Charles Wherry Collection

The Final Pacific Electric Timetable?

Posted on: August 7, 2016 by Pacific Electric 1 Comment

 

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

By Charles Wherry

This Pacific Electric public timetable on thick card stock suitable for tacking to wood poles went into effect on August 31, 1953. A mere 31 days later, PE’s passenger operation was turned over to Metropolitan Coach Lines. This timetable covered rail service from Long Beach to Los Angeles and motor coach service from Long Beach to various destinations including San Pedro, Compton, Huntington Park, Pasadena, Santa Ana and Redlands.

It is likely that this edition was probably the last issue prior to the sale date of October 1, 1953. Long-time Pacific Electric Passenger Traffic Manager H.O. Marler’s name appears at the bottom right. I wonder if Mr. Marler chose to follow the passenger business with MCL or did he complete his career in some other capacity with PE?

Charles Wherry Collection

Mystery / Political “Bus Transfer”

Posted on: August 7, 2016 by Pacific Electric No Comments

 

 Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

 Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

By Charles Wherry

In going through some of my father's collection, I found this interesting "bus transfer" and thought it should see the light of day.

Here are two (front and back) scans of what appear to be an effort to defeat ballot proposition No. 1 on the December 12, 1940, election in Los Angeles. Although there is no specific mention of Los Angeles, or the year, the fact that the 1940 UCLA football schedule is printed on the face leads me to this conclusion.

It is in a transfer format similar to that used by the Pacific Electric and I believe other transit companies of the time.

It was printed for a group calling themselves ‘Citizens Committee against “Phoney” Legislation”. The oversize dimension of 12” X 4 1/4” was apparently meant to emphasize this group’s alarm over what they believed was an effort by bus companies, (no mention of which company(ies), to create a ..."universal" transfer system in Los Angeles. There is an allusion ..."three bright boys"... and some names, possibly corrupted, of ...."Quinsy, Kreaking, Dilly"... .

What the results of the election were, if in fact there was an election, remain a mystery to me. Hopefully there are others that that can fill in the gaps.

Charles Wherry Collection

Los Angeles Railway 1941 Passes

Posted on: August 7, 2016 by Pacific Electric No Comments

 

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

By Charles Wherry

Here are two weekly passes issued by Los Angeles Railway in 1941. The $1.25 price seems quite a bargain especially when reading the fine print which allowed two children under 12 to ride along with the bearer on Sundays and holidays which included Armistice Day, now called Veterans Day.

Charles Wherry Collection

Pacific Electric Restaurant Menu

Posted on: August 7, 2016 by Pacific Electric 1 Comment

 

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

By Charles Wherry

Here is another menu from Pacific Electric’s 6th & Main Street restaurant.

The same photo as on the breakfast menu returns, this time in red tint. PE might have made the color choice as a help
for the wait staff to readily pick the correct menu given the time of day. This offering included a dinner selection as well
as a few breakfast items a la carte. My guess is this red cover edition sufficed for lunch and dinner. Quite a selection for
what was essentially a lunch counter operation.

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Pacific Electric Restaurant Menus, December 1941

Posted on: August 2, 2016 by Pacific Electric 2 Comments

 

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

Charles Wherry Collection

By Charles Wherry

Here are three photos of a breakfast menu from the Pacific Electric Restaurant at 6th and Main Streets in Los Angeles. The date of 12-41 appears in very small print at the lower right hand corner of the third image.

The cover shows what appears to be a composite photo of Pacific Electric bus no. 1686 superimposed in front of a ‘Butterfly’ Twelve. The number of the 1200 is not discernable, however, a picture of Butterfly no. 1216 posed at a favorite location of PE company photographers just outside the Torrance shops appears to be the locale.

Donald Duke’s Volume 3, Pacific Electric Railway, Southern Division, 148 shows 1216 in an identical pose without the bus.

Reading the menu provides some interesting insights to life and dietary choices in pre WWII 1941. Notice the prices of most meat items have been penciled in and although they appear to be bargains by today's standards, when adjusted for inflation, seem to be inline with today's costs. The 10-cent cup of coffee equates to $1.63 in 2015. The 60-cent Breakfast Steak comes out to $9.76 today
and if you were really hungry the No. 7 Club Breakfast cost a whopping .75 cents, $12.20 today.

“(No Substitutions)“

Charles Wherry Collection

See also this link for more on the PE Restaurant.

