1051's front window appears to be some sort of windshield wiper. Sderailway adds: "car 1051 and 1587, St. Louis Car 1935 and 1945 respectively are operating on overhead most likely somewhere on the Maryland lines, Rts 80-82. Note the automatic trolley pole retriever device mounted on car 1578. Only a few cars in the system were fitted with this device. This device would be activated when the car was spotted over the plow-pit on an outbound trip and the pit-man would remove the conduit current-collecting plow* and the trolley pole would automatically be raised until the trolley-shoe nested onto the underside of a flat tapered pan that would self engage the shoe onto the overhead as the car moved forward. On the inbound trip a plow would be attached from the plow-pit and the trolley pole lowered by the retriever. * when operating under overhead the cars carried no conduit plow."

Capitol Transit 1051, a 1935 pre-PCC car, stops for photos on a 1950s fantrip. Looks like the young man in front of the car has just taken a picture of the passing PCC. That odd line on the front of 1051’s front window appears to be some sort of windshield wiper. Sderailway adds: “car 1051 and 1587, St. Louis Car 1935 and 1945 respectively are operating on overhead most likely somewhere on the Maryland lines, Rts 80-82. Note the automatic trolley pole retriever device mounted on car 1578. Only a few cars in the system were fitted with this device. This device would be activated when the car was spotted over the plow-pit on an outbound trip and the pit-man would remove the conduit current-collecting plow* and the trolley pole would automatically be raised until the trolley-shoe nested onto the underside of a flat tapered pan that would self engage the shoe onto the overhead as the car moved forward. On the inbound trip a plow would be attached from the plow-pit and the trolley pole lowered by the retriever. * when operating under overhead the cars carried no conduit plow.”

Before Marvel Comics had a "silver Surfer," DC Transit had their own superhero, the "Silver Sightseer," the first air-conditioned streetcar. While 1512 managed to survive the 1962 shutdown, it was later damaged in a fire at the National Capital Trolley Museum and scrapped.

Before Marvel Comics had a “silver Surfer,” DC Transit had their own superhero, the “Silver Sightseer,” the first air-conditioned streetcar. While 1512 managed to survive the 1962 shutdown, it was later damaged in a fire at the National Capital Trolley Museum and scrapped.

chicago184

The Silver Sightseer began running in 1957. Washington, D. C. can get very hot in the summer, and I am sure this car was a welcome relief.

The Silver Sightseer began running in 1957. Washington, D. C. can get very hot in the summer, and I am sure this car was a welcome relief.

CO&P city car 112 at the La Salle car barns.

CO&P city car 112 at the La Salle car barns.

CO&P express freight motor 1050 at the La Salle car barns in 1934. According to Don's Rail Photos, "1050 was built by St. Louis in 1905 for the Illinois Traction. On September 11, 1928, it went to Ottawa, It appears that it was not relettered before retirement in 1934."

CO&P express freight motor 1050 at the La Salle car barns in 1934. According to Don’s Rail Photos, “1050 was built by St. Louis in 1905 for the Illinois Traction. On September 11, 1928, it went to Ottawa, It appears that it was not relettered before retirement in 1934.”

CO&P freight motor 1523 at the Ottawa shops in 1934. This was a so-called "pull car" that was used as a locomotive.

CO&P freight motor 1523 at the Ottawa shops in 1934. This was a so-called “pull car” that was used as a locomotive.

CO&P car 57, the "Western Special," at the Ottawa Shops in 1934.

CO&P car 57, the “Western Special,” at the Ottawa Shops in 1934.


Help Support The Trolley Dodger

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This is our 127th 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 136,000 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. You can make a donation there as well.

As we have said before, “If you buy here, we will be here.”

