Portland Traction 813


Built in:1932 by J.G. Brill Company (ord#22973)
Out-of-service/Retired:1959 (1958)
Type of car:streetcar (Master Unit lightweight)
Current Owner:Oregon Electric Railway Historical Society(Brooks, Oregon)

Car History by Frank Hicks

Portland Traction 813
Portland Traction 813 is one of only a handful of surviving Portland city streetcars, and the only one currently operational. It was part of an order for 15 cars numbered 800-814 that would prove to be the last new cars built for Portland. These cars were standard Brill "Master Unit" cars and had the typical rounded corners of later Master Units. The Portland city system was narrow gauge, so the cars originally had narrow gauge 77E trucks. When the last streetcar lines in Portland were abandoned in 1950 two cars, 800 and 813, were transferred to the suburban standard-gauge Oregon City and Bellrose lines and converted to standard gauge. Car 813, now 4012, ran until the suburban lines too were abandoned in 1958. The next year the car was sold to OERHS, which at the time didn't have a museum site. It was displayed in Oaks Pioneer Park until OERHS established a museum at Glenwood, Oregon in the mid-1960's; for a time 813 operated there. When the Glenwood site was abandoned and the OERHS museum moved around 1995, 813 went to the OERHS Willamette Shore Trolley operation in Lake Oswego. There it operates with the assistance of a towed generator on a flatcar. It has been restored to its 1940's appearance but has retained its post-1950 standard-gauge trucks and equipment.

Ownership History:Portland Electric Power #813 1932-1944 / Portland Traction #813 1944-1950 / Portland Traction #4012 1950-1959 / Oregon Electric Railway Historical Society(Brooks, Oregon) 1959-present

Facts and Figures

Status:operated oftenGauge:4'8.5"
Construction:steelRoof type:AREnded:DE
#Seats:41#Wheels/Conf.:8 (B-B)Total HP:240
Trucks:Brill 84E1XBrakesCompressor
Motors:GE 210 (4)Voltage (if not 600DC)


Originally 3'6" gauge with Brill 77E trucks; located in Lake Oswego, Oregon