Following Up

This building, located at 6238 S. Wabash Avenue, is home (2003) to the Jitney Taxicab Association, a limousine service. The building was originally constructed as a wreck wagon barn for the Chicago City Railway Company. View looks west across Wabash Avenue. (William Shapotkin Photo)

This building, located at 6238 S. Wabash Avenue, is home (2003) to the Jitney Taxicab Association, a limousine service. The building was originally constructed as a wreck wagon barn for the Chicago City Railway Company. View looks west across Wabash Avenue. (William Shapotkin Photo)

Today, we are following up on three stories from previous Trolley Dodger posts.

First, guest contributor William Shapotkin shares some additional information with us about the former Chicago City Railway building we wrote about in Trolley Dodger Mailbag, 3-20-2016.

The “switch stand” mentioned also figured prominently in the May 25, 1950 catastrophic crash between Chicago PCC 7078 and a gasoline truck, which we wrote about here.  The collision occurred because the operator of 7078 thought he had been cleared to go straight, while the switch was set to divert streetcars into the loop to avoid a flooded viaduct.

CCRy Wreck Wagon Barn

Dave:

It has taken me some time to get around to writing you on this. Believe I can help with answering your questions about the CSL building at 6242 (although my slides indicate the building to be 6238) S. Wabash Ave.

The building, as I understand it, was constructed as a wagon barn — although it was unclear if it was for wreck wagons or those involved in overhead wire work. David Stanley and I visited the building on Oct 18, 2003. At the time, the structure housed vans of the “Jitney Taxicab Association.” We were allowed into the building. An inspection of the interior revealed that there were no rails in the floor and no signs of any overhead installation. The CSL call (telephone) box was still mounted on the outside of the building south of the doorways.

Rails of the one-time streetcar terminal (two tracks, extending east from State almost to Wabash) were still in-place on the north side of the building. Additionally, the rails leading into/out of the former streetcar loop at 62nd/State were still in-place thru the sidewalk along the east side of State St. The switch stand (perhaps not the correct term) for entry off of S/B State St into the 62nd/State loop (I believe) remains in-place under the pavement in State St. David Stanley photographed the switch stand in the 1970s and I recall seeing it in the 1980s.

Bill Shapotkin

Looking north on the east sidewalk if State Street from a point north of what would be 62nd Place. The rails are the northbound exit out of the 62nd Place streetcar loop-- used by PCCs in the post-World War II period. Amazingly, it's been sixty years since streetcars operated down this part of State Street. These rails still survive! (William Shapotkin Photo)

Looking north on the east sidewalk if State Street from a point north of what would be 62nd Place. The rails are the northbound exit out of the 62nd Place streetcar loop– used by PCCs in the post-World War II period. Amazingly, it’s been sixty years since streetcars operated down this part of State Street. These rails still survive! (William Shapotkin Photo)

Looking west across the east sidewalk of State, from a point north of what would be 62nd Place. The rails here are the northbound route out of the 62nd Place streetcar loop. (William Shapotkin Photo)

Looking west across the east sidewalk of State, from a point north of what would be 62nd Place. The rails here are the northbound route out of the 62nd Place streetcar loop. (William Shapotkin Photo)

Looking southeast across an empty lot between State and Wabash from a point south of 62nd Street. The CSL/CTA had a streetcar loop here (installed post-World War II). Prior to installation of the loop, the terminal consisted of a two-track stub facility located just north of the brick building with the smoke stack (center), which had originally been constructed as a Chicago City Railway wreck wagon barn. (William Shapotkin Photo)

Looking southeast across an empty lot between State and Wabash from a point south of 62nd Street. The CSL/CTA had a streetcar loop here (installed post-World War II). Prior to installation of the loop, the terminal consisted of a two-track stub facility located just north of the brick building with the smoke stack (center), which had originally been constructed as a Chicago City Railway wreck wagon barn. (William Shapotkin Photo)

Showing through the pavement in this 1970s view is a switch stand odd southbound State Street leading to the one-time 62nd Street streetcar loop. View looks south on State Street. (David S. Stanley Photo)

