Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society The Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society (PERyHS) is a non-profit association dedicated to the preservation of the memory of the Pacific Electric Railway.

The goals of the PERYHS are: to preserve and maintain historical documents, visual images. The Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society (PERYHS) is a non-profit association dedicated to the preservation of the memory of the Pacific Electric Railway and Los Angeles Railway.

The goals of the PERYHS are: to preserve and maintain historical documents, visual images. The Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society (PERYHS) is a non-profit association dedicated to the preservation of the memory of the Pacific Electric Railway and Los Angeles Railway.

Operating as usual

Ralph Cantos is back with a great short essay on the fate of Los Angeles Railway no. 287, who was destined for scrap, th...
09/23/2021
Los Angeles Railway 287: End of the Line - Almost - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Ralph Cantos is back with a great short essay on the fate of Los Angeles Railway no. 287, who was destined for scrap, then miraculously saved and moved to a hilltop near the 14 Freeway, only to undergo years of senseless vandalism.

  Los Angeles Railway 287: End of the Line – Almost 0 By Ralph Cantos Los Angeles Railway Huntington Standard no. 287 heads a long line of retired Standards at the Vernon Yard’s “scrap track.” These unfortunate cars probably operated their last mile under their own power, as this track stil...

Michael Patris and Steve Crise of the Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society will be giving a presentation on "Paci...
09/17/2021

Michael Patris and Steve Crise of the Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society will be giving a presentation on "Pacific Electric, Mount Lowe & Los Angeles Transit," at the Southern Pacific Historical & Technical Society meet 11AM, Saturday, November 13, 2021, at the Verdugo Woodlands Dads Club, Glendale CA 91208. Note there is a $35 fee to attend this event. Please see the attached forms.

Ralph Cantos brings a 1959-vintage TV program to our attention that features LATL carbodies stacked at National Metals a...
08/22/2021
Rescue 8: The Steel Mountain - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Ralph Cantos brings a 1959-vintage TV program to our attention that features LATL carbodies stacked at National Metals at Terminal Island - plus a very young Harry Dean Stanton. Check it out! Full video included! https://www.pacificelectric.org/collections/ralph-cantos-collection/rescue-8-the-steel-mountain/

  Rescue 8: The Steel Mountain 0 Ralph Cantos wrote us with a tip to search for an episode of an early fire-rescue series similar to Jack Webb’s “Emergency!” from the late 1950s entitled “Rescue 8.” One episode, entitled “The Steel Mountain,” was filmed at National Metals on Terminal ...

Authors Steven Crise and Michael Patris are proud to announce the release of their latest book “Los Angeles Railway” tha...
07/13/2021

Authors Steven Crise and Michael Patris are proud to announce the release of their latest book “Los Angeles Railway” that is now available from Arcadia Publishing as part of their Past & Present series. Steven and Michael have spent more than nine years sorting and editing through hundreds of images and visiting over 90 locations throughout the Los Angeles area to bring to print more than 80 comparative photographic studies of various locations along the old horse, cable car routes, and the later electric powered lines of the Los Angeles Railway, the Los Angeles Transit Lines and the Metropolitan Transit Authority. The studies contained within the pages of this book will surprise and amaze you with the vast and ever changing developments in the city and by the varied mass-transit systems that have come and gone over the last 150 years.

Ordering your copy of Los Angeles Railway is simple and can be accomplished by clicking here:
https://www.arcadiapublishing.com/Products/9781467105880

Authors Steven Crise and Michael Patris are proud to announce the release of their latest book “Los Angeles Railway” that is now available from Arcadia Publishing as part of their Past & Present series. Steven and Michael have spent more than nine years sorting and editing through hundreds of images and visiting over 90 locations throughout the Los Angeles area to bring to print more than 80 comparative photographic studies of various locations along the old horse, cable car routes, and the later electric powered lines of the Los Angeles Railway, the Los Angeles Transit Lines and the Metropolitan Transit Authority. The studies contained within the pages of this book will surprise and amaze you with the vast and ever changing developments in the city and by the varied mass-transit systems that have come and gone over the last 150 years.

Ordering your copy of Los Angeles Railway is simple and can be accomplished by clicking here:
https://www.arcadiapublishing.com/Products/9781467105880

Look what our parent Society won.
07/06/2021

Look what our parent Society won.

Look what our parent Society won.

And third and final entry today in new Alan Weeks photo collections - Pacific Electric box motors.
04/24/2021
Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway: Box Motors - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

And third and final entry today in new Alan Weeks photo collections - Pacific Electric box motors.

