The National Trailways Bus System was founded February 5, 1936, by Burlington Transportation Company, Santa Fe Trails Transportation Company, Missouri Pacific Stages, Safeway Lines, Inc., and Frank Martz Coach Company. It was later renamed the Trailways Transportation System and numbered nearly 100 separate companies. It is uncertain how many of those companies issued their own badges.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “A”
(PLEASE NOTE: THE BADGES AND INFORMATION ON THIS SITE ARE FOR REFERENCE USE ONLY. WE DO NOT BUY, SELL OR TRADE TRANSIT BADGES! All the badges on this site are from personal collections and the photos and/or artwork are used by permission of the owners, or are in the public domain. The purpose of this page is to share information about collecting transit badges. We gratefully welcome additional information, new badge entries and photos. Please don’t hesitate to contact us.)
A & R TRAILWAYS See Allentown & Reading Trailways.
ADIRONDACK TRAILWAYS / ADIRONDACK TRANSIT LINES, INC. Adirondack Transit Lines, Inc. was running in the early 1930s as an intercity company in New York. In 1936 the company joined the National Trailways System as Adirondack Trailways and, in 1939, was running the following routes: New York-Kingston-Albany-Saratoga Springs-Glen Falls-Lake George-Schroon Lake-Lake Placid-Saranac Lake. In recent times it operated between New York-Kingston-Albany-Glens Falls-Montreal, Babylon-Kingston, Newburgh-Kingston, Kingston-Saugerties-Oneonta, Binghamton-Oneonta-Albany, Albany-Utica-Syracuse, Albany-Gloversville, Glens Falls-Warrensburg-Massena, and Syracuse-Canton-Massena. Adirondack Trailways is still in operation. (For more information also see Adirondack Transit Lines, Inc. and TRAILWAYS OF NEW YORK. )
AIRLINE MOTOR TRAILWAYS / AIRLINE MOTOR COACHES COMPANY, INC. of Nacogdoches, Texas, was founded in 1924 by a former school teacher named C.D. Thomas. Beginning with a Model “T” running between Corrigan and Lufkin, Thomas steadily expanded the company through a series of mergers and acquisitions with other local operators. By the 1930s the company operated throughout East Texas. “One of the selling points for bus companies from the very beginning was that they offered service to places not covered by the passenger rail network. During [World War II], this fact, combined with the rationing of raw materials like oil and rubber, made busses the only viable means of public transportation for much of the region. In 1945, the [the company] employed over 150 people and operated busses from Houston, Texas to Shreveport, Louisiana.” In January 1942 the company bought Carroll’s Bus Line, owned by A. J. Carroll. In the 1940s the company joined Trailways as Airline Motor Trailways. In 1946 the company was sold to Dixie Sunshine Trailways. In 1948 Dixie Sunshine Trailways was sold to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways.
ALLENTOWN & READING TRAILWAYS / A. & R. TRAILWAYS / ALLENTOWN & READING TRANSIT COMPANY There’s not much info on this company. Allentown & Reading Transit Company began operations on January 3, 1929, in Reading, Pennsylvania. By 1945 the company was headquartered in Reading, Pennsylvania and served Allentown, Reading, Bethlehem, Quakerstown, Foglesville, Fleetwood and Kutztown. Also in 1945, the company joined National Trailways as Allentown & Reading Trailways, and according to one researcher lasted in that organization until 1947. I found this notice in a September 6, 1945, newspaper: “A & R Trailways Adds 2 New Buses: Few bus companies can equal the record of the Allentown & Reading Trailways Company, Norman P. Fernon, Jr., president, which during the past eight months has added five new buses, making the grand total 24. The two latest models, valued at $14,000 each, arrived recently, and one of them was used on the first charter trip of the season, September second, to Atlantic City. The new buses, all aluminum, with a capacity of 37, are post-war equipment.” In 1954, the company was headquartered in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and ran 5 buses over 39 route miles. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
Photos used by permission of eBay member walkintall64058.
AMERICAN TRAILWAYS / ALL AMERICAN BUS LINES / AMERICAN BUS LINES The history of the company starts with All American Bus Lines, which was incorporated in September of 1935 in Delaware, although the company’s operations were located at 506 S. Wabash Ave., Chicago, Illinois. Organized by Charles F. Wren (1885-1944), All American Bus Lines was formed as a result of his Columbia Pacific Nite Coach going bankrupt in 1935. Like CPNC, All American Bus Lines ran coast-to-coast, and is noted because it was the first coast-to-coast bus line owned by a single operator. Wren died in 1944; in 1946 the company was reorganized and renamed American Buslines / American Bus Lines. Shortly after, it joined the Trailways System, where it was known as American Trailways. In 1954 the company was sold to Transcontinental Bus System/Continental Trailways. (See also Burlington Trailways.) The earlier badge is made of brass and measures: 2¾” x 2⅝”; it is found with one and also two threaded posts. The second badge has two threaded posts.
APACHE TRAILWAYS There’s almost zilch on this company. It was located in Hobbs, New Mexico, and ran in 1948, which one may deduce from several newspaper notices in the local paper—all from 1948. The last notice was in December 1948. The schedule was for Lovington, Artesia, Socorro and Albuquerque, New Mexico.
ARKANSAS TRAILWAYS / ARKANSAS MOTOR COACHES, LIMITED, INC. There is a bit of conflict about the origins of this company. For the background, please go to the entry for Arkansas Motor Coaches, Ltd., Inc. By the 1950s the company was a member of the National Trailways Bus System; in 1953 Russell’s National Motor Coach Guide shows Arkansas Trailways serving Memphis, Brinkley, Little Rock, Hot Springs and Texarkana. Both Arkansas Motor Coaches and Arkansas Trailways are listed in the 1954 and 1956 MTD. According to one source, Arkansas Trailways sold out to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways in 1956. In 1956 the company was operating 31 buses over 464 route miles.
ARROW TRAILWAYS / ARROW LINE TRAILWAYS One website says the R. & H. Bus Company was a Trailways member from 1959-1963 and ran as Arrow Trailways. The only R. & H. Bus Company I find mentioned on the Net served Hartford, Bristol, Waterbury and Danbury, Connecticut, in 1960, which ties into Jon Hobijn’s discussion about Trailways of New England (TNE): “1961 also saw the start of a short lived pool service with The Arrow Line Trailways (R&H Bus Co.) Between Boston and New York City. In the pool, TNE brought the bus from Boston to Hartford and then Arrow took it on their route through Danbury to New York City. Arrow discontinued the service due to the fact that they expected more overhead traffic from TNE and then later sold out to Super Service, with the route finally passing to Bonanza Bus Lines.” As an aside, R. & H. Bus Company is not mentioned in any MTD from the 1940s nor the 1950s.
ARROW TRAILWAYS OF TEXAS According to their website they have been in business since 1936, which is the year the National Trailways Bus System was founded. Since the company isn’t a founding member of Trailways, I’m not sure how they make the claim. Later, the company website claims to have “80 Years of experience”, which takes them back to the 1930s. My guess is that the company has some connection to a founding member of Trailways, although it’s odd that the website doesn’t take a few lines to explain this. Currently “Arrow Trailways provides intercity bus service in Central Texas Texas primarily between Killeen and surrounding cities.”
ATLANTIC TRAILWAYS / ATLANTIC STAGES Atlantic Stages was founded in the 1930’s by J. A. Booker in Savannah, Georgia. The company operated interstate, which included Georgia, Alabama and Florida. In 1943 the company bought out Hart Brothers Bus Line, which operated in Georgia and Alabama. The joined National Trailways in 1945. In the mid-1950s the company was sold to Frank Wilkinson, who owned Southern Stages / Southern Trailways, which operated out of Macon, Georgia. In 1970 Wilkinson sold both Southern Trailways and Atlantic Trailways to Transcontinental Bus System of Dallas, Texas. These two companies were combined and became known as Continental Atlantic Lines, Inc. In 1974, Transcontinental purchased Tamiami Trailways and in 1977, Continental Atlantic Lines was folded into Tamiami. The badge measures about 2″ and has a single threaded post.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “B”
B. & W. TRAILWAYS / BOSTON & WORCESTER STREET RAILWAY / BOSTON & WORCESTER & NEW YORK STREET RAILWAY / B & W LINES / THE B + W LINES The Boston & Worcester Street Railway was founded in 1903 as a subsidiary of Boston & Worcester Electric Companies, headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, and ran between Boston and Worcester, Massachusetts. In 1924 William M. Butler was the president. In 1927 the company was reorganized as the Boston & Worcester & New York Street Railway. The company began supplementing their service with buses in 1925. Buses replaced streetcars in Framington in 1925. Buses replaced streetcars in Worcester in 1945. The company’s buses were named The B & W Lines / B + W Lines. In 1956 the company ran 55 buses over 130 route miles. In 1963 the company was succeeded by the Boston-Worcester Corporation. According to CHICAGO TRANSIT & RAILFAN the company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1936, the same year Trailways was founded, and ran for one year. I have found no information on this. There are two known badges. The first badge is plated metal and measures 1 ⅞” x 1 ¾”. The second badge is metal with two threaded posts, and has red enamel on the bottom half of the badge.
BAY LINE TRAILWAYS / ST. ANDREWS BAY TRANSPORTATION This company’s history begins with the Atlanta & St. Andrews Bay Railway, or the Bay Line, as it was known locally, when it was incorporated on February 14, 1906, by A. B. Steele. The line ran between Dothan, Alabama and Panama City, Florida. By 1927 the railroad had 82 miles of track and eight miles of branch lines and sidings; by that time Minor C. Keith owned the railroad. That same year Harry P. Edwards was hired as vice president and general manager. Prior to his hiring, Edwards had experimented with converting buses to rail vehicles, i.e., replacing rubber tires with steel flanged wheels to run on rails. (Edwards obtained patents for this innovation and founded Edwards Railway Motor Company in Sanford, North Carolina. In 1922 the company began manufacturing steel bodied rail cars using internal combustion engines.) The Bay Line ran these type buses on their rails in November 1929. They measured 54-57 feet long and carried about 30 passengers, plus 25 feet allocated for baggage, and were dubbed as “doodlebugs” by the company’s passengers. “To improve service, the A&SAB also provided ‘free taxi service at Dothan and Panama City to take passengers to and from their trains and their hotels and home.’” In 1934 Edwards formed the St. Andrews Bay Transportation Company as a subsidiary of the Atlanta & St. Andrews Bay Railway, which ran buses and a truck line from Panama City to Marianna to Pensacola and through to Dothan. In 1931 the Atlanta & St. Andrews Bay Railway was sold to the St. Andrews Bay Holding Company, a subsidiary of the International Paper Company. Beginning in April 1941 the bus line became part of the National Trailways Bus System as Bay Line Trailways. (NOTE: there are two conflicting dates on this event: one is that the company joined Trailways in 1939, and the other in 1941.) In 1944 Georgia Stages, Inc. bought out St. Andrews Bay Transportation Company. (St. Andrews Bay Transportation Company had just bought out Lee’s Coach Line, which ran in Florida from Tallahassee to Panama City.) Jon Hobijn writes: “In 1946, Georgia Stages President Fred Mills changed the company name to Modern Coach Corporation, and from then on the company was known as Modern Trailways. . . . Modern Coach Corp. was acquired by Tamiami Trail Tours in 1956, extending Tamiami’s system main line to 825 miles stretching from Atlanta to Miami.”
BLUE RIDGE TRAILWAYS / BLUE RIDGE LINES, LTD. Jon Hobijn founded this company in November 1978 as a member of Trailways. The company began operating the Asheville, North Carolina to Bristol, Virginia via Johnson City, Tennessee route on June 1, 1979. In June 1987, Greyhound Lines, Inc. acquired Trailways, Inc. (formerly Continental Trailways), the largest member of the rival National Trailways Bus System, and effectively consolidated both companies into a national bus service. Jon Hobijn writes: “In 1996, I was called by a senior Greyhound official from Dallas and informed that they had decided that we ‘. . . didn’t add anything to the Greyhound System and were really carrying passengers who should be riding Greyhound buses.’ After 18 years of struggling and building, I watched another man destroy what we’d built and was powerless to do anything to stop it.” The badge is metal with a gold-tone finish, measures 2½” x 1¾”, and has a single threaded post.
BLUE VALLEY TRAILWAYS See Empire State Trailways.
BLUE WAY TRAILWAYS, INC. / BLUE WAY TRANSIT LINES, INC. / BLUE WAY LINES, INC. / TRAILWAYS OF NEW ENGLAND Blue Way Transit Lines, Inc. (also doing business as Blue Way Lines, Inc. and Blue Way Operators, Inc.) operated out of Springfield, Massachusetts. Being registered as a business on June 15, 1932, it operated between New York and Boston and between New York and various central Connecticut and Massachusetts points. Vito Rizzuto was the company president. (Note: CHICAGO TRANSIT & RAILFAN gives the company’s incorporation year as 1922; the above date came from the State of Massachusetts.) The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1936 as Blue Way Trailways. On November 22, 1939, the company merged Blue Way Trailways, Inc. and Blue Way Transit Lines, Inc. It was renamed in 1941 as Trailways of New England. In 1957 it was sold to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways. In 1985 Peter Pan Bus Lines bought Trailways of New England and absorbed its routes into its own system. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
BORDELON TRAILWAYS / BORDELON LINES, INC. was headquartered at 1314 Tulane Avenue in New Orleans, Louisiana. Bordelon’s main route ran west to Baton Rouge and Alexandria. In 1945 the company was merged with Interurban Transportation Co. / Interurban Trailways, based in Alexandria, and Tri-State Transit Co. / Tri-State Trailways, based in Shreveport, Louisiana. The new firm was named Southern Bus Lines, using the brand name of Southern Trailways and was headed by Morgan W. Walker: “In 1949 the Transcontinental Bus System (using the brand name, trade name, or service name of the Continental Trailways) bought the relatively new (recently consolidated) Southern Bus Lines (the Southern Trailways) and renamed it as the Continental Southern Lines.” (Info from Dr. D. B. “Doc” Rushing’s Bluehounds and Redhounds the History of Greyhound and Trailways.)
BOSTON & MAINE TRANSPORTATION COMPANY, INC. / B. & M, TRANS. CO. The Boston and Maine Railroad was chartered in New Hampshire on June 27, 1835, “with intentions of linking its namesake city with Portland, Maine. . . Nearly two years later it merged with the Maine, New Hampshire & Massachusetts and Boston & Portland on January 1, 1842, while retaining the Boston & Maine name.” (American-Rails.com) Like many railroads, the B. & M. began operating its own bus line as a subsidiary to compensate for loss of passenger revenue. The Boston & Maine Transportation Company was incorporated on November 15, 1924, in Boston, Massachusetts. By 1933 the company was headquartered in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and operated almost 2½ million miles with 83 coaches. The company served Portsmouth City Lines, York Beach, Boston-Portland, Concord-Newport, Boston-Concord, Franklin-Bristol, Wakefield-Lynnfield, Dover-Durham, Exeter-Hamton, Nashua-Wilton, Northhampton-Battleboro, Lowell-Worcester, Boston-Keene, Concord City Lines, Gardner-Greenfield, Winchendon-Peterboro, Troy-Bennington and Boston-Albany. In 1946 the company was operating out of Boston and ran 122 buses. According to one source, the company joined National Trailways Bus System in 1952 and remained until 1957 when it was sold to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways. The Boston & Maine Transportation Company, Inc. was dissolved on January 10, 1979.
BOWEN TRAILWAYS / BOWEN MOTOR COACH COMPANY had its beginnings in 1927 as Lone Star Bus Line (running in Texas) and Old Spanish Trail Bus Line (operating in New Mexico). These companies were founded by two brothers, one of whom was Texas bus pioneer R. C.Bowen. (R. C. Bowen and Guy J. Shields organized state bus operators into the Texas Bus Owners Association on March 24, 1928.) Their enterprises were consolidated in 1937 into Bowen Motor Coach Company, which was based in Ft. Worth, Texas. Over the coming years the company became one of the two largest passenger carriers in Texas, the other being Southwestern Greyhound Lines. Bowen Motor Coaches joined National Trailways in 1938 as Bowen Trailways. In 1943 Bowen Motor Coaches was sold to Maurice E. Moore, who was the president of Arkansas Motor Coaches, Ltd., Inc. Trailways historian, Jon Hobijn, writes: “In 1943 the Bowen Brothers had a unique problem. They were the sole owners of Bowen Motor Coaches, a cash rich company to the tune of $40 million dollars. The brothers had never taken big salaries and they wanted to take this cash out of their company. Trouble was, Bowen Motor Coaches was a corporation and, in the eyes of the law, a legal entity, In short, their accountant informed them that they were liable for taxes exceeding 30% of the $40 million. The only solution, he told them, was to sell the company. Thus, in 1943, Maurice E. Moore from Arkansas Motor Coaches purchased Bowen Motor Coaches for the sum of $42 million dollars cash. Two million from Moore and the other $40 million, cash from Bowen Motor Coaches, the Brother’s own money.” Jack Rhodes, in his article “Busing Industry” (written for the Texas State Historical Association), writes: “After the end of the war, M. E. Moore founded the Continental Bus System, with corporate headquarters in Dallas, on December 12, 1945. In 1946 all of the franchises of pioneer operator R. C. Bowen were consolidated into Lone Star Coaches and then merged into the new Continental Bus system. On December 9, 1947, all of the Moore and Bowen interests formed the nucleus of the new Transcontinental Bus System (Continental Trailways), with national operations headquartered in Dallas.” And so, in 1945 Bowen Motor Coaches and Bowen Trailways were consolidated (along with Tri-State Transit Co.) into Continental Bus System, becoming the first company to operate under name Continental Trailways. (See Arkansas Motor Coaches, Ltd., Inc. for a detailed examination of M. E. Moore’s connection to Arkansas Motor Coaches.)
