Allis Station - Milwaukee Road Passenger Station, open in Milwaukee, WI most people do not know exists.

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Allis Station - Milwaukee Road Passenger Station, open in Milwaukee, WI most people do not know exists.
Posted by CMStPnP on Friday, December 6, 2019 5:09 AM

I know this is probably more a Model Railroader post but this has historic Rail Passenger Significance as well.     Back in 1916, the Milwaukee Road built this suburban Commuter Railroad station underneath a bridge in Milwaukee with a stairway up to an upper platform with shelter (what was then a suburb).     It still exists and is home to one of the oldest and most historic operating railroad clubs in the U.S.      I remember when I was a kid my Father taking me here along with a mandatory trip to the largest hobby shop back then on the South Side called Casanova's or some name like that.    Casanovas which I believe was closed a ways back used to specialize in selling Lionel O Gauge Trains and was quite a treat to visit in and of itself but then you also had this unique Model Railroad club as well.

You can read the history of Allis in the links below.   I believe the C&NW also had a station called Allis as well (closer to Jones Island) that also served the Allis-Chalmers Plant.     Allis is the entire reason Milwaukee has a suburb called "West Allis" which is further West along National Avenue.      You can reach this location via Cab from the Milwaukee Amtrak Station it is approx 1.5 maybe 2.5 miles directly South of the  Milwaukee Intermodal station along the CP / Amtrak tracks to Chicago from Milwaukee.    Anyways interesting reading, make sure you read the links below.......

https://www.jsonline.com/story/money/real-estate/commercial/2018/07/13/milwaukees-redeveloping-harbor-district-includes-model-railroad-club/767857002/

 

https://historicmilwaukee.org/doors-open/buildings/model-railroad-club-of-milwaukee/

 

 

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Posted by CMStPnP on Friday, December 6, 2019 5:41 AM

There was another close in Passenger Station that was pretty decent sized that existed just under I think it is the 35th Street Viaduct, could be 27th Street viaduct on the CP Mainline to the West of the Amtrak Station.    If you drive down Canal street that leads to the former Milwaukee Road Roundhouse and Shops site you can see the remnants of it I believe from the road it is on property fenced in on land owned by the state DOT (what the signs say on the fence).    I have only drove past the site and never got out of the car to look (so mostly guess work until my next Summer visit).    It was a fairly substantial station that served primarily the Milwaukee Road shops and the former neighborbood on the bluff directly above it, whom were largely railroad employees back in the day.   There was a staircase that took you up the bluff (where I-94 is today) and to the nieghborhood (just North of I-94).    The houses are larger than normal in that neighborhood but forget the former neighborhood name.

 

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Friday, December 6, 2019 10:34 AM

That's a pretty remarkable story, a model railroad club in the same location since 1936.  I don't know of another that hasn't moved from it's original site, usually multiple times.

Hard to tell from the photos, but do you know if it's an HO club, or two-rail O gauge scale?   I thought I saw an outside third rail power rail in some of the shots.  Third-rail power is an old-timey (in this day and age) set-up for O gauge scale.

Yeah, this might have been more of a "Model Railroader" post, but I'd be willing to bet there's darn few of us here that didn't have toy trains or model railroad layouts in the past, or even now.

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Posted by charlie hebdo on Friday, December 6, 2019 12:24 PM

One of its members,  Frank Zeidler, was the last in a line of three socialist mayors of Milwaukee,  during the period 1910 to 1960. He had the city takeover the streetcar company,  among his other accomplishments. It was a booming and better-run city in those days. 

https://www.wisconsinhistory.org/Records/Article/CS346

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Posted by CMStPnP on Saturday, December 7, 2019 9:17 PM

Flintlock76

That's a pretty remarkable story, a model railroad club in the same location since 1936.  I don't know of another that hasn't moved from it's original site, usually multiple times.

Hard to tell from the photos, but do you know if it's an HO club, or two-rail O gauge scale?   I thought I saw an outside third rail power rail in some of the shots.  Third-rail power is an old-timey (in this day and age) set-up for O gauge scale.