1299 On Inspection Tour

Posted on: May 6, 2016 by Pacific Electric No Comments

 

By Charles Wherry

From the Charles Wherry Collection and William Wherry photographic archive comes more photos from Pacific Electric on tour over the Southern Pacific Covina Branch, being pulled by Southern Pacific steam locomotive 2701.

William Wherry Photos, Charles Wherry Collection

William Wherry Photos, Charles Wherry Collection

“Looking west at P.E. and S.P. Junction at Lone Hill, Calif. 1299 and 2701, 8-23-46. Road Foreman of Engines W.O. Baker just stepped off engine to replace staff in staff machine (booth behind pole). Before electrification of S.P. line”.

Both Pacific Electric and Southern Pacific utilized a staff machine system to authorize train movements on their respective lines. SP’s system began at Baldwin Park with a machine at the PE crossing. Additional machines were at Irwindale, Covina (East Switch), Lone Hill, (Junction Switch), San Dimas station, La Verne Jct. switch and Ganesha Jct.
PE’s staff system began at Monte Vista .058 miles east of P.E. Covina utilizing the same machines at Lone Hill, San Dimas, La Verne and North Pomona.

William Wherry Photos, Charles Wherry Collection

William Wherry Photos, Charles Wherry Collection

“Looking east at Lone Hill. Engine is pulling 1299 under trolley wire before uncoupling. Track to right of 1299 is connection between P.E. Covina line and S.P. line. Track behind 1299 is P.E. line to San Dimas P.E. line.” (Conductor Brocato is visible in the end door of 1299 trying to place trolley pole on wire).

William Wherry Photos, Charles Wherry Collection

William Wherry Photos, Charles Wherry Collection

“Lone Hill, Calif. Cond. Brocato and M/M A.A. Johnston after 2701 had uncoupled and was getting in the clear to permit 1299 to continue on to San B’dno”. (Conductor Brocato was still working into the 1970’s.)

William Wherry Photos, Charles Wherry Collection

1299 Inspection Tour in Covina

Posted on: April 16, 2016 by Pacific Electric 1 Comment

 

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection

By Charles Wherry

This second photo of the series (original here) shows Southern Pacific no. 2701 and Pacific Electric no. 1299 at the Southern Pacific depot in Covina on August 23, 1946. I don’t know if the special stopped on this occasion. My dad was working during this time as a PE train dispatcher and presumably had advance information of the train’s itinerary. His note on the back of the contact print says: “S.P. station at Covina, Cal. Aug. 23rd 1946 before electrification. SP2701 and PE1299 inspection trip. Engr. W.H.Owen, Mtrm. A.A. Johnston, Condr. A.H. Brocato.”

The advance station sign reads: “Azusa Ave One Mile”.

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection

1299 on the SP’s Covina Branch

Posted on: April 6, 2016 by Pacific Electric 3 Comments

 

William Wherry Photograph, Charles Wherry Collection

William Wherry Photograph, Charles Wherry Collection

On August 23, 1946, Southern Pacific 2-8-0 no. 2701 is preparing to depart Baldwin Park eastward over the SP’s Covina Branch with Pacific Electric office car no. 1299 in tow. The PE would purchase that portion of SP’s branch between Bassett, on the Sunset Route main track, and Ganesha Junction, a short distance from Pomona, on September 1, 1946 a mere 9 days later.

This trip was one that PE officials made over the line to see firsthand what their $400,000 investment looked like. The SP’s trackage between the Reliance Rock Spur, just east of Baldwin Park and Lone Hill was not electrified at this time. That would come in the next two months as PE sought a route that avoided increasing automobile congestion on their original line along Badillo Street in Covina.

Here we see some last-minute mechanical goings-on beneath 1299 as overseen by Road Foreman of Engines Baker. Engineer W.H. (Windy) Owen is keeping an eye on things while the fireman has a last look around.

William Wherry Photograph, Charles Wherry Collection

1322 on the Azusa Branch

Posted on: March 29, 2016 by Pacific Electric 4 Comments

 

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection

By Charles Wherry

On September 30, 1951 Pacific Electric ran their last interurban train to Glendora, CA. The following month PE began to remove their famous right of way, beginning at Oneonta Park, Huntington Dr. and Fair Oaks in So. Pasadena) to Myrtle Ave. in Monrovia, west of Glendora. In order for PE to reach their remaining freight customers between Arcadia and Glendora including the non-electrified Day & Night spur which PE had taken over from SP in 1942, it was necessary to build a new piece of railroad, 2.82 miles in length, costing $436,000. The new freight line, called the Azusa Branch, was built from the Crushton spur’s north end to a connection with the Glendora line at Rivas Jct. just west of Azusa, crossing the Santa Fe at Kincaid en route. The first train over the new line ran on September 17, 1951.