BROOKS TRAILWAYS BUS LINE / BROOKS BUS LINE, INC. Brooks Bus Line was a interstate bus company founded by J. Polk Brooks in Paducah, Kentucky in the 1920s. (The following information is from “Brooks Bus Line: The Long Commute from Paducah to Opportunity in Detroit“, by Matt Markgraf, July 1, 2016) While working in Detroit in the late 1920s, J. P. Brooks noticed “a lot of people coming from western Kentucky to work. . . . In 1929, he bought a car and started driving seven of his friends. It was a 24-hour drive; they’d leave on Sunday, work for a week and come home for the weekend.” In 1934 Brooks bought a bus and operated out of a station at 5th and Monroe Streets in Paducah. “It was a rough ride on the bus. While the trip was eventually reduced to 11 hours, the bus had no air conditioning and no bathrooms. Brooks’ daughter-in-law wrote a book about the line and remarks about the western Kentucky connections in Detroit: the grocery store there where they’d get picked up was run by someone from the region. . . . In 1940, the company was hired by the TVA to transport workers building the dams. Charter business took off. . . . April 26, 1980 was the last bus up to Detroit. There were three passengers on the final ride back home. . . . By the 1990s, they sold to another bus company.” In 1942 Brooks Bus Line joined the National Trailways Bus System and was known as Brooks Trailways Bus Line. The company ceased its affiliation with Trailways in 1959. In 1960 the company was incorporated in Paducah, Kentucky by J. Polk Brooks.
BURLINGTON TRAILWAYS / BURLINGTON TRANSPORTATION COMPANY From the Trailways webpage, we find the following history: “On February 14, 1929 The Burlington Transportation Company was started in Burlington, Iowa by the Chicago Burlington & Quincy Railroad (CBQRR). The railroad division concentrated on freight and the bus line on passenger travel. The Burlington Lines, as the bus division was called, was one bus running on Highway 34 between Burlington and Galesburg. By the end of the year buses were covering 858 road miles. In 1936 Burlington Transportation Company became a founding member of the National Trailways Bus System (NTBS). The NTBS, consisting of five bus lines, was formed to compete with the Greyhound Bus Lines and was the first organization to support and promote independent motor coach owners and operators. In 1945 51% of the motor coach lines was sold to All American Bus Lines. In 1947 the company was renamed Burlington Trailways / American Bus Lines. Inn 1952 the company name was changed to American Bus Lines (ABL).” In 1936 the company was operating between Chicago and Los Angeles, via Omaha, Cheyenne and Salt Lake City; also between Salt Lake City and San Francisco; also between Chicago and Denver and between Denver and Billings, Mont., as well as numerous local schedules in the territory served by the parent railway. In August 1947 American Bus Lines, Inc. announced a consolidation of 19 bus companies: American Bus Lines, Inc., Burlington Trailways, Continental Trailways, Crescent Trailways, Dixie-Sunshine Trailways, Denver-Colorado Springs-Pueblo Trailways, Denver-Salt Lake-Pacific Trailways, Eastern Trailways, Georgia Trailways, Indiana Railroad, Mo-Ark Trailways, Modern Trailways, Mucatine-Davenport and Clinton Bus Company, Pony Express, Service Stages, Southeastern Greyhound Lines, Santa Fe Trailways, Utah-Idaho Central Railroad and West Coast Trailways. At the time American Buslines was engaged in a lawsuit with Pacific Greyhound and Southern Pacific Railroad for equal rights on Pacific Coast highways. In 1954 Continental Trailways purchased American Bus Lines. The badge is made of bronze, has one threaded post, measures 2⅝” x 1¾” and is hallmarked with union marks—no makers markings.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “C”
C. & A. BUS COMPANY This company was another owned by Samuel A. Jessup, who owned Virginia Stage Lines, Inc. of Charlottesville, Virginia. C. & A. Bus Company was also located in Charlottesville, and was in operation in the 1940s. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
CANADIAN AMERICAN TRAILWAYS / CANADIAN AMERICAN COACHES, LTD. In 1925 F. Cyril Cooper formed Windsor-Chatham Coaches, which operated out of Windsor, Ontario, Canada. When London was added to the route, the name was changed to Windsor-Chatham-London Coaches. On May 28, 1930, Cooper founded Canadian American Coaches Ltd., which operated to Detroit, Michigan, Windsor, Ontario, Chatham, London, Ingersoll, Woodstock, Paris, Brantford, Hamilton, St. Catharines, Niagara Falls and Buffalo, New York. The company operated from the Union Bus Terminal in Windsor, Ontario. In 1934 the company began using the motto “The Bulldog Line” on its buses. In June 1936, Canadian American Coaches Ltd. joined the National Trailways System and changed their name to Canadian American Trailways Ltd. By September 1938, the company was operating 16 buses. On December 30, 1939, Canadian American Trailways and routes, along with Windsor-Chatham-London Coaches, were sold to Toronto Greyhound Lines, Ltd. for $140,000. (Toronto Greyhound Lines, was owned by Gray Coach from Toronto.)
CANNON BALL TRAILWAYS / CANNON BALL STAGE LINES / CANNON BALL, INC. Cannon Ball Stage Lines was operating in the 1930s out of Durango, Colorado. In the late 1930s R. B. Stone was general manager and his buses served Gallup and Shiprock, New Mexio, Durango and Dolores, Colorado. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1944 and stayed in that affiliation until 1954. In 1946 the company ran 14 buses over 562 route miles. By that time it was owned by partners L. E Clark, who was general manager, and R. C. Hine, who served as traffic manager. According to one source the Trailways portion of the company sold out to Maurice E. Moore, who absorbed it into his Transcontinental Trailways in 1954. In 1955 Cannon Ball Stage Lines moved operations to Albuquerque, New Mexico, changed its name to Cannon Ball, Inc., and was running 3 buses over 48 route miles. It ceased operations in 1959.
CAPITAL TRAILWAYS / CAPITAL MOTOR LINES / COLONIAL TRAILWAYS NOTE: There were two Trailways companies that used the name Capitol Trailways. We start with the earlier of the two: Avery Austin Crow was born in Winston County, Alabama, on April 8, 1891. In the 1920s he was made a partner in the Alabama Bus Company of Birmingham. After the sale of the company in 1929 to Teche Greyhound Lines, Crow relocated to Montgomery where he acquired routes from Dixie Stage Lines, Inc. routes from Fred B. Caudle, of Anniston. At that time Dixie Stage Lines was running from “Montgomery to Mobile, Alabama and from Montgomery to Meridian, Mississippi. One route operated southwest out of Montgomery to Mobile via Greenville, Evergreen, Brewton and Bay Minette, following U.S. 31 and close to what later became Interstate 65. The second route operated directly west from Montgomery through Selma, Demopolis and Livingston, Alabama to Meridian, Mississippi, following U.S. 80.” Crow took over the lines on November 1, 1930. “On December 18, 1930 he incorporated Capital Motor Lines with its principal office in Montgomery. By 1934, Capital Motor Lines had expanded service to three daily trips to Meridian, Mississippi and three round trips to Mobile with additional trips daily to Florala, Alabama (just north of the Florida-Alabama state line) and Pensacola, Florida. . . . By 1937, the Florence to Decatur line was extended to Huntsville, Alabama and Chattanooga, Tennessee. On May 1, 1938, Capital Motor Lines was accepted as a member of the recently formed National Trailways Bus System. This made it one of the early companies to join. Buses were then painted with the Trailways livery and operations were conducted under the name Capital Trailways.” (Information from the National Bus Trader / August, 2008, article “Capital Trailways and Colonial Trailways” by Larry Plachno.) In 1941, the company acquired the Monroeville Bus Company, which continued to operate under its own name. In March 1952, Monroeville Bus Company moved its corporate office from Monroeville to Montgomery, Alambma. At this same time the corporate name was changed to Colonial Trailways. Since they were essentially the same company, Capital Trailways and Colonial Trailways would share management and office space.
In 1954 Capital Motor Lines/ Capital Trailways operated out of Montgomery, Alabama, and ran 72 buses over 1,005 route miles serving Meridian, Mississippi, Columbus, Georgia, Florala, Dothan, Eufaula, Tuscaloosa and Selma, Alabama. The president was James Pruett. Colonial Trailways operated 15 buses over 455 route miles. C. S. Blackledge was the general manager.
As of 2008, Capital Trailways and Colonial Trailways was owned by Frank E. Montgomery III, who was the great-grandson of Avery Austin Crow. As of this date “Both Capital Trailways and Colonial Trailways no longer operate any independent scheduled service. They are now in a revenue sharing pool with Greyhound Lines, Inc. and all operations are in conjunction with Greyhound.” (Click on this link for a detailed history of Capital Trailways and Colonial Trailways.) (NOTE: there are two sources on the Net that claim Dixie Stage Lines became Crescent Trailways. One is found in a caption under a photograph in a recently published book, and the other is a brief mention on CHICAGO TRANSIT & RAILFAN.) There is a badge, but it’s likely for the below company.
CAPITOL TRAILWAYS / CAPITOL BUS COMPANY, INC. As noted above, there are two Trailways companies that used the name Capitol Trailways. The latter company’s history begins in Pennsylvania with Joseph L. Maguire back in the mid 1930s. When he lost his job, Maguire began working for the state highway department in Harrisburg, some 55 miles from his home in Pottsville, Pennsylvania. Before long he was transporting others to Harrisburg for work, which was the beginning of the future bus company. With his brother John as a partner, Maguire was granted permission to operate a 12 passenger stretch auto, and began operations on July 6, 1936. By 1943 Capitol Bus Company was carrying over 6,000 passengers a day and operating service 24 hours a day; that same year the company headquarters were moved from Pottsville to Harrisburg. In 1947, Capitol Bus Company acquired two companies: Gettysburg-& Harrisburg Transportation and Adams Transit Company. The brothers incorporated in 1948 and that same year joined the National Trailways Bus System. In 1956 Capitol Bus Company / Capitol Trailways was operating 30 buses over 464 route miles. The November 11, 1959 edition of the Kingston Daily Freeman from Kingston, New York offers more insight into the company: “The State Public Service Commission approved today the sale of the L. D. Dickinson Motor Coach Lines of Owego for $15,000 to the Capitol Bus, Co. Inc., of Harrisburg. Pa. The transaction, however, hinges on approval by the Interstate Commerce Commission of Dickinson turning over its interstate operating rights to Capitol for an additional $20,000. . . . The PSC said the Dickinson line had been operated since early this year by the estate of its founder. The heirs no longer want to stay in the business, the PSC said.” A December 31, 2008 newspaper article offers recent history: “Capitol Trailways sale approved: The U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Harrisburg has approved the sale of the parent company of Capitol Bus Co., known as Capitol Trailways, to a Kutztown firm. Carl R. Bieber Inc. is buying the assets of the Harrisburg-based bus and charter company for $2.65 million.” The company was absorbed into Bieber Tourways / Bieber Transportation Group. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
CAROLINA TRAILWAYS / CAROLINA COACH COMPANY, INC. was incorporated on November 25, 1925, when the owners bought five bus companies—Carolina Motor Coach Company, Safety Coach Lines, Southern Transit Company, Safety Transit Linesand Golden Star Bus Lines. In 1929 the company bought out Southern Coach Company. The company joined Trailways on May 1, 1940, as the Carolina Trailways; in 1997 the company became a wholly owned subsidiary of Greyhound Lines, Inc. (Click here for a detailed history of Carolina Coach Company.) The badge is made of brass and is a single threaded post. Below left is an older badge, with a newer badge on the right. They measure 2⅔” x 2⅝” and have two threaded posts.
CAROLINA SCENIC TRAILWAYS / CAROLINA SCENIC COACH LINES / CAROLINA STAGES These companies were based in Spartanburg, South Carolina, and were owned by McDuff Turner (1875-1964). The information is sketchy, but at some point McDuff Turner formed a partnership with his son, Hamish Turner, Sr., and daughters Martha Beth Turner Jackson and Nita Turner Scott. During the 1940s all worked in the company—McDuff Turner as president, Hamish Turner as general manager, Martha as secretary, and Nita as treasurer. In 1946 the company operated 70 buses over 591 route miles and that same year bought Carolina Motor Bus Lines. The company served Asheville, Hendersonville, Spartanburg, Union, Columbia, Shelby, Greenwood, Marion, Augusta, Newberry and Greenville, South Carolina. By 1956 the company was operating 65 buses over 1,366 route miles. Carolina Scenic Coach Lines joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1938 as Carolina Scenic Trailways. According to one source it was sold in 1973 to Continental Trailways.
CASCADE TRAILWAYS / BREMERTON – TACOMA STAGES, INC. On May 12, 1922, the State of Washington Department of Transportation issued a certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity to Hubert B. Secor to furnish passenger, express and freight service between Gig Harbor and Tacoma. This certificate was transferred to “Henry Kaffenberger and H. B. Secor d/b/a Gig Harbor-Tacoma Transportation Co. on September 8, 1922.” There followed another certificate transfer to Hubert B. Secor on February 16, 1923 “of passenger and express service only, operating from Gig Harbor and Tacoma.” Secor’s first bus was from White Motor Company, followed by a Pierce-Arrow bus/auto. Secor hired two drivers, Roscoe Savage and Roy Clark. On February 1, 1931, the certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity was transferred to Joseph Lyons, owner of the Tacoma Bus Company. At some point in the 1930s Lyons changed the company name to Bremerton-Tacoma Stages and incorporated. (It is listed in the 1939 Russell’s National Motor Coach Guide as Bremerton-Tacoma Stages, Inc., with J. H. Lyons as president and general manager.) By 1946 Thomas Myers was running the company and was serving Bremerton, Port Orchard, Gig Harbor, Tacoma Olympia and Shelton; it ran 22 buses over 38 route miles. According to Jon Hobijn, in July 1960 the company was purchased by Elwood Arneson, and joined National Trailways as Cascade Trailways in 1972. Jon Hobijn, goes on to note that Arneson sold the company in 1978 to Tom Harmon and Roger Peck. (See Evergreen Trailways for a detailed history of Elwood Arneson.) However, according to Washington state records, the company was incorporated on February 21, 1951, with Paul Holt Harmon and wife, June M. Harmon, as registered agents; its address was 15011 47th Ave. E., Tacoma, Washington and its dissolution date is September 18, 2000. Paul and June Harmon were also the registered agents/owners of Pacific National Line, Inc. (December 3, 1968), Chinook Transportation Corporation (Nov. 06, 1968) and the Tacoma Suburban Lines, Inc. (May 7, 1957). If we accept Jon Hobijn’s account, the date of 1951 must have been a re-incorporation of the company. However, the Sunday, March 3, 2002 edition of the Seattle Times printed an article about Mr. Arneson’s death, in which his history in the transportation industry was outlined: “Elwood Arneson, 86, Husky fan, founder of Evergreen Trailways. . . . Mr. Arneson’s parents started a local bus company, the North Bend Stage Lines, in 1919. The family operated the company for 21 years, when it became part of the National Trailways bus system. Mr. Arneson then started Evergreen Trailways, selling his interest in 1951.” Although it is noted that Mr. Arneson drove his last bus when he was aged 79, there is no mention of Bremerton-Tacoma Stages, nor Cascade Trailways in the article. To add complications, there is Paul Holt Harmon’s lengthy obituary from Mountain View Funeral Home, published on November 29, 2002 in Tacoma, Washington. According to the obituary, Harmon, who was 73, was one of those featured in a book, Washington Diversity in the Pacific Northwest. Here is a portion of that obituary mentioning Harmon’s entry into the public transportation industry: “It all began in 1949, when young Paul Harmon became a night shift driver at what was then Tacoma Suburban Lines. Harmon acquired the Tacoma Suburban Lines along with three other companies from 1974 to 1978, and became a member carrier in the National Trailways Bus System. . . . Today, Harmon is the chief executive officer of Cascade Trailways.” The obit notes that Paul Harmon retired in 1994 after selling Cascade Trailways to Holland America Lines. Undoubtedly the three “other companies” purchased were the Pacific National Lines, Inc., Chinook Transportation Corporation and Bremerton-Tacoma Stages, Inc. Okay; so I leave it to the reader to untangle the somewhat conflicting information. According to one source Bremerton-Tacoma Stages, Inc. operated until 1987, and as noted above, Cascade Trailways lasted until 1994.
CENTRAL TRAILWAYS / PEORIA-ROCKFORD BUS COMPANY, LLC. / ROCKFORD COACH LINES (NOTE: there are two Trailways companies by this name; this is the earlier company.) Peoria-Rockford Bus Company was founded in 1934 and, as the name says, originally ran between Peoria and Rockford, Illinois. The early company was operated by John Shosie, who acted as president, and Milton O. Shosie, who was the general manager. In the 1930s the company operated out of the United Bus Depot in Peoria. In 1937 the company joined National Trailways as Central Trailways and continued until 1942 as a member. In 1939 the company (operating as Central Trailways) served Milwaukee, Lake Geneva, Rockford, LaSalle, Wenona, Kankakee, Bloomington and Peoria. In 1943 the company acquired the Charter Coach Company, and absorbed its routes.In 1954 the company ran 29 buses over 350 route miles and had by then moved its operations to Rockford, Illinois. In 1955 the company acquired Carbondale-Harrisburg Coach Line. By 1964 the company was operating a shuttle from Rockford to Chicago’s O’Hare Airport. The company was bought out by Greyhound Lines in 2002 and renamed Rockford Coach Lines. In 2004 what was left of the company’s routes were sold to Steve Van Galder’s Van Galder Bus Company of Janesville, Wisconsin, some 35 miles away.