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New From Trolley Dodger Records

Screen Shot 03-16-16 at 06.58 PM.PNG Screen Shot 03-17-16 at 12.44 AM.PNG

Red Arrow Lines 1967: Straffords and Bullets
# of Discs – 1
Price: $14.95

This disc features rare, long out-of-print audio recordings of two 1967 round trips on the Philadelphia & Western (aka “Red Arrow Lines”) interurban between Philadelphia and Norristown, the famous third rail High-Speed Line. One trip is by a Strafford car and the other by one of the beloved streamlined Bullets. The line, about 13 miles long and still in operation today under SEPTA, bears many similarities to another former interurban line, the Chicago Transit Authority‘s Yellow Line (aka the “Skokie Swift”). As a bonus feature, we have included audio of an entire ride along that five mile route, which was once part of the North Shore Line.

Total time – 53:08


P1060550

AFR
Steam Sounds of America’s First Railroad
(Baltimore & Ohio)
# of Discs – 1
Price: $14.95

This set represents the only professionally produced audio recordings of a large assortment of Baltimore and Ohio steam locomotives. Every type of steam power operated by the B&O in the 1950s is included. This release is for the serious railfan and railroad historian who want to accurately hear regular revenue steam motive power operations. No excursion or railfan trips have been included. All recordings are from 1952-1955.

Total time – 66:54


P1060549 P1060551

RRC #21 and SIC
Duluth and Northeastern
Steam in Colorado
# of Discs – 1
Price: $14.95

Railroad Record Club #21:
The Duluth and Northeastern Railroad, as of 1961 when this recording was made, was an all steam short line operating from Cloquet to Saginaw, Minnesota, a distance of approximately 11.5 miles. Its primary industry was the Northwest Paper Company mill at Cloquet where it handled loads to and from the interchange at Saginaw with the Duluth, Missabe and Iron Range. It also connected with the N. P., G. N. and C. M. ST. P & P., at Cloquet. We hear from locomotives No. 27 (2-8-0) and 29 (0-8-0).

Record #SIC:
Steam in Colorado (1958) presents five great railroads, depicting the passing of an era. Roads represented are the Union Pacific, Burlington, Colorado & Southern, Rio Grande and Great Western. Steam in Colorado portrays the daily tasks of the “Iron Horse” in high country and each track has been carefully selected for the listener’s enjoyment. All aboard!

Total time – 61:55


Throwback Thursday

A recent post mentioned a May 25, 1958 CERA fantrip, where Chicago Transit Authority personnel brought out cars from their historical collection to pose for photographs. Here is another such car taken out that day, Chicago street railway post office #6, built in 1891 and currently preserved at the Fox River Trolley Museum in South Elgin.

A recent post mentioned a May 25, 1958 CERA fantrip, where Chicago Transit Authority personnel brought out cars from their historical collection to pose for photographs. Here is another such car taken out that day, Chicago street railway post office #6, built in 1891 and currently preserved at the Fox River Trolley Museum in South Elgin.

This is “Throwback Thursday,” so rather than have an over-arching theme, we present several interesting photos spanning the 1940s to the 1970s that we hope you will enjoy.

Happy New Year!

-David Sadowski


Help Support The Trolley Dodger

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This is our 110th post, and we are gradually creating a body of work and an online resource for the benefit of all railfans, everywhere.

You can help us continue our original transit research by checking out the fine products in our Online Store. You can make a donation there as well.

As we have said before, “If you buy here, we will be here.”

We thank you for your support.

PS- As we approach our one-year anniversary this month, the deadline for renewing our premium WordPress account comes due in less than ten days. This includes out Internet domain www.thetrolleydodger.com, much of the storage space we use for the thousands of files posted here, and helps keep this an ads-free experience for our readers. Your contributions towards this goal are greatly appreciated, in any amount.


Updates

George Foelschow writes:

Some time ago, I mentioned that I had two CSL/CTA surface track maps and offered to scan them for The Trolley Dodger. Well, I am confined at home today thanks to an El Nino storm and finally got around to it.

