BADGES ISSUED BY TRANSIT COMPANIES BEGINNING WITH THE LETTER “O”
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O.R.B. Co. See OLIVER & RICKARD BUS LINE / OLIVER & RICKARD BUS COMPANY
OAKDALE COMMUNITY GARAGE & BUS LINE, INC. was operating in 1926 in Dedham, Massachusetts. In February 1939 the company had been forced to give its drivers an increase of eight percent (8%) per hour. In 1946 the company operated 12 buses over 19 route miles and was controlled by Myron and Paul Chamberlain. The company is not listed in the 1954 MTD.
OAKLAND-TUOLUMNE STAGE LINE was operating in the mid 1920s out of Oakland, California. The line ran to Alameda. Hepstead and Rawlings were the registered contacts.
THE OAKWOOD STREET RAILWAY COMPANY, INC. This company received a charter in Dayton, Ohio, in February 1875, with Gabriel B. Harman acting as Treasurer. Route 3 was a mule car driven by Dave Weeks and ran from the corner of Main and Third streets, along Brown Street, up Oakwood Avenue and through the Five Points intersection to Park Avenue (near today’s Smith Gardens) where it turned around. “The streetcar came up every hour. Weeks would stop to rest the horse and blow his horn signaling Oakwood’s first residents to hurry out of their front doors and start for the car. One of the early regulations was that ‘no car should be drawn faster than six miles an hour . . . and that in making turns, mules or horses should not be driven faster than a walk.'” The company went bankrupt in 1876 and was sold at auction to Charles Bailey Clegg (1842-1918), whose family would lead the company for the next seven decades. By the 1930s the company was running a single rail route that extended from the southern limits of Oakwood, a municipality located at the south edge of Dayton, through the Dayton Central Business District, and then across the Great Miami River to a nearby loop in Lower Dayton View. This route served the National Cash Register Company, which allowed the company sufficient revenues to keep operating through the Depression. On January 19, 1936 the company converted their rail line to an electric trolley bus operation. This service was augmented with the purchase of Wolf Brothers Bus Line, which was operated as a motor bus subsidiary and renamed The Dayton Suburban Bus Lines, Inc.
In 1946 the company was running 15 dark red & gold trim trackless trolleys over 11 route miles. The company’s last year is glimpsed in the February 22, 1956, edition of The Daily Reporter from Dover, Ohio: “A major bus strike is scheduled to start March 7 in this city of 244,000 people. Drivers and maintenance men of City Transit Co., voted 212-0 last night to strike on that date, according to Howard G. Steele, president of Local 1385. The local is part of the Amalgamated Assn. of Street Electric Railway and Motor Coach Employees of America, City Transit carries 95 per cent of Dayton’s bus commuters or 120,000 people daily. Six days before, the strike deadline, City Transit is scheduled to consolidate with Oakwood City Railway Co. and Dayton Suburban Bus Line Co., which together carry 20,000 commuters daily to city suburbs. A strike by City Transit’s 300 drivers and maintenance men could affect operations of Oakwood and Dayton Suburban, which together have 65 employees. Stoppage of all three lines would practically paralyze the city’s transportation network. Private cars and taxis are the only other means of mass transportation. his head.”
In 1955 City Railway Company and Dayton & Xenia Railway Company merged, forming City Transit Company. The following year The Oakwood Street Railway Company was sold to City Transit Company, which consolidated all transit lines in the city of Dayton. In 1972 City Transit Company became the publicly-owned Miami Valley Regional Transit Authority, which was renamed Greater Dayton Regional Transit Authority in 2003.
OCCIDENTAL BUS LINE was founded by Roy Laos, Sr. in ca. 1925 to run bus service in the west and south sides of Tucson, Arizona, along side of Tucson Rapid Transit. In 1949 Roy Laos took on a partner named Emery Johnson and they changed the company name to Old Pueblo Transit. In 1978 the company was purchased by Sun Tran, which was formerly Tucson Rapid Transit.
OCEAN SHORE AUTO STAGE COMPANY was operating in the mid 1910s out of Tunitas, California. The following is a brief history of the company, which came from a post on the Net: “I Asked Railroad Historian John Schmale Posted on March 6, 2009, by June Morrall: Where did the Auto Stage pick passengers up on the Coastside? The Ocean Shore Auto Stage company’s route was from Tunitas, in San Mateo County, to Swanton in Santa Cruz County. The franchise for the route was granted to them by the State Railroad Commission to connect the railheads and bridge the 26 mile ‘Gap.’ The buses (two 12- passenger ‘Stanley Steamer Mountain Wagons’ with convertible tops) ran to San Francisco only when the Ocean Shore Railroad was shut down by mud slides and washouts, which was fairly often. When the two Steamers operated to San Francisco and towns other than their assigned route they were really in violation of their franchise. However, the Railroad Commission looked the other way. Beginning in about 1914 several auto jitney and bus lines began competing with the Ocean Shore Railroad including the ‘Coastside Transportation Company’ and the ‘Red Star Stage Line’ which operated along the coast in San Mateo County. They used conventional gas-powered vehicles and served Moss Beach, Marine View, Salada, Vallemar, Rockaway, San Pedro, Montara, Half Moon Bay, and other towns. The Coastside Transportation Company had its northern terminal in San Francisco. The Red Star line traveled along Market Street in San Francisco and went as far as Pescadero.”