Showing through the pavement in this 1970s view is a switch stand odd southbound State Street leading to the one-time 62nd Street streetcar loop. View looks south on State Street. (David S. Stanley Photo)

CTA PCC car 7144, workign route 36 - Broadway-State, is seen heading southbound on State Street at the 62nd Place Loop in the 1950s. View looks north. (William C. Hoffman Photo, Wien-Criss Archive)

CTA PCC car 7144, workign route 36 – Broadway-State, is seen heading southbound on State Street at the 62nd Place Loop in the 1950s. View looks north. (William C. Hoffman Photo, Wien-Criss Archive)

CTA PCC car 7143, working route 36 - Broadway-State, is seen heading southbound on State Street as it passes the 62nd Place Loop in the 1950s. View looks north. (William C. Hoffman Photo, Wien-Criss Archive)

CTA PCC car 7143, working route 36 – Broadway-State, is seen heading southbound on State Street as it passes the 62nd Place Loop in the 1950s. View looks north. (William C. Hoffman Photo, Wien-Criss Archive)

CTA bus #6425, working route 29 - State, is seen heading southbound on State Street past one-time site of the infamous streetcar/gasoline truck collision of May 25, 1950. View looks north. (William Shapotkin Photo)

CTA bus #6425, working route 29 – State, is seen heading southbound on State Street past one-time site of the infamous streetcar/gasoline truck collision of May 25, 1950. View looks north. (William Shapotkin Photo)

This CSL call box is still standing on the south side of the east end of the building located at 6238 S. Wabash Avenue, now (2003) home to the Jitney Taxicab Association. The building was originally constructed as a wreck wagon barn for the Chicago City Railway Company. View looks west. (William Shapotkin Photo)

This CSL call box is still standing on the south side of the east end of the building located at 6238 S. Wabash Avenue, now (2003) home to the Jitney Taxicab Association. The building was originally constructed as a wreck wagon barn for the Chicago City Railway Company. View looks west. (William Shapotkin Photo)

This disturbed portion of the east sidewalk of State Street near what would be 62nd Street represents the entrance to the 62nd Place streetcar loop. View looks northwest. (William Shapotkin Photo)

This disturbed portion of the east sidewalk of State Street near what would be 62nd Street represents the entrance to the 62nd Place streetcar loop. View looks northwest. (William Shapotkin Photo)

In this 1970s view, we see the switch stand for the turnout into the 62nd Place and State Loop off the southbound track in State Street. View looks east. (David S. Stanley Photo)

In this 1970s view, we see the switch stand for the turnout into the 62nd Place and State Loop off the southbound track in State Street. View looks east. (David S. Stanley Photo)

This building, located at 6238 S. Wabash Avenue, is home (2003) to the Jitney Taxicab association-- a limousine service. The building was originally constructed as a wreck wagon barn for the Chicago City Railway Company. The one-time 6nd Place streetcar terminal had been located immediately south of the building at right-- in fact, both tracks of that terminal are still intact and surrounded by brick pavement. View looks southwest across Wabash Avenue. (William Shapotkin Photo)

This building, located at 6238 S. Wabash Avenue, is home (2003) to the Jitney Taxicab association– a limousine service. The building was originally constructed as a wreck wagon barn for the Chicago City Railway Company. The one-time 6nd Place streetcar terminal had been located immediately south of the building at right– in fact, both tracks of that terminal are still intact and surrounded by brick pavement. View looks southwest across Wabash Avenue. (William Shapotkin Photo)

This is the west end of the building located at 6238 S. Wabash Avenue, now home (2003) to the Jitney Taxicab Association-- a limousine service. The building was originally constructed as a wreck wagon barn for the Chicago City Railway Co. View looks east/southeast. (William Shapotkin Photo)

This is the west end of the building located at 6238 S. Wabash Avenue, now home (2003) to the Jitney Taxicab Association– a limousine service. The building was originally constructed as a wreck wagon barn for the Chicago City Railway Co. View looks east/southeast. (William Shapotkin Photo)