I think the CSL 1939 map is notable in that it probably represents the maximum extent of surface track in Chicago. It includes the Roosevelt and Cermak extensions into Burnham Park, 47th Street into the same park, and the full extent of 87th Street. Add in improbable and early abandonments like Franklin/Elm, Erie, and Fulton. The only stretch already gone is the Chicago Avenue line along Lake Shore Drive and into the Navy Pier area. There is even a stretch of dead track on Jefferson Street between VanBuren and Jefferson, which showed up on a photo published on your blog recently. Maybe sharp eyes can detect other anomalies.

I just received the long-awaited “New Look” data disc and am looking forward to settling down with that.

We thank Mr. Foelschow for his generosity. Both of these supervisor’s maps have been added to our E-book Chicago’s PCC Streetcars: The Rest of the Story, available from our Online Store. Now, our unique collection includes the track maps from 1939, 1941, 1946, 1948, 1949, 1952, and 1954.


Recent Correspondence

Olin Anderson of Walla Walla, Washington, who worked for the Chicago Area Transportation Study in the 1990s, asked if we could clear up some mysteries regarding track arrangements on the CTA Congress rapid transit line (featured in our recent E-Book The “New Look” in Chicago Transit: 1938-1973, which you can also find in our Online Store.

Here is what I believe at present:

1. The third track planned for Congress between DesPlaines and Laramie was intended to be used by CA&E as an express track that would keep CA&E and CTA trains separated.

2. The original transfer point between the two railroads was intended to be Laramie, where CA&E’s tracks ended and CTA’s began. These plans were eventually changed and DesPlaines became the transfer point. Meanwhile, CTA paid $1m to CA&E for their “infrastructure” between Laramie and DesPlaines Avenue, even though all this was due to be replaced soon anyway.

3. CA&E went back and forth on whether they would run their trains downtown even after completion of the new right-of-way. They made statements at varying times both ways.

4. CTA’s general preference would have been for CA&E to not run downtown since this would have complicated their operation of the line. They also felt that with the speed improvement of the new route, even if CA&E riders had to change to CTA they would still get downtown faster.

5. Expansion of the DesPlaines yard was an afterthought. The original plans envisioned a track connection to the old Laramie Yard. I have read that this was to be a flyover, but it would have made more sense to have a subway under the highway.

6. The City wanted Lake to be routed onto Congress via a new elevated connection. The location of this changed over the years, from about 3200 W. to 4400 W.

7. From the point where Lake was to be routed onto Congress there would have been four tracks. The two extra subway portals near Halsted were intended for use by Lake trains, as they would have gone into a new “distributor” subway.

8. CTA kept a portion of the old Humboldt Park branch until late 1961 as a potential storage area for CA&E trains.

9. There was talk right near the end (1957) of building a ramp for CA&E trains to connect with the “L” system. Presumably this would have been on the other side of the ramp that was built, and would have permitted CA&E trains to run downtown via the Paulina Connector and the Lake line to circle the Loop.

10. In 1953, when the track connection between CTA and CA&E was severed, that was fine with both of them, because they did not want to have to pay each other to run on each other’s tracks.

Thanks.

In the Comments section of a recent post, Jeff Weiner and I corresponded about the CTA’s PCC Conversion Program, a subject also covered in Chicago’s PCC Streetcars: The Rest of the Story. Thanks to Phil Becker, here are a couple of his photos showing cars going back and forth between CTA and St. Louis Car Company in 1957:

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

Here is a postwar Chicago PCC streetcar in the Streator Yard of the Santa Fe, on its way to St. Louis Car Company as part of the CTA's "conversion program." (Phil Becker Photo)

Here is a postwar Chicago PCC streetcar in the Streator Yard of the Santa Fe, on its way to St. Louis Car Company as part of the CTA’s “conversion program.” (Phil Becker Photo)


Again, thanks to Phil Becker, here are some of his pictures from a Central Electric Railfans’ Association fantrip held on May 27, 1973 using 4000-series “L” cars which were just being retired around this time. The occasion was CERA’s 35th anniversary.

Two 4000s remain on CTA property more than 90 years after they were put into service and are operated on special occasions.