Yeah, this might have been more of a "Model Railroader" post, but I'd be willing to bet there's darn few of us here that didn't have toy trains or model railroad layouts in the past, or even now.

It's Lionel O Gauge, started as three rail but they converted it to two rail.

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Sunday, December 8, 2019 11:21 AM

Thanks!  I suspected it was O gauge scale.  More authentic, but expensive.

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Sunday, December 8, 2019 11:23 AM

charlie hebdo

One of its members,  Frank Zeidler, was the last in a line of three socialist mayors of Milwaukee,  during the period 1910 to 1960. He had the city takeover the streetcar company,  among his other accomplishments. It was a booming and better-run city in those days. 

https://www.wisconsinhistory.org/Records/Article/CS346

 

They must have been fairly moderate Socialists.  Milwaukee beer is too good to promote full-blown Socialism.  Wink

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Posted by CMStPnP on Sunday, December 8, 2019 12:43 PM

Flintlock76
They must have been fairly moderate Socialists.  Milwaukee beer is too good to promote full-blown Socialism.  

As you know, back then and today, Milwaukee is predominantly ethnic German and the election of the Socialists was more an overseas immigrant influenced phenomena based on what was going on in Europe at the time.   The election of the Milwaukee mayor back then had a lot to do with what was going on in Germany and the rest of Europe as it attempted to break away from monarchies and recover from the after effects of World War I.   

Also, during that early time, former Isreali PM, Golda Meir resided in Milwaukee and her father worked initially the Milwaukee Road yards (not sure which one) of all places.  She immigrated to Milwaukee from Kiev, Ukraine about 1906 as a kid.    Went to grade and high school in Milwaukee and later became a teacher via the Teachers School (Now University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee). 

Also, Mayor's Meyer, Norquist and Barret, have all done a great job running the city, it is not true the Ziedler did a better job than the follow on Mayors.    Mayor Norquist was one of the primary drivers for light rail in Milwaukee as well as expanding state support for the now successful Hiawatha Service and improving the quality of the Chicago to Milwaukee trains.   He also hired at City expense an Amtrak quality of service manager to ride the trains to supervise Amtrak management so that it would not put junk or failing equipment on the Chicago to Milwaukee run (as they were apt to do) because thats what some of the private railroads did on short commutter runs because if the equipment failed it would be still close to the maintenence base.

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Posted by Gramp on Tuesday, December 10, 2019 10:13 PM

As I recall Norquist was also in favor of taking out some expressway. Didn't think it necessarily bad to have traffic congestion on city streets. 

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 6:45 AM

Gramp

As I recall Norquist was also in favor of taking out some expressway. Didn't think it necessarily bad to have traffic congestion on city streets. 

 
My experience has been that you wind up with congestion on both the surface streets and the expressways.
The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
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Posted by Flintlock76 on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 8:31 AM

CSSHEGEWISCH

 

 
Gramp

As I recall Norquist was also in favor of taking out some expressway. Didn't think it necessarily bad to have traffic congestion on city streets. 

 

 

 
My experience has been that you wind up with congestion on both the surface streets and the expressways.
 

It's axiomatic.  Traffic always  expands to fill available roadspace.

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Posted by CMStPnP on Saturday, December 14, 2019 2:30 AM

Gramp
As I recall Norquist was also in favor of taking out some expressway. Didn't think it necessarily bad to have traffic congestion on city streets. 

Mayor Meir, prior to Norquist was against I-94 being put through the center of Milwaukee all the way to the lakefront because he felt it would divide Milwaukee into North and South and knock out the retail areas of Grand Ave (renamed Wisconsin Ave).   He was correct in the impact it had in addition to demolishing the Milwaukee Road Depot and several other areas that bound North and South together.     I think Norquist was against a lakefront freeway that would have used the Hoan Bridge in the center but not exactly sure.   It was a serious proposal to use the landfill from the Sewer project I believe to put in a expanded lakeshore drive or a bigger lakefront freeway.   I think Norquist wanted to preserve the lakefront for parkland and pedestrians rather than duplicate Chicago's mistake.

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