San Diego Electric Railway Association

San Diego Electric Railway Association The San Diego Electric Railway Association (SDERA) is dedicated to the preservation of the history of the San Diego Electric Railway
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San Diego Electric Railway Assn., Inc is a 501.c.3 Non-profit Corporation DBA: San Diego Electric Railway (SDERy) and The National City Depot P.O. Box 89068, San Diego, 92138-9068. National City Depot is at 922 West 23rd St, National City, CA 91950 The Depot is located at the corner of Bay Marina Drive and Marina Way in National City. Take Interstate 5 about 10 miles south of downtown San Diego, exit at Bay Marina Drive and go west 1 block and turn right on Cleveland Ave. Turn left one block later onto West 23rd St. The Depot is straight in at the end of the street. The Depot is open Saturdays and Sundays and Holidays (except Thanksgiving and Christmas) 10 am - 4 pm and by appointment.

Mission: The San Diego Electric Railway Association, Inc. (d.b.a San Diego Electric Railway) exists to: * Preserve the artifacts and equipment of the San Diego Electric Railway and other related local companies. * Establish and maintain an active railway museum, complete with an operating, historic streetcar line. * Serve as an educational resource showing the important roles streetcars, interurbans, and electric railways played in the development of the San Diego area. * Preserve past and present pictures, publications, and artifacts of the current San Diego Trolley.

May 5, 2020 is #GivingTuesdayNow. There is still time to support the National City Depot. As a result of the current pub...
05/06/2020
Help Support the National City Depot

May 5, 2020 is #GivingTuesdayNow. There is still time to support the National City Depot. As a result of the current public health crisis we have had to temporarily close our doors. As a small non-profit every day that we are closed takes a toll on us financially. How can you help? You can make a financial donation of any amount using GoFundMe, Facebook or our website at www.sdera.org/donate.

You can also support us by shopping on Amazon Smile. Amazon will donate a small portion of most purchases to a non-profit of your choice every time you shop at smile.amazon.com. Make sure to select the San Diego Electric Railway Association as your charity of choice and continue shop Amazon as you normally would.

Thank you for your continued support during these challenging times.

The National City Depot is operated by the San Diego Electric Railway Association an all-volunteer non-profit organization. Our goal is to preserve San Diego Counties' vast railway history with a special focus on the San Diego Electric Railway s streetcars and trolleys. We rely solely ...

The National City Depot is operated by the San Diego Electric Railway Association an all-volunteer non-profit organizati...
04/08/2020
Help Support the National City Depot

The National City Depot is operated by the San Diego Electric Railway Association an all-volunteer non-profit organization. Our goal is to preserve San Diego Counties' vast railway history with a special focus on the San Diego Electric Railway’s streetcars and trolleys. We rely solely upon donations to maintain the depot along with restoring our exhibits to a museum-quality display. Unfortunately, as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, we have had to shut our doors for the time being. As a result, many of our critical restoration and maintenance projects have been placed on hold indefinitely due to a lack of funding and available volunteers. Please consider donating any amount to help keep our small all-volunteer non-profit museum open to the public once the current public health crisis is over. To learn about some other ways that you can support the San Diego Electric Railway Association please visit https://www.sdera.org/donate.php.

The National City Depot is operated by the San Diego Electric Railway Association an all-volunteer non-profit organization. Our goal is to preserve San Diego Counties' vast railway history with a special focus on the San Diego Electric Railway s streetcars and trolleys. We rely solely ...

Behind The Lens
04/08/2020

Behind The Lens

This was taken early in 2012 during another one of those moments you just can't say no to :)
There was weekend track work on the J-line..access to Beach Yard for the F-Market was cut off...so what happened? Cars were banked along the Embarcadero overnight! This made for an opportunistic night photo shoot.
i am not one to critique color schemes because i am not that up to speed on the various shades of colors...
However i have always been impressed with how simple but how really nice 1078 looks. I think that's my favorite (with all apologies to my hometown 1053 :) )

So lets see your PCC favorites? which cars?

