Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from your friends at the Trolley Museum!
Preserving and interpreting the history of electric street and interurban railways for the Nation's capital since 1959. Join us for a trip back in time!
Mission: The National Capital Trolley Museum preserves and interprets the history of electric street and interurban railways for the Nation's Capital.
Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from your friends at the Trolley Museum!
We launched our official NCTM Instagram account about four years ago and have suddenly seen a rapid increase in activity. We're about to hit the 400 follower mark and we need your help to reach - and surpass - 400 followers! For those of you on Instagram, head over to the NCTM page (@dctrolley) and click the "Follow" button! We'll be releasing a special Instagram-only sweepstake, with an awesome prize, once we reach 400 followers!
A trolley extension cord? Yes! On Saturday, NCTM crews had to retrieve our tamper from storage on number 13 track; the machine has been inoperable for years, and must be towed by a streetcar to move. However this particular job is slightly more difficult due to the fact that our number 13 track, the outside track located between the car barns, does not have electric overhead trolley wire. The solution to this is the use of a special "extension cord," known as a "stinger" for obvious reasons, which attaches to the trolley pole of a streetcar (as shown in the pictures) and collects electricity from nearby trolley wire. It essentially allows the car to operate a short distance in an area where there is no electric trolley wire. This task is much more inconvenient than it is dangerous, as the stinger is made of plastic and always connected to the trolley wire AFTER the other end has been connected to the streetcar's trolley pole.
Thanks to NCTM volunteers Josh Hirschfeld and Hermes van der Lee for sending these photos. Our volunteers are staying very busy despite our extended closure, and we appreciate their efforts!
Laurel History Boys
The Saturday photo of the week.
The Laurel-to-Washington Trolley
A commuter trolley service running between Laurel and Washington, DC began in 1902. The trolley originated from the building on Main Street that later became the Town Tavern/Oliver’s Saloon and ended on G Street, NW next to the Treasury Building.
In 1904, a conductor was killed when the trolley’s brakes failed as it approached the end of the line at 6th and Main Streets in Laurel. It ran off the rails and continued down the embankment to the Patuxent River below.
The commuter service was so popular that plans were made to extend the line northward through Savage and Annapolis Junction, where it would connect with the Ellicott City-to-Baltimore rail service, but the plans never materialized. The trolley ran until 1925.
Some of these photos are from a paper titled “The History of the Maryland Line of the Washington Railway and Electric Company,” written in 1929 and presented to the Phi Mu Honorary Engineering Fraternity at the University of Maryland by James M. Wallace (Class of 1930).
One of the heavier projects planned for our COVID-19 closure was performed today by our shop crew. Montgomery Parks crews assisted in grading the gravel parking lot in our back yard in preparation for a new shipping container (for storage;) crews also paved a small section of grass located outside of the yard. Our shop crews installed a short section of track to allow for the proper storage of several trucks and filled the new container with dozens of items.
While the bulk of our business surrounds the preservation of our historic street cars, we also recognize the need to preserve mechanical parts, signs and miscellaneous material related to local history and transit. The work performed today is part of our dedication to historic preservation, and was made possible by generous donors. Our thanks to those who have made contributions to the museum, and also to our dedicated volunteers who worked so hard today and everyday.
Photos by Hermes van der Lee.
On Saturday we were pleased to host a local cub scout troop for our first ever virtual Zoom tour of the Trolley Museum! NCTM Vice President Hermes van der Lee and Secretary Eric Madison lead the program, and even pulled DC Transit 1101 out of the barn for the occasion. Due to our COVID-19 shutdown, DC Transit 1101 only operated one day this year (in January) as opposed to four; the Saturday cub scout program gave our crews a "good excuse" to pull the car out of the barn.
Thanks to NCTM Volunteer Anthony Vo for sharing this picture of the car on the Plaza Loop in front of the Visitor's Center.
We pause to remember the thousands of courageous and heroic Americans who perished, or were wounded, in the attack on Pearl Harbor, 79 years ago today.
Following US entry into WWII, the Capital Transit Company began several initiatives in support of the war effort. Special paint schemes encouraging the purchase of war bonds were applied to several street cars; the company began hiring women via the "Women's Auxiliary Transit Service" (WATS) to replace men who had been deployed overseas. New street cars purchased by Capital Transit, including CTCo 1430 which resides in the museum's collection, were built under wartime regulations imposed by the War Production Board and lacked any non-essential components, such as the traditional PCC headlight wings and curved aluminum trim at the car ends.