The following Sunday, September 23, we find engine 1322 and caboose moving eastward after crossing the ATSF, (see the distant signal leading to the Automatic Interlocking behind the caboose) and dipping under Foothill Blvd. overpass en route to Rivas Jct. Notice the two trainmen ‘decorating’ the rear steps of 1322?

No, they’re not mad at the motorman. You see, they have made room in the cab for some visitors. This day my brother and I are occupying the left-side seat box on one of the first trips over the branch courtesy some of my dad's working buddies. Tomorrow would be my 7th birthday and there would be plenty of time for cake and ice cream, but today is reserved for some railroading, PE style.

Who would have dreamed that 11 years and a week later I would be making my fireman seniority ‘date’ aboard one of 1322’s brothers, (1401) at the lower end of the ‘C’ Yard in SP’s Taylor yard at Los Angeles?

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection

Pacific Electric Headquarters Painting “Mount Lowe”

Posted on: November 12, 2014 by Pacific Electric 1 Comment

 

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection

By Charles Wherry

My dad worked for PE and at the time of his untimely death in 1952 was an office supervisor working in the Subway Terminal Building at 4th and Hill Streets in downtown Los Angeles. I can only assume that his daily routine took him by this oil painting on his way to and from his office. I personally have only faint memories of the layout of the PE station, but I seem to remember seeing either this oil or possibly its ‘partner’ painting when descending the ramps or stairways leading from the street level down to the track level.

Keeping in mind that I was only 7 years old at the time of his death it does seem a stretch that I should be able to say with certitude anything about my early experiences on the PE. All I can offer is that apparently I was very impressed with my brief experiences since they have remained throughout my next 63 years as if they happened just yesterday. I count myself very fortunate in this regard. I remember vividly riding the PE bus from Temple City with my brother Bill and Dad as we went to his office. After an hour or so in the office Dad would ‘assign’ his boys to a friendly crew and off we would go to Burbank or Hollywood sitting right up front with the motorman. After we arrived back at the Subway Dad would take us to lunch at Clifton's Cafeteria. What a treat!. We would do another trip and then meet up with Dad to ride back home.

Back to the painting(s). I believe that there were two. Apparently by 1951, PE management had decided that reminders of the grand days of seeking tourist nickels and dollars by hauling them to the far flung reaches of its empire were truly over and paintings such as this one were ‘dated’ or didn’t promote the image that corporate PE wanted. Somebody in upper management made a decision to remove this one and its twin from the walls they had occupied for oh so many years. I say ‘twin’ but truth is I don’t really know what the subject of the other painting was. All I do know is that legend has it that the other oil ended up in the ownership of Jack Farrier. My dad helped Jack ‘get on’ with PE since Jack’s dad was a PE man and the family lived on El Monte Ave., a mile or so from our house. (Jack’s pictures have been used in various Interurban Specials and his face shows up in several images on this website).

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection

Dad found out about the painting you see here, got out the utility trailer and hauled it to its new home in Temple City. Before mounting it on a wall of the garage, he thankfully paused to take this picture. As you may tell, it was taken in the late afternoon sun but, also thankfully, he used Kodachrome in his Bolsey 35mm camera and what you see here is the painting offering its ‘best side’ for history. The artist was ‘M. Rossart’. A brief web search shows a Michael Rossart was actively painting in the Los Angeles area in the 1920s and 1930s and he apparently specialized in broad landscapes. I will leave others to identify the geographical points of interest but foremost is the incline from Rubio Canyon.

I am saddened to say that all did not go well for the painting during the next 38 years. The dry heat of the California summers in the garage took a heavy toll. Over time, the canvas began to pull away from the frame and the oil paint began to crack. First my brother and then I married and moved away leaving only Mom to care for it and I’m afraid she didn’t see the historical value of it. Truth be told, neither did I at the time. I really do, now. By the time of her passing in 1989 the damage was too severe to economically repair and I made the decision to pull what little remained of the canvas from the frame and disposed of it. Someone did come by the estate sale and took the frame.

So now I can rest knowing that others with like interests can see for the first time since 1951 what thousands of commuters passed by in their daily life at the Subway Terminal Building. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have had in recounting a little of its part in Pacific Electric history.

William Wherry Photo, Charles Wherry Collection