Due to the statewide shelter in place order we will remain closed indefinitely. The SDERA board is monitoring the situat...
03/21/2020

Due to the statewide shelter in place order we will remain closed indefinitely. The SDERA board is monitoring the situation and will decide when it is safe to reopen the National City Depot to the public. A closure of any duration makes a significant financial impact on small non-profits like us. Please consider supporting us any way possible. Visit www.sdera.org/donate to learn how you can help.

San Diego Electric Railway Association
03/13/2020

San Diego Electric Railway Association

San Diego Electric Railway Association
03/13/2020

San Diego Electric Railway Association

The safety and well-being of our guests and volunteers is our top priority. At this time we have made the difficult deci...
03/13/2020

The safety and well-being of our guests and volunteers is our top priority. At this time we have made the difficult decision to close the National City Depot to the public through March 31, 2020. We will be closely monitoring the situation and will evaluate when it is appropriate to reopen The National City Depot. We apologize for any inconvenience that this may cause. For more information on our closure please visit www.sdera.org.

Did you know that the San Diego Electric Railway Association has a Teespring Store?  We currently have t-shirts, sweatsh...
02/13/2020
SDERA

Did you know that the San Diego Electric Railway Association has a Teespring Store? We currently have t-shirts, sweatshirts, tote bags and mugs available for purchase online.

The San Diego Electric Railway Association (SDERA) is dedicated to the preservation of the history of the San Diego Electric Railway. SDERA is also the operator of the National City Depot.

Happy New Year 2020 from your friends at the San Diego Electric Railway Association!!!
01/01/2020

Happy New Year 2020 from your friends at the San Diego Electric Railway Association!!!

12/23/2019

Happy Holidays from the San Diego Electric Railway Association!
We will be open December 28th and December 29th from 10am to 4pm.

Take 10% off of your Teespring purchase with the promo code SANTA. Offer expires December 18th at midnight PST.
12/16/2019
San Diego Electric Railway Association

Take 10% off of your Teespring purchase with the promo code SANTA. Offer expires December 18th at midnight PST.

Breaking News! The San Diego Electric Railway now has a Teespring store. This online store will make it easier to purchase your favorite SDERA apparel. We are currently working on adding more designs and products. These items are currently available exclusively through Teespring.

Breaking News!  The San Diego Electric Railway now has a Teespring store. This online store will make it easier to purch...
12/16/2019
SDERA

Breaking News! The San Diego Electric Railway now has a Teespring store. This online store will make it easier to purchase your favorite SDERA apparel. We are currently working on adding more designs and products. These items are currently available exclusively through Teespring.

The San Diego Electric Railway Association (SDERA) is dedicated to the preservation of the history of the San Diego Electric Railway. SDERA is also the operator of the National City Depot.

San Diego Electric Railway Association
12/14/2019

San Diego Electric Railway Association

Looking for something to do this weekend? Stop by and visit the National City Depot. We are open Saturdays and Sundays f...
12/12/2019

Looking for something to do this weekend? Stop by and visit the National City Depot. We are open Saturdays and Sundays from 10am to 4pm.

Thank you for your support on #GivingTuesday. Want to learn more on how you can support the San Diego Electric Railway A...
12/04/2019

Thank you for your support on #GivingTuesday. Want to learn more on how you can support the San Diego Electric Railway Association please visit www.sdera.org/donate.

There is still time to support the San Diego Electric Railway Association this #GivingTuesday. Help us reach our $5,000 ...
12/04/2019

There is still time to support the San Diego Electric Railway Association this #GivingTuesday. Help us reach our $5,000 dollar goal by sharing this post or creating your own fundraising campaign.

Thank you for your support!