Photo taken aboard the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park, Honolulu, Hawaii.
If 2020 were a typical year, today the museum would be filled with dozens of smiling families riding our historic street cars for a chance to see and speak with Santa. Although our financial losses from our COVID-19 related closure have been significant, our staff particularly miss the opportunity to provide our guests with a fun and memorable experience during the holidays.
We remain committed to opening the museum, and providing a safe and enjoyable experience, as soon as we are permitted to do so.
Photo by Bill Monaghan, taken during our 2019 Holly TrolleyFest.
#throwbackthursday - Long time members of NCTM might enjoy this! Throwback to September of 1962 when the Trolley Museum sponsored a special excursion to Hagerstown via the old Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. The excursion, which cost $6.75 for adults (about $60 adjusted for inflation,) left from Baltimore's historic Camden Station and made stops at Riverdale and Silver Spring.
Much of this has since changed - the B&O Railroad no longer exists, having been merged with other railroads to eventually form CSX. Camden Station no longer serves long distance trains (only MARC regional commuter trains.) The Silver Spring station is now a museum with no rail service (although MARC does stop at a new station built nearby.) And Lloyd's Hobby Shop has since closed.
Its TrolleyTime Tuesday and we're back with two more colorful Capital Transit street car passes, one of which expired 86 years ago today and the other which went into effect 86 years ago tomorrow.
Read more about these passes in last week's TrolleyTime: https://trolleytime.blogspot.com/2020/11/capital-transit-company-1934-pass.html
Today is #GivingTuesday! 2020 has presented countless unprecedented challenges to our operations; we've lost tens of thousands of dollars in revenue, and anticipate more losses to come (we do not expect to reopen anytime soon.) Yet because of the donations of countless generous individuals, our team has been able to continue working on restoration projects, collection maintenance and implementing upgrades to museum facilities.
Your financial support is needed! Please consider making a donation - or sharing this post if you are unable to contribute. There are several ways to donate:
1) Click the Donate button right on this post - NCTM will receive 100% of your contribution!
2) Mail in a check - checks should be made payable to the National Capital Trolley Museum. Please mail to NCTM - Treasurer, 1313 Bonifant Road, Colesville, MD 20905
3) AmazonSmile - go to smile.amazon.com/ch/52-6054669, or select the National Capital Historical Museum of Transportation, Inc. as your desired charity (you must log in at smile.amazon.com, NOT amazon.com)
If you can't contribute, we invite you to share this post or invite your friends to Like our page. Any and all support is appreciated!
For those of you shopping on Amazon.com today, don't forget to use AmazonSmile! At no additional cost to you, Amazon donates 0.5% of your Amazon purchase to the Trolley Museum! Simply log on to smile.amazon.com/ch/52-6054669, or select the National Capital Historical Museum of Transportation, Inc. as your desired charity. We appreciate your support through this challenging and unpredictable year!
The Capital Transit Company was famous for the colorful weekly transit passes they issued. Each pass featured an elaborate illustration on the front that reflected the season (and any applicable holiday) occurring when the pass was valid. Thanksgiving was no exception; this turkey-themed 1934 pass, valid on street car lines within the District, expired 86 years ago today, just a few days before thanksgiving. This pass is representative of thousands that the museum holds in the Mills Dean III Library.
We wish everyone a safe and happy thanksgiving.
The projects never end; our relentless volunteers continue to work hard to maintain the museum for our eventual reopening! When recent storms caused several tree limbs to come down on the railroad, a few of our volunteers, including Anthony Vo, Eric Madison, Nick Freeling, Josh Hirschfeld and NCTM President Wes Cox, responded quickly to remove debris and adjust the overhead trolley wire. Thanks to Anthony for sending these images from the project.
The museum will remain closed through at least the end of 2020, and we still do not have a predicted date of reopening. However our army of priceless volunteers, much like the ones shown here, remain committed to serving the museum and preparing for the safe return of our valued visitors.
Kids! NCTM Director of Education Karen Lipson has produced another story time video for your enjoyment! Click the image or link below to view.
Join us for a brief story time with NCTM Director of Education Karen Lipson! After the video, follow the link below for our follow up activity.http://files.t...