  Alan Weeks’ Pacific Electric Railway: Box Motors 0 By Alan K. Weeks A few people have asked me what Box Motors were used for. Most of you know but for those that don’t, they were used to haul less-than-a-car-load of freight all over Southern California. Trunks, large boxes, bicycles and very ...

Our second of three new Alan Weeks photo collections is this extensive one of PE substations through the system. Amazing...
04/24/2021
Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway: Substations, 1950s - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Our second of three new Alan Weeks photo collections is this extensive one of PE substations through the system. Amazing the variety of architectural designs from one company.

  Alan Weeks’ Pacific Electric Railway: Substations, 1950s 0 By Alan K. Weeks A book was published a few years ago about the P.E.R.y Sub stations. It sold out in months and I never got a copy. I did not take pictures of them all but did manage to get pictures of quite a few. I am now able to comp...

The first of three new Alan Weeks image collections is this one focused on Santa Anita race trains and the San Vicente S...
04/24/2021
Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway: Santa Anita Race Trains and San Vicente Shuttle, 1949 - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

The first of three new Alan Weeks image collections is this one focused on Santa Anita race trains and the San Vicente Shuttle, all from 1949. Check it out at our site.

  Alan Weeks’ Pacific Electric Railway: Santa Anita Race Trains and San Vicente Shuttle, 1949 0 By Alan K. Weeks This is a small group but two different subjects. The Santa Anita Race track trains, and the San Vicente Shuttle. The Race Track trains only ran on the days that they held races. The S...

Michael Patris recently appeared on the SGV Master Key podcast - a great interview, check it out!
04/22/2021
SGV Master Key Podcast: Michael Patris - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Michael Patris recently appeared on the SGV Master Key podcast - a great interview, check it out!

  SGV Master Key Podcast: Michael Patris 0 Michael Patris of the Mount Lowe Preservation Society recently appeared on the SGV Master Key Podcast. Here is their introduction: Michael Patris has always had an interest in history. Whether collecting antiques, collecting and working on antique cars, or...

Ralph Cantos is back with an amazing story - the secret history of Pacific Electric "Portland 12" no. 1258, a "scrapped"...
03/30/2021
Pacific Electric no. 1258: It's still here (sort of) - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Ralph Cantos is back with an amazing story - the secret history of Pacific Electric "Portland 12" no. 1258, a "scrapped" car that lives on, sort of. Check it out!

  Pacific Electric no. 1258: It’s still here (sort of) 0 By Ralph Cantos In this 1938 photo, Pacific Electric no. 1258 awaits departure time at the PE San Bernardino Station. The cars became known as “Portland 12s” to all that loved these elegant cars. The Portland 12s came to the PE in 1929 ...

Ralph Cantos is back with a great piece on the mighty PE 800s! Check it out!
02/23/2021
Pacific Electric No. 913: The life of a true "survivor" (sort of) - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Ralph Cantos is back with a great piece on the mighty PE 800s! Check it out!

  Pacific Electric No. 913: The life of a true “survivor” (sort of) 0 By Ralph Cantos This photo taken by the late Harold F. Stewart from the Craig Rasmussen Collection shows Pacific Electric No. 913 heading west bound at Culver Junction on the Santa Monica Air Line. It’s mid-1940 and 38 year...

Alan Weeks is back with another collection of fantastic photos and memories - this time a Railroad Boosters Whittier Lin...
01/24/2021
Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway: Whittier Line Charter Trip, October 17, 1948 - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Alan Weeks is back with another collection of fantastic photos and memories - this time a Railroad Boosters Whittier Line fan trip from 1948. Check it out!

  Alan Weeks’ Pacific Electric Railway: Whittier Line Charter Trip, October 17, 1948 0 By Alan K. Weeks In 1947 I saw in the paper that the City Public Utilities Commission were going to hold a hearing on the Pacific Electric’s plan to abandon one of their lines. I went downtown on the streetca...

Ralph Cantos has a great new article on the Hill Street Tunnels - legends for four decades in downtown Los Angeles, but ...
01/19/2021
Pacific Electric's Hill Street Tunnels: An LA Icon - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Ralph Cantos has a great new article on the Hill Street Tunnels - legends for four decades in downtown Los Angeles, but now vanished.

  Pacific Electric’s Hill Street Tunnels: An LA Icon 0 By Ralph Cantos Pacific Electric Hollywood car no. 614 poses for the camera at 1st & Hill Street in this 1923 photo. The south end of the Hill Street tunnel portals dominate the scene. For almost four decades, the twin tunnels stood proudly a...

