Steel City Traction 3
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The North Side
Pittsburgh's North Side was home to some of the Steel City's most-loved trolley lines. Route 21 Fineview had some of the steepest grades, tightest turns, and most spectacular views in the entire city. The West View loop (Routes 10 West View and 15 Bellevue) had one of the system's longest stretches of private right-of-way, and a spectacular high bridge.
Film coverage of the North Side routes was uneven. Some of the lines went so early that we were only able to locate a shot or two. And some of the longest, most heavily-traveled trunks, shared by several routes nearly to the end of trolleys on the North Side, were considered so boring by most railfans that no one bothered to shoot movies of them at all.
The good news is that the private right-of-way of the West View loop was well-covered, and we take you over the line in both directions. And Fineview was covered so well that we were able to assemble 3 complete trips around its one-way loop: one in the mid-60s shot by Jeff Mora on sunny days, with lots of very steady out-the-front shots; one on the last day of service shot by several cameramen, under gloomy skies with intermittent rain (how appropriate for a last day!); and most spectacular of all, a complete trip shot by Art Ellis during World War II when the line was still served exclusively by low-floor cars!
We try to give you a flavor of the DVD on this web site with a slew of images. They are all frame-grabs from the DVD, so every shot you see here is on the DVD. If you just want a quick impression, try the thumbnails page (about 560KB) with about 75 images the same size as those at the top of this page. Each image can be clicked for a larger version (about 20-35KB each). (You may also click the images at the top of this page for larger versions.) If you want to know a little bit about each shot, try the thumbnails with captions page (about 575KB), which will also let you enlarge individual images. If you know you'll want to look at all the images enlarged, then go directly to this page, with larger captioned images (about 2.1MB). Finally, if you would like to read the script for the narration, click here.
Approximately one hour
Images from the DVD (thumbnail page, about 560KB)
Thumbnails with captions page (about 575KB).
Larger images from the DVD (with captions, about 2.1MB)
A brief movie excerpted from the DVD (about 3.4MB)
A simple Map showing the Route 21 Fineview line (30KB)
The narration script.
Other Pennsylvania trolley titles:
The Pennsylvania Trolley Museum (near Pittsburgh) operates several Pittsburgh and other Pennsylvania cars over track that was once part of Pittsburgh Railways's Washington interurban line.
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