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The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
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   The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
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   Author  Topic: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen  (Read 207 times)
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« on: Nov 8th, 2015, 9:35pm »
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Fellows:
 
Most non-rail enthusiasts regard the iconic San Francisco cable cars more of a tourist attraction than as a mode of public transportation.
 
To be sure, the bright colors that the little cars wear today, as well as the "casual" attire of the "grips" indeed do suggest more of a "tourist-y attraction", rather than an important component in MUNI's complex operations.
 
Long gone are the days when the cable cars wore "traditional" colors, and the gripmen and conductors proudly wore their streetcar-era brass buttoned uniforms.
 
The history of SF's cable cars is truly a fascinating and intriguing one, ind indeed deserves to be recalled today.
 
Please join me in a nostalgic trip back to the "Frisco" of many years back, when multiple cable lines were still in operation, and the colorful tales of brawny-armed "grips" abounded.....
 
"L.F.L."


« Last Edit: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:28pm by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #1 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 9:44pm »
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This interesting (illustrated) article from 1902 details the "Heave-Ho!" requirements of the old-time "grips".
 
This certainly was NOT a job for any faint-hearted "Joe Schmoe" just off the street!
 
Note how these proud fellows even "worked out" in full uniform!  
 
http://www.cable-car-guy.com/html/ccgriparm.html
 
(courtesy: thecablecarguy)


« Last Edit: Nov 9th, 2015, 1:07am by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #2 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 9:53pm »
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Here is an outstanding page with a large number links regarding the history of SF's cable cars.
 
Here you will find many links to rare photos, articles, photos, and more.
 
This is an excellent page for anyone interested in the fascinatiing history of the cars and the men who worked them......
 
http://www.cable-car-guy.com/html/ccmisc.html
 
(courtesy: thecablecarguy)


« Last Edit: Nov 8th, 2015, 9:55pm by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #3 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:06pm »
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Vintage and collectible cable car toys, models, transfers, tokens, advertising, and many other items.
 
I have a number of vintage toy cable cars in my collection today, as well as a large scale (and quite detailed) vintage liquor decanter, replicating a POWELL car......
 
http://www.cable-car-guy.com/html/cckitsch.html#toys


« Last Edit: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:13pm by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #4 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:17pm »
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Extensive photo collection (both historical and modern) on the cars.....
 
http://www.nycsubway.org/wiki/MUNI_Cable_Cars
 
(courtesy: nycsubway.org)


« Last Edit: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:18pm by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #5 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:26pm »
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Here are two nostalgic views (1940's/early 50's) of POWELL line cars (these old views take us back to the time when car crews still proudly donned their brass-buttoned uniforms).......
 
http://www.newdavesrailpix.com/sf/htm/sfv004.htm
 
http://www.newdavesrailpix.com/sf/htm/sfv005.htm
 
(courtesy: newdavesrailpix)


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L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #6 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:35pm »
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A timeless 1950's view of one of the "CALIFORNIA"* cars, #58 .
 
The CALIFORNIA ST. CABLE RAILWAY was sold to MUNI in 1952.
 
*(on an interesting related note, toys of the "CALIFORNIA" cars are not all that common; it seems most toys/souvenier replicas made over the decades were patterned after the "POWELL" cars)........
 
http://www.newdavesrailpix.com/sf/htm/sfv021.htm
 
(courtesy: newdavesrailpix.com)


« Last Edit: Nov 9th, 2015, 1:08am by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #7 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:39pm »
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Dates in cable car history.....
 
http://www.sfcablecar.com/history.html
 
(courtesy: sfcablecar.com)


« Last Edit: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:41pm by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #8 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:50pm »
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A 1947 LIFE article (w/photos) about the fight to save SF's then-endangered cable cars.........
 
http://www.cable-car-guy.com/html/cclife.html#top
 
(courtesy:cablecarguy)


« Last Edit: Nov 8th, 2015, 10:51pm by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #9 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 11:03pm »
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The double ended "CALIFORNIA" cars were always particularly snappy in appearance.
 
