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R&A Riverside & Arlington

Horse Car Lines


The Riverside Railway Company

     Incorporated October 15, 1886 with a capitalization of $30,000, its pricipal office was in Riverside in San Bernardino County. During the summer of 1887 this company began building its sytem in Riverside; all of its lines were of narrow gauge, single tracked and were of 16 and 20# iron T-rail.
The lines were:

     Early in 1889 this company built a line of similar type on 8th Street westerly to Pepper Avenue near Roubidoux and anothe line on Walnut Street from 8th Street to 10th Street. During December, 1890, the track on 10th between Main and Walnut was abandoned and removed. At about this time a turntable was installed at 8th and Main Streets.

Lines of Riverside Railway
LineMileage
4th Street0.625
Main Street0.455
Park Avenue0.303
8th Street1.390
Walnut0.432
Spurs & sidings0.038
Total3.243

     The operation of the Riverside Railway Company initially used only one car, which would have yielded quite lengthy headways. Another car was later purchased and these two provided all service offered by this company until its final sale to the Riverside & Arlington in 1895.

A Sale in three parts

  1. On December 10, 1890, an undivided half interest in the line on Main Street from 10th Street to the Loring Opera House at 7th & Main and the rights for the standard gauged Riverside & Arlington to lay a third rail alongside the RRC's along that route; for the consideration of $1,000 in cash.
  2. On December 3, 1892, RRC sold to the Riverside & Arlington an undivided half interest in the line on Main Street from 7th to 4th plus third rail rights; $250.
  3. On May 3, 1895, the RRC sold all of its property (two cars and four mules) and franchises to the Riverside & Arlington for $6,000 cash.

Hall's Addition Street Railway Company

     This Company was incorporated in California on July 18, 1887. Its capitalization was $25,000 --- 250 shares at $100 each. On June 14, 1887 the City of Riverside granted a franchise for a line from 10th & Main Streets, Riverside, south on Main to 14th, east to Park Avenue and southerly along Park Avenue to Date Street. During August, 1887, the necessary rails and track fastenings were purchased from the R&A and construction of a single track, standard gauged line took place over the given route except for Main between 10th and 14th built by the R&A. Hall's Addition Railway acquired an undivided half interest in this four block stretch of single track line shortly after it was constructed. The line was built of 16# iron T-rail which cost an average of $67.73/ton. One car and four mules were purchased and the line was placed in service in the latter part of 1887. In late 1894 the HAR constructed an extension from the old terminus at Date and Park Avenue east on Date Street to Myrtle Avenue and south on Myrtle Avenue (formerly Victoria Avenue) to the foot of Victoria Hill.

Lines of Hall's Addition Street Railway
LineMileage
Original 1887 construction1.064
Extension in 18940.368
Sub-total1.432
Main St. half interest0.137
Total1.569

     The Hall's Addition Street Railway Company operated continuously until June 11, 1895, on which date it sold all its property to the Riverside & Arlington. The stated consideration was "One dollar and other good and valuable considerations," which in reality amounted to: (1) Cancellation of the debt owed by this company to the R&A amounting to $489.99, (2) 35 shares of R&A stock to Mr. Priestly Hall and to Dr. John Hall, and (3) perpetual passes over all Riverside & Arlington lines for the Hall's and their wives.