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)

(Phil Becker Photo)


Off-Street Chicago Bus and Streetcar Loops

Andre Kristopans has updated and expanded the list of off-street loops he recently shared with us:

Limits Garage 1860’s out 7/3/94
Root/Halsted 1/1895 out 8/9/53
Cable Ct/Harper 7/08 out 6/21/59
Wentworth/63 11/08 out 6/22/58
Western/Flournoy 6/09 out 7/18/65
Cottage Grove/72 11/10 out 9/28/56
State/63 1/11 out 1/9/57
Western/Roscoe 7/11 out 1/24/51
Vincennes/80 8/11 out 1990’s
Clark/Arthur 11/11 active
Halsted/79 12/12 active
63/King 6/13 out 6/28/69 (temporarily reactivated circa 1977 when Ryan L out of service at 18th)
Halsted/Waveland 3/15 active
Clark/Howard 4/15 out 12/3/61
75/Lakefront 5/15 active (cul-de-sac)
Broadway/Ardmore 12/15 out 12/26/63
Torrence/112 3/17 active
Devon/Sheridan 5/17 (CMC) out 10/18/53
Archer/Cicero 12/17 active (relocated 1955)
Navy Pier 6/21 active (relocated 1959, relocated again 1990’s)
Madison/Austin 7/21 active
Milwaukee/Imlay 9/27 active
Montrose/Milwaukee 1/25/31 out 9/23/78
Montrose/Narragansett 1/25/31 out 9/3/78
Belmont/Pacific 5/30/31 out 1/9/49
18th/Lake Shore 6/33 out 3/9/49
Roosevelt/Columbus 8/33 out 4/11/53
Hamlin/Fulton (CMC) 6/35 out 2/11/53
Belmont/Central 5/30/31 out 1/9/49 (relocated across street 9/16/35)
Diversey/Western 9/12/35 out 7/1/55
Diversey/Neva 10/4/38 active
Caldwell/Central 8/39 (relocated 10/29/61)
83/Green Bay 5/13/40 out 10/30/63
Bell & Howell 12/5/42 out 03/08/87
76/Keeler 7/26/43 out 3/16/53
76/Kilpatrick 7/26/43 out 6/21/59
Pershing/Western Blvd parking lot east of intersection 8/28/45 out 2/14/48
Pershing/Ashland parking lot west of intersection 8/28/45 out 1947
115/Cottage Grove 9/23/45 out 6/16/63 (south of 115th)
Montrose/Broadway 7/29/46 out 6/22/80
Monroe Parking Lot (CMC) 8/15/46 out 1972
Soldier Field Parking Lot (CMC) 8/15/46 out 9/12/83
Merchandise Mart Plaza 9/16/46 out 1987
Torrence/128 10/21/46 relocated to 130th west of Torrence 6/21/78, out 9/11/81
Torrence/112 10/21/46 out 4/25/48 (south of RR)
74/Damen 11/1/46 active
Irving Park/Cumberland 2/4/47 active (moved 1/24/64)
87/Western 5/22/47 active
Damen/Elston 6/19/47 out 9/30/63
84/State 6/28/47 out 11/26/58
116/Burley (Republic Steel) 6/30/47 out 11/30/86
Cortland/Paulina 8/31/47 out 4/17/59
31/Ellis 2/29/48 out 9/27/56
Narragansett/63 Pl 4/25/48 active
63/Archer 4/25/48 active (relocated 1990’s)
Harlem/64 Pl 6/15/48 active
Western/79 7/31/48 active
Devon/Kedzie 9/13/48 active
Irving Pk/Neenah 11/17/48 (moved from S to N of Irving Pk 7/9/58) out 1/24/88
16th/47th Ct 12/12/48 active
Belmont/Halsted 1/9/49 active
Belmont/Cumberland 1/9/49 active
Belmont/Octavia 1/9/49 active
Western/Berwyn 1/10/49 active
Western/Howard 2/17/49 active
North/Clybourn 7/3/49 out 12/28/08
Lehigh/Touhy 7/14/49 out 2/20/55
Cermak/Harlem (West Towns Garage) 8/13/49 out 1/16/57
Harrison/Central 8/14/49 active
Addison/Pontiac (CMC) 8/17/49 active
Western/Leland 11/14/49 active