Ready. Set. Go. Today is GivingTuesday, a global day of giving back to the causes you care about. Support our #GivingTue...
12/03/2019

Ready. Set. Go. Today is GivingTuesday, a global day of giving back to the causes you care about. Support our #GivingTuesday Campaign today:

1) Start a Fundraiser
2) Donate now

Facebook is contributing up to a $7 Million match to US nonprofits for GivingTuesday 2019. Starting 8:00am EST (5am PST) on December 3, 2019 the match will go live, matching dollar for dollar on a first come first serve basis until it hits $7 million matched.100% of donations made through Facebook Payments go to the nonprofit organization; which means every dollar goes to the causes people care about.

Money raised will go to make vital safety upgrades to the National City Depot and to our many restoration projects.

Thank you for your support.

This GivingTuesday we’re fundraising for The San Diego Electric Railway Association, our goals is $5,000. We need your h...
12/02/2019

This GivingTuesday we’re fundraising for The San Diego Electric Railway Association, our goals is $5,000. We need your help.

How can you help?
As a supporter of The San Diego Electric Railway Association and the National City Depot, we need your help. Create a Facebook fundraiser and share it with your friends on GivingTuesday. Creating a fundraiser is easy and we welcome fundraisers with any goal amount.

Where will the money raised will go?
Every dollar raised will be used to make vital safety upgrades to the National City Depot and to begin restoration on our historic exhibits. Facebook is contributing up to a $7 Million match to US nonprofits for GivingTuesday 2019. Starting 8:00am EST (5am PST) on December 3, 2019 the match will go live, matching dollar for dollar on a first come first serve basis until it hits $7 million matched.

Thank you for your support.

12/01/2019

Dec 3rd is #GivingTuesday. This year we are fundraising for vital repairs to depot and for exhibit restoration. Facebook is again matching donations starting at 5am PST/8am EST. Mark your calendar and help us reach our $5000 goal to make vital repairs to the National City Depot.

San Diego Electric Railway Association
12/01/2019

San Diego Electric Railway Association

The San Diego Electric Railway Association relies on donations to operate and maintain the Historic National City Depot....
11/14/2019
Donate - San Diego Electric Railway Association

The San Diego Electric Railway Association relies on donations to operate and maintain the Historic National City Depot. The depot is in need of some vital maintenance. These projects include replacing the wooden decking surrounding the depot and upgrading the buildings fire alarm system.

How can you help?

1. Visit www.sdera.org/donate to discover the various ways that you can donate.

2. Utilize Amazon Smile for all of your online purchases. Visit www.smile.amazon.com and select the San Diego Electric Railway Association as your charity of choice.

3. Share this post with your friends.

San Diego Electric Railway Association, Inc. is a 501.c.3 non-profit corporation. All contributions are tax deductible in accordance with current tax codes. We depend solely upon the generosity of donors like you for our financial support. Please give generously our restoration and maintenance effor...

We are currently looking for dedicated individuals to serve as volunteers. We are currently looking for docents, electri...
10/10/2019

We are currently looking for dedicated individuals to serve as volunteers. We are currently looking for docents, electricians, wood workers, grant writers and landscapers. If you are interested please visit www.sdera.org/volunteer.

Our 1955 Rea Express baggage cart is progressing in its restoration.  Two new front tires, now all new boards have been ...
09/15/2019

Our 1955 Rea Express baggage cart is progressing in its restoration. Two new front tires, now all new boards have been purchased and cut to size. In the next few weeks, the boards will have several coats of varnish applied before installation. Today, Saturday the 14th, many dents were were pounded out. Of course, any donations would be appreciated. See our website, page 1 for instructions. www.sdera.org

Found our long time member Tom Matson on KPBS this evening on "1915 Expo Centennial: San Diego's Historic Places" with E...
08/09/2019

Found our long time member Tom Matson on KPBS this evening on "1915 Expo Centennial: San Diego's Historic Places" with Elsa Sevilla. This was once of the last appearances of Tom before he passed in 2013. He was quite knowledgable about the San Diego Electric Railway and helped make this episode really stand out with facts and photos. Thanks Tom! We are thinking about you...