The Riverside & Arlington Railway Company

     R&A was incoporated in California on August 13th 1887 with its principal office in Riverside, San Bernardino County. It was capitalized at $500,000 with 5,000 shares authorized at a par value of $100 each. The announced purpose of the incoporation was to construct a street railway connecting Riverside with the town of Arlington, about six and a half miles to the south. Grading began on this line in October, 1887 at 10th & Main Streets, Riverside. The line ran south on Main Street to 14th, west to Prospect Avenue to private right-of-way, thence westerly and northwesterly to Cypress (now Magnolia) Avenue. From this point the line ran southwesterly on Cypress to Bandini Avenue, west on Bandini to Brockton Avenue, southwesterly and southerly along Brockton to Arlington Avenue, west on Arlington to Magnolia Avenue and southwesterly on Magnolia to a point 271 feet southwest of Van Buren Street, Arlington.
     Work continued at a good pace and by March, 1888, the new line was completely graded. Track laying and surfacing began immediately and was completed during December, 1888. The Line was standard gauge, single track and of 20# iron T-rail. On December 11, 1888, R&A began operation; the tiny cars pulled by mules. An undivided half interest was sold by R&A to Hall's Addition Railway on Main Street between 10th and 14th Streets in 1887. On December 10, 1890, R&A bought an undivided half interest in the narrow gauge single track line owned by Riverside Railway Company on Main Street between 10th and 7th Streets and installed a third rail to enable its standard gauge cars to operate over this stretch. Thereafter R&A cars ran on Main as far north as 7th Street to a point opposite the Loring Opera House.
     In 1892 a rerouting occured: rails were taken off Cypress and Bandini Avenues and were reinstalled on 14th Street and Brockton Avenue. Next came the North Extension, built in 1893 between February 25th and August 31st. On December 3, 1892, R&A purchased an undivided half interest in Riverside Railway's line on Main Street from 7th to 4th Streets and put in a third rail. Also in 1892 the R&A constructed a new line from 4th & Main northerly along Main to First Street, then over private right-of-way to Market Street and Houghton Avenue and over Houghton Avenue west to what is now Pine Street. This was a standard gauge single track line 4,757 feet in length, of 16 and 20# T-rail. Subsequently these light rails were replaced over the entire line by 40# steel rails. The North Extension was placed into service as a mule car line during August of 1893; R&A was guaranteed against losses for the first year by Mr. John G. North. The Alvord Extension was a single track, standard gauged line of 16# iron T-rails, extending from the Arlington terminus along Magnolia Avenue to Alvord Station on the Santa Fe Railway in the southwestern part of Arlington. The work on this 3.61 mile line began in December, 1892 and was completed in August of 1893. Operation by mule cars began in August, 1893, and continued until the spring of 1896 when this track was abandoned due to operating losses; the track was taken up.
     At the end of 1895, R&A's system:

Lines of Riverside & Arlington Railway (Mule era)
LineMileage
10th & Main to Arlington terminus6.56
North Extension0.90
Alvord Extension3.61
spurs and sidings?
Total11.07

     On December 10, 1890, R&A purchased from Riverside Railway Company an undivided half interest in the narrow gauge single track line on Main Street from 10th to 7th; on December 3, 1892 it purchased from Riverside Railway Company an undivided half interest in the line on Main Street from 7th to 4th Street and on May 3, 1895, R&A purchased all of the road and equipment owned by Riverside Railway Company.
     On June 11, 1895, the Hall's Addition Railway deeded to R&A all of its railroad property.

Lines of Riverside & Arlington Railway (purchased)
LineMileage
Riverside Railway Company, 1890, 1892, 18953.243
Hall's Addition1.569
Total4.812

     Riverside & Arlington made the following changes in the road purchased from the two other Riverside Street Railways: (1) In late 1895 R&A forces abandoned all the narrow gauge lines it had acquired from Riverside Railway Company and took up the rails fastenings and ties with the exception of one rail which forned a part of the standard gauge line on Main Street between 4th and 10th Streets. (2) During the summer of 1900 R&A abandoned that portion of the former Hall's Addition Railway from 14th and Lime Streets east on 14th to Park Avenue, south on Park to North Date Street and east on North Date Street to Myrtle Avenue.
The consolidated horse car system of Riverside was to last for but three years of operation before electrification arrived in 1898.


Electrification

     By 1900, when Riverside & Arlington was getting started as an electric railway, the city of Riverside had a population of about ten thousand souls "who enjoy every metropolitan convenience," according to local booster pamphlet. Twenty steam trains served the little city daily, there were morning and evening newspapers plus two semi-weekly papers. 150 business firms flourished, as could readily determined by bank deposits of more than $2,000,000, divided among three banks. The city had a municipal light and power plant with a total capacity city of a thousand horsepower which served most of the downtown business houses and the Riverside & Arlington Railway. Fraternal orders were in evidence, and there were also energetic women's literary and improvement clubs. The public library proudly showed 12,000 volumes on its shelves. There were seventeen churches, eleven public school buildings, a theater, a brand new YMCA---and not one saloon. It must have been a wonderful home town.
     Electrification of the Riverside & Arlington's Magnolia Ave. line took place in 1899 and market the debut of the electric streetcar in the Orange Empire country. The indefatigable Frank A. Miller was at the helm of Riverside & Arlington, as he was in almost every instance of major civic improvement in Riverside. The California Electric Company of San Francisco had a financial interest in the electrification and rebuilding of the light rail, and contributed greatly to the ultimate success of the enterprise.

