San Francisco California Street
Cable Car Rosters

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1. Emergency Brake Lever

2. Track Brake Lever

3. Wheel Brake Foot Pedal

4. Grip Lever

5. Cable

6. Grip Lever (Alternate)

7. Adjusting Lever

8. Connecting Rod

9. The Grip

10. Bell

11. Quadrant For Grip Lever

12. Emergency Brake

13. Track Brake

14. Wheel Brake


California Street Cable Cars

Double Ended. Length: 30' 3". Width: 8'. Height: 10' 2". Weight: 16,800. Capacity: Seated -- 34; Total -- 68

Originally, California cars Nos. 1-23 were fitted with a side grip for operation on the California St. line, and Nos. 38-59 had a bottom grip for the O'Farrell, Jones and Hyde line. In 1957, the California St. line was converted to bottom-grip operation. In October 1957, some of the remaining California cars were renumbered so that they would all be in the present 49-60 series, for service on the California St. line.

Unless otherwise noted, the cars built prior to the 1982-84 Cable Car System Rehabilitation Program received a major overhaul at that time.

  • "Cal Cable" cars were built by the California Street Cable Railroad Company.
  • "Hammond" cars were built by John Hammond & Company.
  • "Muni" cars were built by the San Francisco Municipal Railway.

    The Cable Car Museum thanks Randy Hees for the information about early cable car builders.

6.jpg (12172 bytes) Since the start of service in 1878, California Street cable cars have featured Maroon as their basic color
49 Muni Dedicated on Dec. 5, 1992. Prior No. 49 was built in Cal Cable shops in 1912. Originally No. 40, it was renumbered No. 6 in Sept. 1957 and then No. 49 the next month. It was scrapped after an accident on August 20, 1990. 
50 Cal Cable Built 1910.
51 Holman  Built 1906. It was the last car operated on the O'Farrell, Jones and Hyde line, in May 1954. Also, No. 51 was the first bottom-grip car to operate in revenue service on the rebuilt California line, December 22, 1957. Candidate for Reconstruction (2002)
52 Muni It entered service on Feb. 2, 1996. The first No. 52 was built as No. 18 by John Hammond & Co. in 1906. It was renumbered from No. 18 to No. 3 in Sept. 1957 and renumbered to No. 52 the next month. The car was in storage for 27 years. It was judged to be in too poor a condition to be rehabilitated in the 1982-84 rehabilitation program, and was scrapped in 1984.
53 Holman  Built 1906. 
54 Hammond Built 1906. Originally No. 19, it was renumbered to No. 4 in Sept. 1957 and renumbered to No. 54 the next month.
55 Hammond  Built 1906. Oldest active California Street car, originally No. 8, it was renumbered to No. 55, October 1957. Experimentally painted in the then standard Muni livery of green & cream during the mid-1950s, after the California line was cut back to Van Ness Avenue. Soon repainted back to traditional Cal Cable maroon, gray & tan. Candidate for Reconstruction. 
56 Cal Cable Built 1913. Rebuilt by Muni 1984 using seats from first No. 52.
57 Cal Cable Built 1914. It was renumbered from No. 57 to No. 11 in Sept. 1957, but changed back to No. 57 the next month.
58 Cal Cable Built 1914. No. 58 was the last car to operate on the Jones St. Shuttle, February 6, 1954. (Ordinarily, the shuttle was served by three cars that were 22' 5" in length.).
59 Muni A new No. 59, built by Muni, entered service July 31, 1998. First No. 59 was built in 1906 by Hammond. Originally No. 15, it was renumbered to No. 59 in Oct. 1957. Old No. 59 was sent to New Orleans where it is on display in City Park at Popp's Fountain.
60 Muni  A new No. 60 entered service the week of February 16, 2003. On April 10 of that year the new No. 60 was the ceremonial Friends decorated cable car for the 125th anniversary of the California Street line. First No. 60 was built in 1907 by Hammond. Originally No. 16, it was renumbered to No. 60 in Oct. 1957. No. 60 was rebuilt in 1968-69, using the original roof and seats. It was the ceremonial car for the 100th anniversary (1978) of the California Street line. According to a news release, it had been newly refurbished prior to this event. First No. 60 has been placed in storage at Pier 72.
Still wet from its first painting, new No. 60 awaits final acceptance testing prior to revenue service, Washington-Mason, Spring 2002.