Fullerton/Parkside 12/4/49 out 9/8/85
North/Clark 12/4/49 active
North/Narragansett 12/4/49 active
Jersey/Peterson 5/13/50 out 9/7/73
31/California 5/17/50 out 9/2/80
111/Harding 10/21/50 active
Central/Milwaukee 11/17/50 out 9/24/70
Grand/Nordica 4/1/51 active
47/Lake Park 4/15/51 active (moved from W of Lake Park to E 7/26/66)
Cicero/Pensacola 5/10/51 active
Lincoln/Wrightwood 7/2/51 out 4/27/60
Elston/Kentucky 7/19/51 out 7/8/55
Pulaski/Peterson 7/20/51 active
Archer/Neva 11/2/51 active
Lincoln Village 11/13/51 out 1/30/55 (McCormick N of Lincoln)
Lincoln/Whipple 11/23/51 out 4/9/84
Cicero/24 Pl 11/25/51 active
31/Komensky 12/6/51 active
Logan Square 12/19/51 out 1/31/70
North/Winchester 5/5/52 out 9/7/73
Grand/Latrobe 5/24/52 active
Cermak/54 Av 5/25/52 active (moved 8/18/03)
Fairbanks/Ontario 7/20/52 out 1990’s, new built 2000’s
79/Lakefront 8/11/52 relocated 2012
Roosevelt/Monitor 9/7/52 out 2000’s
Pulaski/Foster 9/8/52 out 1990’s
95/Western Evergreen Plaza 9/28/52 out 12/20/15
Chicago/Mayfield 12/13/52 active (moved to Austin 11/21/88)
Roosevelt/Wabash 5/12/53 out 4/15/73
Racine/87 5/28/53 active
26/Kenton 6/18/53 out 6/12/77
Desplaines/Congress 10/9/53 active relocated numerous times until 2/23/81
Jackson/Central Fieldhouse 10/29/53 out 7/8/55
Niles Center/Pratt 11/15/53 out 1/15/54
Kedzie/63 Pl 12/15/53 active
42/Packers 2/14/54 out 11/9/70 (moved 4/22/63)
87/Cicero 8/13/54 active moved to shopping center across Cicero 12/29/96
Ashland/95 11/4/54 active
California/Addison 11/26/54 out 3/31/13
Grand/Natchez 12/20/54 out 2/22/67
Western/119 2/9/55 active
Cermak/47 Av 4/17/55 out 6/29/86
Jackson/Austin 7/8/55 active
Forest Glen Garage 12/4/55 active
Damen/87 12/9/55 active
North Park Garage 12/4/55 no longer used as turnaround since 1/31/92
Cottage Grove/Burnside 8/22/56 out 4/1/91 (reactivated 6/17/07 to 8/23/10)
Brother Rice High School 9/10/56 active
Cermak Plaza 1/14/57 out 11/30/75
59/Keating 5/5/57 out 9/6/87
Howard/Kedzie 1/26/58 out 11/19/60 (east of Channel)
Jackson/Kedzie Garage 7/3/58 not used as turnaround since 1990’s
83/Wentworth 7/14/58 out 3/7/86
Teletype Corp 9/8/58 out 6/26/81
Pulaski/104 9/17/58 active
Cicero/64 11/27/58 out 11/7/93
Pulaski/77 6/21/59 out 6/1/62
79/Kilpatrick (Scottsdale) 6/21/58 out 3/5/00
Indianapolis/101 7/5/59 out 1970’s
Cumberland/Montrose 8/3/59 out 7/13/64
Howard/McCormick 11/3/60 active
Cermak/State 11/19/60 out 9/28/69
McCormick Place 11/19/60 out 1/16/67 account McCormick Place burned down
115/Pulaski 12/4/60 out 8/3/64
67/Oglesby 12/15/60 active
Howard/Hermitage 12/3/61 replaced 3/22/02
Pulaski/75 6/1/62 out 7/21/63
Pulaski/81 7/21/63 active
Beverly Garage 2/10/64 not used as turnaround after 11/19/03 (unofficially several years earlier)
Skokie Swift 4/19/64 active
Old Orchard 4/20/64 relocated to west mall entrance 2/11/74
Marist High School 8/24/64 out 8/30/07
Randolph/Lake Shore (Outer Drive East Apts) 9/14/64 out 3/7/75