ODESSA-KANSAS CITY BUS LINES was operating out of the Union Bus Terminal in Kansas City, Missouri, in the early 1940s.
ODESSA – MIDLAND BUS LINES The only thing I could find on this company was an El Paso Herald-Post 1973 newspaper article about the company being fined $500 in a federal court for five violations of Interstate Commerce Commission regulations. The violations involved a driver driving more than the allotted number of hours per day in trips from Presidio, Texas, to New Mexico. I assume the company was located in Texas. The badge has two threaded posts and was made by HOOKFAST PROVIDENCE R. I.
OGLESBY MOTOR TRANSPORTATION COMPANY. La Salle-Wenona (1928, Oglesby Motor Transportation Co.) Illinois
THE OHIO BUS LINE COMPANY was founded in 1928 as an intercity bus service operating between several small communities in the Cincinnati, Ohio, area. Suburban and intercity bus routes included Cincinnati, Hamilton, Middletown, Dayton, Ohio, and Richmond, Indiana. In 1946 it ran 44 buses over 204 route miles. A March 19, 1945, news item in the Piqua Daily Call from Piqua, Ohio, mentioned that “The Dayton and Western Ohio Airlines, Inc., is owned by three major intercity bus companies, the Cincinnati & Lake Erie Transportation Company, the King Brothers Company and the Ohio Bus Line Company.” In 1956 the company was controlling the Ohio Valley Transit Lines in Addyston, Ohio. In 1956 Cincinnati Transit Company was listed as a holding company. At that time they had a fleet of 84 buses. The badge is thin nickel and die struck with two threaded posts. Approx 2 ½ x 2 ½ inches. (NOTE: I’ve seen several of these, including my own example, and all have had two flat head bolts cemented to the badge as mounting posts. I’m guessing that’s the way they came from the factory.)
OHIO BUS LINES was operating in the 1930s with executive offices in Cincinnati, Ohio. The company was founded in 1923, and ran coaches between Cincinnati, Hamilton, and Middletown, Ohio, and cities in Indiana. The badge measures approx 2¾”x 2¼” with a single threaded post.
OHIO-KENTUCKY INTERSTATE BUS COMPANY was owned and operated as an interstate line in the 1920s by Thomas Magnuson of Norwood, Ohio. In 1927 the company brought suit in a United States District Court against Griffin Kelly, Commissioner of Motor Transportation of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, which stemmed from complaints by two bus companies, Red Dot Coach Lines and Consolidated Coach Corporation, and the Southern Railway System. “This suit is before us on motion for preliminary injunction. It is a three-judge case. The injunction sought is to restrain defendants from interfering with the operation of plaintiff’s interstate passenger bus line between Dayton, Ohio, and Lexington, Ky., and threatening to arrest his operatives in its operation.” The company’s route was as follows: “. . . in Ohio extends from Dayton to Cincinnati, passing through five other stations between these points. That in Kentucky extends from Covington through Newport, Alexandria, and Butler, a few miles south of which last-named station it strikes what is known as the Eastern Dixie Highway or United States Federal Highway No. 25, and runs therefrom and thereon through Falmouth, Cynthiana, and Paris to Lexington. The line consists of seven-passenger touring cars, which are to make four trips each way each day.” Ohio-Kentucky Interstate Bus Company won their injunction in December 1927, but the company doesn’t seem to have survived into the 1930s.
THE OHIO MOTOR BUS COMPANY The company was organized in June 1921 by I. C. Robinson and R.E. McCollum. The company operated over 13 route miles in the city of Columbus, Ohio, and ran a route between Columbus and Westerville, Ohio.
OHIO RAPID TRANSIT COMPANY, INC. There’s not a lot of historical info on this company. In February 1948 Harry W. Arnold bought the Arcodel System, Inc., which was formed on October 11, 1933, in Columbus, Ohio by H.E. Haynes, D. M. Munro and K.H. Pyle. The story behind this company seems to be that it was formed to purchase several small Ohio bus companies and place them in this corporation to operate as a system. At the time Arnold bought the Arcodel System he already owned and operated Ohio Rapid Transit Company, Lake Shore Coach Company, Red Star Way and Fairlick Stages, all of which ran under Arnold’s Lake Shore System. The story was reported in the Monday, February 9, 1948, edition of the Sandusky Register from Sandusky, Ohio: “NEWARK, O., Feb. 9 (UP)—The Ohio Rapid Transit Co., Newark, has purchased the Arcodel System of inter-city bus companies connecting Columbus, Newark. Zanesville, Woodsfield, and Marietta, it was revealed today. Harry W. Arnold, president of ORT, said the purchase will extend the ORT system to Toledo and Cleveland through connections with the Lake Shore Coach Co. The ORT also owns subsidiaries in Sandusky, Newark, Mansfield, and Zanesville. Arnold said the addition of the Arcodel system is part of an expansion program financed by n $500,000 bond issue. R. L. Jacobs, general manager of the Arcodel system, will be in- charge of Arcodel operations under Mr. Arnold.” By the mid 1950s, Arnold’s Ohio Rapid Transit Company, Inc., which was essentially a holding company, owned and operated the following Ohio transit companies: Capital State, Inc., City Rapid Transit Lines, Inc., Fairlick Stages, Inc., Granville Motor Stages, Inc., The Lakeshore Coach Company, Mansfield Rapid Transit, Inc., Muskingum Val. Transit, Sandusky Rapid Transit, Inc., The Zaneville & Marietta Transportation Company, Newark Transit, Inc. and Zaneville Rapid Transit, Inc. The company was still operating in the 1960s. Harry Arnold died on Tuesday Nov 19, 1963, age 61 in a Sarasota, Florida. (For more information, see Lake Shore System and Arcodel System, Inc.)