CENTRAL TRAILWAYS / CENTRAL BUS LINES Editor’s note: some of the early Trailways members had very tangled histories, and oft times hard to work out. Central Trailways is one of these—not the least being that it was the second Trailways company to bear this name: Based in Cookeville, Tennessee, in 1935 Cookeville Coach Company was renamed Central Bus Lines. With Interstate Commerce Commission approval, in August 1947 Central Bus Lines took over the routes and operations of Consolidated Bus Lines, Inc. (Consolidated Bus Lines had been founded in 1938 in Smithville, Tennessee.*) The combined operations were renamed Central Trailways. In 1953 Continental Southern Lines bought Crescent Stages / Crescent Trailways, and renamed the companies Continental Crescent Lines; on March 1, 1954, with Tennessee Utilities Commission approval, Continental Southern Lines acquired Central Trailways and renamed it Continental Tennessee Lines, Inc., which continued as a Trailways member company. Dr. D.B. “Doc” Rushing writes: “In 1960 the Tennessee Coach Company [was] sold to a new firm (created specifically to buy the TCC), named as the Tennessee Trailways, Inc., owned in three equal shares by three other Trailways member companies. The investors were the Virginia Stage Lines (the Virginia Trailways), the Smoky Mountain Stages (the Smoky Mountain Trailways), and the Continental Tennessee Lines (which ran in part between Nashville and Knoxville along US-70N via Lebanon, Carthage, Cookeville, Crossville, and Rockwood). That last company [Continental Tennessee Lines, Inc.] was in turn a wholly owned subsidiary of the Continental Southern Lines, based in Alexandria, Louisiana. The two latter firms were members of the Transcontinental Bus System, which used the trade name of the Continental Trailways.” (*Chicago Transit & Railfan confuses this Consolidated with Consolidated Bus Lines “formed 1926 by J. E. Craft”.)
CINCINNATI & LAKE ERIE TRAILWAYS / CINCINNATI & LAKE ERIE BUS COMPANY / CINCINNATI & LAKE ERIE TRANSPORTATION COMPANY According to one source, this company was founded in 1922 as Dayton & Columbus Transportation, which was a subsidiary of the Indiana Columbus & Eastern Traction Company. The company was renamed the Cincinnati & Lake Erie Bus Company in 1930 after the formation of the Cincinnati & Lake Erie Railroad. The company is mentioned in the August 10, 1932 edition of The Piqua Daily Call from Piqua, Ohio: “According to on announcement made public yesterday by O. E, Howland, receiver for the Dayton & Troy Electric Railway company, the Common Pleas Court of Montgomery County has authorized the suspension of interurban railway operations over its entire route . . . in order that there will bo no inconvenience or interruption in service to Dayton and Troy passengers, the Commission has ordered the Cincinnati & Lake Erie Bus Company to operate motor conch service over the route of the Dayton & Troy, such service beginning Thursday, August 11 . . . The Cincinnati & Lake Erie Bus Company will operate on practically the same schedule as the Dayton & Troy. Comfortable, large coaches with a seating capacity of 33 will be operated.” In 1939 the bus company was renamed the Cincinnati & Lake Erie Transportation Company when Cincinnati & Lake Erie Railroad railway discontinued rail service. From 1940 through 1944 the company was a member of the National Trailways Bus System as Cincinnati & Lake Erie Trailways. In 1949, Great Lakes Greyhound Lines of Indiana acquired Cincinnati & Lake Erie Transportation Company.
COASTAL TRAILWAYS / COASTAL STAGES, INC. Coastal Stages was listed in the 1946 MTD headquartered in Florala, Alamba. The owner was J. E. Cannon and general manager was John H. Peach, Jr. The company was registered as a corporation in Montgomery, Alabama, on December 17, 1949, to transport passengers and freight. The incorporators were Homa C. Cathern (1910-1971), Nina Cauthen and Raymond Srygley, who was the husband of Myrtice Cauthen, Homa’s sister. In the 1954 MTD Homa C. Cauthen was listed as president, and J. E. Cannon was vice president and general manager. The company served Brantley, Florala and Montgomery, Alamba and Panama City, Florida. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1957 as Coastal Trailways and remained until 1966: “In 1964, [Maurice 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 companies involved in Moore’s purchased included Coastal Stages, Inc.
COLBURN MOTOR TOURS TRAILWAYS / COLBURN MOTOR TOURS, INC. There’s little info on this company. It was around in ca. 1940, since there was a 4-page booklet written about it that year. By then it was a member of the National Trailways Bus System, and served the Pike’s Peak Region of Colorado. In 1955 Colburn Motor Tours, Inc. bought a new Flxible bus for its operation and was headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado. It is not listed in any of the MTD editions or Russell’s Guides I have here. The company did issue a Trailways badge. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
COLONIAL TRAILWAYS See CAPITAL TRAILWAYS.
CONSOLIDATED TRAILWAYS / CONSOLIDATED BUS LINES, INC. was founded by James Elliott “Jack” Craft, a native of Breathitt County, Kentucky. “Craft migrated to the coalfields of West Virginia to find work in the mines. After working long enough to repay the coal company his transportation expenses, he worked at different locations throughout the southern coalfields. It was in McDowell County that he fell in love with the great invention of that time, the automobile. Capitalizing on that interest, he started by driving coal company executives on their rounds and in 1921 established a Welch taxi service with a single Model-T Ford. After this proved profitable, he expanded into providing bus service to various coalfield towns. As his business grew Craft acquired other small bus lines, establishing Consolidated in January 1934. Consolidated Bus Lines, with offices in Bluefield, served southern West Virginia, eastern Kentucky, and southwestern Virginia during the middle part of the 20th century. Consolidated provided an essential service to the busy coalfields, and later became part of a national bus line. Its 1,200-mile system extended from Huntington to Roanoke, Virginia, and provided service to cities and towns such as Charleston, Logan, Welch (its busiest hub), Mullens, Princeton, Williamson, East Rainelle, Beckley, and Pineville; as well as Grundy and Richlands, Virginia, and Pikeville, Kentucky. By 1953, Consolidated Bus Lines employed 337 individuals and operated about 100 buses. In 1952 alone, these buses traveled 5,873,468 miles and carried 7,881,663 passengers. On August 1, 1956, Craft sold his business to Virginia Stage Lines, a Trailways affiliate. Bus service was discontinued in most of southern West Virginia by the early 1970s.” (Information from: Beanblossom, Robert “Consolidated Bus Lines.” e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia. 30 January 2012. Web. 21 August 2018.) In 1954 the company joined Trailways as Consolidated Trailways; in 1956 it merged into Virginia Stage Lines / Virginia Trailways; that company sold in 1966 to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways. The badge is nickel-plated brass with enameling and has two threaded posts.
CONTINENTAL TRAILWAYS / TRANSCONTINENTAL BUS SYSTEM was founded by Maurice E. Moore. Trailways historian, Jon Hobijn, writes: “In 1943 the Bowen Brothers had a unique problem. They were the sole owners of Bowen Motor Coaches, a cash rich company to the tune of $40 million dollars. The brothers had never taken big salaries and they wanted to take this cash out of their company. . . . In short, their accountant informed them that they were liable for taxes exceeding 30% of the $40 million. The only solution, he told them, was to sell the company. Thus, in 1943, Maurice E. Moore from Arkansas Motor Coaches purchased Bowen Motor Coaches for the sum of $42 million dollars cash. Two million from Moore and the other $40 million, cash from Bowen Motor Coaches, the Brother’s own money.” Jack Rhodes, in his article “Busing Industry” (written for the Texas State Historical Association), writes: “After the end of the war, M. E. Moore founded the Continental Bus System, with corporate headquarters in Dallas, on December 12, 1945. In 1946 all of the franchises of pioneer operator R. C. Bowen were consolidated into Lone Star Coaches and then merged into the new Continental Bus System. On December 9, 1947, all of the Moore and Bowen interests formed the nucleus of the new Transcontinental Bus System (Continental Trailways), with national operations headquartered in Dallas.” The company’s history is quite involved—too much so to relate here. To see it laid out, visit Jon Hobijn’s history at Jon’s Trailways History Corner. There are three badges shown below: the first is made of chrome-plated metal and made by BASTIAN BROS CO ROCHESTER NY (this badge can be seen in a closeup shot in “The Big Show,” a 1953 episode of the t.v. series Dragnet, which helps pinpoint a date when it was in service); the second is gold-plated metal and was made by HALTOMS FT. WORTH; the third measures approx. 3″ x 1″ (at its widest point), has two pin posts and is made of nickel; the fourth badge is oval shaped made of a solid material encased in black felt, with heavy silver threads spelling out “Continental Trailways”; it has a single threaded post and two pin posts at the top on either side; it measures 3¼” x 2½”.
CONTINENTAL PAN HANDLE TRAILWAYS / PAN HANDLE TRAILWAYS The company was operating out of Amarillo, Texas, in 1938. It was still in operation in 1982, when John Hecket was serving as the company president.
CRESCENT TRAILWAYS / CRESCENT STAGES, INC. / CRESCENT MOTORS, INC. / CRESCENT TRANSIT, INC. According to Greyhound historian Dr. D. B. “Doc” Rushing, Crescent Stages was in operation by 1928 and was originally named Dixie Stage Lines: “completely separate and different from both the Dixie Coaches and the Dixie GL [Dixie Greyhound Lines], based in Anniston (previously sometimes called the “Crescent City”), running on routes which eventually reached from Anniston, Alabama, to Chattanooga, to Rome and Columbus, both in Georgia, and to Birmingham, Montgomery, and Huntsville, all three in Alabama, then in 1947 northward from Huntsville to Nashville (when Crescent bought the Lewisburg Bus Lines, which had run between Nashville and Huntsville via Lewisburg, Shelbyville, and Fayetteville). The Crescent Stages had joined the National Trailways association in 1939 (and thus had become known also as the Crescent Trailways).” Both the 1939 and 1943 Russell’s Guide shows the company as a Trailways member, but lists it as Crescent Stages, Inc. The 1946 MTD lists two companies owned and operated by Crescent Stages: Crescent Motors, Inc., which ran city bus service in Anniston, Gadsden and Huntsville, Alabama with 100 buses and 75 cabs; and Crescent Transit, Inc. running local city bus service in Fairfield and Bessemer, Alabama with 33 buses. All three companies were located in Anniston and all had the same officers (L. B. Liles was the president). It is not until the early 1950s that Crescent Trailways is listed as a subsidiary of Crescent Stages, Inc. in the MTD. In 1952 the company purchased Service Stages, Inc. / Service Stages Trailways. Trailways historian Jon Hobijn writes: “Continental Crescent Lines was incorporated in Delaware in 1952, a wholly owned subsidiary of Continental Southern Lines, for the purpose of purchasing Crescent Stages, a member of the Trailways association. Crescent’s routes stretched from Nashville, TN on the north through Huntsville and Birmingham to Montgomery, AL; from Montgomery to Columbus, GA; from Chattanooga, TN to Montgomery; and with the 1952 purchase of Service Stages, from Birmingham to Atlanta, GA.” In 1953 Crescent Trailways was sold to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “D”
DAHLONEGA-ATLANTA TRAILWAYS / DAHLONEGA-ATLANTA STAGE The company was supposedly operating in 1946, however, it’s not listed in the 1946 MTD. It is listed in the 1952, 1954 and 1956 MTD. The company was located in Dahlonega, Georgia and served Atlanta, Gainsville and Jasper, Georgia with 8 buses; Fred C. Jones, Sr. and wife were the owners. The general manager was Fred C. Jones, Jr. Fred Jones, Sr. has owned and operated Fred Jones Chevrolet Company in Dahlonega since 1938, and the bus company was a sideline. According to one source, the company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1946 and remained until 1955; however, it is listed in the 1956 MTD. The company ran this ad in 1952: “DAHLONEGA- ATLANTA TRAILWAYS invites you to RIDE IN COMFORT – ENJOY THE SCENIC BEAUTY OF THE NORTH GEORGIA MOUNTAINS”. In December 1949 the company purchased a new Flxible Clipper bus. This is all that is known for now.
DE LUXE TRAILWAYS / DE LUXE MOTOR STAGES of Illinois was founded by Ben Kramer and C. J. Villeneuve when they acquired a bus as a result of a bad business deal. The route was from Chicago to St. Louis via Hammond, Indiana, Kankakee, and Decatur, Illinois. By the late 1930s the company had joined the National Trailways System. In 1941 the company had purchased another Trailways member, Empire Trailways, which ran from Chicago to Columbus, Ohio, via Ft. Wayne, Indiana. In 1943 De Luxe Motor Stages also purchased Greenville-Dayton Transportation Company. In 1956 the company was running 14 buses over 640 route miles.
DENVER-COLORADO SPRINGS-PUEBLO TRAILWAYS / DENVER-COLORADO SPRINGS-PUEBLO MOTOR WAY Denver-Colorado Springs-Pueblo Motor Way was formed in 1926 as a subsidiary of the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad. It joined Trailways in 1936 and was operating between Denver, Colorado, and Trinidad. In August 1947 American Bus Lines, Inc. announced a consolidation of 19 bus companies: American Bus Lines, Inc., Burlington Trailways, Continental Trailways, Crescent Trailways, Dixie-Sunshine Trailways, Denver-Colorado Springs-Pueblo Trailways, Denver-Salt Lake-Pacific Trailways, Eastern Trailways, Georgia Trailways, Indiana Railroad, Mo-Ark Trailways, Modern Trailways, Mucatine-Davenport and Clinton Bus Company, Pony Express, Service Stages, Southeastern Greyhound Lines, Santa Fe Trailways, Utah-Idaho Central Railroad and West Coast Trailways. At the time American Buslines was engaged in a lawsuit with Pacific Greyhound and Southern Pacific Railroad for equal rights on Pacific Coast highways. In 1948 the company was sold to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways.
DENVER & INTERURBAN TRAILWAYS / DENVER & INTERURBAN MOTOR COMPANY The history of this company begins with the Colorado & Southern Railway, which, in 1904, organized the Denver & Interurban Railroad to run between Denver and Boulder, Colorado. Facing stiff competition from independent jitney operators, in 1926 the Colorado & Southern Railway’s subsidiary, Denver & Interurban Motor Company, applied to the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to operate a passenger and express motor transportation line from Denver to Boulder, Colorado, and Eldorado Springs, Colorado. The commission granted the application on March 7, 1927. Thereafter, the Colorado & Southern Railway discontinued the Denver & Interurban Railroad electric cars in favor of the Denver & Interurban Motor Company. By 1930 the company was operating 10 buses. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1938 as the Denver & Interurban Trailways. It is listed in the 1939 Russell’s Guide with T. L. James as superintendent. According to one source, the Trailways routes were transferred to Burlington Trailways in 1942.
DENVER-SALT LAKE-PACIFIC TRAILWAYS / DENVER-SALT LAKE-PACIFIC STAGES Denver-Salt Lake-Pacific Stages was formed in 1935 as a subsidiary of Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad. It joined Trailways in 1936, operating between Denver and Salt Lake City via Steamboat Springs, Colorado. In August 1947 American Bus Lines, Inc. announced a consolidation of 19 bus companies: American Bus Lines, Inc., Burlington Trailways, Continental Trailways, Crescent Trailways, Dixie-Sunshine Trailways, Denver-Colorado Springs-Pueblo Trailways, Denver-Salt Lake-Pacific Trailways, Eastern Trailways, Georgia Trailways, Indiana Railroad, Mo-Ark Trailways, Modern Trailways, Mucatine-Davenport and Clinton Bus Company, Pony Express, Service Stages, Southeastern Greyhound Lines, Santa Fe Trailways, Utah-Idaho Central Railroad and West Coast Trailways. At the time American Buslines was engaged in a lawsuit with Pacific Greyhound and Southern Pacific Railroad for equal rights on Pacific Coast highways. In 1948 the company was sold to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways.
DIXIE SUNSHINE TRAILWAYS / DIXIE MOTOR COACH CORPORATION / DIXIE TRAILWAYS Alva Pearl Barrett incorporated Dixie Motor Coach Corporation in 1928 and operated between Dallas, Ft. Worth and Ardmore, Oklahoma; Dallas and Durant, Oklahoma; Dallas, Greenville and Texarkana; Wichita Falls and Texarkana. Since Barrett bought the company, we may assume it was an operating business prior to that year. (In 1928 Barrett also owned Texas Air Transport, Inc. and two Texas radio stations, KTAT in Fort Worth and KTSA in San Antonio.) He sold the corporation to Auble W. Ritter and brother Christopher C. Riter in 1933, who owned Sunshine Bus Lines, Inc. of Terrell, Texas. The brothers combined operations and moved to Dallas, Texas, since Dixie Motor Coach had a large shop already established there—about 35 miles away. (The two companies continued to be operated as separate lines.) Sunshine Bus Lines, Inc. and Dixie Motor Coach Corporation both joined Trailways in 1937 (as Sunshine Trailways and Dixie Trailways) and remained in the association until 1945. In 1939 Auble Riter, Sr. sold his companies to Joseph P. Kittrell (1870-1950), who had acted as vice president of Sunshine Bus Lines, Inc. The Kittrell family sold out in 1945 and the new owners made application to merge the two corporations into one. Soon afterwards the ICC authorized Dixie Motor Coach Corporation to purchase the stock of Sunshine Bus Lines, Inc. and to change the name to Dixie-Sunshine Trailways. In 1946 Dixie Sunshine Trailways acquired Airline Motor Coaches Company, which during 1940’s was a Trailways member operating under name Airline Motor Trailways. In 1948 Dixie Motor Coach was sold to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways. (See Sunshine Trailways for more detailed information.) Three badges are known, the earlier one has two threaded posts and measures about 3″ in length. The second badge has two threaded posts and was made by WHITEHEAD – HOAG CO. NEWARK NEW JERSEY. (See the entry under “DMC” for an early badge that may have been issued by this company.)
DOMINION TRAILWAYS According to one source, this company was a part of the National Trailways Bus System in the 1930s-1940s. However, the 1939 Russell’s Guide doesn’t list it, nor does the 1940s editions of the MTD. Further, it’s not listed in the 1950s editions of the MTD, the 1950’s editions of Russell’s Guide, nor the 70s Russell’s Guides. I did find a notice in the Hinton News, from Hinton, West Virginia dated March 10, 1981: “The new Dominion Trailways bus service connecting Bluefield, Princeton, Athens, Hinton and Beckly . . .” There was a mention elsewhere on the Net that the company was owned by one “Bill Vanderbilt”. So, now you know what I know about Dominion Trailways, i.e., I could locate the company in West Virginia in the 1980s, but not before that date.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “E”
EASTERN TRAILWAYS / EASTERN TRAILS, INC. One source says the company was formed in 1937, joined National Trailways Bus System in 1939, and was sold to American Bus Lines in 1946. In turn, this company was sold to Transcontinental Bus System in 1953. Jon Hobijn notes that transportation tycoon Aaron Greenleaf owned 91% of Eastern Trails. In 1946 Eastern Trailways / Eastern Trails, Inc. operated out of New York City, and Aaron Greenleaf was the president. In August 1947 American Bus Lines, Inc. announced a consolidation of 19 bus companies: American Bus Lines, Inc., Burlington Trailways, Continental Trailways, Crescent Trailways, Dixie-Sunshine Trailways, Denver-Colorado Springs-Pueblo Trailways, Denver-Salt Lake-Pacific Trailways, Eastern Trailways, Georgia Trailways, Indiana Railroad, Mo-Ark Trailways, Modern Trailways, Mucatine-Davenport and Clinton Bus Company, Pony Express, Service Stages, Southeastern Greyhound Lines, Santa Fe Trailways, Utah-Idaho Central Railroad and West Coast Trailways.