At the time of electrification, officers of Riverside & Arlington were:

  • George Frost, President
  • Frank A. Miller, Secretary & Manager
  • H. Newman, Chief Engineer
  • P. Groftholdt, Superintendent

Directors of the company were:

  • G.O. Newman
  • J.S. Castleman
  • A.S. White
  • Priestley Hall

     With workmen busily engaged in tearing up the light horsecar rails and installing the heavier roadbed required to support the much larger electric cars, orders were placed for four double truck cars; two of these were open cross bench, while the other pair was of the familiar California type, but considerably smaller than the usual. Electric power was obtained by contracting with the Riverside municipal light and power plant.
     By the end of March, 1899, the electrification was sufficiently far along to permit Riverside & Arlington to ask the City Trustees for permission to abandon the old carbarn which was down in the Arroyo at the top of Main St.; this old Cypress Hill barn was retired shortly thereafter.
     On April 5th---early in the morning to avoid too much public interest---the first trial trip was held; the car ran over the entire line from First Street to van Buren in Arlington and no diffiulties of any kind were experienced. Unfortunately the number of this first car has not been recorded. Later that day Mr. Miller, apparently very confident, invited officers and directors of the Riverside & Arlington, as well as city officials and newspaper men, to join him in his "private car" (no. 14?) for another trip to Arlington. One newspaper man, quite impressed, observed that the car attained a speed of twenty miles an hour!
     The great day of public celebration was thereupon set and it proved to be Tuesday, April 11th, 1899. Not only the city of Riverside was involved in the gala opening, but excursions from Los Angeles, Pasadena and intermediate points on both the Santa Fe and the Southern Pacific were operated.
     Frank Miller and his Riverside & Arlington staff were aided in electrifying their main line by the other electric railways of Southern California. For opening day the roads lent some of their most able men; from the Los Angeles & Pasadena came Mr. E.B. Anderson; from the L.A. & Santa Monica, Mr. Robert Sherwood; from the Los Angeles Railway, Mr. Oscar Schilling. From the California Electric Company, San Francisco, came Mr. A.C. Jewitt and Mr. J.A. Lighthipe, and Superintendent W.D. Larrabee of the L.A. & Santa Monica took personal charge of operations on opening day. To insure an uninterrupted supply of power, Riverside city electrician F.W. Worthley was aided by Mr. H.H. Sinclair of the Redlands Light & Power Company, from whose Mill Creek plant came the 10 kv AC power.

Riverside & Arlington's family at the time was composed of:
Motoreers and conductors: H.A. Barton, P.W. Olesen, J.W. Painter and A.Maclain. In charge of track and carbarn, H. Meacham, J.T. Proctor, Joe Croft, A. Greivers, Frank A. Yeakin and D. Davis.

Riverside & Arlington Railway Annual Report (1900)
Running Expenses$49,839.74
Construction$79,995.85
Rolling Stock$12,338.12
Electric Car Barn$3,315.33
Arlington Stables$ 200.80
Riverside Stables$1,815.81
Manure and Feed$ 706.26 (Profit)
Fare Receipts$70,377.80

     The Riverside "Press" on April 7th exhorted its readers thusly:
     "The opening of the road is a big thing for Riverside and the people generally ought to cooperate and make it a gala day. Our people ought to clean up and decorate all the way from First Street to Van Buren."
     The opening day did indeed prove to be gala in every way. To tell the story in the vernacular of that long gone day, we again quote the Riverside "Press:" (April 11,1899)

