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by Charles R. Lowe

N.Y.S. Rys., Roch. Lines 0461                                                Charles R. Lowe Collection

Humble by appearance it its later years, as seen here in the 1930ís at East Main Station, wreck car 0461 nevertheless had an interesting history. Originally, 0461 was passenger car 461 and had been built in a 12 car lot (nos. 450-461) in 1902 by Stephenson. The 450-series cars were double ended for use on Rochesterís then-loopless streetcar lines that ended with crossovers. Car 461ís 28-foot long carbody was supported by two trucks, allowing for a generous capacity of 48 seated riders on cross seating. The deck roof provided plenty of light and ventilation for riders.

New cars purchased in the years just before World War I (1917 to 1918 for the United States) rendered cars 450-461 obsolete. Car 461 was retained and converted into wreck car 0461 in 1921. Four powerful 25 horsepower motors gave 0461 enough traction for towing even the heaviest of disabled cars off an active line and back to a nearby carhouse for repair. Many a rider must have cheered when 0461 came to the rescue of a stalled car and re-opened a blocked car line.

Car 0461 played one historical role in Rochesterís streetcar history. In the late 1930ís and early 1940ís, when cars were to be scrapped, their motors were removed at East Main Station, and work cars such as 0461 towed the motorless carbodies to Blossom Road Yard for burning. After the last full day of surface streetcar operation on March 31, 1941, 0461 continued to make the sad boneyard runs. Finally, a last run was to be made. Scraper 105, ironically seen in the background of our 0461 photo, became the last car left at East Main Station that was to be scrapped at Blossom Yard. On May 7, 1941, 0461 dragged 105 out to Blossom Yard and thereby made the final run of a streetcar on a Rochester City street.

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