FPT $20 Day at National Capital Trolley Museum to benefit Red Arrow 85

These PCC cars from three countries (Canada, USA and the Netherlands) are among the historic vehicles in the National Capital Trolley Museum’s collection. (Bill Monaghan photo)

COLESVILLE, Maryland — Friends of Philadelphia Trolleys (FPT) and the National Capital Trolley Museum (NCTM) are teaming up on a special event on May 11 to raise funds for the future restoration of of an 87-year-old car that once served Philadelphia’s western suburbs.

Philadelphia & West Chester Traction Company 85 was built by the J.G. Brill Company in 1932 and served the lines radiating out from 69th Street Terminal until being retired by successor SEPTA after a half-century of service.

Car 85 is seen at the end of the Media line on State Street in 1969. (Matt Nawn collection)

For a donation of $20, guests will have the opportunity to ride, photograph and operate (under instruction) various trolley cars from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. A hosted tour of the NCTM maintenance car house (not typically open to visitors) also will be offered, along with a special presentation in the NCTM auditorium by the Friends of Philadelphia Trolleys on the group’s projects past and present.

Since 2005, FPT has made contributions of $185,000 toward trolley restoration projects in seven different museums. Your participation in $20 Day will help us continue our support of Philadelphia’s trolley heritage in operating museums around the country. You can learn more about FPT’s history and mission by clicking here.

For more information, email FPT2799@COMCAST.NET or MWNTROLLEY@AOL.COM, or visit our Facebook page for the event.

You also can download our flyer for the event (seen at left) by clicking here.

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WHAT: $20 Day in support of Car 85
WHEN: 10 a.m.-4 p.m., May 11, 2019
WHERE: National Capital Trolley Museum,
1313 Bonifant Road, Colesville, Md. 20905–5955
ALSO: To learn more about Car 85, click here.








Another successful $20 day at BSM

Another Successful $20 Day at Baltimore Streetcar Museum was sponsored by FPT on Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018.

Over 40 people attended to ride, photograph and operate trolleys starting at 10 a.m. After a pizza lunch, operations continued until almost 5 p.m.

A little over $1,300 was raised, which will go towards PCC 2168’s upcoming body repair. Thanks to all who supported the 2018 $20 Day!

The photo above, by our own Bill Monaghan, shows 2168 between Baltimore PCC 7407 and Peter Witt 6119 at the museum.

Upcoming body work for SEPTA PCC 2168

Philadelphia PCC 2168 has become one of the most popular cars at the Baltimore Streetcar Museum since it went into public service there in 2009. However, the effects of more than 50 winters in the snow and salt of Philly’s winters are beginning to show on the 70 year old trolley.

Two areas where the salt has hidden near the floor line will be cut out, with new steel welded in, then primed and repainted. These needed repairs will cost $13,500 and will be done on site by an outside contractor, not museum volunteers.

We need about $2,500 more to cover the work. If you can help put, please send your donation to: Friends of Philadelphia Trolleys, P.O. Box 33397, Philadelphia, PA 19142. Please make sure that you mark your check for PCC 2168.

No donation is too small, and all will be appreciated.

FPT presents $5,000 donation to PTM for 8042 project

FPT Director Harry Donahue, at right, recently presented a check for $5,000 to Pennsylvania Trolley Museum Executive Director Scott Becker for the restoration of Philadelphia Transportation Co. 8042.

This donation will be double-matched by Washington County Cares and 20th Century Electric Rail.

PTM volunteers also have rebuilt 8042′ s controller as part of the work, as seen here.

The Many Faces of PCC 2168

Philadelphia Transportation Co. 2168 is seen working southbound along Route 47 on 6th Street in June 1967 (Jim Golhopher photo).

Today she’s a gleaming museum exhibit in Baltimore, resplendent in a beautiful recreation of SEPTA’s 1970s “Gulf Oil” paint scheme. But Philadelphia PCC car 2168 has had a long and colorful history — and more than one distinctive livery over the years.

Step aboard for a photographic trip through time on one of our favorite machines:

Less than a decade old, 2168 is seen at 17th & Lehigh, on Route 21 in 1956. This is the oldest photo we have seen of the car so far (ECTM collection).











It’s the banana car! 2168 is seen at Luzerne in March 1973, fresh from Courtland Shops in the short-lived yellow livery (Harry Donahue









We know not everyone loves the GOH scheme (though some of us do!) but we would be remiss if we didn’t show you a photo of 2168 wearing it. Harry Donahue captured the car northbound at 11th and Market in April 1987.

Yet another paint scheme! Here is Harry Donahue with the car in May 1995 when SEPTA’s Welcome Line service debuted.

















That Welcome Line paint scheme didn’t take long to fade, unfortunately. Here we see Matt Nawn with the car at Elmwood on the occasion of a 50th anniversary charter in July 1998.















Ten years later, a much different scene. Here is 2168 at the Baltimore Streetcar Museum during Crab Fest in July 2008. The exterior restoration had only just begun, but this marked the car’s first operation at BSM after re-gauging (Harry Donahue).










And here is 2168 as we know her today. Donations from FPT members, together with the time and expertise, have transformed the car into a gorgeous museum piece that will help tell the story of Philadelphia trolleys for generations to come (Roger DuPuis).

8042 is coming along nicely at PTM

FPT members Harry Donahue, Matt Nawn and Bill Monaghan are seen with 8042 recently at PTM.

