Jewett Interurban/LVT Car 815-819
Click on pictures for larger image of Car 815
In 1908, Albert L. Johnson, the President of the Lehigh Valley Traction Company and the Philadelphia & Lehigh Valley Traction Company, had ambitiously planned a vast high speed interurban network from Allentown to Philadelphia. LVT officials selected an interurban car which was designed for high speed, Pullman style service
|Exterior features of the
55' - 10 1/2" body include: Baldwin 78-30A arch bar trucks with
standard roller bearings and 36" steel wheels, a Jewett style wood
and canvas railroad roof, 16 clerestory colored arch windows, 8
automatic ventilators, a chimney, 15 pairs of cream and green leaded
cathedral glass panels (each pair spanning two 1/4" polished plate
glass windows and forming a pocket between the inner and outer
leaded glass arches into which the windows could be raised high
enough to permit an unobstructed view), 2 small single leaded glass
arched lavatory windows, exterior wood sheathing and 2 arched train
doorways and doors with sectioned arch windows, a large arch window
on both sides of each train door, 2 arched passenger entrances and
doors with sectioned arch windows, 2 arched baggage entrances and
sliding doors with small panes of glass forming an arched effect, a
stirrup step and a grab handle at each baggage doorway, two 3-step
passenger entrances with 2 pairs of grab handles and floor level
trap doors, head light brackets and fittings at the train door. Two
standard multiple unit wood pilots and anti climbers at each end.
One page of the Allentown Morning Call's December 12, 1912 edition heralded the Lehigh Valley Transit Company's high speed electric interurban railway inaugural run between Allentown and Philadelphia. The new service received enthusiastic and favorable public response which pleased LVT officials. As a result, President Stevens telegraphed the Jewett Car Company on January 3, 1913 requesting immediate construction of 6 additional cars.
LVT's engineering staff adjusted the plans for cars 806-811 to correct several original design errors. These included a higher passenger entrance arch, a proper passenger and trap door opening sequence, Tomlinson couplers, water deflectors above both train doors, standard Westinghouse cab signal whistles at all control locations, oak roof mats and Brill MCB3X trucks with 3rd rail shoes. Car bodies 806-811 arrived in Allentown during the first week of July, 1913. Improved features from the 806-811 group were incorporated into the 800-805 group to standardize operations.
In 1918, LVT sent an inquiry to the Jewett Car Company concerning the building of 4 all-coach cars, which would have 4 passenger entrances and overall dimensions identical to cars 800-811.