Category Archive: Automobiles

Jul 02

R.R. Crossing Poly

©The Tribune

Couldn’t find a story to go with these negatives marked R.R. Crossing Poly Sept 7-63. My guess is this is the Foothill Blvd. crossing of the Southern Pacific tracks. Cerro San Luis is on left, and Bishop Peak on right, the palm trees of California Blvd. This area is all student housing now. Post a …

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May 31

Building Niblick Bridge in Paso Robles

Municipal Services Director Jay Lyon checks progress on the Niblick bridge. His tenure began with the 13th Street Bridge.

When Jay Lyon retired as Paso Robles municipal services director it was a chance to review accomplishments and predict the future. Phil Dirkx wrote a story and sidebar that ran February 26, 1987 and here are a few of the highlights. Jay Lyon, Paso Robles municipal services director will finish his city career the same …

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May 29

Dunite Days in the Oceano Dunes

Ellwood Decker was an artist and one of the last of the dunites. ©Telegram-Tribune/Sharon Lewis Dickerson

Ephemeric characters flash through history like shooting stars, rarely remembered beyond their days. Visionaries, dreamers and mystics rarely get remembered. Usually that honor goes to industrialists, generals, politicians and entertainers. Dreams aren’t worth a memorial if no one made a buck off it or won a battle. A rare exception is coming up. The first …

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Apr 10

Freeway construction begins in San Luis Obispo, 1952

Construction began in Spring of 1952 on the 101 freeway in San Luis Obispo.

It takes less time to travel this section of freeway than it takes to read about it. If you want to see the before picture click here. The Telegram-Tribune of March 25, 1952 carried the story: WORK STARTS ON S.L.O. FREEWAY Big Crossing Structures Come First Construction started today on the first of several freeway …

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Apr 09

1940ish San Luis Obispo Highway

Highway 101 enters San Luis Obispo from the south in this view from the 1930s or 40s.

This undated photo shows what appears to be a new highway entry in to San Luis Obispo as Highway 101 makes a turn onto Marsh Street. My guess is this is from the 40s as the highway was improved at least once in that decade. It may be from the late 30s, I can’t find …

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Mar 03

Victory in Guadalcanal, World War II week by week

Victory at Guadalcanal was the headline in the Feb. 9, Telegram-Tribune.

In my effort to get back on track after our microfilm machine was repaired a major milestone was overlooked, the Feb. 9, 1943 edition of the Telegram-Tribune the new in a banner headline. America had taken Guadalcanal, their first land victory in the Pacific Theater. The Japanese Army had evacuated and only a few stragglers …

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Feb 12

Avila truss bridge collapses, vestage of the Pacific Coast Railway

The 98-year-old Pacific Coast Railway bridge near Port San Luis collapsed on its own weight in San Luis Creek.
©Wayne Nicholls/Telegram-Tribune

You may have wondered about the mysterious henge looming beside San Luis Creek in Avila Beach. It is one of the last remaining monuments to the dawn of modern Central Coast transportation, the Pacific Coast Railway. The concrete plinth was an underpinning to Bridge No. 5. The narrow gauge rails were in use for 66 …

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Jan 14

Phillips Lane bridge over Southern Pacific tracks bites the dust

The Phillips Lane Railroad bridge had come to the end of the road in 1966.
©The Tribune

How many bridges are there across the Union Pacific tracks in San Luis Obispo today? One at Mill Street, two if you include the pedestrian Jennifer Street bridge. The railroad seems to prefer forcing automotive traffic under their right of way as at Highland, Monterey, Johnson and Tank Farm. Only Marsh, Orcutt and Cal Poly …

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Jan 08

When Huell Howser visited Cuesta Grade

Huell Howser host of  public television's "California's Gold" and Bill Loper of the San Luis Obispo Historical Society on Cuesta Grade in 1994.

Huell Howser had what many would consider a dream job, travel, access to interesting places. He was producer and host of a series of shows that highlighted the nature and history of California. He made the most of his opportunities throughout the state with a sense glee that put his subjects at ease and made …

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Jan 05

Studebaker cars, New! Beautiful! Exciting!

The 1964 Studebaker model year was introduced in Sept. 1963.

My friend Shawn Turner informs me that John Studebaker made money in the California gold fields making wheelbarrows for miners. He worked there from 1853-1858 when he returned to South Bend, Indiana and joined his brothers in the buggy and wagon business. Studebaker made the transition to automotive manufacture but by the mid-1960s the line …

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