EMPIRE TRAILWAYS / EMPIRE TRAILS This is the earliest of two Trailways companies using the name Empire Trailways. There’s little info on this company. Apparently it was in business in the 1930s as Empire Trails and was an early member of the National Trailways Bus System. It is noted as using the Trailways Depot on 20 E. Randolph Street in Chicago, which also served Deluxe Motor Stages of Illinois. According to Jon Hobijn, Deluxe Motor Stages’ owners Ben Kramer and C. J. Villeneuve bought the company in 1941 and at that time it was running between Chicago to Columbus, Ohio, via Ft. Wayne, Indiana. Another source says the company lasted until 1947.
EMPIRE STATE TRAILWAYS / EMPIRE TRAILWAYS / BLUE VALLEY TRAILWAYS / WESTERN NEW YORK MOTOR LINES, INC. According to The Encyclopedia of New York State (Syracuse University Press, 2005) “Western New York Motor Lines (trade name, Blue Bus Lines) was organized in 1924 to combine the rights of operators that had started service in 1916 between Batavia (Genesee County) and Rochester. These were joined in 1925 with a Batavia-Buffalo line started in 1921 . . . Rochester-Buffalo-Penfield Bus Company (later Valley Trailways) was organized in 1934, and it acquired Blue Bus Lines [i.e., Western New York Motor Lines] in 1958, continuing operations under that name.” From 1958 the company was operating as Western New York Motor Lines / Blue Bus Lines. The Fall 2005 issue of Headend from The Journal of the New York Museum of Transportation, adds: “The resulting company served Akron, Attica, and Caledonia-Avon-Scottsville on the west side, Fairport and Penfield to the east, and Geneseo, Leicester, Mount Morris and Dansville to the south. Shortly after the  merger, the line joined the Trailways system as Blue Valley Trailways and later Empire State Trailways.” The name Empire State Trailways was adopted in 1962 and shortened to Empire Trailways in 1975. Adirondack Trailways acquired the Empire Trailways routes in 1994, operating them separately as New York Trailways.
EVERGREEN TRAILWAYS, INC. / NORTH BEND STAGE LINES, INC. / EVERGREEN BUS COMPANY By one account North Bend Stage Lines began operations in 1919; by another it was in August 1921. Two partners, Emil A. Arneson (1887-1968) and W. A. Cochran, began operating two touring cars between Seattle and North Bend, Washington. In 1925 the company was incorporated. That same year it acquired Preston-Issaquah-Seattle Stage Line and Cascade Mountain Stage Line. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1940, and began operating as Evergreen Trailways. The company acquired Redwood Stage Company in 1946 and that same year North Bend Stage Lines’ name was legally changed to Evergreen Trailways, Inc. In 1946 the company was headquartered in Seattle and served Issaquah, North Bend, Redmond and Kirkland with 14 buses over 240 route miles; Emil Arneson was the president and his son, Elwood L. Arneson (1915-2002) was general manager. Jon Hobijn, writes: “On December 29, 1950, Arneson leased all the routes of Evergreen to Lake Shore Lines, and as of mid 1951, were operated as East Side Lines. In 1954, the lease expired and the routes were permanently transferred and sold to Lake Shore Lines, which later was known as Metropolitan and then Seattle Metro, the transit authority. Thus, 1954 was the end of Evergreen Trailways for the first time.” After leasing the company’s routes to Lake Shore Lines, in August 1951 Elwood Arneson formed Evergreen Bus Company and continued to operate as Evergreen Trailways. By 1954 the company was operating only 4 buses over 21 route miles. That year Elwood Arneson sold his company to Island Transit. But Elwood Arneson wasn’t finished with the bus business. Back in 1921 Index Stages was formed to operate buses between Monroe and Index, Washington. By 1945 the company was running into Seattle. That year four partners bought the company—one of whom was Emil A. Arneson. In 1954 the partners sold the company to Elwood Arneson and one of partners named Walt Bourdage. Bourdage then sold his share to William Niskanen, who was vice president and general manager of Pacific Trailways / Mt. Hood Stages, Inc., located in Bend, Oregon. In the 1956 MTD Elwood Arneson was listed as Evergreen Bus Company / Evergreen Trailways’ president and general manager; the company was still operating 4 buses over 21 route miles. (Bourdage’s name isn’t mentioned.) According to Jon Hobijn, in July 1960 Elwood Arneson purchased Bremerton-Tacoma Stages, Inc. and in 1972 joined National Trailways Bus System as Cascade Trailways. Jon Hobijn, goes on to note that Arneson sold the company in 1978 to Tom Harmon and Roger Peck. (There is some conflicting info here, so the reader should check out Cascade Trailways’ entry. Also NOTE: I’m not sure if this company is related to the below entry—it’s history is rather tangled!) As to the below badge, I’m not sure if it belongs to this company or the entry below.
EVERGREEN TRAILWAYS / EVERGREEN TRAILS, INC. There’s not a lot of info on this company. It owned certificate #185 “authorizing the giving of service as follows: Passenger and Express Service Between: Kirkland and Monohan, Washington, via Redmond, the route between Kirkland and Redmond to be both via the old highway and the new paved highway;” There is a surviving bus schedule from October 8, 1945 showing that the company served Redmond, Kirkland and Seattle “via Blacktop Highway between Redmond ad Kirkland.” Curiously, the company is not mentioned in the 1939 Russell’s Guide, nor in the 1946 or 1954 MTD. Jon Hobijn writes that the company joined the National Trailways Bus System on May 1, 1957, as Evergreen Trailways, while Chicago Transit & Railfan adds that the company was in business from 1939-1991 and was sold to Northwestern Trailways. As to a badge, see the above entry.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “F”
FRISCO TRAILWAYS / FRISCO TRANSPORTATION COMPANY The company was founded in 1938 as a subsidiary of the St. Louis-San Francisco Railway (Frisco), and began operations on June 17 of that year. They ran between Seneca and Springfield, Illinois with 8-passenger auto-buses, which were painted “ivory with black fenders, radiator shell and snubbers, and aluminum colored top and wheels. They had a red belt around the middle, they carried the Frisco logo on the side, and displayed the ‘Frisco Transportation Company’ in aluminum colored letters on a red background along the top sides.” By the early 1940s the company was operating regular buses and had added Afton, Oklahoma to their route. In 1950 “the bus company assumed a new identity, separate from the FTC trucking division, by adopting the new name of ‘Frisco Trailways.’” With declining ridership, in the spring of 1962 Frisco Trailways discontinued all passenger bus service. (Information from the November 1986 edition of All Aboard, Vol. 1, #6, published by The Frisco Railroad Museum.)
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “G”
GEORGIA TRAILWAYS / ADER COACH LINES / GEORGIA STAGES, INC. Ader Coach Lines was founded by Sidney H. Ader in the early 1930s in Albany, Georgia and ran a route along U.S. Highway 19 between Griffin and Thomasville, Georgia, via Albany and Americus. In 1936 he incorporated and changed the name to Georgia Stages, Inc. Here’s a bit of history on the company from a Florida Railroad Commission record: “1. Pursuant to Notice No. 533 dated November 30, 1936 this matter came on for formal hearing before the Railroad Commission of the State of Florida at its Hearing Room, Supreme Court Building, Tallahassee, Florida, on December 15, 1936. 2. The joint petition of S. H. Ader, operating as Ader Coach Lines, and of Georgia Stages, Inc., a Georgia corporation holding a charter issued by the Superior Court of Dougherty County, Georgia, and holding a Permit from the Secretary of State to do business in the State of Florida, shows that S. H. Ader, operating as Ader Coach Lines, purchased Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity No. 94 from Bainbridge Columbus Motor Lines authorizing operation of busses between Tallahassee, Florida, and the Georgia-Florida State line via Havana, Florida and that such purchase was approved by Order No. 858 of this Commission dated the 24th day of April 1936; that S. H. Ader has organized the Georgia Stages, Inc., a Georgia corporation with a capital stock of $90,000.00 for the purpose of taking over and operating Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity No. 194; that a certified copy of a meeting of the directors of Georgia Stages, Inc., held on November 2, 1936 in Albany, Georgia, shows that S. H. Ader was elected President of the company . . . APPROVED, DONE AND ORDERED by the Railroad Commission of the State of Florida, in session at its office in the City of Tallahassee. Florida, this 8th day of January 1937.”
In 1938 Georgia Stages, Inc. joined National Trailways Bus System under the name Georgia Trailways. The following year the company bought out Coleman Motor Lines, and its owner, R. S. Coleman, became Georgia Stages, Inc.’s traffic manager. In 1944 Georgia Stages, Inc. bought out St. Andrews Bay Transportation Company, which was also a member of the National Trailways Bus System. (The company was headquartered in Dothan, Alabama and was a subsidiary of the Atlanta & St. Andrews Bay Railway, which was known as the “Bay Line”; prior to being sold, the company had just bought out Lee’s Coach Line, which ran in Florida from Tallahassee to Panama City.) Jon Hobijn writes: “In 1946, Georgia Stages President Fred Mills changed the company name to Modern Coach Corporation, and from then on the company was known as Modern Trailways. . . . Modern Coach Corp. was acquired by Tamiami Trail Tours in 1956, extending Tamiami’s system main line to 825 miles stretching from Atlanta to Miami.”
GEORGIA-FLORIDA TRAILWAYS / GEORGIA-FLORIDA COACHES, INC. The company was incorporated in Florida on March 11, 1941. The founder was J. Harley Garner, who was headquartered in Douglas, Georgia. According to Jon Hobijn, the company was formed “by purchasing a route from Service Coach Line from Augusta to McRae, Georgia, and a second route from McRae, Georgia to Lake City, Florida owned by Atlantic Stages of Savannah. . . . By 1948, the company had been sold to Charlotte’s Queen City Trailways, operating headquarters were moved to Augusta [Georgia].” A note of interest is that the 1946 report of Florida Railroad Commission mentions the company as both Georgia-Florida Coaches, Inc. and Georgia Florida Stage Line, both at Box 193, Douglass. Georgia. The state of Florida’s corporation records show that Georgia-Florida Coaches, Inc. was voluntarily dissolved on November 9, 1976.
GEORGIA-TENNESSEE TRAILWAYS / GEORGIA-TENNESSEE COACHES, INC. In December 1946 Tom M. Lambert and George T. Morris bought out W. T. Thomas Bus Line, which ran from Chattanooga, Tennessee to Atlanta, Georgia. After the company changed hands, they incorporated it as Georgia-Tennessee Coaches, Inc. According to one source it joined National Trailways as Georgia-Tennessee Trailways from 1949 until 1952. Jon Hobijn picks up the history on his webpage: “Tennessee Coach purchased Georgia-Tennessee Coaches in 1957 securing a direct route for Tennessee Coach between Chattanooga and Atlanta . . . In August 1960, Kraemer and Burke, the two major stock holders negotiated an agreement to sell Tennessee Coach to Continental Tennessee Lines, Virginia Stage Lines and Smoky Mountain Stages for $2,400,000, with each company owning a one-third interest. On December 21, 1961, the ICC approved the transaction and in the decision recognized the desire of the three purchasing carriers to maintain the identity of Tennessee Coach as being more important than the Commission’s standing policy of merging the rights of acquired carriers into those of their purchasers. Tennessee Coach Company passed into history and the new company, Tennessee Trailways, Inc., was born.” See Tennessee Trailways, Inc. for more information.
GREENSBORO-FAYETTEVILLE TRAILWAYS / GREENSBORO-FAYETTEVILLE BUS LINE, INC. Greensboro-Fayetteville Bus Line was around in the late 1920s. According to the records of the North Carolina Corporation Commission for 1927-1928, the company was headquartered in Asheboro, North Carolina with H. G. Pugh president and J. A. York secretary. The company ran routes from Sanford to Rockingham, Greensboro to Fayetteville, via Aberdeen and Asheboro; Durham to Fayetteville, via Chapel Hill, Pittsboro, Sanford, Jonesboro and Fort Bragg, and Greensboro to Asheboro. In August 1939 the company was sued for $1,250 by Ellen Harris, a black passenger on a Durham bus, who claimed she was “brutally treated” by the driver after she sat next to a white passenger. She was forcibly removed by two police officers. Although she won her case, the bus company appealed all the way to the North Carolina Supreme Court, which upheld Harris’s suit. The 1939 Russell’s Guide places the company’s routes under Queen City Coach Company, Inc. According to one source, the company joined the National Trailways Bus System in the 1940s and operated as Greensboro-Fayetteville Trailways. That same source says the company was taken over by Queen City Coach / Queen City Trailways in the 1940s. However, the 1939 Russell’s Guide entry would indicate that it was a part of Queen City Coach by 1939. It is not listed in the 1941, 1942 MTD, But, in a 1944 ad, the company is advertised as Queen City Trailways and Greensboro-Fayetteville Trailways “Owned and Operated By Queen City Coach Company. The company is listed in the 1946 MTD without any mention of Greensboro-Fayetteville Trailways. In a 1947 ad, the company is called Greensboro-Fayetteville Trailways, headquarters at 220 Person St. Fayetteville, North Carolina. It is not listed in the 1952 nor 1954 editions of the MTD.
GREENVILLE-DAYTON TRAILWAYS / GREENVILLE TRANSPORTATION COMPANY / GREENVILLE-DAYTON TRANSPORTATION COMPANY was and intercity bus company operating out of Greenville, Ohio. It would appear that the company started with the name Greenville Transportation Company in the early 1920s. That was the name when it applied for a permit to operate between Greenville, Hamilton and Defiance, Ohio, in September 1925. George Decker was the president at that time. A little over two years later that same route was being advertised by Dayton-Greenville Transportation Company, which indicates a name change between those years and likely because a major route to Dayton was added to the schedule. The company is listed in the 1939 Russell’s Guide and operated from the “Union Bus Terminal in Greenville, Ohio K. E. Mitchell, manager; served Fort Wayne, Indiana, to Greenville, Ohio to Dayton, Ohio.” Ben Kramer and C. J. Villeneuve, who owned De Luxe Motor Stages and Empire Trailways, bought the company in 1943. In 1946 the company was operating 21 buses over 245 route miles and S. Reifler was the manager. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1947 and remained one year, until 1948. By 1956 C. J. Villeneuve was running the company and was operating 14 buses over 245 route miles. According to one source, the company went out of business in 1966.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “I”
INDIANAPOLIS & SOUTHEASTERN TRAILWAYS, INC. / INDIANAPOLIS & SOUTHEASTERN BUS COMPANY / INDIANAPOLIS & SOUTHEASTERN RAILROAD / INDIANAPOLIS & SOUTHEASTERN STAGES / SOUTHEASTERN TRAILWAYS, INC. This company begins with Indianapolis & Cincinnati Traction Company, which started operations in 1903 in Indianapolis, Indiana and entered into receivership in 1928; the following year it was reorganized as Indianapolis & Southeastern Railroad Company. The company operated streetcars from Indianapolis to Connersville and Greensburg, Indiana. In 1932 the company replaced its streetcars with buses and used the name Indianapolis & Southeastern Railroad Company, Indianapolis & Southeastern Bus Company and, at a later date, Indianapolis & Southeastern Stages. In 1932 the company replaced its streetcars with buses; in 1938 the company joined the National Trailways System and changed its name to Indianapolis & Southeastern Trailways. At some point after this date, the company was purchased by C.J. “Clem” Villeneuve and B.D. Kramer and, in 1946, was operating 18 buses over 225 route miles. (Kramer and Villeneuve also owned De Luxe Motor Stages.) In 1947 Indianapolis & Southeastern Trailways purchased and merged Victory Trailways, which had been founded by Ray Villeneuve and which operated from Indianapolis to Whiting, Indiana. (Ray Villeneuve was the brother of “Clem” Villeneuve.) In 1956 the company was operating 35 buses over 1580 route miles; it listed its operation as both Southeastern Trailways and Indianapolis & Southeastern Stages.
In 1942 Indiana Railroad sold its bus line, known as Indiana Railroad Company, for $650,000 to the Wesson Company, which was headquartered in Michigan. The Wesson Company operated motor vehicles around Indiana, with most junctions and routes being in Indianapolis, and others extending further to South Bend, Peru, Ft. Wayne, Terre Haute, Edinburgh, and Columbus, Indiana. By 1950, Wesson gained authority to operate charter bus services traveling through the states of Oklahoma and Kentucky. In 1950, the Wesson Company sold the entire bus operation to Ben Kramer and C. J. Villeneuve. By the end of 1971 they merged this operating into Indianapolis & Southeastern Trailways and changed the name to Southeastern Trailways, Inc. With this merger, the sole owners of both operations, C.J. Villeneuve and B.D. Kramer, took position of president and vice president of Southeaster Trailways.
INTERURBAN TRAILWAYS / INTERURBAN TRANSPORTATION COMPANY was based in Alexandria, Louisiana. In 1945 the company was merged with Bordelon Lines, Inc. / Bordelon Trailways which was headquartered in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Tri-State Transit Co. / Tri-State Trailways, based in Shreveport, Louisiana. The new firm was named Southern Bus Lines using the brand name of Southern Trailways and was headed by Morgan W. Walker: “In 1949 the Transcontinental Bus System (using the brand name, trade name, or service name of the Continental Trailways) bought the relatively new (recently consolidated) Southern Bus Lines (the Southern Trailways) and renamed it as the Continental Southern Lines.” (Info from Dr. D. B. “Doc” Rushing’s Bluehounds and Redhounds the History of Greyhound and Trailways.)