This photo (left) of DC Transit 1101 at the Peace Monument on the last day of street cars has been a favorite among our visitors and social media followers, and remains one of the most iconic images from that historic day. NCTM Member and Trustee Thomas Petersen recently paid a visit to the site and took the picture on right, which we matched up with the original image taken almost 59 years ago.
This January will mark the 59th anniversary of the end of street car service in Washington. Although it is highly unlikely that we will be open at that time, we will publish several commemorative activities on our TrolleyTime Blog (trolleytime.blogspot.com) to mark the occasion.
Check out our latest edition of TrolleyTime, featuring a 1947 linen rollsign from a Capital Transit Company bus. Our thanks to "the rollsign guy" himself, Joseph Chemerys / RollsignGallery.com, for assistance with this article.
Capital Transit Company Bus Rollsign Click to enlarge images. This week we're featuring a rollsign from a 1940s Capital Transit bus (t he ...
Happy Halloween from your friends at the Trolley Museum! 🎃 👻 🧙♀️ 🕷
Unfortunately we remain closed, with no possibility for reopening anytime soon, however we remain on standby and look forward to the opportunity of serving the public with historic trolley rides in the near future!
Graphic by Angela Cox.
Today marked another major historic moment for Washington DC transit history! This morning our shop crews moved DC Transit 1101 (on the left) into the car shop for periodic maintenance. This simple move reunited DC Transit 1101 with our latest acquisition, DC Transit (Capital Transit) 1470, for the first time in at least 56 - 60 years.
DC Transit 1101 will only remain in the car shop temporarily until routine maintenance concludes, so a photo of the two cars together will likely not be possible for a while. However, it is our intention that, upon the eventual restoration of 1470 or DC Transit 1430 (not pictured,) we will be able to formally unite at least two of our Washington PCCs for a photo opportunity event outside of the display barns.
For more information on DC Transit 1101, the first PCC-type street car in Washington, DC, please click here: https://www.dctrolley.org/DCTS1101.html
For more information on DC Transit 1470 (Capital Transit 1470,) please click here: https://trolleytime.blogspot.com/2020/07/nctm-acquires-dc-transit-1470.html
Thanks to Eric Madison, NCTM Executive Secretary, for this photo.
Amazon.com Prime Day is back starting TODAY and will run through October 14. This is a great opportunity for you to support the Trolley Museum while shopping on Amazon! Simply shop at smile.amazon.com/ch/52-6054669 or with AmazonSmile ON in the Amazon Shopping app and Amazon Smile donates 0.5% of your purchase to the Trolley Museum at no cost to you! We need your help this year more than ever - every amount makes a difference!
Our latest TrolleyTime has been published; this week we're featuring two artifacts from the Annapolis, Washington and Baltimore Railroad - an early predecessor to the Washington, Baltimore and Annapolis Electric Railroad.
Our dedicated team of hardy volunteers continues to work hard on projects at the museum despite our extended closure! Last week, crews cleaned and repainted the floor in Conduit Hall!
Other projects, including major mechanical overhauls on several of our street cars, are currently on-going. Our administrative and management teams continue to work remotely and on-site to maintain museum operations and prepare programming for our eventual return to business.
We appreciate the tremendous support we have received, both monetary and moral, from everyone over the past eight months of our shutdown. We are prepared to welcome guests back to a safe and fun environment as soon as we are permitted to do so.
#TBT - On October 15, 2016, NCTM hosted a Night Photo Session, arranged by Bill Monaghan (with flash lighting provided by Bruce Barry and Michael Burkhart), allowing professional and amateur photographers to capture some of our historic street cars at night in various positions. After the program ended, a couple photographers remained on site and photographed the cars as they were being put back in the barns. Bill Monaghan captured this image, with DCTS 1101 headed back to Street Car Hall and TTC 4602 headed into the car shop. The late Ken Rucker remarked how nicely this scene came together, and the image remains one of our favorite from the night. Note the complex web of trolley wire seen above the cars.
NCTM remains closed due to government COVID-19 mandates; our staff continue to work hard behind the scenes, and we are ready to welcome back visitors as soon as possible.
The Amazon Smile Foundation recently surpassed $200 million in donations to charities worldwide! The Trolley Museum is pleased to participate in Amazon Smile - at no extra cost to you, Amazon donates 0.5% of your purchase total to the Trolley Museum!