Alan Weeks has a year-end surprise, photos from his 1948 trip to the PE's Torrance Shops! Click through to read his acco...
12/31/2020
Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway: Torrance Shops 1948 - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Alan Weeks has a year-end surprise, photos from his 1948 trip to the PE's Torrance Shops! Click through to read his account of this fantastic day-long trip.

  Alan Weeks’ Pacific Electric Railway: Torrance Shops 1948 0 By Alan K. Weeks After a little detour we finally got back to Torrance Shops. I was surprised that I did not take more pictures while I was there. Then I remembered my Box Camera used a roll of Kodac Film with only eight exposures. I w...

Alan Weeks is back with a big collection of images he photographed in and around 6th and Main Street Headquarters dating...
12/06/2020
Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway 6th and Main Street Headquarters - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Alan Weeks is back with a big collection of images he photographed in and around 6th and Main Street Headquarters dating back to the 1940s. Check it out!

  Alan Weeks’ Pacific Electric Railway 6th and Main Street Headquarters 0 By Alan Weeks You might all be tried of the Main St. Station but I think this is the last batch. It really was the most important facility of the Railway. It was a grand hub of the whole system. Millions of people must have...

Ralph Cantos gets into the spirit of the season with this review of the LATL's Candy Cane Cars from the late 1940s and e...
11/23/2020
Los Angeles Transit Lines "Candy Cane Cars & Buses" - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Ralph Cantos gets into the spirit of the season with this review of the LATL's Candy Cane Cars from the late 1940s and early 1950s. Check it out!

  Los Angeles Transit Lines “Candy Cane Cars & Buses” 0 By Ralph Cantos Starting in November of 1948, The Downtown Business Men’s Association sponsored 2 Los Angeles Transit Lines Candy Cane streetcars, PCC no. 3010 and H-4 no. 1257 to stimulate shopping in Downtown Los Angeles. — the only ...

Our heartfelt thanks to all who have served our country.
11/11/2020

Our heartfelt thanks to all who have served our country.

Our heartfelt thanks to all who have served our country.

Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway Macy Street Car House and Shops, 1950-1951.
11/05/2020
Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway Macy Street Car House and Shops, 1950-1951 - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway Macy Street Car House and Shops, 1950-1951.

  Alan Weeks’ Pacific Electric Railway Macy Street Car House and Shops, 1950-1951 0 By Alan K. Weeks Here we have a switch in venue. Shops, Yards and Stored cars. Macy Street was not a heavy shop but did a lot of other types of work. The Main Shops were built in Torrance and were very large. It h...

A new article and series of images from Alan Weeks focused on the Northern District and Downtown, 1950-1951. Check it ou...
11/05/2020
Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway: More Northern District and Downtown, 1950-1951 - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

A new article and series of images from Alan Weeks focused on the Northern District and Downtown, 1950-1951. Check it out!

  Alan Weeks’ Pacific Electric Railway: More Northern District and Downtown, 1950-1951 0 By Alan K. Weeks This pretty much winds up the Northern District. It only took about one year to completely abandon and tear up this district. These are the lines that were abandoned: Pasadena Short Line Pasa...

Ralph Cantos is back with a great new piece on LA traction operations with banners overhead or hanging from catenary. Ch...
11/05/2020
PE and LARy Cars Under Flapping Banners - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Ralph Cantos is back with a great new piece on LA traction operations with banners overhead or hanging from catenary. Check it out!

  PE and LARy Cars Under Flapping Banners 0 By Ralph Cantos This wonderful photo shows LARY cars on Broadway at 7th in the glory days of Downtown Los Angeles. Car lines of both systems blanked the City and with it, miles of trolley wire span wires, The span wires beckoning their use for cloth banne...

Ralph Cantos has a new piece up at our site - check it out!
10/05/2020
PE #428-LAMTA #1537: Mayhem on Long Beach Blvd. - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Ralph Cantos has a new piece up at our site - check it out!

  PE #428-LAMTA #1537: Mayhem on Long Beach Blvd. 0 By Ralph Cantos Although almost 50 years separate these two photos, the results are the same, the destruction of two Ford vehicles. A wise man once said, “never assume anything.” Such was the case in these two accidents. The 1959 accident on L...

We have a great new piece by legendary transit historian Alan Weeks now available at our site - check it out!
09/08/2020
Alan Weeks' Pacific Electric Railway Northern & Southern District, 1950s - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

We have a great new piece by legendary transit historian Alan Weeks now available at our site - check it out!