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “J”
JACKSONVILLE TRAILWAYS / JACKSONVILLE BUS LINE was founded by Otto M. Olsen in 1921 in Jacksonville, Illinois. The line ran two round trips daily from Jacksonville’s town square to to the Illinois Hotel in Springfield, a distance of some 30 miles. Before going on, a few corrections must be made. Jon’s Trailways History Corner offers a very detailed outline of this company. However, the article misspells Otto M. Olsen’s name as “Olson”. The correct spelling is found both in his newspaper obituary and on his grave maker in the Diamond Grove Cemetery in Jacksonville, Morgan County, Illinois: Otto M. Olsen BIRTH 1888 DEATH 19 Feb 1932. This leads to a second problem: Otto M. Olsen’s correct date of death. Jon’s history states that Otto M. Olsen died not long after a 1942 delivery of two new Fitzjohn Model 610 Falcon buses. However, the Jacksonville Daily Journal from Jacksonville, Illinois, for Friday, February 20, 1932, carried this front page article: “OTTO M. OLSEN PASSES AWAY IN ST. LOUIS FRIDAY Prominent Jacksonville Business Man Operated Jacksonville Bus Line.” The article states that Olsen died Friday evening at 7:15 at Central Hospital in St. Louis, and outlines Olson’s success in the bus business, and names his survivors—information (except for the date) that matches Jon’s history, i.e., “Fred being a student at the Illinois School for the Deaf and Kenneth studying at the Western Military Academy.” So there is a 10-year mistake between Jon’s article and the actual time of death of Otto M. Olsen. (Again, you should note that the newspaper’s spelling of “Olsen” is the correct spelling of Otto M. Olsen’s surname.) This means that Olsen’s wife, Mabel U. Olsen, succeeded him in 1932 as president of Jacksonville Bus Line, and all the company’s expansions through 1942, that Jon’s attributes to Otto Olsen, was actually the work of his widow, Mabel. Later her son Kenneth took over duties as general manager with son Frederick O. Olsen (1912-1967) serving as treasurer. (Note: Jon’s gives Kenneth, or “Kenny” as the eldest and Frederick, or “Freddie”, as the younger son. The correct information is taken from their grave markers in the Diamond Grove Cemetery.)
Over the coming years the company expanded routes throughout the state and by 1934 was serving St. Louis, Peoria and Chicago. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1938 and was known as Jacksonville Trailways. By 1939 the company had acquired the Pittsfield-Barry-Quincy Busway and was operating a fleet of 15 buses. In 1946 the company was operating 24 buses over 423 route miles.
Kenneth Olsen (b.1914) died in 1953 and was buried next to his father in the Diamond Grove Cemetery, leaving his mother and brother to run the company. They terminated membership in Trailways in 1955, which, according to Jon’s, was “more than likely in an effort to save the $2000.00 a year minimum dues.” In 1956 the company was operating 17 buses over 325 route miles. In 1972 Mabel U. Olsen, with both her sons being deceased, sold the company to “Ralph Everest, a Springfield travel agent and tour operator who had ties to northwestern Illinois’ Tri-State Tours, a combination of Rocket Lines from Galena and River Trails from Dubuque, Iowa.”
Frederick O. Olsen died in 1967, aged 54-55, and was buried in the Diamond Grove Cemetery next to his father and brother. August 1, 1973: “Mabel U. Olsen, age 83, died at 9:55 a.m. Wednesday at the Meline Nursing Center. Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Friday at the First Presbyterian Church with burial in Diamond Grove Cemetery . . . She is the last surviving member of her family. Mrs. Olsen formerly owned and operated the Jacksonville Bus Line for 50 years.”
(NOTE: my corrections of Jon’s Trailways History Corner’s information is by no means meant as criticism. Jon Hobijn produced a wonderfully informative website that is a tremendous source of information on both Trailways and Greyhound, as well as the many companies that made up these two transportation giants.)
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “K”
KANSAS TRAILWAYS / KANSAS TRAILS, INC. / KANSAS TRAILS BUS LINE / KANSAS TRAILS BUS SYSTEM There isn’t much information on this company. It was operational in the early 1940s and headquartered in Topeka, Kansas. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1944 and is listed as Kansas Trailways in the 1946 MTD. That same year the company was advertising a new route and using the name “Kansas Trail Bus Line”. According to one source, the company left the Trailways association in 1950. On November 23, 1954, the Interstate Commerce Commission granted “a certificate of convenience and necessity to Kansas Trails, Inc., to extend its motor bus service from Osawatomie, Kansas, to Tulsa, Oklahoma, over U. S. Highway 169.” In the 1953 Russell’s Guide the company is listed as Kansas Trails / Kansas Trails Bus System and served Topeka, Iola, Parsons, Pittsburg, Coffeyville and Tulsa. There was a newspaper item from July 3, 1958, that noted “Robert Jordan purchased the Kansas Trails bus system that operated between Bonner Springs and Kansas City, Mo.”
KENTUCKY TRAILWAYS / KENTUCKY BUS LINES, INC. This company’s history begins with two brothers, Albert Lee (1904-1979) and Robert Guthrie Chaudoin (1903-1982), who, in 1935, founded Chaudoin Bus Lines in Louisville, Kentucky. In the 1930s the company served Louisville, Central City and Paducah, Kentucky. A November 27, 1943, Louisville, Kentucky, newspaper article announced that Chaudoin Bus Lines was sold to “the Bankers National Investment Corporation for $225,000. It was transferred to a new corporation known as the Kentucky Bus Lines, Inc. The property was owned by A. L. Chaudoin and R. G. Chaudoin, brothers who operated an intrastate line from Louisville. Running 13 buses to New Castle, Carrollton and Paducah via Shepherdsville.” The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1952 and remained until 1954. In 1972 the Louisville Transit Company acquired the company’s routes.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “L”
Lake Front Trailways / Lake Front Lines 1970-2009
LINCOLN TRAILWAYS / LINCOLN TRAILS SYSTEM Lincoln Trails System was an interstate company operating in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maryland, D.C., New York and Massachusetts. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1937 running 510 route miles. The 1939 Russell’s Guide shows Lincoln Trailways located at 441 East Ohio Street, Chicago, Illinois, with J. B. Wallace the general manager. At that time it served Chicago, Valpraiso and Fort Wayne, Indiana; Lima, Marion, Columbus, Zanesville, Cambridge and Wheeling, Ohio; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Baltimore, Maryland, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, New York and Boston, Massachusetts. One source says the company operated until the 1940s. It is not listed in the 1940, 1941, 1946 or 1947 MTD.
LYNCHBURG TRANSIT COMPANY This company connection to the National Trailways Bus System is somewhat tenuous. By the mid 1940s Samuel A. Jessup and son Claude A. Jessup were a powerful force in the National Trailways Bus System, which was due to their ownership of Virginia Stage Lines, later Virginia Trailways—a company that grew into a 385-employee business with routes across most of Virginia and into North Carolina and Washington, D.C. In the mid 1940s the Jessup family bought the city transit companies in Roanoke, and Lynchburg, Virginia and Wilmington, North Carolina. They were Roanoke Railway & Electric Company and its holding company, Consolidated Electric & Gas Company, in Roanoke, Virginia; Safety Motor Transit Company, also under Consolidated Electric & Gas Company; Safeway Transit Company, which served Wilmington, North Carolina; eventually the Jessups controlled Safeway Trails, Inc., which joined Trailways in 1938 as Safeway Trailways.
Lynchburg Transit Company was controlled by Samuel A. Jessup as president, Claude A. Jessup as vice president, with F. G. McGee as general manager. (Consolidated Electric & Gas Company was the holding company.) The company ran 48 buses over 125 route miles. This agency was connected to Jessup’s Virginia Trailways, which accounts for the company badge displaying the Trailways logo. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts. Hallmarked “Highway Outfitting Company – 276 W. 48 ST. NYC.”
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “M”
M. K. & O. TRAILWAYS See MISSOURI, KANSAS & OKLAHOMA TRAILWAYS
MACKENZIE TRAILWAYS / MACKENZIE COACH LINES, INC. Jon Hobijn gives some background on the founding of this company: “In December 1920, Howard P. MacKenzie, a native of Nova Scotia, moved to the Boston area looking for work. In order for him to spend his summer vacation with his family back home, his employer gave him a month’s vacation with pay. Other Nova Scotians living in the Boston area heard he was driving home, called to inquire if they could go with him, offering to pay a part of the trip’s cost. After several years of doing this, the idea for a bus line, his own business, occurred to him. is first regular trip from Boston to Sydney, Nova Scotia, 895 miles, was August 18, 1934, using a 1931, seven passenger Cadillac car. Two passengers accompanied him on his trip. The route was Boston, Portland, Bangor, St. Stephen, St. John, Moncton, and Truro to Sydney.” In 1935 MacKenzie applied to the Interstate Commerce Commission and received a certificate to operate. The name of his company was MacKenzie Coach Lines, which was incorporated in Massachusetts on December 20, 1937. In 1938 the company joined the National Trailways Bus System as MacKenzie Trailways; however, their membership was short lived due to the fact that it showed little if any profit. In 1948 the company was sold to brothers Israel and Joseph Winner of Lewiston, Maine, who operated Union Square Stages, Inc., and The White Line, a suburban line service in Lewiston. In 1951 the company became embroiled in a lawsuit with S. M. T. Eastern Limited, which was ultimately settled in the Supreme Court of Canada in favor of MacKenzie Coach Lines, Inc. S. M. T. Eastern, Ltd. took the matter higher and appealed to the Privy Council in London, England. The legal cost involved forced the Winner brothers to sell their company to Maine Central Transport Company, Inc. (For more detailed info, see Jon Hobijn Installment Thirty Two: MacKenzie Trailways.)
McMAKIN TRAILWAYS / McMAKIN MOTOR COACH / McMAKIN MOTOR COACHES, INC. was founded in the 1930s by Charles C. McMakin in Lubbock, Texas. The company served Clovis, Earth, Plainview, Vernon and Lubbock, Texas. In 1937 McMakin bought out Red Star Coaches, Inc., and folded it’s service into McMakin Motor Coaches, which was thereafter known as McMakin Motor Coaches, Inc. At some point McMakin joined the National Trailways Bus System as McMakin Trailways. By 1938 McMakin had bought out South Plains Motor Coaches, Inc. and was running both companies. That merger would lead to the founding of the Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma Coaches, Inc. (TNM&O) in 1939. That year the Russell’s Guide listed McMakin Motor Coaches, Inc. and TNM&O Coaches, Inc., as one and the same company. Interestingly, Charles McMakin isn’t mentioned in the company’s operations, while C. M. Owens, who was the former general manager of Red Star Coaches, Inc., which Charles C. McMakin had bought out in 1937, was listed as the traffic manager for TNM&O Coaches. In 1980 the following info was printed in a report about the company: “TNM&O is for all practical purposes, a subsidiary operation of Greyhound Lines, Inc. Greyhound owns 59% of the company stock and Trailways Systems owns another 39%. There are five members on the board of directors, two from Greyhound and two from Trailways while Bob Greenhill, the President and General Manager of the Company is the fifth member of the Board.” The badge is die pressed, measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
MAINE CENTRAL TRANSPORTATION COMPANY / SamOse COMPANY The SamOse Company was formed in Maine in 1925 as a bus subsidiary of Maine Central Railroad Company. Late in 1931 Maine Central Railroad Company issued this statement: “January 1, 1932: effective this date all motor coach and truck operations by the Maine Central Railroad Company will be conducted by the Maine Central Transportation Company. These operations, which had been conducted by the SamOset Company, have grown to such an extent that it is desirable to operate this service by a separate company devoted exclusively to highway motor transportation. Accordingly the name of the Kineo Company, a wholly owned subsidiary previously inactive, was changed to Maine Central Transportation Company with appropriate change in certificate of purposes filed with the Secretary of State.” In the early 1950s the company bought out MacKenzie Coach Lines, Inc. It joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1952, and remained until 1955 when the company was taken over by Greyhound Lines. On April 8, 1955, Greyhound Lines acquired all the capital stock of Maine Central Transportation Co., Inc. and created a new division known as Maine Greyhound Lines, Inc. However, Greyhound continued to operate buses under the Maine Central Transportation Company name, which, in 1956, was cited as the largest intrastate operator in Maine.
MARTZ TRAILWAYS / MARTZ LINES / FRANK MARTZ COACH COMPANY, INC. was founded in 1908 by Frank Martz, Sr. in Plymouth, Pennsylvania and operated between small mining towns in Pennsylvania. (The following info is from the company’s website.) In 1912 Martz took over an intercity bus service based in Wilkes-Barre and operated it under the name White Transit Company. Rides cost 5¢ and stayed that price until 1952 – the last nickel bus fare in the country. In 1922 the Frank Martz Coach Company was formed for intra-city interstate express service operating between Wilkes-Barre and New York City-Philadelphia-Albany, NY-Syracuse, NY-Buffalo-Cleveland, OH-Detroit and Chicago, IL. Because of its use of parlor cars, it was promoted as Club Coach Service. In 1927 the company’s headquarters was established in Wilkes-Barre and was incorporated as Frank Martz Coach Company. Frank Martz, Sr. was one of the founding members of the National Trailways Bus System, and in 1936 joined as Martz Trailways. Also in 1936, Frank Martz, Jr. succeeded his father in the company and held the position until 1964. Frank Henry, grandson of Frank Martz Sr., became the 3rd generation of the family to lead the company when he took over as President in 1964, a position he held until 1996. In 1974 the company purchased Gold Line in Washington D.C. That same year the company began operating Grayline sightseeing, also in D.C. In 1983 Martz acquired Gulf Coast in Tampa & St. Petersburg, FL and National Coach Works in Fredericksburg, VA. In 1986 Martz acquired First Class Coach Company in St. Petersburg, Florida. In 1988 the company acquired Tourtime America in Richmond, Virginia. In 1994 the company acquired Franklin Motorcoach in Virginia. In 1996 Scott Henry became the 4th Martz family member to take control of the company as President. The company is still in business today: “The mission of the Martz Group is to provide safe, reliable and courteous service at an affordable price, and has stayed true to this mission, vision, and community for over a century. The services offered have continuously evolved for the last 100 years, providing transportation in 7 states; Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, Washington D.C and Florida.”
In the 1946-47 MTD the company was listed as operating 75 buses over 1950 route miles; in addition, the White Transit Company was running 25 buses over 25 route miles. Frank Martz, Sr. was listed as president of both companies, with Frank Martz, Jr. as the general manager of White Transit. There are Trailways badges out there, but I’ve yet to find a company badge for Frank Martz Coach Company.
MATHIS TRAILWAYS / MATHIS BUS LINES, INC. Mathis Bus Lines, Inc. was operating in the early 1930s from Blytheville, Arkansas. In 1945 the company’s address was 326 South Church Street, Jonesboro, Arkansas and Edith Mathis was the president. It ran from Blytheville to Dell, Roseland. Manila, Leachville, Monette, Black Oak, Lake City, Jonesboro, and Newport. It was a member of the National Trailways Bus System from 1945-1950. In 1946 the company’s Trailways schedule was NORTH-SOUTH: Lake City, Black Oak, Monette, Manila, Bltheville, Grubbs, Newport, Weiner, and Waldenburg; EAST-WEST: Truman, Marked Tree, Memphis, Hoxie, Walnut, Ridge, Mammoth Springs, West Plains, Springfield and Kansas City and operated out of Jonesboro’s Union Depot. The company was acquired by Great Southern Coaches, Inc. in 1954.
METROPOLITAN TRAILWAYS / EMERY’S MOTOR COACH LINES / EMERY MOTOR COACH LINES, INC. The company was founded by Robert L. Emery, Jr. in Martinsburg, West Virginia. I don’t know the date of the company’s founding, but certainly it was flourishing in the 1940s. At some point in the late 1940s the company had joined the National Trailways Bus System as Metropolitan Trailways. By 1949 the company was in deep financial trouble. In October 1949 the Mellon National Bank & Trust Company of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania foreclosed. On Friday, October 28, 1949 at 10 a.m., the bank forced a public sale at the door of the Berkley County, West Virginia courthouse. Everything was for sale: “Together with all rights, franchise permits, certificates of public conveyance and good-will owned by the said Robert L. Emery, Jr., an individual doing business as Emery’s Motor Coach Lines and Emery’s Motor Coach Lines, Inc. a Corporation.” The sale listed 30 buses, the oldest being a 1935 Yellow Coach and the most recent being Fexible coaches from the 1940, including two 1948 coaches. The details of the sale were revealed in a November 21, 1949 Hagerstown, Maryland newspaper article, which reported that Francis H. Urner, an official of the Potomac Coach Lines, Inc., Jack A. Bowers, the president of the company, Fred Lillard, the manager and Paul Smith, supervisor, acknowledged that the “new company” was having financial difficulties. The article also revealed that Robert L. Emery had been given a 30-day option to repurchase his bus line at the same price Potomac Coach Lines paid Mellon National Bank, which was $20,000 cash. Apparently Potomac Coach Lines was a new company, founded in 1949 at the purchase of Emery’s bus line. My guess is that Emery never exercised his option to repurchase, since in December 1951 he sued Mellon National Bank and Trust Company for money, he claimed, the company failed to pay him after the sale of his business.
MID-CONTINENT TRAILWAYS / MID-CONTINENT COACHES, INC. This company was established in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. It incorporated on June 14, 1940, and joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1946 where it remained until 1954. By 1954 the company owned/controlled Rainbow Coaches and Southwest Coaches and served Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Colorado with 150 buses over 1620 route miles. From 1954-1977 it was affiliated with Oklahoma Transportation Company, which ran from Oklahoma City to Dallas, Texas and to Fort Smith, Arkansas. In 1977 Mid-Continent Coaches and Southwest Coaches absorbed Oklahoma Transportation Company.
