CTA Surface System History presented by the Illinois Railway Museum

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The readings were taken directly from rollsigns that are in the Museum's collection.

The first date listed is the date printed on the sign. The data in the parentheses that follow contains written information on the sign.


Chicago Streetcars

Front
  • PCC Streetcar Front Sign - Printed 09/15/1947


  • Archer Garage

    Front
  • 2 Part (Curb Side) c1960s
  • c1960s
  • 07/01/1975 (7-1-75 07)

  • Side
  • 12/17/1964
  • 07/27/1966 (Sample Number 2-Rev 7-27-66)
  • 07/01/1975
  • 01/00/1992


  • Beverly Garage

    Front
  • 10/10/1973
  • c1977 (6-1-77 92)

  • Side
  • c1940s
  • 08/00/1970
  • 10/18/1985 (10-18-85-92)


  • Chicago Ave Garage

    Side
  • 12/22/1994 (H-6-95-7-94)


  • Evanston Routes

    Front
  • 11/22/1977

  • Side
  • 11/22/1977


  • Forest Glen Garage

    Front
  • Trolley Bus - c1960s
  • 11/00/1969
  • 11/27/1973 (4-1-75-15)
  • 10/18/1978 (86)

  • Side
  • (11/69)
  • 10/00/1975 (10-18-78-15)
  • 10/30/1976 (2-20-83-86)
  • 10/30/1976 (2-20-83-92)
  • 08/21/1986 (5-8-90-07)


  • Kedzie Garage

    Front
  • Trolley Bus (6-19-68)
  • 2 Part Curb Side c1960s
  • c1960s
  • 03/25/1966
  • 07/30/1975

  • Side
  • c1940s - CSL era
  • c1960s
  • 08/22/1972 (10-1-A-80)
  • 01/00/1974 (1-74-A)


  • Keeler Garage

    Front
  • c1960s
  • 2 Part Curb Side c1960s

  • Side
  • c1960s
  • (11-69)


  • Lawndale Garage

    Front
  • 2 Part Curb Side c1960s
  • 2 Part Driver Side c1960s
  • 11/22/1975 (1-3-82-07)

  • Side
  • c1960s
  • c1960s
  • 11/00/1992


  • Limits Garage

    Front
  • 01/13/1965 (1-27-75-80)
  • 04/20/1966 (1-27-75-15)
  • c1970s (3300 only)
  • 10/15/1975 (Spec 10-15-75-15)
  • 10/22/1982 (8-12-82)

  • Side
  • 04/06/1966
  • 10/1973
  • (1-27-75 15)

  • 04/04/1976 (6-22-80-07)
  • Special 04/13/1976 (10-15-75 15)
  • 10/20/1982


  • North Ave Garage

    Front
  • Trolley Bus (2-1966)
  • 2 Part Curb Side c1960s
  • 2 Part Driver Side c1960s
  • c1960s

  • (11-73 07)
  • c1970s
  • 09/01/1975 (9-1-75-Special)
  • 10/01/1975

  • Side
  • Trolley Bus c1960s
  • c1960s
  • (1-1-74 55)
  • 09/01/1975 (9-1-75-Special-15)

  • 10/00/1975 (9-2-79-07)
  • 10/00/1975
  • 07/28/1983 (4-22-83)


  • North Park Garage

    Front
  • 09/20/1968 (9-1-75-15)
  • 08/23/1973
  • 09/01/1975 (9-1-75-Special-15)
  • 04/04/1976

  • 09/05/1984 (3-25-83)
  • 09/05/1984 (8-5-84-PrintDate-3-25-83)
  • 04/09/1985
  • 10/05/1987 (11-29-87-86)

  • Side
  • 09/26/1968
  • (11-69)
  • (11/69)
  • 7/12/1973

  • 09/01/1975 (9-1-75-Special-15)
  • 11/01/1975 (11-1-75-Spec)
  • 04/13/1976
  • 01/31/1979

  • 12/20/1981 (12-20-81-03)
  • 10/14/1992 (11-92-Midway)


  • North Park/Forest Glen Garages

    Front
  • c1990s


  • 52nd St Garage

    Front
  • 10/10/1966 (10-1-74)
  • 07/20/1972
  • c1975

  • Side
  • 7/20/72 (10-1-74)


  • 69th St Garage

    Front
  • c1960s
  • 00/00/1975

  • Side
  • c1960s
  • c1960s
  • 08/10/1973

  • 04/01/1982 (4-1-82-86)
  • (1-27-85 80)
  • 11/00/1992


  • 77th St Garage

    Front
  • 2 Part Driver Side c1960s
  • 09/27/1973 (1-27-75 15)
  • 07/01/1975

  • Side
  • c1960s
  • 07/30/1968
  • 01/31/1972
  • 09/29/1972

  • 09/11/1973 (1-27-75-15)
  • 10/07/1988 (6-28-88)
  • 03/00/1994


  • 77th/52nd St Garages

    Front
  • 07/01/1975 (1st Edition - No Splice)

  • Side
  • 11/01/1980 (1-80-07)
  • 02/23/1982 (3-23-82-86)


  • 103rd St Garage

    Side
  • 08/31/1988 (6-26-88)


  • Suburban

    Front - Nortran
  • RTA-Nortran - c1970s
  • RTA-Nortran - c1970s
  • RTA-Nortran - 08/13/1976
  • RTA-Nortran - 12/11/1978

  • Front - South Suburban/South Division
  • South Suburbs - c1950s
  • South Suburban Safeway - 07/07/1967
  • RTA-South Suburban - 04/1978
  • RTA-Suburban Transit - 01/04/1979

