PERyHS

Life Along the Pacific Electric Monrovia-Glendora Line

Posted on: October 29, 2012 by Pacific Electric 16 Comments

 

By Robert L. Davis

With attention now given to the LA-Pasadena Light Rail line, I thought I'd better write some of my remembrances of the Monrovia line, which shared the Pasadena lines as far as South Pasadena and San Marino. As I start writing this, one of the last segments of the old line is rapidly filling with housing units. When I tell people I lived next door to a double track electric railway they will have a hard time believing it.

I'm one of those rare birds, the Southern California Native. My birth certificate reads "Pasadena Rural" because the hospital was outside city limits in those days. St. Luke's Hospital is still in the same place, but Pasadena has expanded eastward. A few blocks away is Sierra Madre Blvd, where a grassy median is all that's left of the PE Sierra Madre line. I grew up on Fifth Ave. in Monrovia, on the north side of the PE right-of-way. From the time I was old enough to notice, to the sad days in 1952 when the track and trolley wire were ripped out, PE was part of my life. Here it is as I remember it, and as I have read about it in the works of Ira Swett and other rail historians.

Typical weekday service was a car every half-hour to Monrovia, with every other car continuing to Glendora. Rush hours would see two and three car trains running on ten or fifteen minute headways. Add to this a daily freight train, a daily "box motor", and assorted work cars, and there was a lot to watch.... Read More

Notes by L. A. Toothaker

Posted on: December 27, 2011 by Pacific Electric 1 Comment

 

Sometime perhaps in the 40's or 50's my grandfather wrote a brief treatise on his railroad-related experiences, calling it "Notes by L. A. Toothaker," which I came across and have typed as a Word document.  He was born and lived in Rangeley, Maine and later moved to Phillips, and elsewhere on the East Coast before moving to California; about the first half of the text is about the Sandy River & Rangeley Lakes, which of course was part of life around there, though he never worked for that road.  (At least three others of my ancestors did, however, including his great-grandfather "Squire Abner" Toothaker, first president of the Sandy River.)  The remainder referred to his time on the PE and I have made that into a separate document, attached herewith.

L. A. Toothaker Collection
Thomas Pollock Collection

... Read More

 

Pacific Electric Railway: Then & Now by Steve Crise and Michael Patris

Pacific Electric Railway: Then & Now by Steve Crise and Michael Patris

 

PERyHS.org website managers Steve Crise and Michael Patris have authored a terrific new book for Arcadia Publishing Co.'s "Then & Now" series on the Pacific Electric Railway.

... Read More

Pacific Electric Vol. 1 – Northern Division by Donald Duke

Posted on: December 15, 2009 by PERyHS

 

Pacific Electric Railway Volume 1: Northern District by Donald Duke

Pacific Electric Railway Volume 1: Northern District by Donald Duke

 

11x8½
Paperbound
88 pages
More than 170 photos and maps

 

Featuring Alhambra-San Gabriel-Temple City Line, Monrovia-Glendora Line, Mount Lowe Line, Pasadena Local Lines, Pasadena Oak Knoll Line, Pasadena Short Line, Sierra Madre Line, Sierra Vista Line, and the South Pasadena Line.

 

Price: $39.95
Note: All books shipped USPS Priority Mail

 





Pacific Electric Vol. 2 – Eastern Division by Donald Duke

Posted on: December 15, 2009 by PERyHS

 

Pacific Electric Vol. 2 - Eastern Division by Donald Duke

Pacific Electric Vol. 2 - Eastern Division by Donald Duke

 
11x8½
Paperbound
112 pages
More than 260 illustrations
 
Featuring Freight Service, Box Service, and Railroad Post Office Service.
 
Price: $39.95
Note: All books shipped USPS Priority Mail
 





Pacific Electric, Vol. 3 – Southern Division by Donald Duke

Posted on: December 15, 2009 by PERyHS

 

Pacific Electric Railway Volume 3 - Southern District by Donald Duke

Pacific Electric Railway Volume 3 - Southern District by Donald Duke

 
11x8½
Paperbound
157 pages
More than 453 photos and maps
 
Featuring the Catalina Dock Line, El Segundo Line, Gardena-Torrance-San Pedro Line, Long Beach Line, Long Beach Local Lines, Newport Beach-Balboa Line, Redondo Beach Line, San Pedro Line, San Pedro Local Lines, Santa Ana Line, Santa Ana-Huntington Beach Line, Santa Ana-Orange Line, Terminal Island Line (Calship), Watts Line, West Basin Line, Whittier-Fullerton-Yorba Linda Line, Freight Service, Box Motor Service, Railway Post Office Service.
 
Price: $39.95
Note: All books shipped USPS Priority Mail
 





 

Pacific Electric Vol. 4 - Western Division by Donald Duke

Pacific Electric Vol. 4 - Western Division by Donald Duke

 
11x8½
Paperbound
142 pages
More than 280 illustrations
 
Featuring the various lines of the Western Division including the famous Hollywood Boulevard Line.
 
Price: $39.95
Note: All books shipped USPS Priority Mail
 


 

Monograph #1: James N. Spencer: Remembrances of the Pacific Electric

Monograph #1: James N. Spencer: Remembrances of the Pacific Electric

From early childhood trips on the P. E., Railroad Boosters fan trips, riding a three-car train from Hollywood Boulevard and Vermont Avenue to the Rose Parade and rail fanning around the system during and after World War II, Jim Spencer recounts them all in his own unique style. 44 pages with 33 photographs and index.

Oral History Series #1

 

Monograph #2: John L. (Jack) Whitmeyer: Remembrances of the Pacific Electric

Monograph #2: John L. (Jack) Whitmeyer: Remembrances of the Pacific Electric

Jack Whitmeyer recalls his experiences of the P.E. with particular emphasis on Riverside from 1934 to 1942. This monograph also covers San Bernardino and the San Bernardino – Los Angeles RPO. 56 pages with 46 photos (most of which were taken by Jack Whitmeyer), 5 maps (four specially drawn by Jack Whitmeyer for this monograph), reproductions of P. E. notices and forms, and an index.

Oral History Series #2

Monograph #3: Charles Seims: Last Days of Mount Lowe

Posted on: December 10, 2009 by PERyHS No Comments

 

Monograph #3: Charles Seims: Last Days of Mount Lowe

Monograph #3: Charles Seims: Last Days of Mount Lowe

Charles Seims recalls his experiences discovering the P. E.’s Mount Lowe Line 20 years after its abandonment and his attempts to recover, record and preserve its artifacts in subsequent years. Historical material derived from official documents and personal interviews gleaned after the publication of his book, Mount Lowe, the Railway to the Clouds, Golden West Books, San Marino, California, are also included. This monograph contains 30 photographs, which the author believes have never been published before, 60 pages, map and index.