All California Cars in service. Roster as of February 2003

Pre 1906 Roster

Cal Cable's first equipment was built in 1877 by the Central Pacific Shops in Sacramento and the Kimball Manufacturing Co. in San Francisco, copied the design of the two prior San Francisco cable car companies, namely each set of equipment consisted of an open dummy or grip car and an enclosed trailer. Twenty-five sets were constructed, approximately half from each builder. They were used until replaced by "California" style cars during 1891-92.
In late 1888 Cal Cable adopted a new cable car design to replace its two-car trains – "California" cars, a "double-ended" car with an enclosed middle section and open sections at both ends. During 1890-1 the San Francisco car builder John Hammond Car Co. built fifty of these cars for Cal Cable. They were numbered 1-50. All were destroyed during the fire that followed the 1906 earthquake.

Prior to 1903-05 when state law mandated for safety reasons end windows, these cars operated without end windows as this view of No. 9 illustrates. The location is the western end of the California Street line – 150 feet west of Central (Presidio) Avenue. The stone fence belongs to the Laurel Hill Cemetery and the non cable car rail in the picture is part of the Ferries & Cliff House Railway’s Park steam line branch.

A custom of the 1890s was for photographers to photograph cable car crews at the end of lines and then return with the finished photograph to sell to the posed gripman and conductor. This photograph was "From LURLINE STUDIO, A. O. EPPLER Prop., 1814 LARKIN ST. NR CAL." In any event, it is probably the best photograph of an early early Cal Cable “California” car without end windows. Note, also the front signage that reads from left to right “Central Avenue, California & Market Street.”

Gary Stark Collection

 

No.
Builder
Year
Notes/Disposition
1-25 Kimball/Central Pacific Railroad
1877-78
(25 cable train sets were purchased consisting each of a Dummy and Trailer) Dummies (grip car); all except No.24, destroyed by 1906; Dummies briefly fitted with bottom grips for use on Hyde line, 1891-92;
1-25 Kimball/Central Pacific Railroad
1877-78
Trailers, all destroyed by 1906, except Nos. 6 & 7 to Monterey and Pacific Grove in 1895. Became that line’s horsecars Nos. 7 & 8, rebuilt 1911 into “California” type electric cars, retired 1923 with end of M&PG and 3 other trailers disposition unknown, but known stored in derelict condition near the Cliff House.
21 & 52 Kimball/Central Pacific Railroad
1877-78
Grip cars (1891), ex-trailers fitted with special grips and operated on Jones Street Shuttle.
1-50 J. Hammond & Co.
1890-91
California Standard Design, All destroyed 1906.
1 J. Hammond & Co.
1890
“Jumbo” California Standard Design; rarely used after 1893; Renumbered to 19 at unknown date; Destroyed 1906.
51 J. Hammond & Co.
1890s
California Standard Design dinky for Jones Street Shuttle; Destroyed 1906.

“California” Type Cable Cars

Standard “California” type cable cars used post 1906 on the California Street; O’Farrell, Jones & Hyde and occasionally on the Jones Street Shuttle were Double Ended. Length: 30' 3". Width: 8'. Height: 10' 2". Weight: 16,800. Capacity: Seated -- 34; Total -- 68.

During late 1888 Cal Cable adopted a new cable car design to replace its two-car trains - "California" cars, a "double-ended" car with an enclosed middle section and open sections at both ends. This design is still used today on California Street.


Post 1906 Cable Cars Assigned to California Street Line
(1906-1956 -Side Grip Era)