55/St Louis 11/11/64 active replaced 2000’s
51/St Louis 1/13/65 out 11/7/93
115/Springfield 5/10/65 active
King Dr/Burnside 6/20/65 out 11/12/72
Ford City 8/12/65 active relocated 11/29/87
Luther High School (87/Sacramento) 11/24/65 out 1990’s
Pratt/Kedzie 8/1/66 out 6/23/03
Mercy Hospital 2/1/68 out 6/29/04?
Ashland/63 5/6/69 active
95/Dan Ryan 9/28/69 active
79/Perry 9/28/69 active
69/Dan Ryan 9/28/69 active
Cermak/Clark 9/28/69 out 12/10/76
Jefferson Park 2/1/70 active
Irving Park/Keystone 2/1/70 active
Belmont/Kimball 2/1/70 active
Logan Square 2/1/70 active
McCormick Place 1/2/71 out 1/80 account McCormick Place expansion
Olive/Harvey 2/8/71 active relocated 8/3/81 to west side of main bldg and 8/20/82 to s side of bldg
International Towers (Bryn Mawr/Delphia) 6/7/71 out 5/29/73
Wilson/E Ravenswood 1970’s out 12/15/12
King Dr/96 11/12/72 out 7/30/73 temporary Chicago State terminal
Pavilion Apts – 5/29/73 active (relocated to N side of complex 2/28/83)
Clark/Wisconsin 6/18/73 out 9/8/96
95/St Lawrence 7/30/73 active (not used 6/17/07 to 8/23/10 because of dispute with CSU)
South Blvd/Sheridan 09/10/73 out 6/20/03 inherited from Evanston Bus Co
Touhy/Overhill 10/25/74 – CTA has not used since 12/15/12 (replaced last Y terminal)
Randolph/Harbor (Harbor Point Apts) 3/7/75 active
North Riverside Park Mall 11/30/75 active (relocated closer to entrance 7/9/81)
Division/Austin 2/16/76 active
Lincoln Village (Lincoln/Jersey) 4/2/78 out 2/3/80
73/Oak Park 4/2/78 out 12/31/81
Field Museum turn-in on McFetridge 6/18/78 active
Chicago-Read Hospital 9/3/78 out 9/6/15 (relocated across Oak Park Av 10/6/96)
71/Pulaski (Shopping center parking lot) 6/22/80 active
Pratt/Central Park 12/8/80 out 3/8/87
Central/77 (St Laurence HS) 1980’s active
Evanston Twp High School Parking Lot 1/3/82 out 6/20/03
Harlem/Higgins 2/27/83 active
Cumberland/Bryn Mawr – 2/27/83 active
River Rd/Kennedy 2/27/83 – CTA stopped using 1/23/88
47/Laramie (trucking company parking lot) 7/2/84 out 6/21/92
Riverside Square (Archer/Ashland) 12/1/86 out 11/4/97
Skokie Courthouse 1/25/88 active
103rd Garage 6/26/88 active
Grand/Columbus 12/27/88 out 2/28/93
Church/Lamon (Skokie) (JCC) 6/25/90 out 6/21/91
Bryn Mawr/Lake Shore 7/19/93 active
Wright College 8/22/93 active
Archer/Halsted 10/31/93 active
Archer/Ashland 10/31/93 active
Western/49 10/31/93 active
Archer/Leavitt 10/31/93 active
Kedzie/49 10/31/93 active
Pulaski/51 10/31/93 active
59/Kilpatrick 10/31/93 active
King/24th Pl 10/30/94 active but no scheduled service since 12/14/12
McCormick Place South driveway 2/8/97 out ca 1998 as impractical
Desplaines/Harrison 3/9/97 active
Nature Museum (Cannon/Fullerton) 12/12/99 active
Kostner/74 6/25/00 active
Golf/Waukegan (Avon Corp parking lot) 6/24/02 active
Central Park/Cleveland (Rand-McNally Skokie) 6/23/03 out 9/5/09
Lincolnwood Town Center Mall 6/19/06 active
Pullman Plaza parking lot (Doty W/109) 9/11/13
74th Garage first used as turnaround 3/30/14 active