OHIO RIVER MOTOR COACH COMPANY was formed in March 1936. It operated a single route of 20 miles between Aliquippa and Pittsburgh, Pennsylavania, serving Ambridge, Sewickley, Haysville and Emsworth. The company was owned by Stanley and Frank Ference, who had previously owned the Ference Brothers Bus Lines. Ohio River Motor Coach Co. was acquired by Port Authority Transit (PAT) in 1964. The badge is a single threaded post die pressed example.
OHIO VALLEY BUS COMPANY was an interstate concern operating in the early 1920s. In a case before the Ohio Supreme Court dated December 1925, its route was described thus: “Over the protest of the of Cannon Ball Transportation Company, the Public Utilities Commission granted the application of the Ohio Valley Bus Company for a certificate of public convenience and necessity to operate motor transportation over the same route; it appearing in the application that the Ohio Valley Bus Company already had a certificate granted by the State’s Roads Commission of West Virginia to operate motor transportation over the highways of the state of West Virginia between the city of Huntington and the Ohio river, in the direction of Ironton, Ohio. It is therefore an interstate operation.” In 1941 the company was running 49 buses over 57 miles; Joseph Harvey Long was the general manager. In 1956 the company was operating 106 buses over 195 route miles. The company was in business into the 1960s-1970s. A 1974 Ohio state report had this entry: “Ohio Valley Bus Company, 1749 Washington Avenue, Huntington, West Virginia — Leonard Samworth, President. This company, which operated an intercity and a mass transportation service between Huntington, West·Virginia and Ironton, Ohio, is no longer in operation. Its certificate was revoked early in 1973.”
OHIO VALLEY TRANSIT LINES In the 1950s this company was controlled by The Ohio Bus Company. It served the town of Addyston, Ohio.
OKLAHOMA TRANSPORTATION COMPANY / CITY BUS COMPANY So far I’ve not discovered a founding date for this Oklahoma City based intercity bus company. It was operating in the late 1930s with Tom Cooper as president and Moss Patterson as vice president and general manager. Its schedule takes three pages in the 1939 Russell’s Guide. By 1945 the company was well established and was running 80 buses over 936 route miles. In November 1946 it bought the assets and took over the management of the bankrupt Oklahoma Railway Company, which had operated streetcars in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, since 1907, and was running 125 buses over 162 route miles. The owners and management of the Oklahoma Transportation Company formed the City Bus Company to assume city operations in Oklahoma City and to become the holding company for both businesses. Streetcars were discontinued in 1946. From 1954-1977 it was affiliated with Mid-Continent Coaches and Southwest Coaches. The Central Oklahoma Transportation and Parking Authority was established on February 1, 1966, by the Oklahoma City Council to replace City Bus Company after the company announced it would discontinue city service. Their fleet of 18 buses were leased to the new company, which was named Central Oklahoma Transportation and Parking Authority (COTPA). In 1975 the company was renamed to MassTrans. In 1992 it was renamed METRO Transit, and 2013 as EMBARK. In 1977 Oklahoma Transportation Company was absorbed by Mid-Continent Coaches and Southwest Coaches. The badge measures 2 ¼” x 1⅞” and has two threaded posts.
OLANCHA-DARWIN STAGE was operating in the mid 1920s out of Olancha, California. Jesus Romero was the registered contacts.
OLD COLONY COACH LINES, INC. was operating in the 1930s from Boston, Massachusetts. It ran between Boston and New York City, between Boston and Saint Stephen, New Brunswick, Canada, just across the border from Calais, Maine, via Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and Portland, Augusta, and Bangor, all three in Maine. In 1937 The Greyhound Corporation formed the New England Greyhound Lines to take over three routes of the New England Transportation Company and its two subsidiaries – the Berkshire Motor Coach Lines and the Victoria Coach Lines. About this time Greyhound also acquired Quaker Stages Company. After the acquisition all these bus companies (with the exception of New England Transportation Company) ceased to exist. In January 1938 Old Colony Coach Lines ordered three new coaches from American Car & Foundry Company—ACF. The Cincinnati Enquirer from Cincinnati, Ohio, on January 26, 1939, reported that The Greyhound Corporation “issued stock to Old Colony Coach Lines, Inc., for certain property and operating rights, chiefly in New England.” After Old Colony Coach Lines was absorbed by Greyhound, it ceased to exist.