     "HUNDREDS RIDE ON THE TROLLEY
     "Very Successful Opening of the New Road

     "The opening of our new electric road has been most auspicious. Flag and bunting gave the city a truly festival air, and throngs of citizens and visitors from other towns were present to give the enterprise a proper send off.
     "The Perris Indian School band came in about nne o'clock and their music on the streets soon drew a big crowd together. The first Southern Pacific train from Los Angeles brought in quite a crowd, and the number of vistors was doubled when the Santa Fe excursionists began to arrive. The railway management was able to handle all comers, however, and everything went like clockwork.
     "On arriving at Arlington the visitors were received by a deligation of young ladies of the YMCA Auxiliary who were ensconced in attractive booths, decorated in national colors. Refreshments, lemonade and curios were on sale, the proceeds going to the YMCA building fund.
     "The four cars were in charge of the following crews; the first and second being motorman and conductor respectively: P. Groftholdt, A. Mclean; Robert Sherwood, Billy Painter; E. B. Anderson, P. W. Olesen; H. A. Benton, J. T. Proctor. The motors were looked after by Oscar Schilling and A. Griebe. W. D. Larrabee of the Los Angeles & Santa Monica electric railway was superintendent in charge.
     "There promises to be a very liberal patronage of the line tonight. Trolley parties are strictly au fait back east and the fad will have its first inning in Riverside tonight. Kennedy's Philharmonic Orchestra will play and a most agreeable time is anticipated. The opportunity to see Magnolia Ave. and its electric illumination will be taken advantage of very liberally."
     In all, more than five hundred people rode the four little electric cars on the third day, April 13th.
     A word concerning the Riverside & Arlington superintendent and long time operating head, Mr. Peter Grofholdt, is in order. Mr. Groftholdt came from Germany to Riverside in 1888 to join his brother who had come over some years before. The young man went to work for Riverside & Arlington in 1889 and soon became foreman. Seeing the electric era approaching, Pete Groftholdt studied electricity and soon became a practical and well informed electrician. In 1898 he was made superintendent of Riverside & Arlington. Mr. Groftholdt continued on after the Great Merger in 1911, and rose to become one of Pacific Electric's most honored officials, being in charge of the Eastern Distric until 1918 and then going to Los Angeles for other important duties.
     On Wednesday, April 12th, the new road apparently was not ready for regular schedules, but on April 14th they went into effect. Cars ran on a thirty minute headway, leaving Riverside from six o'clock in the morning and Arlington from 6:30; this headway continued throughout the day until 6:00 PM, when an hourly schedule went into effect, leaving Riverside on the hour and Arlington on the half hour. Ordinarily the last car left Riverside at ten o'clock, but on theater nights the last car was held until the close of the entertainment at the opera house.
     On April 13th the first morning trip over the seven mile route saw the motor car pulling a heavy trailer loaded with a piano and chairs. It took 17 minutes for this run, leading Mr. Miller to confidently assert that the trip could be made, when necessary, in 15 minutes.
     On April 14th, San Bernardino occupied the attention of the editor of the Riverside "Press." In a fire breathing editorial typical of that era, he wrote:
     "San Bernardino's Latest Plaint---The San Bernardino 'Transcript' rouses itself from its chronic condition of somnolence to remark that 'Riverside is operating an electric street railroad and the town isn't as large as San Bernardino nor does it transact near as much business.' It is true that we have an electric car line and will soon have two more, while San Bernardino has discontinued service and dug up the rails of its horsecar lines."
     Actually, San Bernardino was spurred by the opening of the Riverside & Arlington's electric line to convert its horsecar lines, and this was in process at the time of the above editorial.
     The Fairmount Park (Houghton Ave.) Line was next on the electrification program. Workers commenced at the car barn on the Main Street in April, 1899, and by the end of the year had been completed as far north as First and Main Streets Work on the remainder of this line was carried on intermittently and was not cmpleted until late 1900.
     The Victoria Hill Line underwent a major change in its electrification; that portion of tis line formerly owned by the Hall's Addition Ry. (from 14th & lime via 14th, Park, N. Date to Myrtle Ave.) was abandoned and the following new line built to replace it: from 14th & Lime southerly and southeasterly on lime Street and Olivewood Ave. to North St.; easterly and northeasterly on North St. to Cridge St., continuing east on Cridge to Victoria (Myrtle) Ave., thence south on Victoria Ave. to Date St., forming a junction with the old line at the intersection of Victoria Ave. & Date. The electrified line was placed in operation as far as the bridge on Victoria Ave. during November, 1900. The Victoria Ave. Bridge was reconstructed in the summer of 1901, after which cars were operated across it.


HENRY E. HUNTINGTON PURCHASES Riverside & Arlington:

