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BADGES ISSUED BY TRANSIT COMPANIES BEGINNING WITH THE LETTER “Q”

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QUAKER CITY BUS COMPANY / QUAKER CITY BUS LINES, INC. / QUAKER CITY LINES / QUAKER CITY MOTOR COACH LINES, INC. At this stage of my research, it would seem that this company started as Quaker City Motor Coach Lines, Inc., in Clementon, New Jersey, in the 1920s. In 1927 Quaker City Lines, Inc., was formed as an interstate carrier with headquarters in Camden, New Jersey. Since Quaker City Lines was advertised by Quaker City Motor Coach Lines, Inc., in its early years, it would seem that the former company was operated as a subsidiary of the latter. In March 1929 Quaker City Lines was owned by T. T. Harris and operated 8 buses between Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Atlantic City, New Jersey. In November 1930 the Quaker City Lines, Inc., ran this advertisement:
“Commencing Monday. Nov. 17th. Direct Without Change to PHILADELPHIA Via Easton. Phillipsburg and Lambertville, N. J. Interstate Passengers from and to Intermediate Points. Brand new 88-passenger six cylinder motor coaches of the latest improved type. Equipped with safety glass throughout, balloon tires, inside baggage racks, and individual sleeper type reclining chairs. The essence of safe, economical, comfortable transportation.”

In July 1935 the company, owned by T. T. Harris, was advertised as the Quaker City Bus Lines, Inc., and ran between Philadelphia, Camden and New York. In a July 17, 1936, newspaper article the company was mentioned as both Quaker City Lines and Quaker City Bus Company, with C. A. Langner mentioned as president. The schedule ran between Philadelphia and New York and Atlantic City, New Jersey. In October 1942 the Interstate Commerce Commission allowed the Quaker City Bus Company to purchase the operating rights of the Blackhawk Line, Inc., which operated a schedule between New York City and Boston, Massachusetts. By 1946 the company was headquartered in Camden, New Jersey. In 1956 the company was again headquartered in Philadelphia and was running 36 buses over 195 route miles. In 1957-1958 the company began coordinating its service with Safeway Trails, Inc., a member of the National Trailways Bus System. In September 1957 Safeway Trails acquired the Quaker City Bus Lines. The badge shown below is made of die-pressed nickel-plated brass with a pin back.

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Photos courtesy of eBay member reecycle.

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QUAKER CITY BUS LINES, INC. This company is not to be confused with the Quaker City Bus Company, which operated an interstate bus service between New York City and Boston, Massachusetts. Quaker City Bus Lines, Inc. was incorporated in East Liverpool, Ohio, on October 1, 1947, and was headquartered in Salem, Ohio. In 1954 the company ran 6 buses over 20 route miles between Lisbon, Columbiana, Warren and Salem, Ohio. It was founded and managed by Frank S. Ullom, with Ellen H. Ullom as secretary and treasurer. By 1956 it was running 4 buses over 12 route miles between Salem and Lison. In 1973, the company president was John Young, who also operated Ohio Valley Charter Service, which ran a route between Lisbon, Columbiana, Warren and Salem, Ohio, with one 38-passenger bus. John Young also ran Ohio Valley Charter Service from the same location, serving East Liverpool, Lisbon, Salem and Youngstown with 13 buses and 8 employees.

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QUAKER STAGES BUS COMPANY, INC. / QUAKER STAGES COMPANY / QUAKER STAGES, INC. was operating in the 1920s-1930s between Boston, Massachusetts, and Bangor, Maine via Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and Portland and Augusta, both in Maine, and between Portland and Belfast, 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 1939 New England Greyhound acquired Old Colony Coach Lines, Inc. and it too ceased operations.