  • RTA-South Division - 10/22/1979
  • RTA-South Suburban/Joliet - c1980s
  • RTA-South Suburban 2 Part (Grumman) Driver Side - 05/16/1983
  • South Suburban Safeway - c1985

  • Front - West Towns (alone or plus others)
  • RTA-West Towns 2 Part (Grumman) Curb Side - 08/04/1979
  • RTA-West Towns 2 Part (Grumman) Driver Side - c1979
  • RTA-West Towns 2 Part (Grumman) Driver Side - c1980s
  • RTA-West Towns - 03/19/1980
  • RTA-West Towns/Elgin/Aurora - c1980s

  • Front - United Motor Coach
  • United Motor Coach - 01/1966
  • United Motor Coach - 05/02/1974

  • Front - Others
  • Evanston Bus Co - c1960s
  • LaGrange - 03/08/1965
  • LaGrange - 04/30/1968
  • Northwest Suburbs - c1970s
  • West Suburbs - c1970s

  • RTA-Hanover Park - 05/20/1977
  • RTA-McHenry - 04/1978
  • RTA-Waukegan/North Chicago - 01/03/1979
  • Pace-Waukegan - 11/06/1986
  • RTA-Aurora - 06/17/1986

  • Side
  • West Towns - 03/31/1942
  • West Towns - 01/11/1947
  • West Towns - 04/06/1950
  • Elgin Bus Co - 08/26/1968

  • South Suburban Safeway - 08/05/1973
  • RTA-Wilbus Waukegan - 08/31/1976
  • RTA-West Towns - 09/01/1976
  • Nortran - 09/02/1976

  • RTA-South Suburban - 09/02/1976
  • RTA-South Suburban - 01/05/1979
  • RTA-West/South Division (Grumman) - 08/04/1979


  • This group of files are scans of CTA documents which outline Rapid Transit rollsign readings with color examples.

  • West-Northwest, West-South and Ravenswood - 09/14/1979
  • North-South, Evanston and Ravenswood - 09/17/1979
  • West-Northwest and West-South - 08/13/1981
  • West-Northwest and West-South 03/24/1982

  • West-Northwest, West-South and Ravenswood - 12/01/1982
  • West-Northwest - 05/13/1983
  • Evanston - 10/27/1983
  • North-South - 10/27/1983

  • North-South, Evanston, Ravenswood - 10/27/1983
  • West-Northwest - 10/27/1983
  • West-South, West-Northwest, North-South, Ravenswood, Evanston and Skokie Swift - 06/11/1984
  • Green, Blue and Oragne Lines - c1995
  • Purple and Yellow Lines - c1995

  • Red, Purple, Brown and Orange Lines - c1995


  • This group of files are scans of CTA documents which outline rollsign readings.

  • 52nd St Garage - 07/01/1975
  • 52nd St Garage - 07/01/1975 (v2)
  • 52nd/77th St Garage - 11/01/1980

  • 69th St Garage - 01/27/1974
  • 69th St Garage - 04/03/1977
  • 69th St Garage - 01/03/1982
  • 69th St Garage - 04/01/1982
  • 69th St Garage - 04/18/1985

  • 77th St Garage - 04/03/1977

  • Archer Garage - 07/01/1975
  • Archer Garage - 11/25/1979
  • Archer Garage - 12/20/1981
  • Archer Garage - 01/00/1993

  • Beverly Garage - 10/01/1975
  • Beverly Garage - 04/10/1983

  • Forest Glen Garage - 10/01/1975
  • Forest Glen Garage - 10/13/1982
  • Forest Glen Garage - 10/13/1982 (v2)

  • Kedzie Garage - 12/22/1976
  • Kedzie Garage - 07/01/1984
  • Kedzie Garage - 11/01/1984
  • Kedzie Garage - 06/01/1986

  • Lawndale Garage - 11/25/1979
  • Lawndale Garage - 06/01/1986
  • Lawndale Garage - 09/07/1986

  • Limits Garage - 04/04/1976
  • Limits Garage - 05/11/1979
  • Limits Garage - 09/02/1979
  • Limits Garage - 05/27/1980

  • Limits Garage - 06/22/1980
  • Limits Garage - 08/12/1982
  • Limits Garage - 08/12/1982 (v2)
  • Limits Garage - 02/17/1983

  • North Ave Garage - 10/01/1975
  • North Ave Garage - 05/22/1979
  • North Ave Garage - 04/22/1983
  • North Ave Garage (Series 870 buses) - 03/05/1980

  • North Park Garage - 06/20/1977
  • North Park Garage - 12/20/1981
  • North Park Garage - 03/25/1983
  • North Park Garage - 04/22/1985

  • North Park Garage/Evanston Routes - 10/01/1975
  • North Park Garage/Evanston Routes - 09/14/1977


  • This group shows supervisor codes.

  • System Wide - 04/19/1985
  • System Wide - 01/09/1994
  • System Wide - 06/18/1995

  • System Wide - 12/07/2003
  • System Wide - 04/11/2004
  • System Wide - 06/18/2006

  • Forest Glen - 04/18/1985
  • Forest Glen - 09/07/1986

  • Kedzie - 04/18/1985
  • Kedzie - 03/08/1987
  • Kedzie - 06/26/1988

  • North Park - 04/18/1985
  • North Park - 03/08/1987
  • North Park - 06/26/1988
  • North Park - 11/07/1993 Rev
  • North Park - 08/29/2004

  • 69th St - 04/18/1985
  • 69th St - 03/08/1987
  • 69th St - 06/26/1988
  • 69th St - 12/01/1994

  • 77th - 04/18/1985
  • 77th - 09/07/1986
  • 77th - 11/07/1993 Rev

  • 103rd - 06/26/1988


  • This file is from the RTA.

  • RTA Destination Sign Listing - August 1978



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