These rails, located between State Street and Wabash Avenue and north of the building at 6238 S. Wabash (the one-time CCRY Co. wreck wagon barn) had been the 62nd Street streetcar terminal. View looks northwest. (William Shapotkin Photo)

These rails, located between State Street and Wabash Avenue and north of the building at 6238 S. Wabash (the one-time CCRY Co. wreck wagon barn) had been the 62nd Street streetcar terminal. View looks northwest. (William Shapotkin Photo)

This building, located at 6238 S. Wabash Avenue, is home (2003) to the Jitney Taxicab Association, a limousine service. The building was originally constructed as a wreck wagon barn for the Chicago City Railway Company. View looks west across Wabash Avenue. (William Shapotkin Photo)

This building, located at 6238 S. Wabash Avenue, is home (2003) to the Jitney Taxicab Association, a limousine service. The building was originally constructed as a wreck wagon barn for the Chicago City Railway Company. View looks west across Wabash Avenue. (William Shapotkin Photo)


Next, we have happy news to report on the fate of Chicago Surface Lines car 1137, which was found last year in Wisconsin. We wrote about that car in our posts Lost and Found: Chicago Streetcar #1137 (June 5, 2015) and The Latest Thing in Houses (1946) (June 10, 2015).

CSL 1137 Is Saved

Frank Sirinek (left) and Jay Drouillard watch as preparations continue for moving the trolley out of Sharon and Bill Krapil's backyard in Weyauwega. (Angie Landsverk Photo)

Frank Sirinek (left) and Jay Drouillard watch as preparations continue for moving the trolley out of Sharon and Bill Krapil’s backyard in Weyauwega. (Angie Landsverk Photo)

From the Waupaca County News:

New home for Wega’s trolley

First acquisition for new museum

By Angie Landsverk

The trolley discovered almost a year ago in a Weyauwega backyard is the first acquisition for a museum being developed in a Michigan community.

“I’m so glad it went to something like this. To have something preserved that’s about 110 years old is amazing. I could not see it being destroyed,” said Sharon Krapil.

Last June 2, Krapil and her husband, Bill, watched as the walls of the brown shack in their backyard were removed, revealing a former Chicago electric streetcar behind them.

The couple bought the home at 300 W. South St. in April 2014 and wanted more space in their backyard.

That is why they hired a construction crew to dismantle the shack.

On March 29, they watched as a semi pulled the trolley, covered in shrink wrap as it sat on a trailer, out of their backyard and onto the street for its eight-hour drive to Grass Lake, Michigan.

The trolley, which the Chicago Surface Lines operated around 1905, is now being refurbished for the Lost Railway Museum.

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“The interurban (railway system) was part of the fabric of the country back then,” said Jay Drouillard, who is involved in Grass Lake’s Lost Railway Museum organization.

The system ran within and between cities and villages in the early 1900s.

“They didn’t have automobiles. If they could jump on an interuban car and ride to their destination, that was pretty good,” he said.

This year, a group of people in this Michigan community decided to open such a museum in a historic building in the community, he said.

“We acquired a building and will start transforming it into a museum later this year,” Drouillard said. “This is the first acquisition for the museum.”

The trolley, donated to the organization from the Krapils for $1, is a Chicago trolley car and never was used as an interurban, he said.

The Lost Railway Museum organization does have photographs of a trolley being used as an interurban to go to a nearby casino, Drouillard said.

“The photograph shows a car that was just like this. It is a sister car, part of a series,” he said. “We’re not going to pawn it (the Weyauwega trolley) off as an interurban. It’s a sister car. The only reason it still exists is because a structure was built around it.”

Most of those involved in the development of the new museum are retired, including Drouillard.

The group learned of the trolley and the Krapil’s desire to donate it to someone from Frank Sirinek, who for more than 50 years has been a volunteer at the Illinois Railway Museum, outside of Chicago.

That museum has a restored and operational trolley from the same series as the Krapil’s former trolley.

Trolley history

According to Sirinek, this type of car was the St. Louis Car Company’s first attempt, at the turn of the century, to manufacture a rubber stamp streetcar.

