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Notes on the Collection of Transfers

W. J. Sidis




        68. What Constitutes a Transfer-Issuing UnitWe may use the term transfer-issuing unit to denote the topographical part of a system (including routes and groups or portions of routes, as well as route directions) issuing the same transfer form or forms. Time differences do not count for this purpose, except where a few transfer issue may alter the transfer-issuing units, as often happens. Similarly a transfer-issuing unit has no reference to receiving lines or portions of lines, but only to the issuing lines and portions of lines. A system may be divided into such units in several different ways according to the class of transfer considered. The unit may be the entire system or sub-system, or some portion of the system equivalent to a sub-system. This happens if the same transfer form is issued in any part of that system or sub-system, such a form being called a general form. A general form may exist side by side with other forms representing smaller transfer-issuing units. There may be also special forms issued only on special occasions, which will be more general than the ordinary transfers as regards the transfer-issuing unit, or which, again, may be less general in issuing unit or in conditions of use. Besides having to do with issuing lines, a transfer-issuing unit may also be a prepayment station (Boston Elevated Railway, rapid transit lines; Hudson and Manhattan Railroad; Newark Public Service terminal before October 1, 1923) or a transfer agent's station (Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit surface lines; Brooklyn City Railroad), if such stations issue transfer and different stations issue different forms. A transfer-issuing unit, in general, covers all possible conditions of place for the issuance of a definitely named transfer form.

        69. What May Be Transfer-Issuing UnitsWhen a transfer is issued at a station to passengers getting on or off cars, whether it is a prepayment or post payment station, the transfer-issuing unit is usually the station itself, though it may have to do with the issuing line as though there issued on the car itself. Or the unit may be a group of stations, considered sometimes as a single station, as for instance in Brooklyn, where the agentsí stations at Borough Hall and at Gold Street are treated as a single station and issue the same forms. However, the Borough Hall station of the Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit surface lines and that of the Brooklyn City Railroad, although located at the same place, are separate transfer-issuing units, because they issue different transfer forms.

         If the same station issues different transfer forms to passengers going in different directions, we may say that the issuing unit is combined with the issuing direction, that the unit is a station and a direction, or a group of stations and direction. Almost any sort of transfer-issuing unit may be combined with direction, the direction referred to being that of the car from which the transfer is made.

         In the case of transfers issued on cars, the variety of transfer-issuing units is much wider. It may be a company division, as is the case with the Boston Elevated Railway surface lines, or even a group of divisions, as with the Middlesex and Boston Street Railway. In San Francisco, the Market Street Railway has as its regular transfer-issuing units the division and direction; that is, each division issues an inbound and an outbound form. Other kinds of such units are: subdivisions (arbitrary parts of divisions), cities, zones (usually considering an overlap as a separate zone), groups of routes, and single routes, and combinations of these (for instance, a combination of route and zone means that the transfer-issuing unit is the part of the route in one zone); also any of these, and combinations thereof, combined with direction. This gives great variety in the nature of transfer-issuing units. Sometimes where different kinds of vehicles (such as cars and buses) are used, the kind of vehicle is combined with one or more of the other conditions to make up the unit. Also, of course, systems and subsystems may be transfer-issuing units.

        A list of the varieties of transfer-issuing units on various systems is to be found in Appendix E.

        70. Indication of Transfer-Issuing UnitOrdinarily all elements making up the particular transfer-issuing unit are to be found printed on the transfer form, though not necessarily all together. Issuance conditions left to be indicated by punching do not belong to the transfer-issuing unit, but are rather sections of the unit. However, it sometimes happens, as in the case of the Harrisburg, (Pa.) Railways, that the list of issuing lines on such punch spaces is the indication of the transfer-issuing unit.

        The most important item of the transfer-issuing unit is the company name, which is almost always printed in. This sometimes constitutes the unit by itself; but any conditions of route, zone, division, or direction, are usually printed in too, and ordinarily are printed in on each attached coupon as well as on the main body of the transfer where there are attached coupons. However, attached coupons referring to conditions of time alone generally do not bear on them the issuing unit, except in the case of Pope P. M. coupons, which usually have printed on them the issuing unit.

        Surcharges of part of the conditions determining the issuing unit are also known. For example, on forms issued by the Connecticut Company, both the main body of the form and the P. M. coupon bear the company name and the division and sub-division names, printed; but the main body of the transfer, on regular form, also bears a surcharge of the name of the issuing route. Again, transfer forms issued by the Los Angeles Railway bear in print the name of the issuing route, and, on another part of the transfer, the issuing direction; both of these are on the main body of the transfer. But the route-letter is also surcharged twice, once on the main body of the transfer, and once on the attached route coupon (only one surcharge in the 1920 issue, which had no attached coupons). It is quite common to have the same statements as to issuing unit thus repeated in different wording and modes of indication on a single transfer form.

