My all time favorite rail picture

By Mike Parker; posted February 22, 2006

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This photo continues to remain my all time favorite rail pic. No, it's not a powerful steam engine, with smoke belching out as it takes on a big hill, or a slick streamliner, speeding to it's destination. Just a rickety old electric interurban trolley, an endangered species as early as 1920, still hanging in operation by a thread in 1952. I will admit that I have a special interest, having been there when it was running. The photo was taken at Bellrose Station, east of Portland, OR. in June, 1952. It is a good color photo, for it's time. It is Oregon at it's best, the evergreen trees, the grass and greenery, the mountains in the background. Car 1102, of the Portland Traction Co. was built in the company shops in 1912. It runs by 4, 75 hp. 600 volt D.C. motors. It is 50 ft. long has 32 seats. In this photo it was 1 year from being scrapped. It and 5 more like it, were taken out on a rural siding and burned to the wheels, never mind that it provided the company with 41 years of faithful service! Of interest to insulator collectors are the power insulators on the pole line to the right of the car. They are rare, blue-gray 1907 Victor M-2618A multiparts, worth a couple hundred each today!