More “Throwback” Photos:

Indiana Railroad car 65 at the Illinois Electric Railway Museum in North Chicago. The date given for this picture is 1955. Behind it is, I think, North Shore Line city streetcar 354. To the right is North Shore Line 161, which presents somewhat of a mystery since this car was not preserved after abandonment. The original museum site, however, was adjacent to the North Shore Line, so this must be an in-service car and not part of the museum's collection.

Indiana Railroad car 65 at the Illinois Electric Railway Museum in North Chicago. The date given for this picture is 1955. Behind it is, I think, North Shore Line city streetcar 354. To the right is North Shore Line 161, which presents somewhat of a mystery since this car was not preserved after abandonment. The original museum site, however, was adjacent to the North Shore Line, so this must be an in-service car and not part of the museum’s collection.

An interior view of a Red Arrow Bullet car in 1960. Note the similarity of these bucket seats and those on Indiana Railroad car 65, built around the same time as this car (1931).

An interior view of a Red Arrow Bullet car in 1960. Note the similarity of these bucket seats and those on Indiana Railroad car 65, built around the same time as this car (1931).

North Shore Line city streetcar 356 in Milwaukee on May 13, 1951. Sister car 354 is preserved at the Illinois Railway Museum.

North Shore Line city streetcar 356 in Milwaukee on May 13, 1951. Sister car 354 is preserved at the Illinois Railway Museum.

A sign advertising South Shore Line interurban service to the Indiana Dunes at Howard Street in Chicago, 1949.

A sign advertising South Shore Line interurban service to the Indiana Dunes at Howard Street in Chicago, 1949.

In this July1947 view, photographer Perry Frank Johnson captured Chicago South Shore & South Bend freight locomotive #1002 on busy Franklin Street in Michigan City, Indiana.

In this July1947 view, photographer Perry Frank Johnson captured Chicago South Shore & South Bend freight locomotive #1002 on busy Franklin Street in Michigan City, Indiana.

With the recent news that the new but long-delayed Washington, DC streetcar may open by the end of February, we thought we would post this view of DC Transit #1512, the air conditioned "Silver Sightseer" near the Capital Building on August 22, 1961.

With the recent news that the new but long-delayed Washington, DC streetcar may open by the end of February, we thought we would post this view of DC Transit #1512, the air conditioned “Silver Sightseer” near the Capital Building on August 22, 1961.

Chicago & West Towns cars 153, 140, and 119 on the busy LaGrange line.

Chicago & West Towns cars 153, 140, and 119 on the busy LaGrange line.

Chicago & West Towns 155 on the LaGrange line in 1941.

Chicago & West Towns 155 on the LaGrange line in 1941.

C&WT cars 128, 104,122, and 152 at the car barn at Harlem and Cermak in 1941.

C&WT cars 128, 104,122, and 152 at the car barn at Harlem and Cermak in 1941.

Chicago & West Towns 140, sister car to the 141 now operating at the Illinois Railway Museum, at the south parking lot of the Brookfield Zoo in the 1940s.

Chicago & West Towns 140, sister car to the 141 now operating at the Illinois Railway Museum, at the south parking lot of the Brookfield Zoo in the 1940s.

A pair of CTA 6000s head north from the Merchandise Mart in this wintry 1963 scene.