        Where the unit is a group of routes or divisions, all routes or divisions of the group are listed, except where all may be included under some general description. Thus, the Newton transfer form of the Middlesex and Boston Street Railway is headed: DIVISIONS 2-3 & 4. An example of a combination of group name and listing of routes is found on the Riverside Drive forms of the Fifth Avenue Coach Company, New York City. Thus, their northbound form, consisting of a main body, a P. M. coupon, and two attached route coupons, has the following indications of the transfer-issuing unit: On the top line of the main body of the transfer, the words "Riverside Drive Lines―Northbound"; on the top line of the P. M. coupon, the words "Service Nos. 5, 8 & 9" ("service number" on this system meaning route number); the issuing direction is also indicated by the green color of the date surcharge on each coupon, including the main body, and by a green secondary diagonal bar surcharged on the main body and on each route coupon. Here, a red set of surcharges and bars would have meant southbound, while any other color of surcharges and bars would have indicated individual route forms, where the direction is not part of the unit.

        Usually, as in the above instance, attached coupons bear the limit indications in a more abbreviated form, due to the smaller amount of space available. In the case of Smith patent transfers, for instance, and in some other transfers, the main body of the transfer bears the complete route name and direction (if so desired); while the attached route coupons simply bear a route number, which, in the Smith forms, is put in a box in a corner at the bottom of the coupon, usually next to the main body of the transfer.

        Transfer-issuing units are not always named at all, and sometimes have to be inferred from other circumstances. For instance, form numbers (usually called so on the transfer) form the entire indication in the case of surface-car forms of the Boston Elevated Railway Company, though the list of punch spaces gives a rather vague idea of the geographical location of the issuing unit. The same is true in the case of the San Francisco "division-direction" units, merely indicated by numbers at the top of the transfer, with sometimes the issuing direction added (always so, in Oakland forms); here again, the punch-spaces form an additional guide, listing actually the different possible issuing routes by number.

        There are cases, though, in which failure to indicate on the transfer the issuing unit goes still farther, and where forms exactly alike except for color are given out on the system, different issuing units giving transfers of different colors. In this case the color is absolutely the only clue to the issuing unit. This is the case, for instance, on the Morris County (N. J.) Traction Company, on the Hudson River and Eastern Traction Company (Ossining, N. Y.), and on the Mauch Chunk and Lehighton (Pa.) Transit Company. Transfers issued at the stations at 149th Street and Third Avenue by the Interborough Rapid Transit Company (New York City) simply state where, they are good, in other words what we may call the receiving unit, and the issuing unit must be inferred from these data.

        It will also occasionally happen that a transfer-issuing unit is actually wider than indicated on the form, especially when an old form has been pressed into new service. This is really an instance of vestigial forms, and should properly be considered as such.

        We may say that, when a transfer form is obtained, one of the first things for the collector to do is ascertain definitely the issuing unit.

        71. Wording of Issuing Unit on TransferThis is quite variable, and the same statement about the transfer- issuing unit may he repeated in the same or in different wording on different parts of the form. Even the same system, on the same class of transfer form, is not uniform in the way in which the issuing unit is indicated. For instance, the Philadelphia Rapid Transit Company usually states the transfer-issuing unit in large type in the top line of the front of the transfer; but in some cases the issuing direction is here omitted even when it forms part of the unit; and the issuing route may be referred to either by name or by number, so that the same route may be thus referred to either, let us say, as "From Frankford―2nd and 3rd" or "From Route 5." On these forms, the endorsed matter is headed with route and direction, the route here always being referred to by number.

        In connection with the above, we may note that the words "From," or "Issued From," are commonly, though not always, placed before the names of transfer-issuing units on transfer forms.

        The ordinary way of expressing a transfer-issuing unit is at the head of the form, on the front side, and in some such direct way as: "167th Street Crosstown Line East," or "Rye Beach Lines." Direction is expressed in any one of various ways, and frequently the same thing is expressed more than once on the same form, as in the case of the regular transfer forms of the Los Angeles Railway, which we may call for short "D in." Here the main body of the form bears the words: "West Sixth Street and Southern Pacific Depot Line," and both the main body and the attached route coupon bear the surcharge "D," which means the same thing. The direction is expressed by the green color of the transfer (a common way of marking such things, as we shall see when we come to consider color schedules), but also by the printing in a box at the lower right-hand corner of the main body of the transfer, reading: "IN TRIP from Southern Pacific Depot," thus expressing the direction in two different ways in one sentence. In many cases, though, systems will leave some item of the unit to be inferred.

        In case of a group of lines or divisions constituting a transfer-issuing unit, they may be individually listed, or they may be combined under a general description. Or, as with the Harrisburg (Pa.) Railways, they may be listed in punch spaces, the issuing line to he punched. Where a group of lines is combined under a single general description, this may be considered as constituting them a division or subdivision. An instance of both listing and combining-form methods of wording the issuing unit has been given in Sec. 70.

        Where a zone is part of the indication of the unit, it is usually named by some city or town, or by the terminal points of the zone, or by some arbitrary name. For instance, in the case of overlap transfers of the Pittsburgh Railways, the transfers issued within the inner fare limits are surcharged "OLD 5c AREA."