  Alan Weeks’ Pacific Electric Railway Northern & Southern District, 1950s 0 By Alan Weeks This is a mixed batch from the North, Downtown and the Southern Districts. For years the Watts Local and Sierra Vista Local ran as one thru line from Sierra Vista to Watts. It did not go into the Main Stree...

Ralph Cantos  returns with a great new  article  focusing on the action that could be found at Broadway and 7th. Check i...
07/26/2020
LARY in Downtown LA. : Always a car in sight! - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Ralph Cantos returns with a great new article focusing on the action that could be found at Broadway and 7th. Check it out!

  LARY in Downtown LA. : Always a car in sight! 0 By Ralph Cantos It may have been Los Angeles Transit Lines that coined the phrase “always a car in sight” when referring to the world-famous P Line with its 90-second post-World War II headways. But all anyone needs do is look at historic photos...

Here's an amazing new story by Ralph Cantos with an even more amazing photo. Check it out!
05/27/2020
LARY Cars at Georgia Street: Stop everything and run for cover! - Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

Here's an amazing new story by Ralph Cantos with an even more amazing photo. Check it out!

By Ralph Cantos This remarkable photo was taken at dusk on February 25, 1942. It was one of the first air raid tests in the Los Angeles area. Just two days before, the Richfield Ellwood oil storage facility near Santa Barbra was shelled by a Japanese submarine. While no one was killed, and the damag...

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San Gabriel, CA
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About PERHYS

Formed in 1999, the Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society was founded by Jack Finn, Walter Abbenseth, Craig Rasmussen and Jed Hughes. Eventually Jeffery Moreau and Michael Patris were added to the board. Sadly, in July of 2006, Jack Finn passed away following a prolonged illness. According to longtime friend Alan Weeks, Jack lived very close to the Pacific Electric Railway Glendale Line and it is here where his love of the system began. Also, according to Weeks, they both operated rail cars at the Orange Empire Railway Museum (OERM) for many years. Alan was badge #54 and Jack was badge #74. Jack Finn conducted several interviews of many people who rode on or worked for the Pacific Electric Railway and published eight monographs which contained these interviews and images to enhance the text. Eventually, we would like to reprint those monographs and make them available via this website. Please see our monograph page. Also, according to Alan Weeks, speaking of Jack, "His research and knowledge of the P.E. was quite extraordinary in my opinion. He was a stickler for accuracy. But, in the long run, I will remember Jack for being the kind and caring person who looked after many ill people who had no one else to help them. He did this quietly and without fanfare." Upon Jack's passing, the archives of the Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society were bequeathed to the Mount Lowe Preservation Society, Inc. The goal has been to expand the MLPSI archives to include the PERYHS collection and further enhance the sharing of history, images, text and artifacts of these operations. Also, to further make available the monographs already produced as well as assemble from notes and tapes the monographs that were in the works at the time of Jack's passing. Here is the original Mission Statement for the PERYHS: The Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society (PERYHS) is a non-profit association dedicated to the preservation of the memory of the Pacific Electric Railway. The goals of the PERYHS are: to preserve and maintain historical documents, visual images, oral histories, and historical studies; to make these materials available to the general public via publications (monographs), presentations and displays to non-profit groups and organizations and to assist other non-profit organizations in their efforts to preserve the legacy of the Pacific Electric Railway. Our goal is to keep Jack Finn's dream alive and continue his work for all to enjoy. The Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society will operate under the 501 (c) 3 non-profit educational foundation of the Mount Lowe Preservation Society, Inc. Michael Patris President, MLPSI

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Recently photographed in a geographer's office at Cal State LA.
Does anyone here want this copy ?
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Q: Red Car fare in 1920's? And was that to ride anywhere, even with transfers?
Scanned negative early 1900's "Los Angeles". No exact location given. R.A. Carpenter photographer. My G-Grandfather.
Scanned negative from around 1912. "Lankershim"
LA Preservationists - we need you!! https://vimeo.com/500171761/0b91312c29 Please give our 90 second video on the historic block, narrated by LA historic preservationists Nathan Marsak. Save Normandie : Koreatown's Little New York
Hello! Please share your memories of riding the Red Car with artist Mark Steven Greenfield for a project:
I made this picture, as a a 16 yo photographer and railroad fan, at the 6th Street Terminal in Los Angeles about 1947.
I modified my switch stand to make it look more like a Pacific Electric stand. It got a new paint job too.It lights up too. A Dressel lamp with a Star stand.
Nice piece on Hidden Huntington Beach this morning.
Does anyone have any photos of the stops in Cypress near Moody?