After 1908, other streetcar companies custom produced them on demand as cities ordered them.

The Chicago Surface Lines operated the electric streetcar from the 1100 series until about 1946, which is when cars like it became too small and slow for moving a lot of people, Sirinek said.

After World War II, the trolleys were sold to those wanting a place to live or stay, which is how they ended up throughout the Midwest, including in Weyauwega.

Sirinek became aware of the local trolley about 20 years ago, traveled to Weyauwega and took pictures of the structure built around it.

At that time, no one was living in it.

From about 1946 to 1948, the late Robert and Amanda (Mandy) Husberg lived in it with their three children – Amanda, Bob and William – before moving to Chicago.

News about the trolley being found behind the walls of the structure traveled to Brooklyn, New York, where Amanda saw a story about it on her local ABC newscast.

She recognized the brown siding and knew it was the trolley where she once lived after learning that it was found in the backyard of a small community in Wisconsin.

Last September, she stopped to see it on her way to visit family in the Plover area.

Both she and Krapil hoped a new home would be found for the trolley in Weyauwega, followed by its restoration.

“Weyauwega had a chance, but the city didn’t have the money,” Krapil said. “I was looking for any way to preserve it.”

Several others also expressed interest in it.

“In mid-March, we were contacted by the (Lost Railway) Museum. They said they wanted to come up and look at it,” she said.

Another person who had expressed interested in the trolley told the Krapils if someone wanted it, to give it away.

When representatives from the newly formed museum said they wanted the trolley, Krapil said she expected the move to take place in the summer.

“Then we got the call that they would be here March 28 to 29,” she said.

Sirinek also made the trip back to Weyauwega to watch the process.

A company that specializes in moving heavy items across the country accompanied members of the Lost Railway Museum organization.

“We’re going to restore it. We have a fantastic group of people involved,” Drouillard said. “The museum will be open by mid-year next year. This car will not be done by then.”

He said it will be restored for a static display.

“I’m so happy she’s going to be there with people who will respect her and take care of her,” Krapil said.

The Krapils look forward to visiting the museum in the future.

They have an open invitation to go there, as well as to the Illinois Railway Museum.

The couple plans to go to the Illinois museum this summer, where Sirinek told Krapil she “can even drive the trolley” and they will receive a personal tour.

Krapil said she is happy the trolley has a new home but also a bit sad.

When she looks out her kitchen window, she says, “It’s gone.”

However, she thinks about the many people she met because of the experience.

“They did a wonderful job,” she said.

Those involved in moving the trolley leveled off the backyard as best as they could and left grass seed for the Krapils to plant this spring.

Krapil called the trolley her “Grand Lady,” and said the story ended with a happy ending.

“It was an incredible journey with the trolley car, and I’ll treasure it for the rest of my life,” she said.

They wanted the trolley to be saved, appreciated and enjoyed by many.

“She’s gone to the right place, where she’ll get all of that and more,” she said.

The trolley is just about ready to be moved from Weyauwega to its new home in Grass Lake, Michigan. (Rosie Rowe Photo)

The trolley is just about ready to be moved from Weyauwega to its new home in Grass Lake, Michigan. (Rosie Rowe Photo)

This refurbished trolley from the same series as the one found in a Weyauwega backyard may be seen at the Illinois Railway Museum. (Photo courtesy of Frank Sirinek)

This refurbished trolley from the same series as the one found in a Weyauwega backyard may be seen at the Illinois Railway Museum. (Photo courtesy of Frank Sirinek)


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World’s Fair Buses

Finally, much new material regarding 1930s World’s Fair buses has been added to Trolley Dodger Mailbag, 3-27-2016. At this point, it is not entirely certain whether the buses used at A Century of Progress here in Chicago eventually made their way to Texas or not. Similar buses were used at the Texas Centennial Exposition in 1936. It’s possible that these were the Chicago buses, repainted and with the additional of some sheet metal. Or, they could just have been similar buses made for the Dallas fair.

