Lehigh Valley Transit

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Lehigh Valley Transit was a previous interurban and freight operator with services between Allentown and the Philadelphia area in Pennsylvania. Services operated between 1905-1972. Its interurban services ended in December, 1951, however freight services continued after.

Services were known for the "Liberty Bell Limited", a high-speed interurban service between Philadelphia and Allentown.

Interurban lines

[1]

  • Allentown-Lansdale (1903-1951)
  • Lansdale-Chestnut Hill (1903-1926)
  • Lansdale-Norristown (1912-1951)
  • Philadelphia-Quakertown-Allentown-Bethlehem (c. 1951)
  • Allentown-Shamokin via Tamaqua, Mahanoy City, Shenandoah and Mt. Carmel (c. 1951)

Roster

Bus

Fleet numbers Thumbnail Year Manufacturer Model Engine Transmission Notes
315-322 1947 Mack C-41-GT Mack END-672 or END-673
351-365 1948 Mack C-33-GT Mack END-510A
369-384 1950 Mack C-37-DT Mack END-510
385-392 1950 GMC TDH-3612
4500-4514 1950 GMC TDH-4509 Detroit Diesel 6-71

Interurban

Fleet number(s) Thumbnail Year Manufacturer Model Ends Motors Trucks Notes
Unknown 1902 St. Louis Fifty total suburban cars placed into service in 1902.
(see note) 1906 Kuhlman DE BR 27G Order number 311.
  • Cars numbered 23, 31-35 (odd), 39-59 (odd), 63, 67, 69, 93, 99.
124-125 1907 Brill DE Order number 15920.
126-129 1907 Brill DE Order number 16206.
137, 139, 153 1901 St. Louis 137 scrapped in 1939.
187-196 1905 Kuhlman DE BR 27G Order number 294.
197-206 1905 Kuhlman DE BR 27G Order number 295.
211 1907 Brill 211 Scrapped in 1949.
213 1891 Briggs
214 1914 Brill
218 1916 Brill
219 (1) 1891
  • Ex-Allentown and Bethlehem Rapid Transit Company 4.
  • To Lehigh Valley Transit in 1905, and scrapped in 1918.
219 (2) 1916 Brill
223 1916 Brill
301-304 1908 Brill DE Order number 16304.
400-401 1926 St. Louis
406-409 1909 Brill DE Order number 16814.
410-423 1923 Kuhlmann DE BR 77E1 Order number 812.
430-435 1926 Kuhlmann DE BR 77E2X Order number 898.
442-443, 445 1916 St. Louis Order 1088, received in 1938.
600-609 1910 Brill DE BR 27MBC1 Order number 17230.
  • Rebuilt in 1939.
610-619 1911 Brill DE BR 27MBC1 Order number 17885.
  • Rebuilt in 1939.
  • 613, 614 burned and scrapped.
620-623 1912 Brill DE Order number 18180.
  • Rebuilt in 1939.
7## 1916 Southern
  • All-steel cars.
  • Unknown number of cars. Numbers include 701-711?
  • Converted to one-man cars.
800-805

806-811

1912

1913

Jewett
  • “Liberty Bell Limited” cars. Later converted to freight cars.
  • Steel and truss-bar supported wood frame interurban cars.
  • Twelve cars featuring separate baggage and passenger sections and arched "stained-glass" windows.
  • 801 has been restored, and is part of a collection at Electric City Trolley Museum.
  • Rebuildings and disposition:[2]
  • 800 rebuilt to one-man operation in 1936, and rebuilt to freight trolley C16 in 1940.
  • 802 rebuilt to freight trolley C14 in 1934/1935, then to freight trolley C19 in 1942. Body was scrapped in 1951, with trucks to Philadelphia Transit Company.
  • 803-805, 807 scrapped (not rebuilt) at Fairview car barn in 1940. Body of 805 sold for use as a home, and 807 sold for use as a utility trailer.
  • 806 rebuilt to freight trolley C17 in 1940. Body was scrapped in 1951, with trucks to Philadelphia Transit Company.
  • 808 became freight trolley C15 in 1935, and then outlived LVT as rubbish car #T-18 on Philadelphia’s Broad St. subway.
  • 809 converted/rebuilt to an all-coach configuration in 1936, and rebuilt as a freight trolley C18 in 1940.
  • 810 retired from service in 1932, and body sold for use as a diner in Hellertown, PA in 1938.
  • 811 on September 1, 1929, car gutted by fire in use on P&W portion of the service. Car later scrapped entirely at Fairview car barn in 1935.
  • 812 featured classic arch windows, and was used as a private car. Later converted to passenger car.
900-923 1917 Brill Order number 20206.
  • Many rebuilt in 1930.
  • Used on city services.
924-938 1919 Brill Order number 20706.
  • Many rebuilt in 1930.
  • Used on city services.
940 1905 Kuhlmann Rebuilt in 1930.
  • Used on city services.
950-959 1930 Brill Brill 177E1X Order 22869.
  • Last new car purchases by LVT.
960-964 1926 Brill BR 177E1 Order number 22442.
1000-1008 1929 Cincinnati Balanced Lightweight Car
"Red Devil"
Order number 3050.
  • Purchased in 1939.
  • Ex-Cincinnati and Lake Erie Railroad 125, 128, 126, 121, 127, 123, 129, 120, 122.
  • Dubbed “Liberty Bell Limited” cars after being extensively modified.
  • 1001 and 1030 (not "Red Devil") involved in a minor collision when 1030 stalled after losing its connection to the trolley line. The accident was found preventable, if the motorman had flagged behind his car, instead of attempting to re-catch the wire in the dark.
  • 1003 involved in a multiple fatal head-on collision with LVT freight motor C14 in 1942. Twelve passengers on 1003 perished, as well as the motorman. In addition, 20 others injured.
  • 1004 destroyed in fire due to faulty electric car heater.
  • “Square rear-end” cars.
1020-1023 1929 Cincinnati Balanced Lightweight Car
"Red Devil"
Order number 3055.
1030 1931 Pullman
  • Ex-Indiana Railroad (IRR) interurban parlor car 55. Intended to replace burned 1004.
  • “Rounded rear-end” car.
  • Arrived in IRR’s “traction orange” paint scheme, nicknamed the “Golden Calf”
  • Car preserved and operating at Seashore Trolley Museum.
1100-1103 1929 Cincinnati Curveside Order number 3025.

Legend:

  • Ends: (DE) Double-end, (SE) Single-end
  • Motors: (GE) General Electric, (WH) Westinghouse
  • Trucks:

References

  1. Chicago Rail Fan, Interurban Railways in Pennsylvania/Delaware, accessed October 8, 2018.
  2. Lehigh Valley Chapter of NRHS, "The Liberty Bell Route's 800 series interurbans - History and Roster", p43