     The founder and builder of the great Pacific Electric Railway centered in Los Angeles, Mr. Henry E. Huntington, secured control of Riverside & Arlington in early 1903. His announced plan to construct a line through Corona and the Santa Ana Canyon to a connection with his PE system's Yorba Linda line at Stern brought great excitement to Riverside, but it was not to be. Mr. Huntington turned over control of Riverside & Arlington to the Los Angeles Interuban Railway Company on December 1, 1904. LAIU was also a Huntington company so that at all times subsequent to 1903 and until the Great Merger of 1911, Mr. Huntington was foremost in the thoughts of Riverside citizenry.
     The 7th Street line was quite slow in materializing; not until mid-1903 was this line constructed, and then by Henry E. Huntington who had taken over Riverside & Arlington that year from Frank Miller. Knowing that Riverside & Arlington could not be made to pay, and having borne the financial load for several years, Mr. Miller prevailed upon his good friend, Mr. Huntington---President of both Pacific Electric and Los Angeles Railway---to take of over the company. Mr. Huntington had previously worked with Mr. Miller in the construction of the New Glenwood---later renamed the Mission Inn---and it was with this project that Mr. Miller's imagination was fired. The main building and its two wings were constructed in 1902, and the great tourist hotel speedily put Riverside on the itneraries of world travelrs. The prominent in all walks of life, including the Presidents of the United States, visited the Mission Inn and the sprawling block-square caravansary become the pivotal point about which Riverside revolved. It was most fitting, therefore, that Mr. Miller should retire from the railway and that Mr. Huntington, an expert in the field of traction development and operation, should take control.
     A curious working agreement thereupon evolved. Mr. Huntington visited Riverside infrequently, and relied upon Mr. Miller to "front" for him in affairs pertaining to Riverside. As late as 1908 Mr. Huntington is reported to have loaned Mr. Miller a large sum, part of which went to construct Riverside & Arlington's substation in the carbarn on Main between 5th and 6th Streets.
     Perhaps Riverside & Arlington was reponsible, but in 1901 the federal government accepted Mr. Miller's offer of land for a new Indian school at Arlington. The first building on the site began construction on July 18, 1901. By May of 1902 nine attractive buildings had been completed, and the former Perris Indian School moved to Arlington and became the Sherman Institute. On the forty acre site eventually were constructed 35 buildings which accommodated more than 600 boys and girls from about 55 Indian tribes. The Institute speedily became a prime tourist attraction, giving Riverside & Arlington another source of passengers.


NEW CONSTRUCTION:

     A new standard gauge, double track line on 7th Street from Market Street to the Santa Fe Station was constructed during the period from May 15th to August 31st, 1903. This proved to be a great convenience and was Riverside's first double track line.
     Double tracks next appeared on Main Street between 1st and 14th Streets with tis important work being performed between August 22nd and December 31st, 1903 and opened in January, 1904. The original track was then lowered to grade in February, 1904.
     Next to appear was the West Seventh Street Line, an extension of the 7th Street line above listed. This single track line extended from Market Street to Rubidoux Drive, with track laying occurring in September, 1906. This line was opened for traffic in early January, 1907.
     During the latter part of 1910 that portion of the Victoria Hill Line along Cridge Street was reconstructed.

Mileage of Road Owned
Double Track1.55
Single Track9.46
Miscellaneous0.93
Equivalent single track mileage13.49


POWER SUPPLY:

     In 1899 Riverside & Arlington and the Riverside municipal light & power plant entered into a contract whereby Riverside & Arlington would purchase power (600 volts DC) at $500 a year for the first three years, $1500 for the next two years, $2400 for the next three years, and $3700 for the last four. in 1901 the city attempted to rescind this contract and charge the actual cost of power. On November 1, 1902, the United States District Court sustained the validity of the contract. Not until 1908 did Riverside & Arlington build its own substation, using a part of its carhouse to house the equipment which consisted of two 400 kw motor generator sets, one rotary converter and an induction motor.


CHEMAWA PARK

     As did evert self respecting electric railway company of the day, the Riverside & Arlington brought into being an amusement park, sufficiently removed from downtown to make a ride on the cars imperative. Riverside & Arlington's Frank Miller picked upon far away Arlington as the site of his park, and in 1901 and 1902 construction crews were hard at work.
     Chemawa Park, as it was named, was located on Magnolia Ave. next to the Sherman Institute, the federal government's great indian school. Today the old park site is in use as the location of Chemawa Junior High School.
     One of the better descriptions of Chemawa Park in its salad days was published in The Riverside Press of April 12, 1902, from which we quote:
     "Few people realize the magnitude of the operations which the street car company is carrying on at the Magnolia Ave. (Chemawa) park. There has already been expended the sum of $21,000 there, and the amount will reach $30,000 before the work contemplated is finshed.
     "Through the courtesy of Manager Miller a Press reporter enjoyed a walk through the park and polo grounds recently and was astonished to find how thoroughly the tastes and desires of the pleasure-seeking public have been studied.
     "When the trees which have been planted in the front of the 23 acres are up, the effect will be that of natural groves flanked by avenues of palms. An acre of sycamores in the southwest corner west of the pavilion, an acre of cottonwoods east of the pavilion---a grove of gum trees, the choicest to be found, a grove of acacias, containing many blooming and rare varieties---when have Riversiders had such unlimited shade for picnics or the quiet afternoon alone with nature?
     "Great care has been taken to have the trees next to the pavilion deciduous, that the winter sun may not be shut out. The pavilion itself is a very neat structure 40 feet wide by 100 long, artistically finished with palm stems cut to give a rustic effect. Here are the band stand and waxed floor for dancing, with dressing rooms below. When roses and vines are tained over the building it will be a charming retreat for picnics and dancing parties and summer evening concerts.
     "The fence about the race track is not the ugly conventional board affair, but will be covered with myrtle and climbing roses, and screened by a row of castor beans, amking one of the prettiest features of the park. The grounds of the Polo clubhouse have been laid out with lawn, flowers and ornamental shrubs. The grandstand, which was moved from Athletic Park, is being fixed up according to the most modern plans. The back part under the seats will contain a restaurant where coffee, tamales and toothsome lunches will be dispensed Mr. Miller is trying the experiment of putting in boxes in front in the true English style.
     "The polo grounds were laid out by Messrs. Bettmer, Maude and Waring according to the most approved methods, and are considered excelllent. Back of the grandstand, stables will be built for the polo ponies and race horses."
     Chemawa Park was the locatin of the first polo tournament in California, held by the Riverside Polo Association. As will be noted from several photographs herein, Riverside & Arlington cars bore large signs calling attention to polo events.
     Another feature of Chemawa Park in Riverside & Arlington days was the well stocked zoo. Visitors watched with fascination such animals as bears, wildcats, coyotes, coons, foxes, monkeys, squirrels, guinea pigs, deer, goats and burros, while feathered attractions included eagles, owls, vultures, parrots, and scores of tropical and singing birds.
     Owned and developed by Frank Miller, admission to Chemawa Park was free---but there was alwys that nickel fare from Riverside to consider.