MIDWEST TRAILWAYS / MIDWEST BUS LINES, INC. / MIDWEST BUSLINES, INC. In 1955 Missouri Pacific Railroad sold its bus subsidiary, Missouri Pacific Bus Lines and a new company, Midwest Bus Lines, Inc. / Midwest Buslines, Inc. was formed to purchase the company. The new company joined (or rejoined, since Missouri Pacific Bus Lines had been a member), the National Trailways Bus System as Midwest Trailways. The president of the new company was Trammell Crowe of Little Rock, Arkansas. (Of interest is that the company is not listed in any edition of Russell’s Guide or MTD from the late 1950s, with the exception of the 1957 MTD, which lists only one Midwest Bus Lines, and that was for was a Midwest Bus Lines operating out of Dickinson, North Dakota, with one bus and was owned by Alex Beaudon operating over 64 route miles.) The company was sold in 1960 to Maurice E. Moore’s Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways. After that, the company had some claim to fame when one of its buses, carrying five Freedom Riders on route to Houston, Texas, pulled into the Little Rock, Arkansas, Midwest Trailways Depot on July 10 1961, and was met by a crowd of some 400 protesters. The company was still operating as part of the Trailways system in 1981.
MISSALA TRIALWAYS / MISSALA STAGES, INC. Missala Stages was listed in the 1939 Russell’s Guide as operating out of Oakman, Alabama, with J. H. Deason as the owner. The route was from Birmingham to Jasper to Sulligent, Alabama. Obviously the company name is made of a conjunction of Mississippi and Alabama. By 1943 the company had moved its headquarters to Jasper, Alabama. The company was incorporated on May 25, 1946 in Jasper, Alabama by Mr. & Mrs. James H. Deason and R. Foster Deason. By 1948 the company was running to New Albany, Mississippi. It joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1949 and remained until 1951. In 1954 the company was operating 18 buses over 916 route miles. In later years Wesley W. Meeks was president and CEO of the MissAla Stages, Inc. Missala Stages, Inc. operated until 1970.
MISSOURI-ARKANSAS TRAILWAYS / MO-ARK TRAILWAYS / MISSOURI-ARKANSAS COACH LINES, INC. This company was owned and operated by Floyd W. Jones in the 1930s in the states of Missouri and Arkansas. In 1938 the company joined Trailways as Mo-Ark Trailways. In turn Mo-Ark Trailways was sold in 1945 to American Buslines, which was sold in 1953 to Transcontinental Bus System/Continental Trailways. The following excerpt is from the article “Ozark Air Lines” from American Aviation Historical Society Journal, Vol. 58, No. 3 – Fall 2013 gives a bit more background:
“Ozark [Air Lines] was the brainchild of Laddie Hamilton, who . . . after operating his own automobile garage in Springfield, Mo., Laddie went to work for Floyd W. Jones, first as a bus driver, then, in 1936, as manager of the southern portion of Jones’s Mo-Ark Coaches (later Mo-Ark Trailways). Floyd Jones and Laddie Hamilton developed a business relationship that would serve them both well for many years to come. With Jones’s help, in 1937 Hamilton purchased the bankrupt Dixie Coaches, a bus line operating in Alabama and Mississippi. He resuscitated the company, turning it into a financially-healthy enterprise, then sold it for a profit to Southeastern Greyhound Lines in 1942. Laddie Hamilton had earned his pilot’s license in 1928, so it was no surprise that his next move would be into the field of aviation. He was training pilots during the war working for Oliver Parks’s Alabama Institute of Aeronautics part-time while acting as regional manager for Southeastern Greyhound Lines in Tuscaloosa. On a spring day in 1943, he met with his friend, Floyd Jones, and two other gentlemen, Barak T. Mattingly and Arthur Heyne, both attorneys, at Mattingly’s office in the Title Guarantee Building on Chestnut Street in Downtown St. Louis. The purpose of their meeting was to discuss forming an intrastate airline that would operate between Springfield, St. Louis, Kansas City and Columbia, Missouri. Articles of Incorporation were filed with the Missouri Secretary of State on August 26, 1943, and a charter was granted on September 1. Ozark Airlines was officially in business (note that ‘Airlines’ was one word in the original incarnation of Ozark).” The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
MISSOURI, KANSAS & OKLAHOMA TRAILWAYS / M.K. & O. COACH LINES / MISSOURI KANSAS & OKLAHOMA COACH LINES In 1928, Howard W. Allen incorporated his fledgling bus line, Allen’s Auto Stage, as Missouri, Kansas & Oklahoma Coach Lines, Inc. That small bus operation grew to become a regional intercity carrier serving the nation’s mid-section in both regular route and charter bus operations. From 1937 until 1953 it was part of the Trailways System as M. K. & O. Trailways. Diversification efforts in the early 1970’s established the company in the commercial real estate business under the name of Venture Properties. Eventually the company divested itself of the transit business. Here’s a notice that was published on May 3, 2011: “OKLAHOMA CITY – Downtown’s Union Bus Station could close as early as this fall after serving as a hub for travelers for more than 70 years. A cafeteria that was once part of the bus station was shuttered a few years ago, but the terminal still bustled with passengers waiting for connecting buses one recent weekday morning. Early bus industry pioneer Howard W. Allen built the Union Bus Station as a hub for his regional intercity bus company called Missouri, Kansas & Oklahoma Coach Lines.” The below bus badge appears to be a later issue. I would guess there are older, different style badges out there. I’m not sure if a Trailways badge was ever issued. More info needed.
MISSOURI PACIFIC TRAILWAYS / MISSOURI PACIFIC BUS LINES Missouri Pacific Bus Lines was formed in 1928 as bus subsidiary of Missouri Pacific Railroad. In the 1930s the company was operating over routes paralleling practically all of the lines of the parent railway between St. Louis, Missouri, Brownsville, Texas, Pueblo, Colorado, Omaha, Nebraska, and New Orleans, Louisiana. The company joined National Trailways in 1936. This last until 1948, when it resumed operating under its original name. In 1957 the company was sold to Midwest Bus Lines, which was also a member of Trailways. In 1960 Maurice E. Moore, who founded Transcontinental Bus System in 1948 after his 1943 purchase of Bowen Motor Coaches, bought Midwest Bus Lines and absorbed it into Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Bus System.
MODERN TRAILWAYS See BAY LINE TRAILWAYS.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “N”
TRAILWAYS OF NEW ENGLAND See Blue Way Trailways
NEW YORK TRAILWAYS See Empire State Trailways.
NORTHERN TRAILWAYS / NORTHERN TRAILS, INC. There isn’t a lot of historical background for this company. One source says the company was formed in 1937. Jon Hobijn writes that Northern Trails, Inc. took over the lease of Safe Way Lines, Inc.’s nine buses from the lessor, Santa Fe Trails Transportation Company in 1938. That company was operating between Chicago and New York City, and continued by Northern Trails, Inc. Controlling interest in the company was bought by Aaron Greenleaf in 1939. That year the company joined the National Trailways Bus System. In 1942 an application was made to sell Northern to All American Bus Lines and was approved by the ICC in 1944. By the end of that year it was merged into All American Bus Lines, which was renamed in 1946 as American Buslines.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “O”
OHIO TRAILWAYS, INC. / ZANE TRANSIT LINES, INC. According to one source, this company was incorporated in the 1920s. It was a member of the Ohio Motor Bus Association in the 1920s and 1930s and operated between Cleveland, Akron, Canton, Coshocton, Zanesville, Lancaster, Athens and Marietta, Ohio. In the 1930s the company was headquartered in Zanesville with C. M. Wilson as manager. (Members of the Wilson family continued to operate the company on into the 1970s.) In 1954 the company bought out the Glouster-Athens Auto Bus Company, and joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1956 and was renamed Ohio Trailways, Inc. According to Ohio state records, the company’s certificate of operation was revoked in early 1973 and it was out of business in 1974. The assets were sold in 1976 to Garfield Heights Coach Line.
OLYMPIC TRAILWAYS / PORT TOWNSEND SOUTHERN STAGES, INC. On September 6, 1946, the Washington State Department of Transportation issued a certificate to Frank L. Hart and Arthur Garrett to operate Port Townsend Southern Stages (also known as Port Townsend Southern Bus Line) and furnish passenger and express service between Port Townsend and Quilcene. (This Frank L. Hart was the son of the Frank S. Hart whose HART BROTHERS STAGE LINE ran the same route back in 1922.) Port Townsend Southern Bus Line was successful for several years and operated out of Port Townsend’s Central Hotel and later from Baker’s Drug Store on Water and Tyler Streets (on the opposite corner from O’Neill’s Drug Store where the Washington Motor Coach System buses stopped) and ran daily, except for Sunday and holidays. Port Townsend Southern Stages advertised routes Port Townsend-Maynard-Quilcene, and Port Townsend – Center – Quilcene – Brinnon – Hoodsport – Bremerton Junction. Later, Port Townsend Southern Stages would advertise routes from Port Townsend south to Quilcene, Brinnon, Hoodsport, Shelton, Olympia, Aberdeen, Chehalis, Kelso, Portland, San Francisco and finally into Los Angeles some 36 hours later. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1949 as Olympic Trailways. After 1952, Port Townsend Southern Stages isn’t mentioned in the Port Townsend city directory, so one might assume it ceased business after this date.
OZARK TRAILWAYS See A. W. Shepherd Trailways for information. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “P”
PACIFIC TRAILWAYS / MT. HOOD STAGES, INC. (Information on this company comes from Jon’s Trailways History Corner.) In Bend, Oregon, back in 1929, Myrl Hoover and William Niskanen operated a bus on a regular schedule to connect with Union Pacific passenger trains. By 1931 they had expanded their business by taking over Columbia Gorge Motor Coach Company’s routes running to The Dalles on the Columbia River. (Columbia Gorge Motor Coach was owned by Pickwick Stages, which was later merged with Pacific Greyhound.) A man named Del Mattson, who was running his own bus line from The Dalles to Maupin, joined the enterprise and they incorporated as Mount Hood Stages on May 20, 1931. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System on January 1, 1943, after which it was known as Pacific Trailways, although the corporate name would remain Mount Hood Stages. The company folded in 1988 with Greyhound taking over its routes. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
PAN AMERICAN TRAILWAYS, INC. / PAN AMERICAN BUS LINES Jon Hobijn writes: The story of Pan American Trailways spans a short period of time, is bizarre and details a largely unknown Trailways member. It started out as an independent, was a Trailways operation owned by three other members and then ended its life as part of Greyhound where it also created problems and was finally, quietly, shut down, and it all began in Charlotte, North Carolina with a man named Paul R. Sheahan.
Sheahan incorporated Pan American Bus Lines on December 11, 1934, in South Carolina. His premise was to operate a limited stop, through bus service between New York City and Miami. Pan American Trailways, Inc., began operting in 1940 in Charlottesville, Virginia. Ownership of the company was held 50% by Virginia Stage Lines, 25% by Safeway Trails and 25% by Eastern Trails, all three Trailways members. Sheahan leased his buses to the new company. Effectively, Claude Jessup, through his control of Virginia and Safeway and interest in Eastern Trails, controlled Pan American Trailways.
A joint application was filed with the ICC on August 22, 1941. Arthur Hill of Atlantic Greyhound testified that Pan American Bus. was deeply in debt and was, in fact, in danger of immediate collapse. This is the same argument which would be made by Fred Currey in his take over of Trailways, Inc. 46 years later. Hill decided that Trailways had missed the chance to just purchase Pan American outright once through stupidity and he wasn’t about to wait and give them another chance to have a competitive go at him, keeping in mind that the Pan American route duplicated Atlantic Greyhound for about 850 miles from Washington, DC to Jacksonville, Florida.
The ICC, however had a different idea. They didn’t like the dividing up of Pan American amongst their competitors and in November 1941, denied Greyhound’s application. Hill wasn’t going to take no for an answer and two weeks later he formed Pan American Greyhound Lines, Inc. to acquire Sheahan’s assets. The stockholders of Pan American Greyound turned out to be the same four individuals, Sheahan, Atlantic and Pennsylvania Greyhound and Florida Motor Lines. Sheahan then sold his stock back to the other three stockholders in exchange for the assumption of his debts.
Another joint application was made and on January 16, 1942, permission was granted for Pan American Greyhound Lines to acquire Pan American Bus Lines, with Atlantic Greyhound controlling the new company. This marked the first time Greyhound buses actually operated substantially into peninsula Florida and could be seen on their one round trip per day in Miami.
On April 16, 1947, Atlantic Greyhound received permission to merge Pan American Greyhound into its operations and the company quietly disappeared after 12 years of operation under three owners.
PANHANDLE TRAILWAYS / PANHANDLE STAGES In 1936 this company was operating in the Texas Panhandle and in Oklahoma and Kansas. Panhandle Stages was a Trailways member from 1936-1948.
PENNSYLVANIA TRAILWAYS / BLUE & WHITE LINE, INC. There’s almost no information on this company on the Net. According to Chicago Transit & Railfan, it was part of the Blue & White Lines of Virginia, and was a member of the National Trailways Bus System from 1949 until 1951. I can find no records in Virginia mentioning a Blue & White Lines doing business. According to West Virginia state records, the Blue & White Lines was registered in there on September 13, 1945, with its offices in Pennsylvania. The 1954 MTD lists the Blue & White Line, Inc. headquartered in Altoona, Pennsylvania in the P.R.R. building with 35 buses running 673 route miles and serving portions of Pennsylvania and Maryland. The 1953 Russell’s Guide adds Buffalo, New York on the list of destinations. It is not listed in the 1957 MTD.
PINE HILL TRAILWAYS / PINE HILL-KINGSTON BUS CORPORATION This company had its beginnings in the 1910s-early 1920s and was founded by John B. Winne, who ran a Stanley Motor Carriage —a “Stanley Steamer”—between Pine Hill and Kingston, New York. In 1922 the company was bought by brothers Russ and Levan “Bub” Merrihew. In 1927 the Merrihews bought the Longyear bus line, which served the Woodstock area, and later extended this to Margaretville, New York. In 1931 they offered direct service from Margaretville to New York City – two buses daily in each direction. Over the coming years they extended the company routes and was serving Oneonta and Cooperstown. In 1946 the company was running routes that included Margaretville, Arkville, Fleischmanns, Highmount, Pine Hill, Big Indian, Shandaken, Allaben, Phoenicia, Mt. Tremper, Cold Brook, Boiceville, West Shokan, Olive Bridge, Shokan, Ashokan, Glenford, West Hurley, Stony Hollow and Kingston. In 1956 the company was running 16 buses over 187 route miles. After the death of the Merrihew brothers in 1944 and 1963, the company was sold in 1964-65 to Adirondack Trailways and joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1966. It is still in operation. (For more information see TRAILWAYS OF NEW YORK and ADIRONDACK TRAILWAYS.)
PROVIDENCE TRAILWAYS There’s nothing to be found on the Net about this company, other than a mention by Chicago Transit & Railfan that it operated from 1959 until 1962—presumably out of Providence, Rhode Island.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “Q”
QUAKER CITY TRAILWAYS / QUAKER CITY BUS COMPANY This company came into existence and lasted for less than a year, which occurred when Safeway Trailways bought Quaker City Bus Company of Philadelphia in 1958. The company was absorbed into Safeway Trailways and ceased to exist.
QUEEN CITY TRAILWAYS BUS SYSTEM / QUEEN CITY COACH COMPANY, INC. According to several family members, and repeated on a few different websites, Queen City Coach Company company was founded in 1928 by L. A. Love, (Lonnie Adam Love, Sr. November 1, 1893–March 11, 1969), whose name was well known in the nation’s early transportation industry. However, Greyhound historian Dr. D.B. “Doc” Rushing credits another early transit pioneer named John Gilmer with founding the company. (Gilmer 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).” According to Doc Rushing 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 places Love in the 1928 time frame mentioned by Doc Rushing. It seems 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 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.” There are two known badges for this company. An earlier badge with two threaded posts made by Fifth Avenue Uniform Company that looks like it dates from the 1940s, and a later badge that measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “R”
READING TRAILWAYS From Jon’s Trailways History Corner: “The Reading Railroad set up Reading Transportation in 1928 to compliment their existing railroad passenger service. Reading bus service operated from Harrisburg east to Reading and Allentown, from Lancaster to Reading, from Allentown-Bethlehem to Philadelphia, and from Pottsville to Reading and Philadelphia. . . . In 1964, the Reading Railroad decided to sell their bus operations and Readings Trailways’ routes were sold piecemeal to four different operators: 1. Safeway Trailways purchased Lancaster-Reading Allentown 2. Edwards Lakes-to-Sea got Allentown-Shamokin and Pottsville-Shamokin 3. Penn Stages too over Philadelphia-Allentown (Bieber today) and 4. Capitol Trailways got everything that was left, namely Harrisburg-Reading-Philadelphia, Reading-Pottsville, Reading-Tamaqua and Reading’s charter certificate, ICC rights from five miles either side of every Reading Railroad track in existence.” The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
RED RIVER TRAILWAYS is a present-day member of the Trailways Transportation System that, according to their webpage, has “been serving the Ark-La-Tex since 1922. With more than 100 years of driving experience combined, our skilled team of drivers excels at passenger safety, customer service, and problem solving.” The company was founded in 2006 and is based in Shreveport, Louisiana and serves Northwest Louisiana, Northeast Texas and Southwest Arkansas. As for the company’s history, their website offers this time line: 1922 – Tri State Coaches; 1937 – Tri-State Trailways; 1947 – Great Southern Coaches; 2006 – Red River Trailways. (NOTE: Red River Trailways lists Great Southern Coaches in its company pedigree in 1947, which creates a problem. The only company of that name and date was Great Southern Coaches / Great Southern Coaches, Inc., which operated out of Jonesboro, Arkansas. I have not been able to make the connection between that company and Red River Trailways. Red River Trailways’ parent company is Great Southern Coaches of Arkansas, Inc., but that company’s info says it was founded in December 2000 and began operations in 2001, which doesn’t match Great Southern Coaches, Inc. The only info that might connect the two companies is that W. S. Ramsey was president of Great Southern Coaches, Inc. in 1956 and a Peter D Ramsey is the president of Great Southern Coaches of Arkansas in 2018. More info is needed.)