OLD DOMINION STAGES was formed in 1929 in Roanoke, Virginia, by Arthur M. Hill (owner of the Blue and Gray Transit Company, of Charleston, West Virginia), John Lash Gilmer (owner of Camel City Coach Company, of Winston-Salem, North Carolina), and Guy Huguelet (owner of Consolidated Coach Corporation, of Lexington, Kentucky, which, in 1936, was renamed Southeastern Greyhound Lines). The line ran between Knoxville, Tennessee, and Washington, D.C., via Bristol, Wytheville, Roanoke, Lexington, Staunton, and Winchester, Virginia. Service began in November 1929. In 1931 Arthur Hill and John Gilmer and some other investors, organized Atlantic Greyhound Lines. In 1932 Hill and Gilmer bought Huguelet’s one-third interest of Old Dominion Stages and merged the company into Atlantic Greyhound Lines.
OLD SOUTH COACH LINES was formed in 1929 to buy a 59-mile route from the Alabama Bus Company that ran between Birmingham and Tuscaloosa, Alabama. It was owned and operated by John Gilmer, who had founded the Camel City Coach Company of Winston-Salem, North Carolina. That company became part of the National Highway Transport Company of Charleston, West Virginia, which in turn was renamed the Atlantic Greyhound Lines in 1931.
OLD SPANISH TRAIL BUS LINE was incorporated in 1927, along with Lone Star Bus Line (running in Texas), as the Bowen Motor Coach Company. (See that entry for more information.)
OLEAN, BRADFORD & SALAMANCA RAILWAY COMPANY The following history is excerpted from “Power for the Last Century Roller Rink Had Roots in Electric Generation” By Ken Clark, Special to the Times Herald Olean, New York, June 2005. “The Olean Street Railway Company started in 1880 as a horse-draw line. It converted to electric cars in 1893, thus starting the era of the trolley in Olean. The company merged with a trolley company in Bradford as well as a third company which linked the two cities in 1906 to form the Western New York & Pennsylvania Traction Company. The term ‘traction’ was used in the era to refer to electric propulsion of rail vehicles within and between cities. It was derived from the ‘traction motors’ which hung under the rail cars and provided the power to move them. The same concept today is called ‘light rail.’ . . . This traction company grew to nearly 100 miles of electrified track and eventually linked Olean with Bradford and Salamanca. Its line were extended to Bolivar, Shinglehouse, Little Valley and Lewis Run, Pa. . . . In 1921 the traction company entered receivership (a form of bankruptcy) and was reorganized as the Olean, Bradford & Salamanca Railway Company. . . . The company shut trolley operation down completely in 1927 to be replaced by a bus line.” The bus line mentioned above was Olean, Bradford & Salamanca Bus Line, Inc.
OLEAN, BRADFORD & SALAMANCA BUS LINE, INC. succeeded the Olean, Bradford & Salamanca Railway and operated buses in Salamanca and Olean and between Olean and the New York State line via Limestone and between Bradford, Jamestown and Salamanca in the 1920s. In the January to June 1927 edition of the Electric Railway Journal, volume 69. The entry says: “At the beginning of the year only a few major properties remain under the protection of the courts, and these are rapidly clearing up their difficulties so that it is likely that several of them will emerge from receivership before the end of 1927. These are the Olean, Bradford & Salamanca Railway and the Utah-Idaho Central Railroad, the latter road having also emerged from receivership in 1926. Both of these are interurbans, as are all but a few of the other defaulting companies.” The Olean, Bradford & Salamanca Railway went out of business in 1927 and transferred its franchises and property (i.e., its bus line) to Alvin R. Bush of Philipsburg, Pennsylvania. (Bush owned Philipsburg Motor Bus Company and would also buy the Williamsport Transportation Company of Williamsport, Pennsylvania, where he served as president and general manager. He went on to serve as a U.S. Congressman from Pennsylvania from 1951-1959.)
OLIVER & RICKARD BUS LINE / OLIVER & RICKARD BUS COMPANY was operating in the mid 1950s in Russellville, Alabama. It was founded by D. M. and L. K. Oliver and A. Rickard, and ran 3 buses over 80 route miles. The company is not listed i the 1954 MTD, nor can I find any mention of the company on the Internet; moreover it is not mentioned in any of my references other than the 1956 MTD. As for the badge below belonging to Oliver & Rickard Bus Company, I’m not sure, but there is no other bus company that would fit these initials in any of the many references I’ve checked. The badge is made of chrome-plated metal with two threaded posts and measures 2½” x 2¼”.
OLSEN’S AUTO SERVICE was operating out of Portola, California, in the mid 1920s. It was owned and operated by M.M. Olsen.
OLYMPIC BUS LINES operated in the North Olympic Peninsula, Washington, and was purchased by Jack and Vicki Heckman in 1988. With partial grants from the FTA and Greyhound Lines, Inc., in 2008 they launched the Dungeness Line—emblazoned with its namesake crab. (The Dungeness Line was an independent agent for Greyhound, and made a connection to Greyhound’s downtown Seattle location.) The company’s buses made two trips daily between Port Angeles, Sequim, Port Townsend, Discovery Bay, and Kingston, to and from Edmonds, downtown Seattle, and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, and offered charter service. The company ceased operations on Sunday, July 1, 2018 and its routes were taken over by Greyhound Lines, Inc.