-David Sadowski

World’s Fair Memorabilia Show

FYI, the 22nd Annual World’s Fair Memorabilia Show takes place on Sunday, April 17, 2016. The hours are 10am to 4pm and is being held at the Elk Grove Holiday Inn, 1000 Busse Road (Rt. 83 and Landmeier Rd.) in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. Admission is $6, $5 for seniors 65+. Early preview admission at 9am is available for $20. Tables are available for $100. ($110 after Feb. 1st) Please e-mail me if you would like a contract for a table.

There will be a special display of 1933 World’s Fair memorabilia. Collectors and dealers will meet to buy, sell and trade items related to World’s Fairs from 1876 to the present. The main focus will be on the 1933 & 1934 Chicago World’s Fair. There will also be items from the 1893 Chicago Columbian Exposition and other Chicago-related ephemera. There will be some items from other World’s Fairs including: 1904 St. Louis, 1939-40 New York, 1962 Seattle, 1964-65 New York, Expo ’67, etc. There will be over 20 tables of World’s Fair items for sale!

There will be continuous showings of home movies and newsreels on video from the 1933/34 Chicago A Century of Progress. World’s Fair collectors and fans of the fair are invited to come celebrate the 1933-34 Century of Progress and relive one of the brightest moments in Chicago’s history. (Two of the stars on Chicago’s flag commemorate the 1893 and 1933/34 Fairs!)


Help Support The Trolley Dodger

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This is our 132nd 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 145,000 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.


DONATIONS

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 possible and are greatly appreciated.


Trolley Dodger Mailbag, 3-27-2016

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Chicago, Ottawa & Peoria

Tim McGuire writes:

I’m attaching a photo of my grandfather, Arthur Defenbaugh from Streator, who was a conductor on the Streator to Ottawa branch, with his engineer, standing in front of their trolley. I don’t know when or where the picture was taken. We think it was Streator. I believe it was in the late 20’s as this is a metal trolley car. The trolley car number appears to be 18. I read on your website that you don’t have many operational era photos for the CO&P. I thought you would enjoy it.

If you have information about my grandfather or the other gentleman, please let me know.

 

Arthur Ingram Defenbaugh was born on October 6, 1881, and died in July 1972, aged 90. It appears he spent most of his working life as a farmer. His wife died in 1926 and it does not appear he ever remarried.

If any of our readers have additional information, please let us know, thanks.


Toronto Peter Witt Car 2766

Dave Barrett recently did some volunteer work on Toronto’s sole remaining Peter Witt streetcar (whiich is now 93 years old) at Hillcrest shops, to get the car ready for the annual Beaches Easter parade. He has generously shared his photos of car 2766 with us:

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CTA Kenwood, Stock Yards and Normal Park Shuttles

M. E. writes:

In this note I want to comment about photos of Indiana Ave. and Harvard Ave. in Chicago Rapid Transit Photos, Part Three (March 23, 2016).

You show the South Side L Indiana Ave. station in two pictures. I saw Andre Kristopans’ comment at the bottom, and I learned something from his comment: I had no idea the middle track west of the station was used for storing spare Stock Yards L cars. But I am sure Andre is correct.

The first photo shows a bigger scope. Let me start with the platform at the right.

Notice that the section of wood nearest the track looks newer than the wood under the cover. This is because the newer wood was constructed over the third track that went through the station. Yes, there were three tracks on the north / south main. The three tracks actually continued east of the station, then south on the north / south main to just north of the 43rd St. station, where the easternmost track merged into the middle track.

Also, prior to (I think) 1949, the Kenwood L did not end at Indiana Ave. Instead, it went downtown onto the Loop. I’m not sure where it went from the Loop — some sources say to Ravenswood, others say to Wilson. My own experience is that the Englewood ran to Ravenswood, and the Jackson Park ran to Howard, through the State St. subway. And I think the Kenwood ran to Wilson. There were several smaller stations north of Indiana that were serviced by the Kenwood L. The Englewood and Jackson Park were supposed to be express through that area but were frequently delayed by being behind Kenwood trains.