RED STAR TRAILWAYS / RED STAR LINES, INC. / RED STAR MOTOR COACHES, INC. began operations in 1923 as the Eastern Shore Transit Company, Inc. with service between Salisbury and Clairborne-Annapolis Ferry. Red Star Motor Coaches, Inc. was formed when Eastern Shore Transit changed ownership and expanded service. The new owner—Day & Zimmermann, Inc., an engineering-development firm—organized under the laws of Maryland on October 28, 1925, as a “carrier of passengers and, to a certain extent, of express and newspapers. In addition to its tangible operating properties, it had certain permits or franchises to operate over fixed routes and owned 50 percent of the capital stock of the Red Star Garage & Terminal Company.” It served Salisbury, Wilmington, Baltimore, Clairborne, Ocean City, Cambridge, Hurlock and Philadelphia. On January 22, 1930, the name was changed to Red Star Lines, Inc. Lee Webster Selfe, a minor stock holder, was the general manager. In 1939 the company joined joined Trailways as Red Star Trailways. (This affiliation continued until 1947.) On December 28, 1951, Red Star Motor Coaches, Inc. was taken over by Carolina Coach Company, which was headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
RIO GRANDE TRAILWAYS / RIO GRANDE MOTOR WAY, INC. In 1927 the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railway formed a trucking and bus subsidiary called the Rio Grande Motorway. The company, which was headquartered in Denver, Colorado and, in its early operation, acquired other bus lines, including Western Slope Motorway, San Luis Valley Bus Company and Inland Pacific Stages. In 1936 the company joined Trailways as Rio Grand Trailways, and operated between Denver and Pueblo and Salt Lake City, via Tennessee Pass, with feeder schedules in central and western Colorado and Utah. In 1946 the company operated 66 buses over 1950 route miles, and also 246 trucks. In 1948 the company sold to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “S”
SAFEWAY TRAILWAYS / SAFEWAY TRAILS, INC. Untangling the history of this company is not an easy task—indeed, no less an expert in Trailways history, Jon Hobijn, writes: “There is often a great deal of confusion about the early use of the ‘Safeway’ name in the National Trailways Bus System, mainly because there were two of them, Safeway Lines of Illinois, a founding member of NTBS and Safeway Trails, which while not connected to the former, did have a bizarre connection to the original … and that connection came through a man from Kansas, who with his colleagues owned 40% of Santa Fe Trail Transportation. Safeway Trails came into being and its first few years of existence centered not so much around buses but around a series of razzle-dazzle plays designed to keep [Aaron] Greenleaf’s ownership in not only Safeway Trails, but Northern Trails and Eastern Trails, a secret from the ICC, who opposed Greenleaf’s ownership in the eastern carriers because of his connection to Santa Fe. If I write book chapter and verse the story is almost impossible to follow … I barely can.”
For the reader who wants more info on the above, I refer you to Jon’s Trailways History Corner webpage (you can find the link on our “LINKS” page). But the essentials are this: Safeway Trails, Inc. was founded in 1937 by two Washington transportation lawyers named William A. Roberts and Charles B. McInnis; a third partner/founder was the aforementioned Aaron Greenleaf. After a lot of tangled dealing, in the end Roberts, McInnis and Claude A. Jessup of Virginia Stage Lines, emerged as owners of Safeway Trails. By 1942 Jessup alone was in control. Safeway Trails operated out of Washington, D. C. And its original route was between Washington-Baltimore-Philadelphia-New York City.
In 1957, Safeway Trails and Virginia Stage Lines purchased Trailways of New England. In 1958 the company acquired Quaker City Bus Company, which operated between Philadelphia and New York City and Philadelphia and Atlantic City. In 1964 the company bought out Reading Transportation Company, which operated from Philadelphia to Pottsville and Harrisburg. Finally, in 1966, Safeway Trails, Inc./Safeway Trailways was purchased by Continental Trailways. Jon Hobijn 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 has two threaded posts and measures 2⅔” x 2⅝”.
SANTA FE TRAILWAYS / SANTA FE TRAIL STAGES, INC. / SANTA FE TRAIL TRANSPORTATION COMPANY / SANTA FE TRAIL SYSTEM The Santa Fe Transportation Company was a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe (A. T. & S. F.). and was operated in conjunction with the Santa Fe Trail System in which the railway had a controlling interest. It was the largest of the five original founding members of the National Trailways Bus System. It’s main line stretched from Chicago to Los Angeles, 2,240 miles; its operation in California ran 529 miles from San Diego to San Francisco; and a 716 mile north-south line from Salt Lake City to Phoenix, 684 miles from Kansas City to Denver.
The history of the above companies is related, in part, by the late Trailways historian Jon Hobein: “In 1924, what would grow to be the Santa Fe System consisted of only a few short bus routes radiating out of Wichita, Kansas, operating with enlarged passenger cars. In order to survive and prosper, the companies all pulled together and pooled their resources as one company, Southern Kansas Stage Lines. Gradually, they began to prosper. Blue Bird Bus Lines from Wichita to Kansas City was purchased and in 1930, Kansas City to Tulsa was purchased from Rapid Auto Transit and from Wardway Lines came Tulsa to Muskogee, Ft. Smith, Fayetteville and Oklahoma City. In 1933, routes were extended east from Kansas City to Chicago and St. Louis when Blue Motor Coach was bought and Santa Fe Trail Stages acquisition extended the operation 1,459 miles west from Wichita to Los Angeles via Tucumcari and Albuquerque. Additional routes in Kansas and Nebraska and extending to Denver came from Cardinal Stage Lines. In 1935 the name of the company was changed from Southern Kansas Stage Lines to Santa Fe Trail Transportation Company and later that year the AT&SF Railroad bought an interest in the company, acquiring a portion of the stock [23,000 shares], marking the first time the railroad had any involvement with the bus line.”
There is this interesting insight found in the November 1937 Railway Age magazine in an article titled The Santa Fe’s Far-Flung Bus System: “Why Bus Companies Were Bought; Prior to going into the bus business on this large scale, the Santa Fe conducted an extensive study of bus service in relation to rail service and became convinced that full and complete passenger transportation in service could only be provided by a coordinated rail and bus service. The subsequent acquisitions were made on the basis of this comprehensive survey, and in these purchases it encountered a fortunate situation. The president of the Southern Kansas was a former Santa Fe train conductor and, possibly because of his familiarity with the territory, the bus company had confined itself almost exclusively to territory tributary to the Santa Fe, paralleling its main lines and branches for practically the entire distance between Chicago and Los Angeles, and as far south as Oklahoma City, Okla. Thus, in acquiring the Southern Kansas, the railway acquired a bus system so nearly paralleling its rails that it could hardly have done better if it had laid out the system itself with completely coordinated service in mind.”
Santa Fe Trail Transportation Company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1936; in 1948 it was sold to Transcontinental Bus System/Continental Trailways. We have several badges here: first is the Santa Fe Trail System badge with a single threaded post. The second badge is the Santa Fe Trailways badge, which measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts. The third badge is from the Santa Fe Trail Transportation Company.
SERVICE COACH TRAILWAYS / SERVICE TRAILWAYS / SERVICE COACH LINES, INC. Service Coach Lines was founded in the 1930s by George T. Morris in Dublin, Georgia. Initially the company ran an east-west route from Macon to Savannah, Georgia and made a connection with Atlantic Greyhound. In 1946 the company was operating 35 buses. In 1948 the company joined the National Trailways Bus System as Service Coach Trailways. In 1956 the company was sold to Tamiami Trailways, Carolina Trailways and Virginia Trailways. Thereafter, the company ran between Augusta, Georgia and Jacksonville, Florida, Sylvania to Jacksonville, Waycross to Savanna, Georgia, and Waycross to Brunswick, Georgia. Service Coach Trailways lasted until 1975.
SERVICE STAGES, INC. / SERVICE STAGES TRAILWAYS Service Stages, Inc. was operating by the early 1930s from Birmingham, Alabama, to Atlanta, Georgia. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1945 as Service Stages Trailways. In 1952 it was purchased by Crescent Stages, Inc. Trailways historian Jon Hobijn writes: “Continental Crescent Lines was incorporated in Delaware in 1952, a wholly owned subsidiary of Continental Southern Lines, for the purpose of purchasing Crescent Stages, a member of the Trailways association. Crescent’s routes stretched from Nashville, TN on the north through Huntsville and Birmingham to Montgomery, AL; from Montgomery to Columbus, GA; from Chattanooga, TN to Montgomery; and with the 1952 purchase of Service Stages, from Birmingham to Atlanta, GA.” In 1953 Crescent Trailways was sold to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways.
A. W. SHEPHERD TRAILWAYS / A. W. SHEPHERD BUS LINES / OZARK TRAILWAYS / OZARK TRAILS, INC. / MO-ARK TRAILS 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. By 1953 A. W. Shepherd was the president and general manager of South Central Stages, which operated out of 529 W. McDaniel St. in Springfield, which was also the address of Mo-Ark Trails, which the MTD states that Shepherd owned, and South Central Stages controlled. South Central Stages was also a National Trailways Bus System member from 1945 until 1954. In 1954 South Central Stages operated 4 buses over 320 route miles. In 1957 South Central Stages was sold to Smitty’s Bus Company. Mo-Ark Trails continued operations until 1967.
SMOKY MOUNTAIN TRAILWAYS / SMOKY MOUNTAIN STAGES INC. I’ve yet to locate a founding date for this company, but there is this early record: On April 12, 1934, the Public Utilities Commission approved the lease of the Chattanooga to Copperhill [Tennessee] route (owned by W.M. Lowery) to Smoky Mountain Stages of Asheville, North Carolina, which was headed by Joel Wesley Wright and his son Wayne E. Wright. In 1936 the company was operating in western North Carolina and portions of Georgia and South Carolina, and served as part of through route to New York-Florida and New York-New Orleans. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1938. By the early 1940s its buses ran from Knoxville, Tennessee to Asheville and Charlotte, North Carolina, to Greenville, South Carolina to Atlanta, Georgia, and into the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee. In 1946 the company was headquartered in Asheville, North Carolina and operated 107 buses over 1,664 route miles. By this time the Wrights, father and son, were part owners of Queen City Coach Company / Queen City Trailways of Charlotte, North Carolina, and, in turn, L. A. Love, owner of Queen City Coach Company, had some kind of financial interest in Smoky Mountain Stages. In 1954 Smoky Mountain Stages operated 93 buses over 1644 route miles. On August 29, 1960, the Tennessee Coach Company, which was headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, was sold for $2,400,000 to three Trailways affiliates: Continental Tennessee Lines, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Continental Southern, Virginia Stage Lines and Smoky Mountain Stages. A new company was formed named Tennessee Trailways, Inc. 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.
SOUTH CENTRAL TRAILWAYS / SOUTH CENTRAL STAGES In the 1940s the company was owned and operated by Lon Massey out of Fort Scott, Kansas. In 1945 the company joined the National Trailways Bus System as South Central Trailways. By the early 1950s the company had been taken over by A. W. Shepherd and moved to Springfield, Missouri. A. W. Shepherd was the president and general manager and the company operated out of 529 W. McDaniel St. in Springfield, which was also the address of Mo-Ark Trails, which the MTD states that Shepherd owned, and South Central Stages controlled. (Shepherd’s wife, Mary R. Shepherd, served as the company’s secretary-treasurer.) South Central Stages dropped its membership in Trailways in 1954. In 1954 the company operated 4 buses over 320 route miles. In 1957 the company was sold to Smitty’s Bus Company.
SOUTHEASTERN TRAILWAYS, INC. See Indianapolis & Southeastern Trailways.
SOUTHERN TRAILWAYS / SOUTHERN TRAILWAYS OF GEORGIA / SOUTHERN STAGES INC. / SOUTHERN STAGES COMPANY, INC. This company was organized on October 20, 1930, as Southern Stages Company, with Frank L. Wilkinson owning 99% of the company. Based in Macon, Georgia, the early company operated entirely in Georgia, between Augusta and Columbia via Thomson, Sparta, Milledgeville, Gray, Macon, Roberta, Talbotton and Geneva. It also served Louisville, Sandersville, Tennile, Reynolds, Butler, Americus and Echeconnee. The company was reorganized on July 18, 1946, as Southern Stages, Inc. The company joined the National Trailways Bus System as Southern Trailways of Georgia. In the mid 50’s, Wilkinson bought out Atlantic Trailways and operated it as a separate company out of Macon. In 1970 Wilkinson sold both Southern Trailways and Atlantic Trailways to Transcontinental Bus System of Dallas, Texas. These two companies were combined and became known as Continental Atlantic Lines, Inc. In 1974, Transcontinental purchased Tamiami Trailways and in 1977, Continental Atlantic Lines was folded into Tamiami. In April 1961 the ICC won a judgement against Southern Stages Inc. in a case involving enforcement of bus desegregation. The case involved a passenger in Georgia in the summer of 1960. They were fined $100. In 1968 Southern Stages, Inc., ceased operations. The first badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝”, has two threaded posts and was made by “FIFTH AVENUE – UNIFORM CO – 19 SO. WELLS – CHICAGO” (There is a question about this badge, i.e., if it belongs to this company or the Trailways company listed below.)
SOUTHERN TRAILWAYS / SOUTHERN BUS LINES of Alexandria, Louisiana, was formed Morgan W. Walker in 1945 by merging Bordelon Lines/Bordelon Trailways, based in New Orleans; Interurban Transportation Company / Interurban Trailways, based in Alexandria; and Tri-State Transit Company / Tri-State Trailways, based in Shreveport, Louisiana. The line ran as far north as Nashville and Memphis, Tennessee. “The resulting firm, a huge one, based in Alexandria, became named as the Southern Bus Lines, using the brand name of the Southern Trailways. . . . In 1949 the Transcontinental Bus System (using the brand name, trade name, or service name of the Continental Trailways) bought the relatively new (recently consolidated) Southern Bus Lines (the Southern Trailways) and renamed it as the Continental Southern Lines.” (Info from Dr. D. B. “Doc” Rushing’s Bluehounds and Redhounds the History of Greyhound and Trailways.) As to a badge, I must admit that I don’t know if the badge shown under the heading Southern Trailways of Georgia fits this company, or the Southern Trailways of Georgia company.
SOUTHWESTERN TRAILWAYS / SOUTHWESTERN MOTOR CARRIERS CORPORATION / SOUTHWESTERN STAGES, INC. According to one webpage detailing the history of Trailways, Southwestern Trailways was formerly Southwestern Stages and operated from 1937-1947. In the 1946 edition of MTD, Southwestern Trailways, which is operating out of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, is shown as part of Southwestern Stages, Inc. However, according to the Interstate Commerce Commission’s December 31, 1944 year end report, Southwestern Trailways was formerly Southwestern Motor Carriers Corporation. This report is backed by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission in a report dated 1938, and in a Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit Court that was brought before the U.S. Supreme Court dated December 13, 1948: “No. 370. Southwestern Motor Carriers Corporation d/b/a Southwestern Trailways.” There is yet another court case, this one in Texas, involving Southwestern Motor Carriers Corporation and the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen dated 1945: “Southwestern Motor Carriers Corp. is an Oklahoma corporation with its office and principal place of business in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Under the name of Southwestern Trailways it is engaged in transporting by motor vehicle persons, property, and United States mail between various termini in the States of Oklahoma and Texas.” There isn’t enough information on the Net to figure out this conundrum, but it would seem that Southwestern Motor Carriers and Southwestern Stages were one and the same company. In 1939 Southwestern Trailways was operating between Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and Altus. In the 1940s it was operating interstate in Oklahoma and Texas. According to one source it operated until 1947 when it was absorbed by Mid-Continent Trailways.
SUN VALLEY TRAILWAYS / SUN VALLEY BUS LINES, INC. One source offers that this company was started in 1947; however, there is a professional photo of one of its buses that is dated June 9, 1945. It’s listed in the 1946 MTD as located in Phoenix, Arizona, L. A. Tanner president. The following is an account of a 1947 trip on one of Sun Valley’s coaches: “In these years, the entire area was very remote. The principal highway was narrow, two-lane and unpaved, not dissimilar to the poorer sections of today’s Control Road west of Tonto Village. The trip from Phoenix was a full day and sometimes longer. In 1947, R-C staff members were transported from Phoenix to Camp Geronimo via bus provided by Sun Valley Bus Lines. The bus had wooden spoke wheels and the bus top was canvas. The trip started at Scout Headquarters at 8:00 AM; lunched at Sun Flower and arrived at Camp Geronimo at 4:00 PM.” There is a notice in the Tucson Daily Citizen, from Tucson, Arizon December 19, 1947: “. . . application of the American Bus Lines, Inc. and the Sun Valley Bus lines to expand their operations. . . . Sun Valley [Bus] wants to broaden its operations to include New Mexico and Texas.” The company was a Trailways affiliate from 1949-1954, as was American Bus Lines. In 1977 this company was listed as a subsidiary of The Greyhound Corporation. The company was still operating in 2009, but is now listed as out of business. There are two badges for Sun Valley Bus Lines. The first badge is an older nickel-plated example with enameling and has two threaded posts. The second badge has the word “Inc.” included in the title, is made of nickel-plated metal and his two threaded posts. So far I’ve yet to encounter a Sun Valley Trailways badge.
SUNSHINE TRAILWAYS / SUNSHINE BUS LINES, INC. / DIXIE-SUNSHINE TRAILWAYS Sunshine Bus Lines, Inc. was founded in 1919 in Terrell, Texas by Auble Whitted Riter, Sr. (1889-1940) More information is found in Auble Riter’s obituary: Riter began his bus line “with a used touring car, operating a bus line from Dallas to Forney and later extending it to Terrell and then to Tyler. He drove the first car himself. From that beginning he expanded the business until in 1936 his lines, including the Sunshine Bus Lines and Dixie Motor Coach Corporation, were valued at more than $3,000,000. He had the distinction of pioneering streamlined busses. In 1934, as the country was emerging from the depression, he ordered ten streamlined busses after seeing blueprints on them. His ten were the first built in the United States. During his career as a bus line operator he held offices in the National Bus Association. Mr. Riter sold his interests in the lines nearly a year ago and retired, partially because of poor health and partially because he had always said he would retire from business when he reached the age of 50. He observed his fiftieth birthday less than four months before he retired.” Sunshine Bus Lines, Inc. was founded by brothers Auble W. Riter and Christopher C. Riter in Forney, Texas. Not long afterward the operation was moved to Terrell, some 15 miles away. When the company bought Dixie Motor Coach Company from Alva Pearl Barrettin 1933, they combined operations and moved to Dallas, Texas, since Dixie Motor Coach had a large shop already established there—about 35 miles away.