LEASED LINES:

     Riverside & Arlington operated under lease lines of electric railway owned by other corporations. herein were the line to Crestmore owned by The Crescent City Railway Company, and the line toward Colton which then ended at the Riverside-San Bernardino County line; this was owned by The San Bernardino Interurban Railway Company.

Mileage of Leased Lines
Crescent City Railway (from Market & Houghton to Crestmore)3.30
San Bernardino Interurban (Double track on First Street from Main Street to Colton Avenue, and0.46
single track on Colton Avenue from First Street to County Line.)2.72
Total6.48

     Both the above lines were of major importance. The Crescent City Line was later extended through Bloomington to Rialto and supplied PE interurban trains with their access to Riverside. The Crescent City Railway electrified its line in March and April, 1908 and Riverside & Arlington placed the line in service in May 1, 1908 for passenger and express service.
     The Interurban Railway's line to the County line was placed in operation by Riverside & Arlington on April 7, 1911. This line was later extended to colton and there hooked up with the San Bernardino electric lines, affording Riverside residents with direct electric cars to San Bernardino, Redlands and other points on the system of the former San Bernardino Valley Traction Company.


FINAL DISPOSITION:

     On February 25, 1911, after the written assent of stockholders had been obtained, Riverside & Arlington Directors unanimously adopted a resolution setting forth Riverside & Arlington's intention to consolidate with the corporations hereinafter named, and to form a new railroad corporation to be known as The Pacific Electric Railway Company:

  • Pacific Electric Railway Company (old)
  • Los Angeles & Redondo Railway Company
  • Los Angeles Interurban Railway Company
  • Los Angeles Pacific Company
  • San Bernardino Valley Traction Company
  • San Bernardino Interurban Railway Company
  • Redlands Central Railway Company.

The Consolidation was effective on September 1, 1911.


The Crescent City Railway Company

     During 1907, while its cement plant was under construction at Crestmore, The Riverside-Portland Cement Company constructed a standard gauge single track railroad line extending from Riverside to Crestmore. This line was built to provide adequate transportation facilities for employees and supplies.
     On February 28, 1908, The Crescent City Railway and The Riverside & Arlington entered into an agreement which saw Crescent City Railway construct a connecting track between its line and the Riverside & Arlington tracks near Market Street & Houghton Ave., and Crescent City Railway also built the overhead trolley over this connecting track as well as over its whole line from this connecting track to Crestmore. Crescent City Railway also bonded the rails and otherwise prepared its line for the operation of electric cars.

Also in this agreement were the following points:
  1. Crescent City Railway would maintain all track on its line.
  2. Crescent City Railway would provide competant dispatchers and telephone service and to maintain same.
  3. Crescent City Railway would give Riverside & Arlington electric cars, operating on schedule, absolute right of way over its own steam trains.
  4. Riverside & Arlington agreed to operate passenger and express service over the Crescent City Railway Company line to Crestmore.
  5. Riverside & Arlington would maintain all overhead, its own cars, and all electrical equipment other than rail bonding.
  6. Net operating revenues would be divided between the two railways.
  7. The agreement was to be effective for a period of one year and carried a proviso that the agreement should be renewed if terms and conditions were satisfactory to both.