Work on Philadelphia Transportation Co. car 8042 is coming along nicely at the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum.

FPT members including Harry Donahue, Matt Nawn and Bill Monaghan were able to check on its progress earlier this month while visiting the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum in Washington County, Pa. They are seen in the adjacent photo with the car, showing the extent of work on its platform thus far.

As you will recall, the 1923 Brill car is being restored with support from Friends of Philadelphia Trolleys and generous donors such as you. The car has been on display at PTM since 2005.

If you or anyone you know may be interested in helping the cause, please click this link to download and print our donation form.

Red Arrow fans rejoice: FPT aids Car #24 project at PTM

Red Arrow “St. Louis” cars 14 and 24 are seen in MU operation at the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum. (Bill Monaghan photo.)

In a sight that is sure to warm the hearts of Red Arrow fans, two of the system’s former St. Louis streamliners ran in multiple-unit operation last weekend at the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum, and FPT is helping bring one of those cars back into shape after a period of storage.

The Friends of Philadelphia Trolleys provided a $500 grant to the museum for the preservation of Red Arrow Lines/SEPTA Car #24 on Saturday, June 2.  This grant recognizes the efforts of a group of volunteers at PTM who have recently taken on this project and returned the car to operating condition and provide a funding base for further efforts in the future.

And, as noted, FPT members and other guests were treated to seeing 24, which wears SEPTA’s “Gulf Oil” paint scheme, operating in MU with sister car 14, which the museum has beautifully restored to its original livery.

FPT’s Directors are interested in continuing to support the Car 24 project. Just think of the impact if everyone on this page would send FPT $5 (or more) towards this car.  We could raise $7,000 with just this simple step.  Grants provided to museums for projects like this enable  opportunities for matching grants from other organizations, which can lead to doubling of the money contributed by FPT.

FPT’s Scranton charter benefits 5205 restoration

FPT’s own Bill Monaghan and Harry Donahue are seen with PRT/PTC 5205, under restoration at the Electric City Trolley Museum in Scranton. Photo courtesy of Marc Glucksman.

Friends of Philadelphia Trolleys and the Electric City Trolley Museum collaborated on hold the first-ever photo charter at the museum on Saturday, April 28, 2018.

This trip raised $2,000 towards the ongoing restoration of former Philadelphia Transportation Co. 1923 Brill-built car 5205, which is seen in the attached photo behind FPT members Bill Monaghan and Harry Donahue.

We would like to thank the ECTM crew for the great day,  including Jimmy Kosydar, David Gallagher, George Metz and Henry Adamcik.

By the way, if you would like to join FPT for the upcoming Father’s Day Charter, read more here, or you can simply download our charter form here.

Father’s Day trolley charter to use car celebrating 125 years of Philly service

The 125th anniversary car is seen inside Callowhill Depot. For information on how to attend our upcoming Father’s Day charter using this car, see the story below.

PHILADELPHIA  — Fans of urban transit history can photograph a unique tribute to the city’s rich trolley heritage and support efforts to preserve relics of that heritage on a special charter trip next month.

Friends of Philadelphia Trolleys (FPT) is sponsoring a Father’s Day Charter over parts of SEPTA’s trolley system on Sunday, June 17 using Kawasaki-built trolley #9043, which is wearing a special decal to commemorate 125 years of electric trolley operation in the City of Philadelphia.

The first electric trolleys in Philadelphia ran on the Catharine-Bainbridge Line beginning Dec. 15, 1892.

FPT’s charter trip will depart from SEPTA’s Elmwood Depot, 7311 Elmwood Ave., Philadelphia at 11 a.m. and continue until 3 p.m. It will cover SEPTA’s entire route 15 trolley line, as well as some of the system’s subway-surface lines in West Philadelphia. Snacks and drinks will be available for purchase on the car.

All proceeds from this year’s Father’s Day charter, one of several annual events hosted by nonprofit FPT, will benefit the restoration of former Philadelphia Transportation Company car #8042, a 1923 streetcar built by the J.G. Brill Company of Philadelphia, then the world’s largest manufacturer of trolleys and electric railway equipment. Car 8042 ran in the city until 1957. It now resides at the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum in Washington County, Pa., where the car is undergoing restoration.

Tickets for the charter will be $45 per seat. To reserve a seat, mail a check or money order, payable to “FPT, Inc.”, to Harry Donahue, 103 Mulberry Court, Morgantown, PA 19543. For a flyer or more information, e-mail Bill Monaghan at FPT2799@Comcast.Net or download a flyer below.

Founded by a group of Philadelphia-area preservationists, historians and transit professionals, FPT is a non-profit organization which raises money to support the restoration and upkeep of Philadelphia-area trolley cars preserved in operating condition at museums around the country, including facilities in Pennsylvania, Maryland and Connecticut.

Its members, many of whom have lengthy experience in the transit industry, offer not just funding but technical advice to museums, and frequently travel around the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast to participate in restoration work.

WHAT: Friends of Philadelphia Trolleys Father’s Day Charter using 125th anniversary commemorative car

WHEN: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Sunday, June 17, 2018

WHERE: Trip starts from SEPTA’s Elmwood Depot, 7311 Elmwood Ave., Philadelphia

COST: $45 per person; mail a check or money order, payable to “FPT, Inc.”, to Harry Donahue, 103 Mulberry Court, Morgantown, PA 19543.

CONTACT: Bill Monaghan at FPT2799@Comcast.Net