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The Sacramento Northern Railway was once a critical interurban link between California's northern Central Valley communities, the state capital, and the Bay Area. Running through orchards, farmland, swamps, and cities, this electric railway began its life in 1905. Service eventually ran from Chico to Oakland, but after the Bay Bridge opened in 1939, the 186-mile route started in San Francisco's Financial District, crossed the bridge on the lower deck, ran through Contra Costa County towns like Moraga, Lafayette, and Pittsburg, across the Suisun straits on the massive rail ferry Ramon (which could hold an entire train), and into Sacramento, the halfway point. From there, the train continued through rolling hills and farms on to Marysville, and finally to Chico before making its return journey. The Sacramento Northern soldiered on until World War II, but eventually the growing car culture, along with competing diesel railroads, undid this splendid line. Interurban passenger service ended in 1941, and the various lines were gradually abandoned or dieselized. Today a 22-mile segment of the route remains in operation at the Bay Area Electric Railway Museum in Solano County.
Please note that the content of this book primarily consists of articles available from Wikipedia or other free sources online. Pages: 38. Chapters: Northwestern Pacific Railroad, Pacific Electric Railway, Sacramento Northern Railway, Key System, East Bay Electric Lines, San Diego Electric Railway, List of California street railroads, Tidewater Southern Railway, Petaluma and Santa Rosa Railroad, Market Street Railway, Ocean Shore Railroad, Shipyard Railway, Central California Traction Company, San Francisco, Napa and Calistoga Railway, Peninsular Railway, Pacific Coast Railway, Northern Electric Railway-Marysville and Colusa Branch, Visalia Electric Railroad, Glendale and Montrose Railway, Nevada County Traction Company, Sacramento Valley Electric Railroad, Watsonville Traction Company. Excerpt: The Northwestern Pacific Railroad (reporting mark NWP) is a regional railroad serving California's North Coast. The railroad ran from the North Bay at Sausalito to Eureka, California, primarily near the present-day U.S. Route 101 corridor. The NWP ran an electrified interurban commuter railroad in Marin County until 1941. The opening of the Golden Gate Bridge in 1937 caused commuters to shift from the train-ferry service to commuting by bus and car. The NWP was merged into the Southern Pacific in 1992, only four years before the Union Pacific/Southern Pacific merger. Under the auspices of the North Coast Railroad Authority (NCRA), freight service by NWP. Inc. is currently operating from the California Northern interchange at Schellville, north to Windsor. Locomotives including a Tier 3 hybrid at the Schellville depot awaiting thrice weekly runs. Plans are set to have freight trains to Willits by 2014. The Northwestern Pacific will run along part of the same route as Sonoma Marin Area Rail Transit, which will travel from Larkspur to Cloverdale. Mesa Grande train station, about 1910 462,6Samoa Southern Pacific Railroad controlled the NWP line from Schellville to Willits wh...
Though small in geographic size, Placer County is large in its rich history of railroading in California. This book covers 14 different railroads that did or still do exist in some association with Placer County. There were narrow-gauge and standard-gauge, long transcontinental, and short point-to-point railroads. Some railroads were fully contained within the county, and others just touched the county. Some railroads were short-lived operations, while others operated for decades. One railroad still functions today, undiminished after 150 years in service. This book is more than just a collection of photographs of locomotives; it provides the reader with a visual history of various aspects of the many railroads operating in Placer County over the years.
Until 1947, Sacramento's streetcars linked a bustling downtown district with residential neighborhoods, workplaces, and a growing series of suburbs. Starting with horse-drawn cars on Front Street, the streetcar system owned by the Pacific Gas and Electric Company expanded to include Midtown, Curtis Park, Land Park, Oak Park, and East Sacramento. But PG&E was not alone; two other companies ran streetcar routes downtown, along with suburban lines to West Sacramento, North Sacramento, Rio Linda, Elverta, Colonial Heights, and Colonial Acres. Sacramentans rode the cars to work, to school, to the state fair, and just about anywhere they wanted to go until the streetcars were replaced by buses owned by National City Lines.
In what has emerged as one of the most desirable places to live at the turn of this new century, the journey of Chico since its inception is one of growth as well as remembrance. A rich cultural heritage is as responsible for development of this diverse community as its fertile soils were in creating an economic stronghold. From the traditions and teachings of the Mechoopda Indians to its present day reputation as an educational bastion, Chico serves as a backbone of the budding Central Valley.
The discovery of gold launched an unprecedented rush of humanity to California's Sierra foothills. Many of those miners and minerals flowed as naturally as the waterways into a settlement that grew where the American and Sacramento Rivers meet. The Sacramento River, the main traffic artery between the mines and San Francisco Bay, was soon flanked by a burgeoning Embarcadero and commercial district that became Sacramento City in 1849. Paddlewheel riverboats, like the New World, carried goods, passengers, and great wealth. Besting all jealous rivals, Sacramento became the state capital, and a wealthy merchant's residence was transformed into the governor's mansion. Today downtown and Old Sacramento, a 28-acre state historic district, are thriving, graced by such treasures as the restored State Capitol Building, the art deco Tower Bridge, and scores of historic structures and attractions like the Leland Stanford Mansion and the California State Railroad Museum.
The Sacramento Southern Railroad was born into a famous railroad family and a busy railroad town in July 1903. The mighty Southern Pacific, which controlled the new line from the outset, built south from Sacramento along the eastern bank of the Sacramento River into the delta's rich farmland area. At its zenith, the line was about 31 miles long, serving the communities of Freeport, Hood, Locke, Walnut Grove, and Isleton. Trains on what became known as the Walnut Grove Branch hauled pears, sugar beets, asparagus and other products from the agricultural region's packing sheds and canneries. Competition from trucking and damage from flooding took a severe toll on the railroad, and the Southern Pacific largely abandoned it by 1978, but a portion lives on as a labor of love.

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