Sunshine Bus Lines, Inc. and Dixie Motor Coach Corporation both joined Trailways in 1937 (as Sunshine Trailways and Dixie Trailways) and remained in the association until 1945. In 1939 Auble Riter, Sr. sold his companies to Joseph P. Kittrell (1870-1950), who had acted as vice president of Sunshine Bus Lines, Inc. The Kittrell family sold out in 1945 and the new owners made application to merge the two corporations into one. Soon afterwards the ICC authorized Dixie Motor Coach Corporation to purchase the stock of Sunshine Bus Lines, and to change the name to Dixie-Sunshine Trailways. In 1946 Dixie Sunshine Trailways acquired Airline Motor Coaches Company, which during 1940’s was a Trailways member operating under name Airline Motor Trailways. In 1948 Dixie Motor Coach was sold to Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “T”
TAMIAMI TRAILWAYS Briefly, the company’s roots go back to Georgia Stages, Inc. / Georgia Trailways, which was renamed in 1946 to Modern Trailways. This company was sold in 1956 to Tamiami Trail Tours, which was sold in 1975 to Continental Trailways. See Modern Trailways, Georgia Trailways and Ader Coach Lines, Inc. for a more thorough history. The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
TENNESSEE TRAILWAYS / WASHINGTON COUNTY BUS LINE According to a 1946 Kingston, Tennessee Rotary Club publication, this company started in 1928, operating ten buses with 25 employees, serving the public between Kingsport and Johnson City, Tennessee. The company became part of Trailways as Tennessee Trailways between the years between 1948-1950. In 1954 Tennessee Trailways was operating 10 buses over 60 route miles and Howard Patrick was the president.
TENNESSEE TRAILWAYS / TENNESSEE COACH COMPANY LINES, INC. The history of this company is long and involves a man named Onnie Bruce “O.B.” Baskette, who began his public transit career back in the 1910s by driving a bus for the Cleveland-Akron Bus Company, and then driving for the Cleveland-Elyria-Toledo Bus Company. In 1928 Baskett and Al Kraemer incorporated the Tennessee Coach Company, bought the Southern Motor Coach Company and White Arrow Coach Lines and merged the two, along with Baskett’s own Safety Coach Company, into the new Tennessee Coach Company, located at 510 Sevier Avenue in Knoxville, Tennessee. The company was in operation until 1976, when it was merged into the Continental Tennessee Lines. (On December 1, 1928, Southern Motor Coach and White Arrow Coach sold their Knoxville franchise to the new Tennessee Coach Company for the sum of $197,000. On August 28, 1953 Tennessee Coach Company sold out to Tennessee Trailways, Inc. On August 29, 1960, Tennessee Coach Company, headquartered in Knoxville, was sold for $2,400,000 to three other Trailways affiliates: Virginia Stage Lines a.k.a. Virginia Trailways, Smoky Mountain Stages a.k.a. Smoky Mountain Trailways and Continental Tennessee Lines. The three companies changed the name of Tennessee Coach Company to Tennessee Trailways, Inc.) The Tennessee Coach Company badge was made of nickel-plated brass and has two threaded posts. (See Georgia-Tennessee Trailways for more information.)
TRAILWAYS The below badges were issued by the National Trailways Bus System and were used on most, if not all Trailways routes.
TRAILWAYS OF NEW ENGLAND See BLUE WAY TRAILWAYS, INC.
TRAILWAYS OF NEW YORK The June 11, 2006, edition of The Daily Freeman contained this bit of information on the founding of this company: “ADIRONDACK, New York and Pine Hill Trailways make up Trailways of New York, a company that began in 1926 as the Rip Van Winkle Line between Kingston and New York City. Through a series of early successes, founder John Van Gonsic Sr. extended service to the northern Hudson Valley and Capital region by the 1930s and, in 1937, joined the National Trailways Bus System.” Today, Trailways of New York is one of the largest privately held transportation companies based in New York State. It employs over 450 people and carries passengers more than 80 million miles annually. Trailways of New York operates under three brands: Adirondack Trailways, Pine Hill Trailways, and New York Trailways.
TRANSCONTINENTAL BUS SYSTEM See Continental Trailways.
TRI-STATE TRAILWAYS / TRI-STATE BUS LINES, INC. According to Chicago Transit & Railfan’s website, Tri-State Bus Lines was a National Trailways Bus System member from 1948-1949. The only Tri-State Bus Lines listed in the MTD editions I have here is for 1954 and is located in Aberdeen, South Dakota. It had 4 buses and operated over 450 route miles. It served Aberdeen, Watertown, Fargo, Morris, Montevideo, Madison, Mitchell and Sisseton, South Dakota. I’m not sure this is the same company: more info needed.
TRI-STATE TRAILWAYS / TRI-STATE TRANSIT COMPANY In 1922 Caddo Transfer & Warehouse Company formed a bus company in Shreveport, Louisiana. In 1923 the company was renamed Tri-State Transit Company. In 1938 the company joined National Trailways Bus System as Tri-State Trailways. In 1945 the company was merged with Interurban Transportation Co. / Interurban Trailways, based in Alexandria, and Bordelon Lines, Inc. / Bordelon Trailways, which was based in New Orleans. The new firm, named Southern Bus Lines, used the brand name of Southern Trailways and was headed by Morgan W. Walker: “In 1949 the Transcontinental Bus System (using the brand name, trade name, or service name of the Continental Trailways) bought the relatively new (recently consolidated) Southern Bus Lines (the Southern Trailways) and renamed it as the Continental Southern Lines.” (Info from Dr. D. B. “Doc” Rushing’s Bluehounds and Redhounds the History of Greyhound and Trailways.) According to the Red River Trailways‘ website, that company is the present-day successor to Tri-State Trailways.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “U”
UNION TRAILWAYS / UNION BUS LINES According to his January 7, 1959, obituary, Joseph Harris “Joe” Amberson (born 1894) started the Union Bus Lines in 1919 running between San Antonio and Medina Lake, Texas, was operating in 1927 between San Antonio and Kerrville, Texas. In 1946 the company ran 85 buses over 1510 route miles and served Rio Grande Valley, Corpus Christi, Hamilton, Texas. In 1949 the company joined the National Trailways Bus System. According to a newspaper account published in the March 5, 1953, edition of the Alice Daily Echo from Alice, Texas, Joe Amberson sold the company in 1952 to M. E. Hylton. However, according to his obituary, Amberson sold his company to Continental Trailways. (I’ll get back to that a bit later.) The 1953 article explained that Amberson offered to re-buy Union Bus Lines for 25% more than Hylton had paid for the company. The reason behind Amberson’s desire to repurchase his old bus company was that he had applied to the State Railroad Commission for a new bus route service between Brownsville and San Antonio, Texas, and various other Texas communities. At the time of Amberson’s offer, Union Bus Lines’ drivers and mechanics had been out on strike for some three months. (In the 1953 Russell’s Guide the company was listed as Union Trailways.) In 1956 the company, which included Union Trailways, was operating 24 buses over 1,000 route miles and was headquartered in McAllen, Texas, with M. E. Hylton as president and general manager. Since Joe Amberson’s obituary stated he sold the company to Continental Trailways, and that sale took place in 1956, we may reasonably assume that Amerberson did in fact repurchase his old company from Hylton and Hylton stayed on as president and general manager. In 1964 the company acquired Winter Garden Bus Line, which had been incorporated in 1926. By 1978 it was operating under the trade name Trailways Texas.
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “V”
VALLEY TRAILWAYS This company seems to have been around very briefly. Rochester-Penfield Bus Company was founded in 1934 by Max F. Cowan, and operated between Penfield and Rochester, New York. In 1958 the company purchased Blue Bus Lines and extended service to Buffalo, New York. On source says that the company took the name Valley Bus Line in 1958; however, it is listed as Valley Bus Line in the 1947 MTD. The 1951 Russell’s Guide list Valley Bus Line as “Owned and Operated by Rochester-Pennfiled Bus Company.” (“Pennfield” is misspelled in the guide.) That year the company was operating between Rochester and Perry, New York. In 1954 the company was operating 16 buses over 276 route miles and serving Rochester, Penfield, Avon, Perry, Dansville, Bath, Corning and Elmira, New York. Max Cowan was listed as the manager. I’m not sure when the company joined National Trailways Bus System. It’s membership isn’t noted in the sources cited above. Information about the company after 1958 follows: According to The Encyclopedia of New York State (Syracuse University Press, 2005) “Western New York Motor Lines (trade name, Blue Bus Lines) was organized in 1924 to combine the rights of operators that had started service in 1916 between Batavia (Genesee County) and Rochester. These were joined in 1925 with a Batavia-Buffalo line started in 1921 . . . Rochester-Penfield Bus Company (later Valley Trailways) was organized in 1934, and it acquired Blue Bus Lines [i.e., Western New York Motor Lines] in 1958, continuing operations under that name.” From 1958 the company was operating as Western New York Motor Lines / Blue Bus Lines. The Fall 2005 issue of Headend from The Journal of the New York Museum of Transportation, adds: “The resulting company served Akron, Attica, and Caledonia-Avon-Scottsville on the west side, Fairport and Penfield to the east, and Geneseo, Leicester, Mount Morris and Dansville to the south. Shortly after the  merger, the line joined the Trailways system as Blue Valley Trailways and later Empire State Trailways.” The name Empire State Trailways was adopted in 1962 and shortened to Empire Trailways in 1975. Adirondack Trailways acquired the Empire Trailways routes in 1994, operating them separately as New York Trailways.
VALLEY TRANSIT TRAILWAYS / VALLEY TRANSIT LINES There’s little info on this company. In 1939 it was based in Alamosa, Colorado, with E. R. Williams serving as president. The company served Alamosa, Ft. Garland, Walsenburg, Colorado, and Taos, New Mexico. The company became a member of the National Trailways Bus System in 1943. In 1946 the company operated out of A-1 Automotive Service in Taos, New Mexico, and ran 2 buses over 81 route miles. Wess Clark was the president, general manager, treasurer, purchasing agent and general superintendent. Interestingly, transportation tycoon Aaron Greenleaf was the vice president. (Aaron Greenleaf owned 91% of Eastern Trailways, had a controlling interest in Northern Trailways and was a partner in Safeway Trails, Inc. / Safeway Trailways.) The company was still operating in 1962. (One source says the company was sold in 1977 to Continental Trailways.)
VICTORY TRAILWAYS / VICTORY COACH LINES was formed in 1942 by Ray Villeneuve, whose brother “Clem” Villeneuve, was co-owener of Indidanapolis & Southeastern Trailways. The company operated from Indianapolis to Whiting, Indiana. At some point in the 1940s the company bought out rival Trailways member Yankee Trailways, taking over the company’s route from Indianapolis to Chicago. In 1947 Indianapolis & Southeastern Trailways purchased and merged Victory Trailways into its operations. (See Indianapolis & Southeastern Trailways.)
VIRGINIA TRAILWAYS / VIRGINIA STAGE LINES, INC. Virginia Stage Lines was incorporated on March 21, 1925 by J. W. Walker, Jr., P. B. Porter, W. S. Pettit and John O. Rhodes, Jr. The company ran from Culpepper down U.S. Hwy. 15 through Orange to Gordonsville, then over U.S. Hwy. 33 to Richmond, Virginia. In 1926 Samuel A. Jessup, of Charlottesville, Virginia, bought the the company and helped it grow into a 385-employee business with routes across most of Virginia and into North Carolina and Washington, D.C. By 1936 the company operated lines west on State Route 55 to Front Royal, west on U.S. Route 211 to Luray, southwest to Charlottesville via U.S. Route 29, and south to Richmond via U.S. Route 1 and State Route 2. Virginia Stage Lines joined the National Trailways Bus System in 1938. In the mid 1940s Samuel Jessup and son Claude A. Jessup bought the city transit companies in Roanoke, and Lynchburg, Virginia and Wilmington, North Carolina. They were Roanoke Railway & Electric Company and its holding company, Consolidated Electric & Gas Company, in Roanoke, Virginia; Safety Motor Transit Company, also under Consolidated Electric & Gas Company; Safeway Transit Company, which served Wilmington, North Carolina; and eventually the Jessups controlled Safeway Trails, Inc., which joined Trailways in 1938 as Safeway Trailways. By the 1940s Claude A. Jessup became president and general manager of Virginia Stage Lines. The Jessups also owned and controlled Lynchburg Transit Company, an interstate transit company which ran 48 buses over 125 route miles. This agency was connected to Jessup’s Virginia Trailways, which accounts for the company badge displaying the Trailways logo. In 1960 Virginia Stage Lines / Virginia Trailways, Smoky Mountain Lines/Smoky Mountain Trailways and Continental Tennessee Lines (a Trailways affiliate) formed Tennessee Trailways, Inc. specifically to buy out Tennessee Coach Company. (Tennessee Coach Company operated under its company name until 1976.) In March 1964 Virginia Trailways merged with Transcontinental Bus System—both companies being affiliated with National Trailways Bus System.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: In 1957 George M. Winn, who at the time was a regional manager for Trailways; his boss was Claude A. Jessup. That year Winn borrowed money from Jessup and bought a used 1942 Trailways bus and go into business for himself. In March 1958 Winn Bus Lines started business out of Richmond, Virginia. In 1966 George M. Winn bought out Virginia’s oldest bus company, Virginia Stage Lines, whose president at the time was his old boss and financial backer, Claude A. Jessup. Virginia Stage Lines was absorbed into Winn Bus Lines, and, although the name is no longer in use, Winn’s advertises that it is the “oldest continually operated bus company in the Commonwealth of Virginia and holds that distinction to this day.” The badge measures 2⅔” x 2⅝” and has two threaded posts.
Virginia-Carolina Trailways / Virginia-Carolina Coach Co. 1940-1942
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “W”
WEST COAST TRAILWAYS / WEST COAST BUS LINES, LTD. was incorporated 1938 by Gene Allen to operate from Phoenix, Arizona, through Los Angeles and then north to Seattle, Washington. For various reasons, Allen’s application to operate was held up by the Interstate Commerce Commission for some five years. Due to dwindling finances, Allen sold Santa Fe Trailways and Continental Bus System each a 15.8% interest in West Coast Bus Lines. After a six year delay, West Coast Trailways began operating on November 5, 1945. In 1948-1949 it was bought out by Transcontinental Bus System / Continental Trailways and renamed Continental Pacific Lines, Inc. In 1975 the company was merged into Continental Western Lines (Click the following link for a detailed history of West Coast Trailways.)
WILSON TRAILWAYS BUS LINES / WILSON BUS LINES, INC. was founded by William M. Wilson (1897-1982) in East Templeton, Massachusetts, in 1937. Page 23 of the Monday, December 27, 1982, edition of The Boston Globe gives details in his obituary: “William Wilson, 85; founded bus company GARDNER – A funeral Mass for William M. Wilson, 85, founder and retired president of the Wilson Bus Lines Inc., will be said tomorrow; at 10 a.m. in Sacred Heart Church. He died Friday at Henry Heywood Memorial Hospital. Mr. Wilson, of Lawrence street, was graduated from Cushing Academy in Ashburnharh in 1919. He became superintendent of buildings and grounds for the academy, and in that job carried trunks and other cargo in a wheelbarrow from Cushing to the railroad station at the foot of the campus. That was the beginning of his career in transportation. In 1929. with a seven-passenger limousine, he began taking Cushing students to and from the station, and also drove the school athletic teams to their games. The company grew to six buses by the end of World War II, and became a commuter line between Ashburnham and Fitchburg. Mr. Wilson began a charter service in 1947 to baseball and sporting events in Boston. In 1957, his company bought the East Templeton Railway, and by the time Mr. Wilson retired in 1978, his company transported more than 400,000 riders a year all over the country. . . . He leaves his wife, Anna; a son, John M. of East Templeton, president of the bus company.” The company is still in business today in Templeton and their website notes that “We are a fourth generation, family owned and operated business and have been operating for over 75 years.” As to the company’s connection to the Trailways System, I can find only one mention in the 1960s where Trailways leased buses from Wilson. More information needed!
BADGES BEGINNING WITH “Y”
YANKEE TRAILWAYS / YANKEE COACH LINES, INC. Yankee Coach Lines, Inc. was operating in the 1930s-1940s in Illinois and Indiana, serving the Calumet Region. According to one source, this company joined National Trailways as Yankee Trailways 1938 and operated between Chicago, Illinois, and Indianapolis, Indiana. The company was bought out by Victory Trailways / Victory Coach Lines, which, in 1947 was bought and merged into Indianapolis & Southeastern Trailways.
NOTE: the above list of Trailways companies was partly taken from a list of TRAILWAYS MEMBER COMPANIES from Bill Vandervoort’s Chicago Transit & Railfan Web Site.
Between 1975 and 1987, the Trailways system consisted of Continental Trailways, and 14 independent Trailways companies. In 1987, Continental Trailways was acquired by Greyhound. The following 14 companies continued to be separately owned:
De Luxe Trailways
Lake Front Trailways
Pine Hill Trailways
(PLEASE NOTE: THE BADGES AND INFORMATION ON THIS SITE ARE FOR REFERENCE USE ONLY. WE DO NOT BUY, SELL OR TRADE TRANSIT BADGES! The purpose of this page is to share information about collecting transit badges. All photos and artwork displayed on this site are from personal collections and are used by permission of the owners, or are in the public domain.)
Copyright © 2021 TRANSITBADGES.COM. All Rights Reserved. You may freely quote from this page with the proviso that TRANSITBADGES.COM is credited.