O. & C. B. STREET RAILWAY COMPANY / OMAHA & COUNCIL BLUFFS STREET RAILWAY COMPANY began operations in 1902. It ran until 1955, when street cars were discontinued. That year the Omaha Transit Company took over operations. The badge is die pressed, has two threaded posts and measures 2 ⅜”. (See Omaha Transit Company.)
O&CB / Omaha and Council Bluffs Street Railway Company / OMAHA STREET RAILWAY COMPANY / OMAHA & COUNCIL BLUFFS RAILWAY AND BRIDGE COMPANY A brief history of these companies is outlined on page 16 of the Sunday, March 7, 1909, edition of the Omaha Daily Bee:
At the beginning of 1889 traction conditions in Omaha were about as chaotic as they well could be. The Omaha Horse Railway Company was operating 25 miles of horse railway; the Omaha Cable Tramway Company about 6 miles of double track cable tramway, and the Omaha Motor Railway Company was constructing an extensive, double track, electric road covering 10 miles.
All three were militant. The Horse Railway declared it would install both electric and cable lines. The Cable Company announced its intention of building additional lines and making itself a more formidable competitor. Both concerns watched the construction of the electric lines with keen apprehension.
The excess expenditure in investment and operation, and the inconvenience and expense of double fares to the people in competing street railways Were soon apparent to all concerned. Competition between two lines was bad enough; among three it would be intolerable.
There were strong men in both the Horse and Cable roads and each group saw the necessity of Consolidation. February 12, 1889, the Legislature passed a law permitting the merger, which formally took place April 1, 1889. Both companies were incorporated in a new organization — The Omaha Street Railway Company — on about equal terms. . . . . Since 1898 Omaha has grown rapidly and the business of the street railway has steadily increased in proportion. Prior to 1903 some small extensions were made and an amount of track reconstruction accomplished, but in the year before the Omaha Street Railway Company found itself compelled to deal with a vital situation.
The growth of the city and the increase in passenger traffic had outgrown the facilities of the company. Its power equipment was worn out and expensive to operate; its cars were much too small and too few in number and most of the track required reconstruction with heavier rails and a firmer and more costly roadway, Prevailing demands were too much for the road without even considering the needs of the future.
The stock and bond issuing capacity of the company had been exhausted and the proposition had grown to a size too great to be handled readily by local capital exclusively. In addition the time had arrived which appeared opportune to unify the operation of the Omaha lines with the Omaha & Council Bluffs Railway and Bridge Company a property which had never been able to earn profits operated independently.
To meet the demands and finance the rehabilitation and consolidation of the two systems, a reorganization took place, December 22, 1902, which brought the Omaha and Council Bluffs Street Railway Company into existence. Under this reorganization a large amount of money was obtained from Eastern sources, the capitalization of the property was increased and the Council Bluffs lines and bridge taken over for operation on a 99-year lease.
The first Board of Directors of the new company were as follows; Frank Murphy, Guy C. Barton, G. W. Wattles, W. V. Morse and W. A. Smith, all of Omaha; C. R. Tyler of Council Bluffs; Albert Strauss of New York; Randall Morgan of Philadelphia and Hugh J. McGowan of Indianapolis.
(A very detailed history of these different companies can be found in Omaha Street Railway History – 1909 Newspaper Advertisements by William H Hodge Collected by Joe Thompson)
In Council Bluffs, Iowa, the city awarded a new franchise for bus operations on May 14, 1948, to the Council Bluffs Transit Co. In Omaha, Nebraska, in 1955, the Omaha and Council Bluffs Street Railway Company bought 35 new buses and discontinued streetcar service. That year it became the Omaha Transit Company. There are two badges shown below for the Omaha & Council Bluffs Street Railway Company. The first is die-pressed nickel-plated brass with two threaded posts and measures 2⅜” in length. The second badge is enameled brass, has a single threaded post and measures approx. 2½”. (NOTE: I’m not sure which is the older designed badge. My guess is that it the second badge.)
OMAHA TRANSIT COMPANY took over transit operations in Omaha, Nebraska, in 1955 from the Omaha & Council Bluffs Street Railway Company after the company discontinued streetcars. The company operated until 1971. Their badges are identical in design to those of the Omaha & Council Bluffs Street Railway. The badge has one threaded post and one pin post, measures approx. 2 ⅜” and was made by MEYER & WENTHE CHICAGO.
O’NEALS BUS SERVICE was a private bus charter company running out of Wilmington, Delaware, and operated by Joseph E. and Ethel B. O’Neal. It was running in the summer of 1952 when it advertised in a local paper. There are few more mentions of the company in the local papers, all having to do with transporting school children. In the 1970s and 1980s it operated from O’Neals Bus Terminal 4125 Concord Pike (Rt. 202). The badge is made of base metal and has two threaded posts.