Log on to smile.amazon.com/ch/52-6054669 to support the Trolley Museum when you shop on Amazon.
We pause to remember those who perished 19 years ago today, on September 11, 2001.
(Image via usnews.com)
Join us for story time with Ms. Lipson, NCTM Director of Education! (Follow up activity is available on the TrolleyTime Blog after this video is public.)
Happy Labor Day from the Trolley Museum!
Today we take a moment to recognize the hard work and effort our volunteers and staff dedicate to the museum. From our Operations staff to our Maintenance and Restoration teams, from the Administrative and Executive staff to the Education team, the tireless efforts of these men and women have kept the Trolley Museum open and operating, successfully, for over 50 years.
While we remain closed due to COVID-19 government orders, the efforts of our dedicated teams continue, both remotely and in person, in anticipation of our eventual return to operations.
We hope everyone has a safe and relaxing Labor Day; we look forward to the opportunity to serve you again soon!
(Photo by Bill Monaghan.)
TrolleyTime posts will return next week!
In case you missed it, check out our special edition article on the Washington, Baltimore and Annapolis Electric Railroad- https://bit.ly/3hOATgd
Our WB&A special edition of TrolleyTime is now live and available for viewing via the link below:
Image: stained glass window from a WB&A car.
Washington, Baltimore and Annapolis Electric Railroad Prior to the DC Metro, prior to Amtrak's Northeast Corridor high-speed rail service, p...
1313 Bonifant Rd
There is no direct access to the museum via public transit. Visitors arriving from Washington DC and surrounding locations are encouraged to take Metrorail's RED LINE to GLENMONT, and then take a taxi (approx. 5 miles, 8 - 10 minutes, $14/way) to the museum. There is NO bus service to the museum from Glenmont. If you need further public transit instructions, please call us during our operating hours.
LAST STREET CAR DEPARTS THE VISITORS CENTER A HALF HOUR BEFORE CLOSING TIME. HOURS OF OPERATION: Saturdays, Sundays: 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Memorial Day, July 4th, & Labor Day: 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays (March 15th - May 15th, June 15th - August 15th & October 1st - November 15th): 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. NOTE: The Museum is CLOSED on December 24th, 25th & 31st and January 1st FAQs and CAR LOCATIONS & STATUSES: The current operational status of all streetcars in the museum collection is posted here > https://link.thunderpenny.com/ioeyC *INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY*: Streetcars operate RAIN OR SHINE, UNLESS lightning is present. If lightning is present, car departures will be temporarily suspended until the storm passes. Please CALL THE MUSEUM (301 384-6088) the day of your visit to confirm streetcar departures.
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The National Capital Trolley Museum, in cooperation with Montgomery County Parks, brings the sights and sounds of the trolley era to visitors of all ages. Experience early 20th century transit as you travel two miles aboard a Washington street car, an American trolley, or an European Tram. Tour Street Car Hall with a docent. See "Street Cars Go to the Movies" and the Rock Creek Railway model in Main Hall. Enjoy interactive exhibits, film programs, and the Museum Shop.
[There is no way to access the museum via public transportation. Visitors from Washington DC may take Metrorail’s RED LINE to GLENMONT, but will have to take a taxi (10-15 minute trip) from there to the museum.]
Saturdays, Sundays: 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Memorial Day, July 4th, & Labor Day: 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Thursdays, Fridays (March 15th - May 15th, June 15th - August 15th & October 1st - November 15th): 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
NOTE: The Museum is CLOSED on December 24th, 25th & 31st and January 1st
The current operational status and display location of all streetcars in the museum collection is posted here > http://bit.ly/2v5O6bh . For information on the streetcar(s) operating on the date of your visit, you may call the museum (301-384-6088) no earlier than 15 minutes before scheduled opening (11:45 on Saturdays and Sundays and 9:45 on Thursdays and Fridays.) Please know that equipment is subject to change without notice.
Streetcars operate RAIN OR SHINE except in any case when lightning is present. If lightning is present, car operations will be temporarily suspended until the storm passes. Usually the museum buildings remain open as normal for the duration of such storms. Should you have any concerns, or for streetcar operation updates during your visit, please call the Dispatcher at 301 384-6088.