A pair of CTA 6000s head north from the Merchandise Mart in this wintry 1963 scene.

A two-car train of CTA 6000s heads west at Lake and LaSalle in April 1964. Below the "L" at right, we see the Loop location of Discount Records, a local chain who once had a great selection of LPs.

A two-car train of CTA 6000s heads west at Lake and LaSalle in April 1964. Below the “L” at right, we see the Loop location of Discount Records, a local chain who once had a great selection of LPs.

In July 1963, a two-car CTA Ravenswood train of 6000s approaches Adams and Wabash from the south. When this picture was taken, both tracks on the Loop "L" ran in the same direction. At right we can see Carl Fischer's, sellers of sheet music for many years, at 312 S. Wabash.

In July 1963, a two-car CTA Ravenswood train of 6000s approaches Adams and Wabash from the south. When this picture was taken, both tracks on the Loop “L” ran in the same direction. At right we can see Carl Fischer’s, sellers of sheet music for many years, at 312 S. Wabash.

PCC Side Roll Signs

Kenosha PCC 4617, the SF Muni 1950s-style tribute car. (John DeLamater Photo)

Kenosha PCC 4617, the SF Muni 1950s-style tribute car. (John DeLamater Photo)

John DeLamater writes:

I found a sign shop here in Madison that made a nice replica of a vintage MUNI side roll sign for 4617. We installed it yesterday and it looks great. Photo attached. I am wondering if CTA PCCS in the 50s had side roll signs in a standee window, and if so, what destinations were listed. Do you happen to have any sources for that information?

Thanks for writing. That San Francisco tribute car sure looks good.

Yes, the Chicago PCCs had side roll signs, both prewar and postwar, as did both experimental cars (4001 and 7001). The postwar cars had them in a standee window.

You will find many, many pictures of these signs among the Chicago PCC pictures posted here on this web site.

Presumably, such signs were somewhat simpler in wording than the front signs, which were naturally a lot larger. In addition, I would imagine there were variations.

These signs were made via a silk-screening process in segments that were then stitched together. So, parts of a sign could be added and subtracted.

Offhand, I couldn’t say whether all PCCs had the same set of signs, or if the signs a car had were based on which Station (car barn) it ran out of. Perhaps our readers can enlighten us on that point. Surely there are fans out there who have such side rolls signs in their collections, and there is also the 4391 that can be checked at IRM.

One of our readers notes:

The side signs of the Post War PCCs differed between those built by Pullman-Standard and St Louis Car Company. The readings were probably the same, but the layouts were different. Pullman side signs were straight across with the route names such as CLARK-WENTWORTH. SLCC were often in two rows such as
CLARK
WENTWORTH.

It appears that there were three different sets of side signs based upon the car stations (Kedzie, 69th/Devon/77th, 38th-Cottage). Kedzie served Madison, Madison-Fifth; 69th/Devon/77th served Halsted, Clark-Wentworth, Broadway-State, Western and 63rd; 38th-Cottage served Cottage Grove.

The side signs for 69th/Devon/77th read as follows:

CHARTERED
BROADWAY-STATE
BROADWAY (added in 1955)
BROADWAY-WABASH
STATE
CLARK-WENTWORTH
CLARK
WENTWORTH
HALSTED
HALSTED-ARCHER-CLARK
WESTERN
63RD STREET
NOT IN SERVICE

The above readings were from a SLCC PCC.

George Trapp adds:

Actually the difference was not between Pullman and St.Louis but rather between first 200 cars 4052-4171, 7035-7114 which originally had route name such as CLARK-WENTWORTH squeezed into one line. The 400 cars of the second order 4172-4411, 7115-7274 had the route name on two lines.

Front signs between the two orders differed as well as built. On the front signs the style of the route numbers were more simplified on the second order and destinations with numbered streets showed 79th, 81st, 119th on first order versus 79, 81, 119 on second.

Thanks for this great information.

-D. S.

The CTA sign shop at work in the 1950s.

The CTA sign shop at work in the 1950s.