ONONDAGA COACH COMPANY, INC. ONONDAGA COACH CORPORATION is an intercity company formed in New York in 1953. That was the year Onondaga Coach Company took over the line previously abandoned by the Cayuga Omnibus Corporation. In 1956 it was running 10 buses over 78 miles serving Auburn, Marcellus, Skaneateles, Split Rock and Syracuse, New York. M.H. Bank was president. The company expanded their runs in the 1960’s through a mutual agreement with The Greyhound Corporation. In the early 1990’s Onondaga Coach ceased line run operations completely and gave their line run rights to Centro, who still oversees those scheduled services. Onondaga Coach switched its focus completely to Charter and Tour services. In 2013 Onondaga Coach Corporation celebrated 60 years of service.
OPERATING AUTHORITY / OA is the MaBSTOA (Manhattan and Bronx Surface Surface Transit Operating Authority) of New York City. The badge is die pressed with a single threaded post. It is one of the more common transit badges out there. (Also see New York City Transit Authority and Manhattan and Bronx Surface Transit Operating Authority.)
ORANGE BUS LINE was running out of Oxford, North Carolina, in the mid 1920s. It ran to Durham, Henderson, N.C. and Chase City, Virginia.
ORANGE & BLACK LINES I’ve yet to find any info on this company. I’ve not found it listed in the many books and other publications in my collection. The badge shown below features a bus that is from the 1930s, which offers a hint as to the age of the company. The July-December 2011 issue of Motor Coach Age has an article on “Orange & Black Lines”, which I have not seen. I will note that the Orange & Black Bus Lines, which was founded in 1955 (see the below entry), is occasionally mentioned in articles as “Orange & Black Line”, such as in a 1975 Princeton Alumni Weekly article about George Robert Carr’s appointment as general manager of Maplewood Equipment Company of New Jersey. This company was New Jersey’s second largest bus company and controlled Warwick Lines, Intercity and Northeast Coach Lines and “Orange and Black Lines.” It is possible this company is the same as the below company, being bought by Theodore Richmond and then incorporated in 1955 as “Orange & Black Bus Lines.” (Note, that “Orange & Black Lines” is mentioned in a 1954 Bridgewater, New Jersey, article, which was before Orange & Black Bus Lines 1955 incorporation; it is mentioned in a 1960 Asbury Park, New Jersey, article and a 1971 Kingston, New York article.) The badge is die-pressed and has a single threaded post.
ORANGE & BLACK BUS LINES, INC. was incorporated on December 16, 1955, as a “foreign business corporation type” and registered in New York City. It ran buses in New Jersey to New York City. The company’s owner was Theodore J. Richmond, who owned a number of transit-related businesses, along with numerous financial companies. To get a glimpse of his his holdings, we can look at a court case dated February 23, 1968: “In 1932 Theodore J. Richmond formed a New Jersey corporation named Manufacturers Credit Corporation to conduct a finance business. Sometime prior to 1948 it became a holding company and by 1967 a complex of twenty-six subsidiary or affiliated companies had been incorporated or acquired. Mr. Richmond was president of each company and controlled its affairs. The stock of each was owned directly or indirectly by Mr. Richmond, his wife and two daughters.” Among Richmond’s transit holdings were the following bus companies: Inter-City Transportation Co., Inc. Franchised Inter-State Bus Line; Northeast Coast Lines Franchised Inter-State Bus Line; Orange & Black Bus Lines, Inc. Franchised Inter-State Bus Line; Warwick-Greenwood Lake & New York Transit, Inc. Franchised Inter-State Bus Line; Homestead Transit Co., Inc. Franchised Intra-State Bus Line; Inter-City Lines of New York, Inc. Franchised Intra-State Bus Line; Lake Region Coach Co., Inc. Franchised Intra-State Bus Line; New Jersey-New York Transit Co., Inc. Bus Leasing; Warwick Coaches, Inc. Bus Leasing. In 1956 the company was operating 75 buses over 15 route miles. It served Fairview, Cliffside, N. Bergen, Union City, W. New York, New Jersey, and New York City. Ike Englehardt was the president. The badge is a solid metal type with two threaded posts and features a bus from the 1950s.
ORCHARD GAP BUS LINE was operated by Tommie Nixon in the mid 1940s. It operated out of Mount Airy, North Carolina, over N. C. Highway 104 to North Carolina-Virginia State Line and returned over the same route.
OREGON, CALIFORNIA & NEVADA COMPANY was operating out of Reno, Nevada’s, Union Stage Depot in 1940.
