Thursday, June 2, 2011

Los Angeles Streetcars

Here is a very cool look back at the transit system in and around the Los Angeles area in 1957. All brought to you by the photography of John Dziobko at and descriptions by Ray Peacock at Thank you John and Ray !!!

Metropolitan Coach Lines - MCL 5119 Los Angeles, California - September 13, 1957 - Down the line in Watts - Graham Tower controlled the maze of trackage radiating from Graham yard.

Metropolitan Coach Lines - MCL5116 Slauson Jct. - Los Angeles, California - September 13, 1957 - Looking at northbound cars to downtown, about to cross Slauson Ave. The branch behind is the Pacific Electric Whittier-Fullerton branch.

Metropolitan Coach Lines - MCL 407 San Pedro - Long Beach line - Los Angeles, California - September 09, 1957 - Express cars roll by at Slauson Jct. in south central L.A. The inner two mains were express tracks, running from downtown to Long Beach. Don't be mislead by the term 'express', as the preponderance of grade crossings through this part of the line, protected only by wig-wags, kept speeds at 25mph max.

Unfortunately the wig wags weren't the objective of the photographer on this day, but we can all be thankful for John's documentation of the line in color. Note the sharp-dressed motorman through the window. Today this is the Metrolink Blue Line.

Metropolitan Coach Lines - MCL 415 San Pedro - Long Beach line - Los Angeles, California - September 09, 1957 - Car 415 moves towards downtown after crossing the Santa Fe Harbor line at Slauson Tower on the MCL Southern District. This is the main stem of the MCL system as it existed in 1957, express trains ran on the inner two mains of the 4-track right of way, in the heart of south-central L.A.


TokyoMagic! said...

These are fantastic! I say....bring back the Los Angeles streetcars!

Debbie V. said...

Great pictures. When my mom and dad were first married they lived in Inglewood and my dad took the street car to work. He was an ironworker. I think they lived somewhere near Manchester. It's always fun to see a moment in real life back in the 1950's. I like the two women walking along the tracks and all the cars and palm trees.

Major Pepperidge said...

Wow, what amazing photos! Just beautiful. I've seen nice slides of L.A Streetcars sell for several hundred dollars APIECE on ebay.

210Frwy said...

You can still ride street cars like these at the Orange Empire Railway Museum in Perris California.

A Snow White Sanctum said...

Yes! I second that. Bring back the street cars!

Field Captain R. Kraft said...

Tokyo and A Snow,

The line in each of the four images is still active for LRV (which the PE had on the drawing board even before the SP became its parent).


Ebay will soon be history. Thank god.


Your father was riding the Santa Monica Airline. The depot from Palms was saved. You can visit it and some victorian shacks off the 110 freeway.


Long live OERM ! Can't wait for Metrolink service to start on the San JAC !