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Tag Archives: TRAINS

The Streamliner SHASTA DAYLIGHT – San Francisco to Portland

Southern Pacific’s streamlined Shasta Daylight train operated daily between San Francisco, California (by ferry boat to Oakland), and Portland, Oregon through the 1950s and into the early 1960s. From 1949 until 1966, the custom-built daylight train had a tight 15-hour-30-minute schedule in either direction for the 713-mile trip through some of the most beautiful ... Read More »

Silver Streamliner CALIFORNIA ZEPHYR Served mid-Century America.

From 1949 until 1970, the California Zephyr operated daily during the 1950s and 1960s between Chicago and San Francisco. Over two days and nights, across prairies, through canyons, over (and through) mountains, on a timetable that maximized the impact of the scenery for tourists rather than meeting the schedule of ... Read More »

Santa Fe’s Streamliner SAN FRANCISCO CHIEF

Santa Fe, Pullman, Chief, Super Chief, El Capitan, Union Pacific, Southern Pacific, City of San Francisco, Lark, Starlight, Shasta Daylight, San Joaquin Daylight, Streamliner, Hi-Level, Dome Cars, Chair Cars, Amtrak, Michael L Grace, Cruising The Past, Cruise Line History

The Santa Fe felt it needed its own streamliner serving the Bay Area and launched the San Francisco Chief in June 1954. The new express train joined Santa Fe’s other legacy trains: the Chief, Super Chief, and El Capitan. The San Franciso Chief offered First Class Pullman Sleeping Car and ... Read More »

Streamliner SUPER CHIEF – Santa Fe’s all-Pullman train of the stars

From the late 1930s to the 1950s, Hollywood adopted the Super Chief as the primary mode of travel as well as the subject of novels and motion pictures. In MGM’s The Hucksters, a brutal satire on the ad industry, Clark Gable says to another character: “Only talent agents and kept ... Read More »

A great video of the most dangerous and extreme railways in the world!

From the devilish mountain peaks, deep gorges to a temperamental bridge, these trains cross some of the world’s most spectacular and downright dangerous landscapes. If you can handle hair-raising bends and gut-clenching drops, take a ride on the world’s most dangerous railways. Here are the twelve famous dangerous railways featured ... Read More »

Throwback Thursday – Elvis Presley on the train from New York to Memphis in 1956.

“Elvis who?”   Photographer Alfred Wertheimer recalls uttering that very question in early 1956. A publicist from RCA Victor Records had contacted him, asking if he was available to photograph a young singer named Elvis Presley. “I’d never heard of the man,” Wertheimer told TIME Magazine in an article 40 ... Read More »

“Give ’em hell” Harry! President Truman aboard his 1948 campaign train heading to win re-election.

Faced with the likely loss of the 1948 presidential elections, President Harry S. Truman set out from Washington on September 17 on a twelve-day cross-country political barnstorming trip aboard the “Truman Special” from Washington Union Station. The barnstorming “Truman Special” makes a whistle-stop. At the last minute, wealthy Democrats had come ... Read More »

Ships and Liners of Messageries Maritimes

Messageries Maritimes was a French merchant shipping company. It was originally created in 1851 as Messageries Nationales, later called Messageries impériales, and from 1871, Compagnie des Messageries Maritimes, casually known as “MesMar” or by its initials “MM”. Its rectangular house flag, with the letters MM on a white background and ... Read More »

Les Paquebots: Tahitien and Caledonien – Sailing from France, via the Panama Canal, to Cambodia and Vietnam.

The Messageries Maritimes ships, the Calédonien and the Tahitian (later reborn as the cruise ship Atalante), sailed for two decades (1952 to 1972) on regular round trips lasting almost four months between Marseilles and Sydney. The two ships were beautifully designed passenger-cargo liners. These handsome ships carried cargo, passengers, and ... Read More »

THE CHIEF – SANTA FE promotional film on the famed train from the 1950s…

Santa Fe promotional video on the streamliner the CHIEF (not the SUPER CHIEF as stated in the youtube video). Here’s the Chief about to depart from Pasadena, CA., in the 1960s with Pullman sleepers, chair cars, dining car, lunch-counter car and Dome Lounge. Social and travel history: the Santa Fe ... Read More »