Friday, September 2, 2016

A Double Vision Sign

Today we are learning about the term "Pullman".

Why?


Ah!  This is because I found a sign saying "Pullman Tickets" that was "erased" (painted over)  and reused as a "Keep Out" sign at the Depot.  
It is easy to see the top sign that reads: "Private.  Keep out.  This means you, not the other fellow."  If you keep looking at it, you might see the sign beneath the yellow lettering.  It is a bit challenging, since it is black letters on a black sign.

I've tried to reverse the colors to help reveal the words:  "Pullman Tickets".  

Note:  I apologize for my horrible hand drawn letters.  The original font is a lot more stylized.

Okay, so what does Pullman mean?

Back in the height of American railroads, the term Pullman was equivalent to saying "high end railroad sleeping cars".  This was because most sleeping cars were built and operated by the Pullman Company. 
 

Cite:  Pullman Bank.  Train Station. UnknownPhotography.  The Pullman State Historic Site, Chicago City.  The Pullman State Historic Site. Web. 1 Sep. 2016. < http://www.pullman-museum.org/  >.  The Pullman Company grew to be so large that the new Pullman plant of the 1880's had its own railway station (pictured above), housing, churches, theaters, parks, shopping areas, a library, and a hotel to keep their employees happy.

The Pullman company started out with luxury sleeping cars in 1863.  George Pullman's mission was to build the most comfortable, clean, and appealing car no matter the price. And he did not cut corners.   One car, the Pioneer, cost the company $18,000 to make in 1863 which is equivalent to $329,756 today.  And that was just one car! The second version of the Pioneer cost $20,000 in 1865 and was so large that it would not fit on the current railroad tracks.  Since it was being used by President Lincoln's family during his funeral cortege, the railroad tracks were replaced to accommodate this new very large luxury car.

So, what did a Pullman Sleeping Car look like?

Cite:  Watkins, C.E.  No.43 - Pullman's Palace Sleeping Car "Palmyra".  Unknown Date.  Reprinted Postcard.  The Pullman State Historic Site, Chicago City.  The Pullman State Historic Site. Web. 1 Sep. 2016. < http://www.pullman-museum.org/  >.
They were fancy on the outside and...
Cite:  Pullman Company.  Sleeping Car Interior.  1890'sPhotography.  The Pullman State Historic Site, Chicago City.  The Pullman State Historic Site. Web. 1 Sep. 2016. < http://www.pullman-museum.org/  >.
....fancy on the inside.
  
Gwen Wyatt, owner of the Depot, remembers traveling with her parents on a Pullman Company car.  Her father Dr. R. L. Wyatt knew the event coordinator of fundraiser termed Sentimental Journey.  Because of that, the Wyatt family was lucky enough to travel in Pullman Sleeping Car that looked like the one above.

Cite:  Pullman Company.  Sleeping Car Interior.  1870's-1880'sPhotography.  The Pullman State Historic Site, Chicago City.  The Pullman State Historic Site. Web. 1 Sep. 2016. < http://www.pullman-museum.org/  >.



Of course, Pullman did not only make sleeping cars.  In fact, the company created many different cars from diners,
Cite:  Historic Pullman Foundation. Pullman Plate #4.  UnknownPhotography.  The Pullman State Historic Site, Chicago City.  The Pullman State Historic Site. Web. 1 Sep. 2016. < http://www.pullman-museum.org/  >.


Cite:  Pullman Company.  Dining Car.  UnknownPhotography.  The Pullman State Historic Site, Chicago City.  The Pullman State Historic Site. Web. 1 Sep. 2016. < http://www.pullman-museum.org/  >.



 reclining rooms, parlor cars, hotel cars (sleeping cars with a kitchen), and more. 
Cite:  Pullman Company.  Car Interior 1890's.  1890'sPhotography.  The Pullman State Historic Site, Chicago City.  The Pullman State Historic Site. Web. 1 Sep. 2016. < http://www.pullman-museum.org/  >. This shows a plush parlor.

Cite:  Watkins, C.E.  No. 47 - Pullman's Palace Hotel Car.  UnknownPhotography.  The Pullman State Historic Site, Chicago City.  The Pullman State Historic Site. Web. 1 Sep. 2016. < http://www.pullman-museum.org/  >.  This shows a hotel car.
Cite:  Pullman Company.  Car.  1894Photography.  The Pullman State Historic Site, Chicago City.  The Pullman State Historic Site. Web. 1 Sep. 2016. < http://www.pullman-museum.org/  >.  This photo shows a lavish private sitting room.

Cite:  Unknown.  Coach Car Interior-Women Singing to Mandolin Accompaniment.  Early 20th Century.  Photography.  The Pullman State Historic Site, Chicago City.  The Pullman State Historic Site. Web. 1 Sep. 2016. < http://www.pullman-museum.org/  >. This shows a tourist car full of passengers travelling to Santa Fe.
People paid for the privilege to be on these fancy smooth rides.  The wide variety of cars from The Pullman Company ran on the line until 1981.  That is an impressive 118 years!

So what do you think of all that?  

Feel free to share any stories or comments you might have.  We love hearing from y'all.

As always, thank you for reading!  







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