Are you planning on participating in 2019 Amazon Prime Day? Did you know that you can help support the San Diego Electri...
07/15/2019

Are you planning on participating in 2019 Amazon Prime Day? Did you know that you can help support the San Diego Electric Railway Association whenever you shop on Amazon? Amazon Smile will donate a small portion of your purchase to a charity of your choice. Just remember to use www.smile.amazon.com whenever you shop on Amazon. #amazonprimeday #nationalcity #nationalcitydepot #sandiego #amazonprime #amazonsmile

A big thank you to Bryce from Troop 951 for building brand new steps for our Vienna Streetcar as a part of his Eagle Pro...
07/07/2019

A big thank you to Bryce from Troop 951 for building brand new steps for our Vienna Streetcar as a part of his Eagle Project. We appreciate his hard work and dedication and wish him luck on his final steps towards becoming an Eagle Scout!

In 2001 the San Diego Electric Railway Association chartered a three car excursion train on the Mission Valley segment o...
06/02/2019

In 2001 the San Diego Electric Railway Association chartered a three car excursion train on the Mission Valley segment of the San Diego Trolley system. Little did we know that 17 years later Car 1002 would be on display at the National City Depot!

These photos are from the collection of Andy Goddard who also wrote the following caption.

Back in 2001 the San Diego Electric Railway group chartered a three car San Diego Trolley train to inspect the Mission Valley segment of the system. I volunteered my time and operated the train for the group doing run-byes and photo stops. It was a long day as we had hoped to have done the whole system but we fell short on time and did not want to delay revenue trains. You may take note I was looking at my watch carefully. -ANDY

It's on and I see BACON!! Come on by for the Rotary Pancake and Waffle Breakfast at the Depot! We will be here until 2!
05/19/2019

It's on and I see BACON!! Come on by for the Rotary Pancake and Waffle Breakfast at the Depot! We will be here until 2!

05/18/2019

A big thank you from the volunteers from Sweetwater High School who came today and helped get our yard ready for tomorrow's Rotary Club Pancake & Waffle Event (10 to 2 Sunday at the Depot). Love to see you there!

Timeline Photos
05/05/2019

Timeline Photos

We will be closed Sunday April 21 for Easter Sunday.
04/19/2019

We will be closed Sunday April 21 for Easter Sunday.

Address

922 W 23nd St
National City, CA
91950

San Diego Trolley, take the Blue Line to National City / 24th St Station. The Depot is about 4 blocks west of the station.

General information

The San Diego Electric Railway Association (SDERA) is dedicated to the preservation of the history of the San Diego Electric Railway - San Diego's primary streetcar system which operated from the late 1800s to 1949. SDERA is also the operator of the National City Depot, an historic Santa Fe railroad station. We operate a railroad and local history museum within the depot, and the depot is open Thursday to Sunday from 9 am to 5 pm. A large model-railroad exhibit, operated by our 3-Rail model railroad group, is also included in the museum displays. All train buffs, local historians, and people looking for an interesting "day out" in the San Diego area are encouraged to visit the depot, join with us, and help us grow into a major destination within San Diego County.

Opening Hours

Saturday 10:00 - 16:00
Sunday 10:00 - 16:00

Telephone

(619) 474-4400

Alerts

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About us

The San Diego Electric Railway Association (SDERA) is dedicated to the preservation of the history of the San Diego Electric Railway - San Diego's primary streetcar system which operated from the late 1800s to 1949. SDERA is also the operator of the National City Depot, an historic Santa Fe railroad station. We operate a railroad and local history museum within the depot, and the depot is open Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 4 pm. A large model-railroad exhibit, operated by our 3-Rail model railroad group, is also included in the museum displays. All train buffs, local historians, and people looking for an interesting "day out" in the San Diego area are encouraged to visit the depot, join with us, and help us grow into a major destination within San Diego County