1 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Sold 10/16/56 to Gridley Reality, motorized on truck chassis, available for charter.
2 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Sold Harrah's Casino, Reno, NV motorized and restored to circa 1910 appearance. Sold by Harrahs circa 1985 to unknown private party.
3 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Sold Harrah's Casino, Reno, NV motorized and restored to circa 1910 appearance. Sold by Harrahs circa 1985 to unknown private party.
4 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Unknown. Stored for several years at Washington-Mason.
5 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Sold to unknown party in Forest Grove, OR. Seats used by Muni for present day California type heritage dinky streetcar No.578.
6 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
To Knotts Berry Farm, Buena Park, CA 1955, converted battery-electric. Sold 1981 back to SF Muni for possible California-Hyde line. Later resold by Muni to unknown party.
7 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Sold 10/16/56 Gridley Reality, motorized on truck chassis, available for charter.
8 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
2nd No. 55 1957. (See current roster table, above)
9 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Sold 1955
10 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Rebuilt after May 1926 major accident. Placed on display, Children's Zoo, San Francisco. Scrapped 1985.
11 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Sold 10/16/56 Gridley Reality, motorized on truck chassis, available for charter.
12 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Sold 10/16/56 Gridley Reality, motorized on truck chassis, available for charter.
13 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Sold and became part of a restaurant in Charleston, SC; Sold to the Generation Gap Antique Center, Byron, GA. Presently being incorporated as part of the décor of a restaurant in Dallas, TX.
14 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
To Children’s Playground, Golden Gate Park. It was removed and scrapped.
15 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
2nd No. 59 in October 1957 (See current roster table, above)
16 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
2nd No. 60 in October 1957 (See current roster table, above)
17 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Rebuilt after major May 1926 runaway accident. To Knotts Berry Farm, Buena Park, CA 1955, converted battery-electric. Sold 1981 to Gaslamp Trolley Project, San Diego. Never used, then to San Diego Trolley and stored. Donated by the City of San Diego to the City of Poway, CA. Being restored by the Poway-Midalnd Railroad Volunteers at Old Poway Park.
18 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
2nd No. 3 September 1957; to 2nd No. 52 October 1957. (See current roster table, above)
19 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
2nd No. 4 in September 1957; and renumbered to No. 54 October 1957 (See current roster table, above)
20 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
To Knotts Berry Farm, Buena Park, CA 1955, converted battery-electric. Sold 1981 back to SF Muni for possible California-Hyde line. Later resold by Muni to unknown party.
21 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Donated to Travel Town, Los Angeles, CA.
22 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Sold 1956
23 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Acquired by the Santa Clara Fairgrounds in 1956; donated California Trolley Corporation and stored at their Kelly Park carbarn, San Jose CA. This is believed to be the last unmodified single side-grip car Cal Cable car in existence.
24 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Rebuilt 1911 to bottom-grip by Cal Cable; transferred to O’Farrell, Jones & Hyde line, assigned No. 38. (See Roster of that line)
25 J. Hammond & Co.
1906/07
Rebuilt 1911 to bottom-grip by Cal Cable; transferred to O’Farrell, Jones & Hyde line, assigned No. 39. (See Roster of that line)

Note - After the 1906 Earthquake and Fire partial service was restored on August 4, 1906 on the California Street line using a single open dummy No. 24 that had survived the Earthquake & Fire in an isolated small barn near Central Avenue. No. 24 withdrawn following the arrival of first four "new" 30' 3" double-ended "California" style cars.

 

Post 1906/07 Cable Cars Assigned to O’Farrell, Jones & Hyde Line
(1906/07-1954 -Bottom Grip)

38 Cal Cable
1911
Originally built J. Hammond & Co., 1906/07 for California Street line, side grip No. 24; Rebuilt 1911 to bottom-grip by Cal Cable for Hyde line; Sold to a party in Lakeport, CA; Acquired by Lake County Fairgrounds Association, On display at Lakeport, CA.
39 Cal Cable
1911
Originally built J. Hammond & Co., 1906/07 for California Street line, side grip No. 25; Rebuilt 1911 to bottom-grip by Cal Cable for Hyde line; On display at a Youth Guidance Center, San Francisco.
40 Cal Cable
1912
2nd No. 6 September 1957; 2nd No. 49 October 1957; (See current roster table, above)
41 W. L. Holman Co.
1906/07
Sold 1953.
42 W. L. Holman Co.
1906/07
Sold 1955 to H. Stanley Brown, Betteravia CA, converted battery-electric for use in feedlot; in 1994 to Market Street Railway, San Francisco, rebuilt in storage by Muni.
43 W. L. Holman Co.
1906/07
Sold to Knotts Berry Farm, Buena Park, CA 1955; Acquired by Orange Empire Railroad Museum, Perris, CA.
44 W. L. Holman Co.
1906/07
Currently being restored by the S&S Shortline Railroad, a Farmington Utah tourist attraction, No. 44 was sold in 1953 to the Jorgensen Steel Co., Oakland, CA; then Western Airlines, which restored it in 1970 and put it on a truck chassis, used No. 44 for promotion of its flights to San Francisco. Later, the car found a home at Salt Lake's Trolley Square, then at Lagoon amusement park.
45 W. L. Holman Co.
1906/07
Sold Damon Trout, Marelco Rancho, OR; Sold a private party Snowmass Village CO. where since 1989 it has served as a fast food stand. Currently, No. 45 is being offered for sale.
46 W. L. Holman Co.
1906/07
Sold 1955 to a party in Tacoma, WA.
47 W. L. Holman Co.
1906/07
Sold to Harold Warp, Pioneer Museum, Minden, NE.
48 W. L. Holman Co.
1906/07
Sold to Canadian Railway Historical Society, Montreal, Quebec; Acquired by the Seashore Trolley Museum, Kenneburkport, ME.
49 Cal Cable
1912
Sold to Knotts Berry Farm, Anaheim, CA. 1955, converted battery-electric; sold 1981 to Muni for California-Hyde line. Later resold by Muni to unknown party.
50 Cal Cable
1910
In service (See current roster table, above)
51 W. L. Holman Co.
1906
In service (See current roster table, above)
52 W. L. Holman Co.
1906
Sold to Gridley Reality, motorized on truck chassis, available for charter.
53 W. L. Holman Co.
1906
In service (See current roster table, above)
54 W. L. Holman Co.
1906
Sold to Hal Wilmunder, Roseville, CA, Believed regauged to 3'0" for use on Camino, Cable & Northern, Camino, Calif. Sold?
55 Cal Cable
1913
Sold 1956 to a party in San Jose, CA; Sold to Stephen Hartman, Napa CA.
56 Cal Cable
1913
In service (See current roster table, above)
57 Cal Cable
1914
In service (See current roster table, above)
58 Cal Cable
1914
In service (See current roster table, above)
59 Cal Cable
1915
Sold to Knotts Berry Farm, Anaheim, CA. 1955, converted battery-electric; sold 1981 to Muni for California-Hyde line. Later resold by Muni to unknown party