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QUEEN CITY COACH COMPANY, INC. / QUEEN CITY TRAILWAYS According to several family members, and repeated on a few different websites, this company was founded in 1928 by L. A. Love, (Lonnie Adam Love, Sr. November 1, 1893–March 11, 1969), who was a well known figure in the nation’s early transportation industry. However, Greyhound historian Dr. D.B. “Doc” Rushing credits another early transit pioneer named John Gilmer, who founded Camel City Coach Company. Rushing writes: “In 1928 Gilmer provided much of the funds used in a refinancing and reorganizing of the Eastern Carolina Coach Company (running between Charlotte and Wilmington, both in North Carolina), which, based in Charlotte, became renamed as the Queen City Coach Company. Sometime about 1939-43 the firm joined the National Trailways association (thus becoming known also as the Queen City Trailways), and in 1966 it became bought by the Transcontinental Bus System (the Continental Trailways).” Gilmer ended his involvement with Queen City Coach Company in 1933.

The Gastonia Daily Gazette for February 4, 1929, refers to L. A. Love as the operating executive of Queen City Coach Company—a notice that easily place Love in the 1928 time frame mentioned by Doc Rushing. Obviously the answer is that Doc Rushing failed to mention L. A. Love’s name in his brief outline and that John Gilmer helped arrange the funding for Love to buy and reorganize Eastern Carolina Coach Company. That Love was in fact controlling Queen City Coach, is seen in a 1932 a Charlotte city directory advertisement: “TRAVEL BY MOTOR COACH OVER QUEEN CITY LINES All Paved Roads — Courteous and Dependable Drivers Luxurious Coaches Five Daily Schedules Between Charlotte and Atlanta Daily Schedules from Charlotte to Monroe, Lumberton, Fayetteville, Wilmington, Gastonia, Chimney Rock, Asheville, Morganton, Marion. For Further Information Call Agent Your City or QUEEN CITY COACH COMPANY, INC. L. A. LOVE, General Manager J. H. QUATTLEBAUM, Traffic Mgr. 417 WEST FIFTH STREET PHONE 5813 CHARLOTTE, N. C.

In 1939 the company joined National Trailways as Queen City Trailways, although the company operated buses under both names. At some point, Joel Wesley Wright and his son, Wayne E. Wright, who owned Smoky Mountain Stages, Inc. of Asheville, North Carolina, bought a part ownership of Queen City Coach Company. During World War II, Queen City Trailways served Morris Field, the air base that the army leased from Charlotte Municipal Airport, and Fort Bragg on the edge of Fayetteville. In 1946 the company was operating 380 buses over 3345 route miles. (The day-to-operations were controlled by the Wrights.) The company’s history after this time is picked up by Trailways historian Jon Hobijn, who writes: “In 1964, [M. E.] Moore reached agreement to purchase the bulk of the Trailways carriers operating on the east coast, however final approval from the ICC and DOJ wouldn’t come until 1966. The carriers involved were Trailways of New England, Safeway Trails, Virginia Stage Lines and its 33% share of Tennessee Trailways, Queen City Coach Co. and its share of Smoky Mountain Stages, Carolina Scenic Stages, Coastal Stages Corp., Gray Line of Charleston, Fort Bragg Coach Co., Georgia-Florida Trailways, and Southeastern Motor Lines. The majority of the transaction involved trading Transcontinental stock to the principals of the various companies, chiefly, Claude Jessup, Marvin Walsh, and the Love family. Two years after the take over on the east coast, M. E. Moore reached agreement with Holiday Inns of America in Memphis to buy Transcontinental Bus System.” The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.