     Construction of the four mile line proceeded apace; by the middle of March, 1908, wiring was well along and it was hoped to open the line for passenger service by April first. The inevitable delays intervened, however, and it was not until May first that the first Riverside & Arlington car rolled into the yard of the big cement plant at Crestmore.
     Mr. William C. Henshaw of San Francisco purchased the Crescent City Railway in 1910 and he and Riverside & Arlington entered into an agreement substantially the same as that above.
     An extension from Crestmore to Bloomington, 2.4 miles, next followed, and Riverside & Arlington and Crescent City Railway Company agreed to the same general conditions as above, under which this extension was place in service in April, 1911.
     On September 1, 1911, Pacific Electric became the owner, by consolidaton, of all property owned by the Riverside & Arlington, including the contractual rights in and the to the agreements between Riverside & Arlington and the Crescent City Railway.

     During 1913 the Crescent City Railway Company line was extended from Bloomington to Rialto, 3.3 miles and PE inaugurated the hauling of passengers, mail and express over the entire line, Riverside to Rialto, 9.122 miles of single track; counting the 0.463 mile of spurs and sidings, the equivalent single track mileage of the Crescent City line was 9.585.
     On March 1, 1915 (effective March 15, 1915) The Riverside, Rialto & Pacific Railroad Company, incorported in California on January 15, 1911 and the successor in interest to The Crescent City Railway, leased to PE this line for the operation of passenger, mail and express service.
     On March 15, 1915, through interurban electric train service was inaugurated by PE between Los Angeles and Riverside with this line being the connecting link between the San Bernardino Line at Rialto and Riverside.


The San Bernardino Interurban Railway Company

     This company was incorporated in California on November 30, 1906 with a capitalization of $1,000,000---divided into 10,000 shares of a par value of $100 each. Its principal place of business was listed as San Bernardino but in 1907 this was changed to Los Angeles.
     SBIU planned to construct a fairly comprehensive system which would have had an estimated length of 48 miles:

  1. A line from San Bernardino west through Rialto and North Ontario to the western limit of San Bernardino County.
  2. From San Bernardino southerly to and through the City of Riverside.
  3. A branch from the most convenient point on the Riverside line easterly to Highgrove.
  4. From the most convenient point on the Highgrove line easterly to Redlands.

     Of all these projected lines, only that portion from First & Main, Riverside, to the County Line was built by this company.
     In November, 1906, The San Bernardino Valley Traction Company agreed to sell to SBIU a franchise it held for an electric railway between San Bernardino and Riverside. This franchise covered the route starting at First & Main Streets, Riverside, thence via First to Colton Ave., thence northerly on a fifty foot wide private right of way on the east side of Colton Ave. to the County Line. On December 1, 1906 the SBIU took possession of the SBVT franchise, together with what preliminary construction work SBVT had already performed on same, amounting to about $14,750 in cash.
     Little work was done by SBIU at that time, and on April 8, 1908, SBIU was granted a new franchise covering the same route as outlined above; the original franchise contained a time limitation clause which had not been livedup to---hence the need for the new franchise. Thise new franchise defined the north city limits of Riverside as being at Palmyrita Avenue Work was to begin within four months and be completed within three years of the date of granting the franchise.
     In march of 1908 SBIU began grading along Colton Avenue Rails and ties were purchased during August and September, 1908, and tracklaying began in September. The overhead trolley system was constructed by Riverside & Arlington crews for SBIU, and this work started in March, 1909.
     Work was carried on spasmodically during the remainder of 1909 and 1910, and was completed, except for surfacing and balasting, during the summer of 1910. Thus SBIU owned a standard gauge, double track line on First Street, Riverside, from Main Street to Colton Avenue, and a standard gauge, single track line on private way alongside Colton Ave. from First St. to Palmyrita Ave. Roadway mileage was 3.18 with 0.46 miles of second track, making a total equivalent single track mileage of 3.64.
     The work of surfacing and ballasting the line was begun in November, 1910, and completed during April, 1911.
     SBIU never operated its line, but leased it to Riverside & Arlington; on April 7, 1911, Riverside & Arlington placed the new line in operation.
     On July 18, 1907, Huntington forces took control of SBIU. The principal place of business was changed to the Pacific Electric Building, Los Angeles, and new Directors were named on the same date; all of these were Huntington men, including son Howard Huntington.
     On November 10, 1910, the old Directors resigned and were replace by Southern Pacific men. On February 15, 1911, SBIU adopted a resolution setting forth its intention to consolidate with seven other electric railway corporations to form New PE; this took place on September 1, 1911.