Back at the Indiana station, both the Kenwood trains and the Englewood / Jackson Park trains used the two outer tracks of the three-track main. South/east-bound Kenwood trains crossed over from the southernmost main track to the Kenwood L structure to head east.

Later, when the Kenwood was cut back to shuttle service from Indiana to 42nd Place, the wood was added to cover most of the north/westernmost outer main track, leaving (at the east end of the platform) the terminal for the Kenwood shuttle. As I recall, that space could accommodate two cars. When Kenwood cars needed service, they turned south onto the easternmost main track, merged into the northbound main near 43rd St., switched over to the southbound main, and made their way to the Jackson Park yards at 61st St. and lower 63rd St.

So the photo shows two main tracks through the station, which had been the middle and south/westernmost tracks of the three-track setup.

Regarding the platform at the left, you see that the Stock Yards L terminated on the south side of that platform. Its only connection to the rest of the L system was the set of switches west of the Indiana station.

The Indiana station had an overhead bridge connecting the two platforms, thus enabling north/west-bound customers to access the Stock Yards L, and south/east-bound customers to access the Kenwood shuttle.

Now, on to the picture showing the Normal Park L shuttle. I think it was in 1949 that the CTA relegated the Normal Park line to shuttle service. Before that, the Normal Park cars were hitched onto the rear of Englewood trains. So people riding the Englewood L southbound had to be alert that the last car would be split off and go to 69th and Normal. If someone was in the wrong car, he/she could move between cars, which is apparently taboo today.

The structures along the sides of the L track are where the connections were made and unmade. Workers were stationed there to do this. Yes, even in frigid weather. And with live third rails. OSHA would have had a fit. The motormen of northbound Normal Park trains rode the trains into the Harvard station, then down and under to the southbound platform, then onto the last car of incoming southbound trains.

You also see in the distance the switch tower where the Normal Park line branched off to the south.

When the Normal Park line became shuttle service, northbound trains went into the Harvard station. The motorman quickly changed ends, then immediately (so as not to delay northbound Englewood trains) proceeded to the switch over to the south/west-bound track. You can see this switch next to the bigger structure.

In the photo, I have no idea why the motorman of the Normal Park car is standing in the walkway between the tracks. Perhaps this picture was deliberately posed.

This photo was taken from the southwest end of the south/west-bound L platform at Harvard. The address on the food shop below is 6316 S. Harvard. Busy 63rd St. was just to the right, and a block south at 64th St. and Harvard Ave. was St. Bernard’s Hospital, which I believe is still there. Two blocks east of the Harvard L station was Englewood Union Station (New York Central, Nickel Plate, Pennsylvania, Rock Island), and three blocks west was the other Englewood train station (Erie, Monon, Wabash, Chicago and Eastern Illinois, Chicago and Western Indiana). Plus, there were several streetcar lines. All told, for a fan of anything on rails, it was nirvana.

 


Chicago or Copenhagen?

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I recently wrote to the Chicagotransit Yahoo discussion group about the above photo:

There’s a photo negative on eBay that is identified as showing a couple streetcars at the 1933-34 Chicago World’s Fair. Yet I don’t recognize where this could have been taken there.

I know that Chicago Surface Lines had a couple of line extensions built to bring people to the fair, but was not aware of any trolleys on the grounds themselves.

Is the photo misidentified, and if so, what does it actually show? To me, it looks like it could have been taken in Europe.

Dennis McClendon wrote:

The famous Copenhagen church (Grundtvigskirke) just behind the trams might be a good clue.

 

Pardon my stupidity, but I assume you mean the famous Copenhagen church in Copenhagen, and not one that was moved, brick by brick, to the 1933-34 Chicago World’s Fair?

I wonder what it was about this picture that made the seller guess that it was taken in Chicago. For transit on the fair grounds themselves, I am pretty sure they used buses of a type similar to those used at the 1939-40 New York World’s Fair.

Dennis McClendon replied:

The Century of Progress grounds stretched for three miles along the lakefront, from Roosevelt to 39th. Greyhound got the concession for motorized transport within the fairgrounds, driving these open-air trailer conveyances along a portion of Leif Eriksen Drive that later was part of South Lake Shore Drive.