OREGON MOTOR STAGES / OREGON MOTOR STAGES, INC. Apparently, there were two companies doing business in Oregon with this name, although they were separated by at least ten years and seem to have had no connection. The first, Oregon Motor Stages is found operating out of Salem, Oregon in the 1910s: The March 13, 1913, issue of Motor Age published this about the company: “Oregon Motor Stages Go All Winter: The territory in and around Redmond, in central Oregon, is ideal for motoring and at no time during the present winter have the roads been too bad for travel by machine. Motor stage lines have been in operation all winter between Bend and Burns and Redmond and Prinville.“
The second company was founded as a subsidiary of the Southern Pacific Railroad in 1927 to “replace remaining steam trains and the entire electric rail operation centered in Portland, Oregon.” (It is possible that the SP bought out the above company and made it into a subsidiary, however there is no info about such a transaction. That same year the SP had already founded a subsidiary named the Southern Pacific Motor Transportation Company—that company was later reorganized as Pacific Greyhound Lines.) Oregon Motor Stages was incorporated in 1931. At some point in the 1930s, the company’s ownership passed to R. W. Lemon, who served as president and general manager. In May 1942 the company acquired the Spokane-Portland & Seattle Transportation Company. By 1945 the company was “. . . the largest intrastate bus company operating in Oregon. Stages operated its motor busses as a public carrier pursuant to a permanent franchise under the rules and regulations of the Interstate Commerce Commission.” That same year owners L. D. Jones, T. D. Wilson and the family of R. W. Lemon, put up the company for sale. It was acquired by Ezra Royce, Barney Royce, Robert T. and Agnes C. Jacob, and L. R. Bentson, who was the uncle of Ezra and Barney Royce. (Bentson sold his shares in the company that same year.) In 1946 the company served Portland, Astoria, Seaside, Tillamook, Conalles, Newport, Salem and McMinville, Oregon, with 117 buses over 120 route miles. In addition to intercity service, the company operated city services in Salem from 1929 until 1929, and in Eugene from 1929 until 1949. In 1954 Pacific Greyhound Lines acquired the operating routes and equipment of Oregon Motor Stages, Inc. and the company ceased all operations.
OREGON TRAIL STAGES was operating in 1923 from LaGrande to Joseph, Oregon, over a 72-mile route. In 1927 it was operating a route between Pendleton, Oregon, and Boise, Idaho.
OREGON-WASHINGTON RAILROAD & NAVIGATION COMPANY, ran in 1927 in Pendleton, Ore.
ORIGINAL STAGE LINE, INC. began operations in 1913 as an auto-stage company serving Los Angeles to San Fernando, California. It operated through 1939 when it was bought out by the newly-formed Asbury Rapid Transit, which also purchased Pasadena-Ocean Park Stage Line at the same time. Asbury operated in the San Fernando Valley and was acquired by Metropolitan Coach Lines, a subsidiary of Pacific Electric Railway, in 1954.
ORIOLE LINES See INTERSTATE STAGES, INC.
ORIOLE MOTOR COACH LINES, INC. began in 1919 with a small 16 mile route from Bridgeville, Pennsylvania, to Dormont Junction where it connected to the Pittsburg Railways Company line. It was owned by John Collavo. In 1921 the company ran a route between Greentree and Downtown Pittsburgh. In April 1928 John Collavo sold controlling interest of the company to Joseph Supan, who incorporated the operation as The Oriole Motor Coach Lines, Inc. In time Oriole Motor Coach Lines became the largest independent bus company in the Southwest region of Allegheny County. On March 12, 1964 the corporation was taken over by Port Authority Transit (now the Port Authority of Allegheny County). At that time it was running 51 buses over 8 routes and carried some 3,260,000 riders per year.
ORLAND-ELK CREEK AUTO LINE was operating in the late 1920s out of Elk Creek, California. C. H. Ellis was the owner.
OROVILLE-ADELAIDE TRANSIT COMPANY was operating out of Oroville, California, in the mid 1920s and ran to Butte, Montana. F.S. Frye was the registered contact.
OROVILLE-LUMPKIN AUTO STAGE was operating out of Oroville, California, in the mid 1920s and ran to Butte, Montana. Morgan D. Levulett was the owner.
OROVILLE-MERRIMAC STAGE LINE was operating in the mid 1920s out of Oroville, California.
OROVILLE-WOODLEAF AUTO SERVICE was operating in the mid 1920s out of Oroville, California, and ran to Butte, Montana. The registered contacts were Merian and Merian.
ORRS SPRINGS STAGE was operating in the mid 1920s out of Orrs, California. A.P. Weger & Sons were the registered contacts.
OTEEN BUS COMPANY, INC. operated out of Asheville, North Carolina, in the 1940s. In 1942 the route was Asheville from Pack Square, over College Street into Highway No. 20 (now U. S. Highways Nos. 70 and 74); thence through Beaucatcher Tunnel down to the intersection of Highways Nos. 10 and 20 at Haw Creek School; thence follows U. S. Highway No. 74 (by Jack Weaver’s restaurant) via Municipal Golf Course and Recreation Park to property known as United States Public Health Hospital at Oteen.
OVERLAKE TRANSIT SYSTEM was founded in 1927 by Charles Claringbould, who operated buses between Roanoke and Beaux Arts, (King County) Washington. In 1936 the company extended service to Medina, Bellevue and Issaquah. In 1962 the company acquired Suburban Transit System and Lake Shore Lines. In 1964 Overlake Transit System consolidated operations into Metropolitan Transit Corporation. In 1965 the company acquired The Greyhound Corporation’s suburban service to Tacoma, Everett, Auburn and Kent and merges these into Metropolitan Transit Corporation. Facing low ridership and possible bankruptcy, in 1973 the company sold out to Seattle’s Metro Transit for $1.2 million.
OWENS BUS LINE COMPANY was operating in 1928 in Tennessee. No further info found.
