Yakima Valley Trolleys Timeline
Compiled and Edited by Kenneth G. Johnsen
- Predecessor company Yakima Inter-Valley Traction Company (YI-VT) formed. June 2.
- Yakima City Council granted YI-VT a 40-year franchise to operate streetcars. October 15.
- Yakima Valley Transportation Company (YVT) formed, obtained YI-VT franchise and assets July 2.
- Ground breaking and first track laid for YVT at the Redmon place west of town. September 9.
- Temporary streetcars #18 and #36 rented from Tacoma, arrive in Yakima. First week of December.
- 100 men working on laying track to meet January 1 deadline. Mid December.
- First three miles of YVT track completed, west of NPRR tracks. December 21.
- First unofficial test movement of an electric streetcar in Yakima. December 22.
- Inaugural run of streetcar with YVT Directors, City Councilmen, press. December 24.
- First public runs of streetcars in Yakima. Christmas Day.
- Crossing of the NPRR made and track laid on east side of Yakima Avenue. Mid summer.
- First run of a trolley on east side of NPRR tracks on Yakima Avenue. September 7.
- First three built-for-Yakima trolleys arrive via NPRR. September 16.
- Opening of Washington State Fair; trolleys strained to provide enough service. September 28.
- Rented Tacoma streetcars returned to Tacoma. October.
- Temporary wooden carbarn erected at Sixth and Maple Streets. Late.
- Construction of North 4th Street line begun. Spring.
- YVT sold to Oregon Railway & Navigation Company (Union Pacific). June 9.
- Two more streetcars ordered and three interurban cars ordered. Late summer.
- Construction of Maple Street line begun; bridge pier placed in Yakima River. Fall.
- Fruitvale line opened for business. March 27.
- Courthouse loop laid around four blocks and Yakima Avenue double tracked. Summer.
- Carbarn and shop facility built at 3rd Avenue and Pine Street.
- Wiley City line opened for business. June 17.
- The convertible Seeing Yakima Car made its inaugural run. July 20.
- Summitview line opened for business. Summer.
- Four more streetcars (two single truck and two double truck) ordered. Summer.
- Twelve flat cars ordered. Summer.
- Union Pacific completed its line from the Columbia River to Yakima.
- Powerhouse built at 3rd Avenue and Pine Street.
- Rock crushing plant established in Selah Gap.
- Construction of Selah Line begun. Late.
- Three more interurban cars ordered.
- First run over Selah Line made. June 21.
- Y.V.T. reached its maximum size of 48 miles.
- Freight locomotive #299 purchased second hand from a line in Oregon.
- North Fourth Street line abandoned because of numerous hold-ups by bandits.
- Locomotive #298 purchased from General Electric Company.
- Locomotive #A outfitted for line work.
- Bus service experimented with on certain lines. Not successful.
- "Seeing Yakima Car" #101 makes its final run.
- First scrapping of YVT streetcars, #1 and #2. September 12.
- Three Master Unit streetcars from the Brill Company purchased. Arrived February 28.
- Last run of a single truck car made by #5 on Fruitvale-North 8th Street line. March 5.
- All remaining single truck cars plus #101 car scrapped. June 4.
- Nick Richards, general manager since 1909 retires.
- County Commissioners agree to let YVT suspend interurban passenger service. December 20.
- Final interurban runs made. May 15.
- Fairview line abandoned and torn up. June.
- Double truck streetcars #10 and #11 scrapped; bodies used for tenements. Sept. 27 and Oct 10.
- Two Twin Coach 23-seat buses ordered. April.
- Two additional Twin Coach buses ordered.
- Locomotive #297 added to roster; came from Glendale & Montrose in Southern California.
- Original 40-year franchise expired. October.
- YVT negotiates new 25-year franchise allowing cessation of passenger service.
- YVT loses all lines east of North 6th Avenue as a result of franchise changes.
- Final streetcar runs made in "Parade of Progress". February 1.
- Streetcars #6 and #7 scrapped.
- Ten-year bus franchise granted to YVT. March.
- Rail removed from Yakima Avenue and east side lines. Summer.
- The three Master Unit cars #20, #21 and #22 sold to Portland Traction Company.
- YVT doesn't renew bus franchise. Private company takes over bus service.
- Master Unit cars sold to collectors and moved to Snoqualmie, Washington.
- Locomotive #299 scrapped.
- YVT franchise expires amid controversy from "Safe Streets Committees" to abolish YVT.
- Box motor locomotive #301 sold to California Railway Museum at Rio Vista, California.
- Former YVT #301 cannibalized for parts for Petaluma & Santa Rosa car at Rio Vista.
- YVT repaints its locomotives into standard Union Pacific color and lettering scheme.
- Ten year operating franchise granted to YVT by City Council
- Return of passenger trolley service to YVT proposed by Ken Johnsen to City Council. February 5.
- Trolley Advisory Committee set up by City Councilman Wray Brown. March.
- City sends Paul Class to Portugal to negotiate purchase of two streetcars. October.
- Oporto (Portugal) streetcars #1776 and #1976 arrive in Yakima via Union Pacific. August 28.
- Streetcar #1776 makes first run of a passenger trolley on YVT in 27 years. August 29.
- Training of motormen for the new trolleys utilizes off-duty firemen. Fall.
- Inaugural run of Yakima's trolleys made by Union Pacific president John Kennefick. October 12.
- "Trolley Dollies" group formed to give commentary on public trolley rides.
- Yakima Interurban Lines Association formed to take over tourist trolley operation.
- YVT experiments with Trackmobile #296 in place of electric locomotive for several months.
- Steeple cab locomotive #298 returns to service as Trackmobile #296 is unable to perform adequately.
- YVT, citing loss of business to trucks, files for abandonment. April.
- Union Pacific offers entire railroad and rolling stock donation to City of Yakima.
- Abandonment of YVT granted. Final ceremonial freight run takes place November 12.
- Union Pacific transfers Trackmobile #296 and boxcab #297 to California. November 13.
- Track, overhead, rolling stock (except #296 and #297) and machinery donated to City by U.P.
- Trolley barn property retained by U.P., leased to City of Yakima.
- Congdon's Orchards successfully sues to revert YVT right of way back to Congdon's use.
- Route of passenger trolley changed to Selah after west lines are torn up.
- Master Units #21 and #22 leased from owner Bob Hively and transported to Yakima.
- City retains architect Les Tonkin to devise total restoration plan for YVT railroad.
- City obtains ISTEA grants to refurbish YVT.
- City obtains more ISTEA grants to refurbish YVT.
- City terminates operating agreement with Yakima Interurban Lines Association.
- City of Issaquah obtains 18-month loan of streetcar #1976 from City of Yakima.
- Yakima Valley Trolleys association formed; Yakima Interurban Lines Association dissolved.
- Trolley #1776 repainted into original YVT colors and lettering scheme of 1908.
- Service to Selah interrupted by theft of overhead copper wire.
- Centennial of YVT celebrated with re-enactments. July 1 and December 22.
- City purchases trolley barn property, completing its ownership of YVT railroad. February.
- Trolley Actors group formed to teach history on trolley rides.
- Fageol Twin Coach bus, identical to the original YVT buses, donated to Yakima Valley Trolleys.
- City of Yakima includes downtown expansion of YVT trolley lines in their official 5-year plan.
- Centennial of opening of the Selah line on June 21st. First run re-enacted with trolley #1776 painted in original YVT colors.