Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Discussion relating to the past and present operations of the NYC Subway, PATH, and Staten Island Railway (SIRT).

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4266
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Location: Topsham Maine via North Conway

Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Post by 4266 »

A friend of mine who is working on a film project asked me what a conductors announcement from a 1906-era NYC subway would sound like. Any ideas?

Allan
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Location: Bronx, NY

Re: Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Post by Allan »

4266 wrote:A friend of mine who is working on a film project asked me what a conductors announcement from a 1906-era NYC subway would sound like. Any ideas?

There were no PA systems on the trains in the 1906-era so the conductors wouldn't be making any announcements. Perhaps one with a loud enough voice might call out the next stop to the people in the car he'd be riding in between stops or "watch the doors" before they closed them (the door controls were on the outside of the cars). Even on the BRT?BMT D-types (1925-28) which had door controls on the inside still did not have a PA system.

I can remember riding the IRT Lo-vs (which dated back to the 1920's and 1930's and no PA systems )during the 1960's and don't recall any attempt at any announcements.

Internal PA's were not part of the rolling stock until the R12 came along in 1948. There was a test on the R11 experimental cars a few years earlier. BTW - the door controls were still on the outside.

4266
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Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2008 6:44 pm
Location: Topsham Maine via North Conway

Re: Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Post by 4266 »

I figured as much with the PAs, but I didn't know if they did some sort of announcement outside the train like passenger train conductors would do.

Allan
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Location: Bronx, NY

Re: Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Post by Allan »

4266 wrote:I figured as much with the PAs, but I didn't know if they did some sort of announcement outside the train like passenger train conductors would do.
In all the books that have been written (and that I have read) on the subway, there is no mention of conductors making announcements. They may have, and then again, they may have not.

4266
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Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2008 6:44 pm
Location: Topsham Maine via North Conway

Re: Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Post by 4266 »

Wow I had no idea this would be such a stumper!

BobLI
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Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 7:46 am
Location: NY

Re: Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Post by BobLI »

I remember riding the Canarsie line when they had the BMT standards and the conductor was in with the opassengers. No announcements were made then. Also riding the E line when they had the conductor riding between the cars (dont know car type) to open the doors, again no announcements.

ExCon90
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Re: Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Post by ExCon90 »

4266 wrote:I figured as much with the PAs, but I didn't know if they did some sort of announcement outside the train like passenger train conductors would do.
I believe subway conductors remained within the train next to the door controls (or, as mentioned above, on the end platforms of open-platform cars). In riding the subway since the early 1940s I never have never seen a subway conductor stand on the station platform during a stop, and it would be impracticable to try to make an announcement from inside the train to passengers on the platform. Also, New York subway cars have traditionally been plentifully equipped with signs, unlike railroad passenger trains, and announcements were probably considered unnecessary.

alchemist
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Location: Bayside, NY

Re: Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Post by alchemist »

I'll second ExCon90's observation. I've "only" been riding the system since the late 1940s (makes me a kid, eh?) and I never heard any kind of announcement from a conductor or motorman until the PA systems came along. People read the signs to see where they were.
The Alchemist
*All is potentially gold*

keithsy
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Location: unfortunately New York

Re: Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Post by keithsy »

I have taken up this post before. Announcements were a courtesy when the R16's and above were delivered. Since 1990, thanks to the ADA, Dr. Diekmann and the illiterates that ride the system, announcements are now relentless. In the old days, people knew where they were going and learned how to travel. Sadly, geography and self-reliance are not taught in the schools or at home. It was important to get that train from terminal to terminal expediently.
Last edited by keithsy on Tue Mar 09, 2010 5:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

keithsy
Posts: 176
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Location: unfortunately New York

Re: Conductors Announcements throughout the ages

Post by keithsy »

In an old IRT Manhattan Rwys. rule book, the conductors and trainmen called out the stations, aloud.

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