In this circa-1960's view, we see car #55 on the job.....
 
http://www.nycsubway.org/perl/show?16338
 
(courtesy: nycsubway.org)


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L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #10 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 11:29pm »
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If it were not for the 1900's attire of the passengers and the traditional uniforms of the gripman and conductor, this timeless scene could easily have been a contemporary one.....
 
http://www.newdavesrailpix.com/sf/htm/sfv137.htm
 
(courtesy: newdavesrailpix.com)


« Last Edit: Nov 8th, 2015, 11:29pm by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #11 on: Nov 8th, 2015, 11:47pm »
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According to late rail/transportation author George W. Hilton, one of the final menaces to San Francisco's cable cars was the advent of the one-way street.
 
Cable technology was so inflexible, that lines could not readily be rerouted when formerly two-way thoroughfares were converted to one-way streets.
 
The long-gone O'FARRELL-JONES-HYDE line at one time operated against the flow of traffic for a block on Pine St., with the aid of a large electric signbox suspended over the street, which was actuated by the cars before turning the corner.
 
This sign would flash out its warning, "CABLE CAR COMING" , to warn oncoming motorists of approaching cable cars.....
 
"L.F.L."


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L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #12 on: Nov 9th, 2015, 12:14am »
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The ever-fascinating "inner workings" of the cable car system, then and now......
 
http://www.cablecarmuseum.org/mechanical.html
 
(courtesy: cablecarmuseum)


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L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #13 on: Nov 9th, 2015, 12:16am »
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SF's eight original cable car companies.....
 
http://www.cablecarmuseum.org/companies.html
 
(courtesy: cablecarmuseum)


« Last Edit: Nov 9th, 2015, 12:17am by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #14 on: Nov 9th, 2015, 12:27am »
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Though the "CALIFORNIA" cars themselves present a timeless image, the 1950's and early 1960's vintage autos seen here (as well as the stylishly-dressed pedestrians) truly date this wonderfully nostalgic street scene (the smart tail-finned auto just behind the cable car heading downhill is a '60/'61 Mercury "COMET")..........
 
http://www.nycsubway.org/perl/show?45440
 
(courtesy: nycsubway.org)


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L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #15 on: Nov 9th, 2015, 12:42am »
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Another interesting page on the "inner workings" of the cable cars.....
 
http://www.streetcar.org/wheels-motion/cable-cars-work/
 
(courtesy: Market Street Railway/streetcar.org)


« Last Edit: Nov 9th, 2015, 12:44am by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #16 on: Nov 9th, 2015, 10:42pm »
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Here is another 'historic" (and interactive!) cable car site well worth visiting.....
 
http://www.sfcablecar.com/
 
(courtesy: Cable Car Website)


« Last Edit: Nov 9th, 2015, 10:43pm by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #17 on: Nov 9th, 2015, 11:00pm »
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Ancestor of the ever-timeless "POWELL" cars is Car #16, of the OMNIBUS CABLE COMPANY.........
 
http://www.newdavesrailpix.com/sf/htm/sfv132.htm
 
(courtesy: newdavesrailpix)


« Last Edit: Nov 9th, 2015, 11:01pm by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #18 on: Nov 9th, 2015, 11:06pm »
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It is clear that this electric streetcar of the old "UNITED RAILROADS" (#1389) was a "kissin' cousin"/"great-grandaddy" to the familiar "CALIFORNIA" cars still in use today.....
 
http://www.newdavesrailpix.com/sf/htm/sfv001.htm
 
(courtesy: newdavesrailpix)


« Last Edit: Nov 9th, 2015, 11:07pm by CLASSB » Logged
L. F. LOREE 1403
Former Member
Re: The Glory Days of SF's Cable Cars & Gripmen
 
« Reply #19 on: Nov 11th, 2015, 11:28pm »
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One of the most unusual and fascinating cable operations in San Francisco many decades ago was the unique Fillmore St. Counterbalance.
 
In this operation, however, it was electric streetcars that were hauled uphill by a cable, instead of a cable car.
 
This hill was far too steep for the electric cars, hence the need for this counterbalance operation.
 
The car ascending the hill was in fact being pulled up by the streetcar that was descending the hill, hooked to the same cable as its ascenting neighbor, acting as a counterbalance.....
 
http://donsdepot.donrossgroup.net/dr165.htm
 
(courtesy: Don's Rail Photos)


« Last Edit: Nov 11th, 2015, 11:31pm by CLASSB » Logged
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