Nearby museums


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Comments

RIP George Geyer. Many of us will miss him. He loves all these classics trolley and trains. He is also a member of OERM (Orange Empire Railway Museum) in Perris, California.
Months ago I visited the National City station. I spoke to the people there and took endless pictures. I thanked everyone for their help. Fast forward. I am not putting together the chapter on the RR and looking at my pictures and notes. WHAT A WEALTH OF INFORMATION. I know I thanked you but you guys were tremendous. My Chapter is about Latinos and the railroad. Your information will cover several pages. Gracias.
Another 1002 from the collection of Andy Goddard, Senior. Enjoy!
1002 in the early days. From the collection of Andy Goddard, Sr; photos by Jerry Squier.
1002 in the early days. From the collection of Andy Goddard, Sr; photos by Jerry Squier.
1002 in the early days. From the collection of Andy Goddard, Sr; photos by Jerry Squier.
1002 in the early days. From the collection of Andy Goddard, Sr; photos by Jerry Squier.
1002 in the early days. From the collection of Andy Goddard, Sr; photos by Jerry Squier.
Another clown I know... C Street 1981
As promised, Part 2. Today is the Reopening under new ownership. El Carrito quickly became a social hub for Barrio Logan. Although it eventually passed out of Johnston family ownership, it continued to operate as a Mexican restaurant, then called El Nuevo Carrito, until closure in 2016. The retiring owners sought a new owner who would appreciate the history of El Carrito and Barrio Logan: enter Milo Lorenzana, owner of the Por Vida coffee shop on same block. Lorenzana is restoring El Carrito, which will reopen serving breakfast and lunch on June 1, 2018. He has done extensive woodwork while keeping as much of the historic material as possible, even when impractical, and adopting the cream and sage paint scheme of the 1930s and 1940s trolleys. El Carrito Cocina Mexicana is located at 2154 Logan Avenue in Barrio Logan, one block from Chicano Park and a couple of doors down from Lorenzana’s Por Vida Café. In keeping with El Carrito’s history as a community hub, Lorenzana and the adjacent San Diego Vintage Co. host a monthly flea market in the adjacent lot, offering clothing, craft stalls, and local food trucks. Find more info at https://www.facebook.com/elcarritobarriologan/, https://www.porvidacollective.com/, and https://www.facebook.com/barriologanfleamarket/. Figure 2. El Carrito prior to reopening, May 2018.
San Diego Electric Railway Car 150 – “El Carrito” Part 1 The San Diego Electric Railway, in service from 1891 to 1947, was responsible for the growth of several San Diego neighborhoods including North Park and Normal Heights and delivered many of the 3.7 million visitors to the 1915-16 Panama-California Exposition, San Diego’s World’s Fair in Balboa Park. When the system was shut down in favor of buses, many of the old streetcars were demolished or sold for scrap. However, a few of the cars were sold and converted to back-country cabins or suburban cottages in an early example of adaptive reuse. Alfonso “Pelón” Johnston, a Barrio Logan community organizer and musician, purchased one of these streetcars. Car 150 was a Class 2 “Expo” electric trolley car built in 1914 by the McGuire-Cummings Manufacturing Company of Paris, Illinois. The car seated 52 passengers, was mainly constructed of wood, and provided all the latest technology including electric lighting, window shades, and pull cords for signaling stops. Johnston installed the decommissioned car in the front yard of 2154 Logan Avenue, right along the No. 12 – Logan Heights trolley line. He built a stucco enclosure on one end, installed kitchen equipment, and opened a restaurant called El Carrito (“the little car”) in 1948. Wriiten by PanGIS Senior Historian and Archaeologist Doug Mengers. Figure 1. El Carrito under construction in 1947; Alfonso “Pelón” Johnston at right (Pacific Southwest Railway Museum).
One more photo for this day shows rebuilt car 147 at the Adams Street Car House. Many more to come in the days ahead. ANDY GODDARD collection