Within the exhibits area, where motorized vehicles weren’t allowed, you could ride in a pushchair, providing summer employment to dozens of high school and college students.

 

Cent of Progress buses

Similar buses (actually, they look more like trucks) were also used at the 1939-40 NY World’s Fair. As it tuns out, they were not the same vehicles. This is explained in an article from Hemmings Motor News.

Apparently, the Chicago buses used at the fair were one-offs made by General Motors.

There were at least two types of buses used at the New York World’s Fair, a “tractor train” and a more streamlined bus. Neither looks much like the ones used in Chicago. The streamlined buses were made by Yellow Coach.

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After the fair ended in 1940, some of the streamlined buses were used to transport WAACs.

After the fair ended in 1940, some of the streamlined buses were used to transport WAACs.

The question has been raised as to whether or not the Chicago buses were then sold to Bowen Motor Coach for use at the Texas Centennial Exposition in 1936. You can see pictures of the Texas buses below, and there is also a quick view of them in a video clip here.

At this point, it’s not clear whether they were the same buses that were used in Chicago with a bit of new sheet metal attached, or simply similar buses built later by General Motors.

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A Greyhound Bus' tram drives in front of Chrysler motors Building at the Chicago World's Fair. (Photographer Unknown/www.bcpix.com)

A Greyhound Bus’ tram drives in front of Chrysler motors Building at the Chicago World’s Fair. (Photographer Unknown/www.bcpix.com)

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Buses purported to be those from the 1933-34 World's Fair, shown in Texas in 1939, where they were owned by the Bowen Bus Company.

Buses purported to be those from the 1933-34 World’s Fair, shown in Texas in 1939, where they were owned by the Bowen Bus Company.

A Bowen bus at the Texas Centennial Exposition in 1936. (J. Elmore Hudson Photo)

A Bowen bus at the Texas Centennial Exposition in 1936. (J. Elmore Hudson Photo)

The west facade of Grundtvigskirken today. Photo by Hans Andersen - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=266140

The west facade of Grundtvigskirken today. Photo by Hans AndersenOwn work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=266140


FYI, we have added another Liberty Bell Limited photo to our recent post Alphabet Soup (March 15, 2016):

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.


“Keeping Pace” – A Rare Chicago Surface Lines Recording

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We have a unique opportunity to buy a 16″ transcription disc made by the Chicago Surface Lines‘ public relations department in 1939. Chances are, this is a 30-minute radio program promoting CSL, most likely played a few times on local radio stations, and has been unheard since then. The script was written by Hollis Farley Peck (1909-1971).

For all we know, this recording may include the sounds of Chicago streetcars, which would be very rare.

It will not be easy to play this record due to the large (16″) size. Although this is a 33 1/3 rpm record, it used the same technology as the 78 rpm records of its time. The current LP system of vinyl records did not come about until 1948.

Such large recordings were necessary to provide a longer running time than a standard 78 rpm record, which could only last about 3:20. I assume that each side of this transcription disc has 15 minutes on it.

Once I have the record, I plan to consult with the Museum of Broadcast Communications here in Chicago. Possibly they may have the necessary equipment for playing it. If a successful recording can be made, we will digitally remaster it and issue it on a compact disc.

If MBC can help us, we may donate the original disc to the museum for their collection. After all, this is local history.

However, before we can do that, we first have to complete the purchase. If you can help contribute to the $60 cost of this rare recording, your donation will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.

-David Sadowski


DONATIONS

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 possible and are greatly appreciated.

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Specialized equipment is required to play a 16" transcription disc. This is one such turntable made by Esoteric Sound.

Specialized equipment is required to play a 16″ transcription disc. This is one such turntable made by Esoteric Sound.

A 1936 phonograph for playing transcription discs. This one played records from the inside out, with a maximum running time of one hour per side.

A 1936 phonograph for playing transcription discs. This one played records from the inside out, with a maximum running time of one hour per side.


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