A Baker’s Dozen of Mystery Photos (Transit Trivia #2)

Mystery Photo #1, taken on June 26, 1960 at Clinton. The mystery here is, what are these single car units with trolley poles doing on the Lake St. "L"? After all, we have been led to believe that curved-sided "L" cars could not operate on the ground-level portion of Lake, due to clearance issues. (Charles L. Tauscher Collection)

Mystery Photo #1, taken on June 26, 1960 at Clinton. The mystery here is, what are these single car units with trolley poles doing on the Lake St. “L”? After all, we have been led to believe that curved-sided “L” cars could not operate on the ground-level portion of Lake, due to clearance issues. (Charles L. Tauscher Collection)

(Editor’s Note: Contest answers are here.)

Here, in our second installment of Transit Trivia, we have a Baker’s Dozen of mystery photos, generally from Chicago. In most cases, it’s the where and when that we are looking for, but in a few other cases, there is something else that’s mysterious about the picture.

Send your best answers to cerablog1@gmail.com and we will print the best answers. The contest ends at midnight Central Time on September 22, 2013. The winner will be the entrant with the best overall answers. Limit one entry per person.

The winner will receive a copy of our new book, Trolley Sparks Special #1, a 75-year retrospective of CERA, its history, members, publications, and fantrips.

You can still buy tickets here for all this week’s 75th Anniversary events, the fantrips to Kenosha, IRM, and the Fox River Trolley Museum, plus our Banquet/Program featuring rare North Shore Line films, presented by longtime CERA Member, Director, and President Walter Keevil. Tickets bought starting today will be held for pickup at the events. We hope to see you there!

-David Sadowski

PS- Everyone attending our Banquet and Program will receive a copy of our new book, which you can also order using the link given above.

Mystery Photo #2 has a processing date of October 1962. What has happened here, and where are we? (Charles L. Tauscher Collection)

Mystery Photo #2 has a processing date of October 1962. What has happened here, and where are we? (Charles L. Tauscher Collection)

Mystery Photo #3 - CA&E 310 on July 1, 1957. Where are we? (Charles L. Tauscher Collection)

Mystery Photo #3 – CA&E 310 on July 1, 1957. Where are we? (Charles L. Tauscher Collection)

Mystery Photo #4 - CTA 2200s in September 1973. Where are we? Name an interesting fact about this station. (Charles L. Tauscher Collection)

Mystery Photo #4 – CTA 2200s in September 1973. Where are we? Name an interesting fact about this station. (Charles L. Tauscher Collection)

Mystery Photo #5 - These are Chicago PCCs, but where are we? When could this undated photo have been taken? (Photographer unknown)

Mystery Photo #5 – These are Chicago PCCs, but where are we? When could this undated photo have been taken? (Photographer unknown)

Mystery Photo #6 - Where are we? And when could this undated photo have been taken? (Unknown photographer)

Mystery Photo #6 – Where are we? And when could this undated photo have been taken? (Unknown photographer)

Mystery Photo #7 - Where are we? When do you think this photo was taken? (Unknown photographer)

Mystery Photo #7 – Where are we? When do you think this photo was taken? (Unknown photographer)

Mystery Photo #8 - Where are we? When could this photo have been taken? (Photographer unknown)

Mystery Photo #8 – Where are we? When could this photo have been taken? (Photographer unknown)

Mystery Photo #9 - An 1853 Chicago Omnibus, on display in 1962. Where is it today? (Photographer unknown)

Mystery Photo #9 – An 1853 Chicago Omnibus, on display in 1962. Where is it today? (Photographer unknown)

Mystery Photo #10 - It's 1943, but where are we? (Unknown photographer)

Mystery Photo #10 – It’s 1943, but where are we? (Unknown photographer)

Mystery Photo #11 - Where are we? When could it be? (Photographer unknown)

Mystery Photo #11 – Where are we? When could it be? (Photographer unknown)

Mystery Photo #12 - Where are we? When could it be? (Photographer unknown)

Mystery Photo #12 – Where are we? When could it be? (Photographer unknown)

Mystery Photo #13 - Where are we? When could it be? (Unknown photographer)

Mystery Photo #13 – Where are we? When could it be? (Unknown photographer)



Categories: 75th Anniversary, Chicago Area, Transit Trivia

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

24 replies

  1. Great photos. Can hardly wait til the answers come in.

  2. #1 I would guess they are going to the Shops near Pulaski. (I don’t know any dates)

    #3 CA&E at Batavia

    #4 Douglas at Laramie (guess)

    #5 Madison at Austin (g)

    #6 State at Adams

    #7 Madison at Canal (C&NW Station)

    #10 I am really curious as to where this is.