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QUEEN CITY COACH LINES was formed in the 1920s in Beatrice, Nebraska, by E.J. Dalchant. The 1927 Russell’s Guide shows the company running four routes from Lincoln to Beatrice, Beatrice to Fairbury, Beatrice to Marysville, Kansas, and Beatrice to Pawnee City. In July 1929 the Union Pacfic Railroad bought out Interstate Transit Lines; also that month the UP bought out Queen City Coach Lines, as noted in the July 1929 issue of Railway Age: “The Union Pacific has purchased and began the operation on July 1 of the motor coach services of the Interstate Transit Lines, the Cornhusker Stage Lines and the Queen City Coach Lines. These three lines now operate a total of 80 motor coaches in Union Pacific territory, particularly in Nebraska. The Interstate Transit Lines have services extending from Omaha, Neb., to Sioux City, la., Lincoln, Neb., to Fremont and Wahoo, Kansas City, Mo., and Fairmont, Minn., from Lincoln to” Fremont, Grand Island and Nebraska City, and from Fremont to Norfolk, Neb., and Dodge. The Cornhusker Lines operate from Lincoln, Hastings and Fremont to Nebraska points, while the Queen City Lines operate from Beatrice, Neb., to other Nebraska points. The present organization of each of the lines will be retained and Russell J. Walsh, Oliver W. Townsend and E. J. Delchant, formerly owners respectively of the Interstate, the Cornhusker and the Queen City Lines, will each be retained as president and general manager.” I’ve yet to discover the ultimate fate of this company. (There is a newspaper mention of a Queen City Coach Lines bus being in a head-on collision in Mattoon, Illinois, in October 1942. I’m not sure it’s the same company.) This company is not to be confused with Queen City Coach Company, which operated out of Charlotte, North Carolina, and became Queen City Trailways.

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QUEEN CITY METRO Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority, abbreviated SORTA, is the public transport agency serving Cincinnati and its Ohio suburbs. The agency replaced the Cincinnati Transit Commission, which operated buses from 1952 to 1973, and which was known as Queen City Metro. The badge measures 1½” x 2½”, has a single threaded post, and was made by Bastian Bros. Co. Rochester, NY.

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QUEENS AUTO TRACTION CORPORATION began operations in the borough of Queens, New York City. It was operating in the mid-late 1920s. Its routes were taken over by Green Bus Lines.

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QUEENS BUS LINES, INC. See NEVIN BUS LINES, INC. for information on this company.


QUEENS-NASSAU TRANSIT LINES, INC. was established on February 16, 1926, the New York & Queens County Railway to operate a bus line in Queens, New York. On January 26, 1937, a franchise agreement between Queens-Nassau Transit Lines, Inc. and the City of New York created the Queens Surface Corporation. (See QUEENS SURFACE CORPORATION for more information.)

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QUEENS SURFACE CORPORATION / QUEENS TRANSIT CORPORATION From Wikipedia: The New York & Queens County Railway (NY&QC) became the largest trolley line in Queens in 1896, through the consolidating of four previous streetcar operators: Flushing & College Point Electric Railway, Long Island City & Newtown Railway, Newtown Railway, and the original Steinway Railway Company. It served Long Island City, Woodside, Astoria, North Beach, College Point, Jamaica, and even the Queensboro Bridge. Between 1903 and 1922, the NY&QC became an affiliate of the Interborough Rapid Transit Company. On February 19, 1926, NY&QC established a bus division called the Queens-Nassau Transit Lines, Inc. Queens-Nassau buses replaced all NY&QC trolleys by 1937. Queens-Nassau was renamed Queens Transit Corporation in 1957, and Steinway Omnibus became Steinway Transit in 1959. The two companies merged again in 1986 to form the Queens/Steinway Transit Corporation. In 1988 the Linden Bus Company acquired the routes and changed its name to Queens Surface CorporationOn February 27, 2005, the MTA Bus Company took over the operations of the Queens Surface routes, part of the city’s takeover of all the remaining privately operated bus routes. (For more information see the Steinway Transit Corp.) The first badge has a single threaded post, is die pressed and measures 2½” x 2″. The second badge is die-pressed nickel and has pin & clasp.

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Photo used by permission of eBay member tidal_moon_treasures.
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Photos used by permission of eBay member vintagenewsstand.

QUINCY La PORTE STAGE LINE was operating in the late 1920s out of La Porte, California. C. H. O’Rourke was the registered contact.

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QUINCY-MEADOW VALLEY AUTO STAGE was operating out of Quincy, California, in the mid 1920s. H.W. Egbert was the registered contact.

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QUINN’S BUS LINES served Suffolk County, New York. It was running in the 1950s and was merged with Coram Bus Service in 1969. It served the area between Port Jefferson and Wading River.

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