Over the years, various transit properties have produced films for public relations or employee training. They show fascinating aspects of transit operations, both behind the scenes and on the streets, interspersed with often painfully amateurish staged sequences which give them an unintended humorous quality. We have made brand new transfers to DVD of each of these films for this series, but in some cases the quality of the result was limited by the quality of the prints we had to work with. Unless noted, all films have their original soundtracks, and are in black & white.
Rapid Transit is a public relations film produced by the New York City Transit Authority in the 1950s, and shows all aspects of the operation of its subway and elevated lines. 9 minutes.
Don't Dent Me In is an employee training film produced by Pittsburgh Railways, concentrating mostly on stopping distances required by different types of cars, and other safety issues. 20 minutes.
Getting About is a 1935 public relations effort of Detroit Street Railways showcasing all aspects of their operations, and extolling the benefits of public ownership of the system. Particularly interesting is the (intentionally) humorous narration. 14 minutes.
March of Progress is a 1945 Key System documentary concentrating on the transbay interurbans, but also showing local streetcars and the WWII-era Richmond shipyard operations with old NY el cars. 15 minutes.
The Vanishing El is from the "If things could talk..." documentary series, so New York's 3rd Avenue el tells you all about itself in its declining years. 10 minutes.
Ten Seconds to Go is a Kansas City wartime employee training film, emphasizing the important role of public transportation to the war effort, and the importance of safe operations on the homefront. Very heavy-handed, but lots of interesting scenes of streetcar operations. 27 minutes.
It's a Big Job is a 1947 (color) Los Angeles Railways employee orientation film, an obvious but nonetheless rather well-done effort to inculcate a "corporate culture" in a new hire. Concentrates mostly on streetcar operations. 22 minutes.
Safe Highways is Chicago Surface Lines's effort to make the streets a little friendlier and safer for its passengers. Lots of 1920s street scenes & trolleys.12 min. (Silent, piano score added)