Coming… Or Going?

Coming or going? We would like to think that trolleys are coming back into style, rather than going away. But where are the wires? Maybe this car is rolling downhill.

Coming or going? We would like to think that trolleys are coming back into style, rather than going away. But where are the wires? Maybe this car is rolling downhill.

Denver RTD LRV 275 on May 27, 2013 at Lincoln on the E line. New systems like this are coming on line all over the country. (Photo by Ray DeGroote)

Denver RTD LRV 275 on May 27, 2013 at Lincoln on the E line. New systems like this are coming on line all over the country. (Photo by Ray DeGroote)

News, mail, odds and ends from CERA. One reader writes:

Would you consider showing past trips the CERA took. Some of my most fond memories with my Dad were on your sponsored trips. Example CSS&SB Railroad. Late 1950’s?

Yes, we will post photos from CERA fantrips as we come across them. Here are several:

Gary Railways 19 on the very first CERA fantrip (May 1, 1938). (Photo by Lamar M. Kelley)

Gary Railways 19 on the very first CERA fantrip (May 1, 1938). (Photo by Lamar M. Kelley)

Northern Indiana Railway 216 at Notre Dame University in South Bend, Indiana on a CERA fantrip, circa 1940.

Northern Indiana Railway 216 at Notre Dame University in South Bend, Indiana on a CERA fantrip, circa 1940.

"Modernized" CSS&SB 15 at Tremont, Indiana on September 20, 1942, on CERA inspection trip #41. (Photo by Malcom D. McCarter)

“Modernized” CSS&SB 15 at Tremont, Indiana on September 20, 1942, on CERA inspection trip #41. (Photo by Malcom D. McCarter)

CERA Bulletin 41, issued in 1942, covered the modernization of CSS&SB 15.

CERA Bulletin 41, issued in 1942, covered the modernization of CSS&SB 15.

CNS&M 744 on a CERA fantrip on June 17, 1962.

CNS&M 744 on a CERA fantrip on June 17, 1962.

North Shore Line freight loco 452, as it appeared on June 17, 1962, during a CERA fantrip.

North Shore Line freight loco 452, as it appeared on June 17, 1962, during a CERA fantrip.

June At CERA

Our next program will be:

Bill Hoffman’s Unedited Movies of the Chicago Rapid Transit Lines in the 1940s and 1950s
Presented by Jeff Wien and the Wien-Criss Archive

June’s membership meeting will consist of digitized 8mm films taken by the late Bill Hoffman during the 40s and 50s on the Chicago “L”. These films will be shown in an unedited format rather than as an organized program. The audience will be encouraged to participate in the program by calling out the locations as they appear on the screen. This will give the viewers a chance to participate in the program in a similar manner that has been developed on the CERA Members Blog. Come join us for what promises to be a fun evening.

Friday, June 28, 2013
1900 hrs / 7:00pm
University Center
525 S State St, Chicago, IL

Admission is free.

Since there are no plans at present to make them available for sale on video, chances are this will be your only oportunity to see these vintage films. In honor of Friday’s program, we herein offer some additional vintage views of Chicago transit in the 1940s and 50s, for your enjoyment:

The "temporary" CTA terminal at the end of the Congress line in 1959. The platform at right is where CA&E cars would have transferred passengers to CTA, if the interurban could have resumed service after highway construction.

The “temporary” CTA terminal at the end of the Congress line in 1959. The platform at right is where CA&E cars would have transferred passengers to CTA, if the interurban could have resumed service after highway construction.

A Garfield Park "L" train of 'fishbellies' passes Union Station in August 1951.

A Garfield Park “L” train of ‘fishbellies’ passes Union Station in August 1951.

Downtown CTA rapid transit lines, as of 1948.

Downtown CTA rapid transit lines, as of 1948.

In the early 1950s, CTA postwar PCC 4400 lays over in an open storage yard behind 69th and Ashland carhouse, at the south end of the Western Avenue line.

In the early 1950s, CTA postwar PCC 4400 lays over in an open storage yard behind 69th and Ashland carhouse, at the south end of the Western Avenue line.

CTA (ex-CSL) Red Pullman streetcar 967 on Irving Park Road, September 1948.

CTA (ex-CSL) Red Pullman streetcar 967 on Irving Park Road, September 1948.

CTA (ex-CSL) 5434 (built by J. G. Brill 1907-08) on the Wallace-Racine line, which was bustituted in 1951. (Photo by Raymond J. Muller)

CTA (ex-CSL) 5434 (built by J. G. Brill 1907-08) on the Wallace-Racine line, which was bustituted in 1951. (Photo by Raymond J. Muller)

Our recent post “Bringing It All Back Home” stirred up a lot of discussion on some Yahoo Groups. Opinions were divided- some think the North Shore Line would not have been a suitable candidate to morph into high-speed rail, being, as one writer called it, the “slowest of the three rail lines between Chicago and Milwaukee.” Others agreed with my basic point that far too often, when it came to public transit in the 1950s and 60s, we threw out the baby with the bath water, and are now paying more to put back part of what we once had.

Incredibly, one poster crowed about how much his North Shore Line stock increased in value, when the line was abandoned. You can check out some of these discussions on Yahoo Groups. In particular, look for CHICAGOTRANSIT, Chicagoland_Traction, and CNSMRR. In general, membership in these groups is required first if you intend to post messages.

-David Sadowski

The North Shore Line terminal in Milwaukee, as it was being demolished in 1964.

The North Shore Line terminal in Milwaukee, as it was being demolished in 1964.

An insurance company building is now on the site of the former North Shore Line terminal in Milwaukee. (Photo by David Sadowski)

An insurance company building is now on the site of the former North Shore Line terminal in Milwaukee. (Photo by David Sadowski)

Buy tickets now for CERA’s 75th Anniversary Events this September 20, 21, and 22. Three special fantrips plus a banquet, program, and commemorative book.



Categories: CERA Programs, Chicago Area, General, Interurbans

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