    #12 Dearborn at Madison (g)

    #13 Westchester N of Roosevelt

  3. Well, #2 is easy – this is the aftermath of the fire that took out Tech/35th station. The station should be behind the burned-out car, but all that is left is the stairways! Car is 6453, if I remember. SB motorman was coming into station, saw smoke coming from under platform, stopped to try to put it out. Fire got away from him, totally destroyed center platform (which was almost brand new at the time, replacing the two side platforms) and the old NB side platform. SB side platform was south of 35th, so it was unharmed. Eventually the center platform was replaced and side platforms removed, but until the 1990’s rebuilding, there were still some singed ties on the SB track in the station.

  4. #1 is a real oddball. It does appear to be an in-service train. And yes, it was possible to run 6000’s west of Laramie, but clearnces, especially at Austin WB were so close (within inches) that it was considered too tight for regular service. It would seem however, that there were at least a few efforts with brand-new 1-50’s (the only 6000’s with trolley poles) to see how it would work.

  5. #10 – I have my doubts this is in Chicago. Does not look like Chicago structure, appears to be a solid deck. Also ground is not level, look at how street slopes upward in background relative to buildings. My vote would be for Philadelphia, where the Market St El dropped down into the subway around 23rd Street and Market Street.

    • It’s not Philly, Andre. The deck may be a solid deck, but the ironwork underneath is nothing like anything used in Philadelphia. In addition, there were no in-street portals in Philly…all of the Philly portals were (and are)off-street. There are two other possibilities I can think of, namely Baltimore and Kansas City.

  6. I’ll take a shot at question 11: It was at Clark and Lake, looking south, in 1946. The picture would have been taken from the Clark-Lake Loop L station.

    • Regarding photo 6, the picture was taken at State and Adams…the street sign IS visible on the left, and years of UPS have given me some ability to pick out tracking numbers that some folks may have not been able to pick up. As far as date, I think it was sometime in March or April, 1952…the paint scheme on the PCC, as well as the Oldsmobile behind the trolley influenced by guess on dates. AFA Picture 13, I think it may have been taken at Mundelein, IL, at the Eucharistic Congress in 1926…a lot of temporary trackage had to be laid, and it took less time to build 3rd Rail for use as power than to string overhead trolley wire. The 4000-series Plushies were among the cars that used trolley poles that were borrowed by CNS&M for this occasion…just about all of the L cars were use on this day, with the 3rd rain-only cars probably seeing assignments for one day that they would have never seen otherwise under Chicago Rapid Transit, and just enough trolley-pole equipped L cars that HAD to be kept for L services used there, with the rest sent to Mundelein for the day.

  7. I believe # 2 is at Tech-35th on the old north-south route. There was a fire at the station and the train was trapped.

    I believe # 4 is the 50th station on the old Douglas route. What would make the station interesting is it’s preserved at IRM.

    The next 2 are wild-a$$ guesses. I believe # 13 is at Des Plaines on the old Garfield route. Something to do with expressway construction and maybe the CA&E?

    Could # 10 be Lake st around Canal st?

  8. Another WAG, I think # 11 is Clark just south of Lake st.

  9. I just read this ended in June….

  10. Maybe we win a Tardis, so we can go back and see the sites as they actually were…(sorry, you’ll have to buy your own period clothes)…I’d also want to check out my home town, as well as New York City, as they appeared back then.

  11. Photo Number 7 is from 1949! W/ ERPCC Pullman (4149) and the Former C&NW Chicago Passenger Terminal.

  12. So when do we get the answers?

  13. After talking to Roy Benedict, the 1-50’s on Lake St are indeed a charter. Photostop with appropriate run number and signs, so it lokks very real, but it isn’t.

  14. Has anybody noticed one odd thing about almost all Chicago photos from the early 1950’s – the amount of trash in the streets? Especially #7 and #11. See all the garbage in the gutters? I remember my mother telling me that in the early 50’s downtown chicago was absolutely filthy with newspapers blowing in the wind!

  15. Mystery Photo #8 I didn’t see this one indentified so far and it is chock full of place and time yielding tips and clues:

    This eastbound Rt. 20 PCC 4066 is passing the DeMerit Candy Shop and Kitchens at 312 W Madison, it is fall of 1948 probably October.

    Left of center just above the end of the car is an event sign on the south side of the Chicago Civic Opera Building, traction magnate Samuel Insull’s gift to the city.

    The sign reads “the one and only Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo Oct 19 to Nov 1” further research confirmed the Ballet Russe engagement at the Civic Opera House.

    • from Oct 19th through Nod 1st, 1948.

      • be nice to have edit ability

      • corrections: Post-war PCC 4066 is passing the DeMet candy shop @312 W. Madison St.. The ‘Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo’ engagement at the Civic Opera House was from October 19th thru November 1st, 1948 which marks this photo as most likely having been taken in October 1948. The relative lack of traffic and the shadows suggest it could be a Sunday morning as weekend bus service on Madison came four years later in 1952.

  16. #8 Madison eastbound between Wacker and Franklin Sts.

Trackbacks

  1. Mystery Photos Contest Answers (Transit Trivia #2) « CERA Members Blog

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