Firsts in San Bernardino

1887 - First Streetcar Line

in the City was put into

operation.

Click here for more Firsts.

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HOURS:
Saturdays 10 AM - 3 PM

FREE Admission

FREE Parking

FREE Tours

LOCATION:
1170 W. Third Street
San Bernardino, CA 92410

Map & Directions

MAILING ADDRESS:
San Bernardino
Historical &
Pioneer Society

P.O. Box 875
San Bernardino, CA 92402

EMAIL:
sbrrdays@me.com

PHONE:
(909) 888-3634 

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Depot & Museum Tour

November 05, 2014

Tours will  be conducted

on  the  first Wednesday of

each month at 10:00 am.

Call (909)  888-3634  for

a reservation.  FREE

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Group Tours

For a Group Tour on

Saturday or any other 

day call (909) 888-3634.

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Virtual Museum Tour

Click here for visual tour

of the museum.

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Photo Histories

Click here to view local San

Bernardino and railroad

photographic histories.

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Newsletters of the

Western Archives of

the Santa Fe Railway

Click here for Newsletters 

of the Santa Fe Railway

Historical and Modeling

Society (Western Archives).

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Norton AFB Museum

Now Open:

Thursday 10:00 to 2:00

Saturday  10:00 to 2:00

More...

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Next Meeting at Coco's

The next meeting of the

National Association of

Retired & Veteran Railway

Employees will be held

at Coco's Restaurant.

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Thursday
Jan302014

Steam Locomotion (1769 - 1927)

 

Click here to view a short Photo History of Steam Locomotives that was extracted from The History of Transportation, published by The Railway Education Bureau in 1927.

Tuesday
Oct222013

The First Train Arrives in San Bernardino

For over 11 months the Southern Pacific Railroad prevented a train from entering San Bernardino from the South.  Southern Pacific used legal and physical means to prevent the train from crossing the SP east-west track at the Colton Crossing. 

Virgil Earp (a special agent for Southern Pacific and later the first City Marshall of Colton) led the group that prevented California Southern Railroad from heading north to San Bernardino.

On September 13, 1883, after a court order was issued and an "at grade" crossing (called a "frog") was installed, the first train arrived in San Bernardino from National City (just south of San Diego).  The train, pulled by Engine No. 4,  was operated by the California Southern Railroad, later owned by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway.

Fred T. Perris, a civil engineer and surveyor for the railroad, was at the whistle.  (Photograph by H. B. Wesner) 

Note: On August 28, 2013, a public celebration was held to dedicate the opening of the new Colton Crossing Rail-to-Rail Grade Separation.  After 130 years the east-west Union Pacific Railroad tracks were raised to pass over the north-south BNSF Railroad tracks.  This will alleviate congestion at the crossing, which accommodates more that 100 trains each day.

Friday
Oct182013

DVDs and Slide Shows Playing in the Museum


History of Fred Harvey and the Harvey Girls

DVD - Railroad Handcar in the Movies

San Bernardino Society of California Pioneers

DVD's of Various Trains and Railroads

  
History of San Bernardino Fire Department

Santa Fe Shops in San Bernardino
DVD - The History of BNSF & the Santa Fe

DVD -The History of Pacific Electric

Santa Fe Depot (1886-1916)

Tuesday
Oct152013

Chair from Opera House is in the Museum

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This chair was in the personal box of James Waters, who is pictured at the right.  James Waters, along with Herman Brinkmeyer (seen on the balcony of the Opera House), built the San Bernardino Opera House in 1882, four years before Los Angeles had an opera house of its own. 

The Opera House featured everything from Italian Grand Operas and Shakespeare's plays, to musicals and magicians, and to vaudeville and silent movies.  All of the greats performed in San Bernardino's finest theater, including Lillie Langtry, Al Jolson, Lillian Russell, Harry Houdini, Will Rogers, Sarah Bernhardt, Edwin Booth, the Barrymores and many more. 

The Opera House was located on the east side of D Street between 3rd and 4th Streets and was torn down in 1927.  

The chair and the painting of James Waters were donated to the San Bernardino Historical and Pioneer Society by Mary Renter, the great-great-granddaughter of James Waters.

Click here for a detailed look at the Opera House.

Click here for the story of Jim Waters, from mountainman to builder of an opera house.

Saturday
Jun012013

Clocks that Keep on Ticking in the Museum

Santa Fe Standard Clock that was in the Roundhouse Office in 1916                                         Clock from the Santa Fe Wire Chief's Office (Telegraph Office) located at the west end of the Depot

 

 

   
   
 
 
Small Santa Fe Clock

Thursday
May302013

Museum Houses 19th Century Gas Lamp

 

Gas and Electric Lights Come to the City of San Bernardino 

In 1881 the National Gas Company of New York, secured a franchise and put in an extensive [gas] plant.

November 2nd, 1881, the city [of San Bernardino] was first lighted by gas and the Times of that date declares: "Gas under the new dispensation was a brilliant success as was abundantly made manifest last evening."

[In 1891] the city was first lighted by electricity, the San Antonio Electric Co. putting in from 500 to 800 incandescent lights.

(Ingersoll's Century Annuals of San Bernardino County, 1769-1904, pp. 169 & 383)