Note-The proposed California-Hyde line that was to run from Market Street via California and Hyde Streets to Beach was never built. Track work was to be part of the 1982-84 cable car reconstruction.


Post 1906/07 Cable Cars Assigned to Jones Street Shuttle
(1906/07-1954 -Bottom Grip)

Shortened version of standard “California” type cable cars built for Jones Street Shuttle was Double Ended. Length: 22'5" Width: 8'. Height: 10' 2". Weight: 10,500. Capacity: Seated -- 28 Total -- 58.

60 Cal Cable
1908
Sold 10/16/56 to Gridley Reality, motorized on truck chassis, available for charter.
61 Cal Cable
1909
Renumbered 62, and in early 1954 motorized on truck chassis by Muni for parades and annual Cable Car Bell Ringing.
62 Cal Cable
1910
Renumbered 61, and placed on tires and shipped To Osaka, Japan November 1959 for displayed at Osaka Transportation Museum.

Note - On December 28, 1906 Cal Cable restored partial service on the Jones Street Shuttle. Using until 1908 single open dummy No. 24, converted to a bottom grip from its operation on the California Street line.

Jones Street Shuttle Cars Nos. 61 and 62 Switch Numbers

In 1947 the movie studio RKO contracted with Cal Cable to borrow a cable car for the movie soon to be in production I Remember Mama (released 1948). It was decided to ship one the short Jones Street shuttle cars, since it would be easier to ship than a full size cable car. On June 11, 1947 No. 61 was hoisted aboard a railway freight car and shipped to Los Angeles. The car retained its trucks. Close examination of the photograph verifies No. 61 was shipped.

No. 61, like all Cal Cable cars at the time, needed paint. A combination of the depression, World War II and an adverse post war economic situation for Cal Cable led to the company’s equipment looking shabby. RKO, accordingly, painted No. 61. It emerged as No. 62!

This is clearly shown by a photograph on page 105 of Lucius Beebe and Charles Clegg’s book Cable Car Carnival. Beebe and Clegg wrongly caption the RKO photo by stating that “RKO Studios in Hollywood supply authentic San Francisco atmosphere for the film of “I Remember Mama” with a real California Street grip.” The bottom grip Jones Street shuttles never ran on the side grip California line.

In the movie the now No. 62 is signed “O’Farrell, Jones & Hyde Streets.” Interesting, since the movie family lived on Steiner Street. They would have to walk 11-blocks to catch a cable car!

Why the number change is unclear. Evidence suggests that the car specified in contract between the movie studio and Cal Cable was No. 62. No. 61 was sent in place of No. 62 after the Cal Cable determined that No. 61 was in better condition. Cal Cable was going to get freshly painted cable car. The actual reason may never be known.

After the January 1952 by Muni purchase of Cal Cable in early 1954 the renumbered 62 was motorized on truck chassis by Muni for parades, charters and the annual Cable Car Bell-Ringing. At the time it was correctly signed “O’Farrell, Jones & Hyde Streets.”

The original No. 62 was renumbered to No. 61 painted and placed on rubber tires, but not motorized and shipped during November 1959 to Osaka Japan for display at the Osaka Transportation Museum. Unfortunately, No. 61 was incorrectly signed “Van Ness Ave, California & Market Streets.” Subsequently, when No. 62 was repainted it was also given this incorrect signage, which is its status today.

Jones Street Shuttle No. 61 (former No. 62) is on display at the Osaka, Japan Transportation Museum.
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