OWENSBORO RAPID TRANSIT COMPANY, INC. / OWENSBORO CITY BUS LINES, INC. / OWENSBORO CITY TRANSIT See the main menu tabs at the top of this page and select Owensboro, Ky. Transit Hist.
OWENSBORO CITY RAILROAD COMPANY, INC. See the main menu tabs at the top of this page and select Owensboro, Ky. Transit Hist.
OWOSSO-FLINT BUS LINES, INC. / INDIAN TRAIL LINE / INDIAN TRAILS BUS LINES, INC. This company was founded in Owosso, Michigan, in 1910 by Wayne E. Taylor and his wife, Cora Phillips Taylor. Originally known as the Phillips-Taylor Livery Service, it specialized in moving passengers and freight from the local Durand Union Train Depot to points around Shiawassee County. The couple started out with a Model T Ford taxicab, which they ran night and day. In 1916, when the demand arose for a bus service from Owosso to Flint, the Taylors bought an old bus and named their business the Owosso-Flint Bus Lines. Information from the company’s website recalls “By the time World War I began, they were serving passengers all the way from Saginaw and Bay City to Flint and Detroit. During the war years, Wayne Taylor served in the Army Signal Corp and saw combat in France, while Cora ran the growing bus line, a little heard of practice in those days. Another first for the company saw Cora ‘man’ the wheel of those early highway cruisers, becoming the first woman in Michigan to be issued a chauffeur’s license. Today, in recognition of her many accomplishments, Cora’s portrait hangs in the Michigan Department of Transportation’s Hall of Honor.“
By 1929 the company had expanded, as this August 21, 1929, edition of the Battle Creek Enquirer from Battle Creek, Michigan shows: “A new bus schedule for Bellevue has taken place recently. A new company with headquarters in Owosso is now operating and buses run oftener than formerly. The company is known as the Owosso-Flint Bus Lines, Inc., and through Bellevue is running nine east bound buses and 10 west bound buses. The line runs from Battle Creek to Flint and is called the Indian Trails route. The Flint-Owosso -Lansing-Battle Creek division which runs through Bellevue, is the biggest one operated by the company.” Historic Views of Owosso and Corunna Michigan gives additional history: “By the early 1930’s The Owosso-Flint Bus Line had become known as the Indian Trail Route in reference to its primary route of travel along US-12, which was locally known as the ‘Old Indian Trail’. A student of Michigan history, Cora Taylor researched some 65 native Indian Chiefs and began the tradition of ‘christening’ each coach in honor of a native Michigan Chief. The tradition continues to this day, with each Indian Trails coach proudly bearing the name of one of the founders of the Indian trail.” (For more information and photos of this company, see HISTORIC VIEWS of OWOSSO and CORUNNA MICHIGAN) About 1935 the company incorporated as Indian Trails Bus Lines—with the motto “Thru The Heart of Michigan”. However, it continued to operate under both the Indian Trails name, and Owosso-Flint Bus Lines, with Wayne Taylor as president and general manager of both companies. (The company also used the name “Indian Trail Lines”, which is displayed on its badges.)
By 1946 the company was interstate, running between Chicago, Illinois and Flint, Michigan, with intrastate routes in Battle Creek, Flint, Saginaw, Lansing and Ionia. It ran 50 buses over 476 route miles. In the 1952 edition of the MTD, the Owosso-Flint Bus Lines is not listed, whereas Indian Trails Bus Lines is, with Wayne E. Taylor as president and general manager. Wayne Taylor died in June 1954 as a result of an automobile accident near Grand Rapids. Indian Trails Bus Lines is still operating today as a charter and tour bus company with 62 coaches and 175 employees. I’ve no info on the first badge shown below. It is well made, likely of nickel-plated brass, with the face of the Indian plated brass. The later badge was made by FIFTH AVENUE UNIFORM COMPANY 19 SO. WELLS CHICAGO, has a single threaded posts and measures about 2½” in length. I’ve yet to see any badges bearing the name “Owosso-Flint Bus Lines.”
OZARK TRAILS, INC. / OZARK TRAILWAYS A. W. Shepherd Bus Lines was formed April 29, 1938 in Springfield, Missouri by A. W. Shepard, and ran between Springfield, Missouri, and Fayetteville, Arkansas, as well as Shreveport, Louisiana, Durant and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and Dallas, Texas. The history of the company is a bit tangled, but piecing together parts from various editions of MTD and Russell’s, at some point the company joined the National Trailways Bus System and operated until 1946 as A. W. Shepherd Trailways. That year Shepherd changed the name to Ozark Trailways, and incorporated A. W. Shepherd Bus Lines as Ozark Trails, Inc. on March 6, 1946, in Boonville, Missouri. According to the 1953 Russell’s Guide, in March 1950 Shepherd sold Ozark Trails, Inc. / Ozark Trailways to Des Moines Springfield & Southern Stages of Springfield, Missouri; about this time he founded Mo-Ark Trails, which ran from Springfield, Missouri to Berryville, Arkansas. The company continued operating under the name Ozark Trails, Inc., and by 1956 was operating out of Springfield, Missouri, serving Springfield, Lebanon, Ft. Leonard Wood, Missouri, Ft. Smith and Little Rock, Arkansas. The company was legally dissolved on March 6, 1996.
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