From Above the Air...

Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal

January 25, 1948 - The combined Santa Fe Super Chief/El Capitan arrived on time, shortly before 9:00 a.m.   For reasons never explained, the engineer on locomotive 19L, preparing to move ahead then back onto the center "release track" to head for Redondo Roundhouse, released his brake cutoff valve..and lost ALL his braking ability.   He plowed through the bumper, across the service drive, up the curb, across the sidewalk and through the foot-thick retaining wall, coming to rest when his locomotive bottomed-out, twenty feet above Aliso Street.   It turned out to be Engineer Fred Hurst's last run on the Santa Fe... he was relieved of duty and never returned to work.

And the image below has graced the walls of Philippe's restaurant ever since. Philippe's was, at the time, directly across the street, on the south side of Aliso, when Santa Fe 19L "almost dropped in for a sandwich."


Elson Trinidad's page: "Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal"



If it's available, Interurbans' Special #72 "Last of the Great Stations" is a wonderful and thorough 120-page history of LAUPT.

1955 map of Union Station area