Rolling Stock

www.ERHA.ORG
.....Riverside & Arlington
Car NoSourceOld Car NoBody TypeBuilderDateWeightLengthWidthHeightSeatsMotorsHpControlBrakesTrucksWheels1911 NoFate
5LARy223CaliforniaHammond190031,25034'-10"7'-8"11'-0"36(2)101B50K-11C. St.(2) B-130"PE 105G&M 1/27/14
6LARy229CaliforniaHammond190031,25034'-10"7'-8"11'-0"36(2)101B50K-11C. St.(2) B-130"PE 106G&M 1/27/14
7LARy225CaliforniaHammond190031,25034'-10"7'-8"11'-0"36(2)101B50K-11C. St.(2) B-130"PE 107G&M 1/27/14
8LARy228CaliforniaHammond190031,25034'-10"7'-8"11'-0"36(2)101B50K-11C. St.(2) B-130"PE 108G&M 1924
9LARy227CaliforniaHammond190031,25034'-10"7'-8"11'-0"36(2)101B50K-11C. St.(2) B-130"PE 109G&M 1924
10new---open------25,80035'-0"7'-6"11'-1"40235K-11C. St.special30"PE 103Scrapped 1925
11new---closed------28,30034'-6"7'-6"11'-4"36427K-10C. St.special30"PE 104Scrapped 1926
12new---California------27,90028'-0"8'-0"11'-1"30227K-10C. St.Brill 22-E30"PE 100Scrapped 1914
13new---California------27,90028'-0"8'-0"11'-1"30227K-10C. St.Brill 22-E30"PE 101Scrapped 1914
14new---closed------28,00038'-6"8'-4"12'-5"40427K-10C. St.special30"PE 409Scrapped 1927
15PE50openBrill189814,70020'-9"6'-11"10'-8"30(2) 80025K-2Hand(1) Peckham30"PE 18Scrapped 1923
16PE---open------12,00017'-0"7'-6"11'-4"300---noneHandspecial30"PE 3Scrapped 1914
17PE---open------12,00017'-0"7'-6"11'-4"300---noneHandspecial30"PE 4Scrapped 1914
18PE46closedLACE189315,50023'-6"7'-4"9'-10"24(2) 80025K-2HandMcGuire A-130"PE 26Scrapped 1914
19LAIULAT 6openB&S189715,60027'-8"7'-4"10'-4"40(2) 80025K-2Hand(1) Brill30"---Scrapped 1926
20LAIULAT 8openB&S189714,00027'-8"7'-4"10'-4"40none------Hand(1) Brill30"---Scrapped 1926
21LAIULAIU 96CaliforniaAmerican1897--------------------------------LAIU 783to LARy
36PE36workPE1902------8'-0"12'-6"0----------(2) B-230"PE 1530Scrapped 1913
134PE77closedBrill189633,60033'-0"7'-10"11'-4"32(2) 38-B50K-11C. St.(2) B-130"PE 400Scrapped 1923
135PE77closedBrill189633,60033'-0"7'-10"11'-4"32(2) 38-B50K-11C. St.(2) B-130"PE 401Scrapped 1923
136PE77closedBrill189633,60033'-0"7'-10"11'-4"32(2) 38-B50K-11C. St.(2) B-130"PE 402Scrapped 1923
210LAIU210closedAmerican190149,90045'-0"8'-6"12'-0"48(2) 38-B50K-14C. St.(2) B-130"PE 474Scrapped 1933
G&M: Glendale & Montrose Railway, LARy: Los Angeles Railway, PE: Pacific Electric Railway, LAIU: Los Angeles Interurban Railway, LAT: Los Angeles Traction Company, LACE: Los Angeles Consolidated Electric Railway
B&S: Barney & Smith, C. St.: Christensen Straight Air, B-1: PE Rigid bolster, 5'-3"wb, B-2: PE Rigid bolster, 5'-7"wb, Special: rebuilt diamond frame superimposed on single member type frame, NOT a fully "bolster swing linked and equalized truck."
R&A cars were painted PE red after 1903; before that they were "orange & lemon." Cars 14 & 210 were always dark green.
Car 10 was enclosed at R&A barn in 1911 by three PE carpenters who were sent out to live in Riverside for three months until the job was completed.


Edited by Ira L. Swett, November 15, 1962, Associate Editor RE Younghans, converted to web format by John Heller, August 1, 1996

Dedicated to the memory of Mr. Frank Augustus Miller, Master of the Mission Inn.

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