        In all cases, there is the possibility that the description and nomenclature used on transfers might differ from that otherwise used. We have pointed out, for instance, that the route numbering in Pittsburgh is different on the transfers from that on the cars; the same thing may happen with the naming of routes or other transfer-issuing units. Thus, in the case of the Bronx (N. Y. City) lines of the Third Avenue Railway system, there was such a diversity of nomenclature for the routes, the name "Tremont Avenue Line" as found on transfer forms being generally known, and labelled on car signs, as the 180th Street Crosstown Line; while the line called Tremont Avenue on the car signs was called "Westchester and Walker Aves." on the transfer forms. This discrepancy has since been corrected, actually constituting a new issue of transfers as concerned those two lines (4 forms being affected by the issue).

        72. Baltimore Type of TransferIn this connection, we note what may be called the Baltimore type of transfer, because it is being used in that city. The outstanding feature of the type is the printing of the name of the issuing route conspicuously at the top of the transfer form, with the direction, if so desired, immediately below it, and, beside the name of the issuing route (usually to the right, though occasionally to the left) is a box containing the number of the issuing route. The Baltimore type should properly call for a vertical transfer, with these two methods of denoting the issuing route occupying the entire top end, and the box occupying a corner. However, this is not necessary, except that with a horizontal transfer (as used by the Public Service Railway of New Jersey) the issuing route will not occupy the entire top, but only a portion of it.

         Transfers of the Baltimore type generally indicate the receiving route by a series of punch spaces in single column, although this is by no means a necessary arrangement. The Springfield (Mass.) forms have the Franklin double column which we will consider later, while the Public Service transfers issued in Newark merely have an endorsed listing of receiving lines.

         73. Section of the Issuing UnitIn many cases it is desired to indicate the conditions of issuance more in detail than a simple statement of the issuing unit could possibly give. Conditions of issuance so indicated from what we may for convenience call a section of the transfer-issuing unit. The section may include indication of direction where the issuing unit itself does not involve that; or it may be an individual line or group of lines forming a portion of the group constituting the issuing unit; or it may be a zone or portion of a zone where the transfer was issued (conditions involving initial fare limit). Of course, the issuing unit may have been indicated by a listing of sections; but generally where it is desirable to indicate such sections of the issuing unit, it is best done by a list of punch spaces.

        Punch spaces indicating the exact part of the route where the passenger got in are occasionally found, and may be there either on account of overlap fare limits or to indicate the zone where the transfer is valid; or it may be to prevent returning by a roundabout route to the starting point on one fare, The latter is the commonest. To illustrate, suppose that we have two routes from A to B, one via C and one via D. Now, it is no part of even a universal transfer privilege to let a passenger ride from to B on one of these routes and get a transfer to the other route which will take him back to his starting point, A, again. And still, if A and B are far enough apart, it may be convenient to give transfers from one line to the other for passengers travelling locally at either junction, A, or B. To accomplish this without granting a round trip for one fare, intermediate points C and D may provided, with the regulation that transfers issued to passengers getting on before C or D are not good on the other of the two lines indicated. In this case the transfer would be punched as issued before C (or D) or after it. Such punches are in use on some forms of the Public Service Railway (New Jersey) and of the Kansas City Railways.

        Punching the issuing line is also a common device. One special variation is to be noted: namely, when there is a double column with a list of lines so arranged that each route name crosses the division of the columns, one column being headed "From," and the other "To." Thus the issuing and receiving lines are punched in parallel columns. One of these columns may also be divided in two (usually it is the "To" column) to combine with the half-day condition, the two halves of the column representing A. M. and P. M. respectively, the P. M. column usually being dark. Both columns may be thus divided. We will refer to this device as the From-To punch, and, as we have just seen, it may be combined with a Stedmanic arrangement.

        Direction of issuing line is also frequently punched, so that we have forms containing punch spaces marked "In" and "Out," or "North," "South," "East," and "West." Where there are such punch spaces, it is not always clear, whether they refer to the issuing or the receiving direction; the context must indicate, and more often they will refer to the receiving direction. Where the issuing direction is a section of the issuing unit to he marked on the transfers, it is very frequently combined with other items, such as receiving direction, half-day, or even the entire set of receiving conditions. The latter is accomplished by dividing the transfer into two parts, which may or may not include the parts referring to conditions of time; one part to he punched if the issuing car runs in one direction, and the other part to be punched if the issuing car runs in the other direction. This is found best exemplified in the forms issued by the New York State Railways in the city of Rochester. When the transfer is thus divided, it may be desired to indicate the issuing direction alone by punching merely the heading of the desired half of the transfer; this is done with the forms issued by the Public Service Railway of New Jersey on lines not entering Newark.

        We note in the case of the "From-To" punch, that the names of issuing routes need not appear in all columns. There may be one column of empty boxes or of boxes containing some arbitrary sign (usually a star). Also, these descriptions of issuing routes may include issuing direction.

        As samples of the "From-To" punch, we can give the following:

        Case 1, above, is taken from the Larchmont (N. Y.) transfer form of the New York and Stamford Railway; Case 2 is from the transfer forms of the Richmond Light and Railroad Company (Staten Island, New York City); while Case 3 represents a part of the route punch on transfers issued by the Community Traction Company (Toledo, Ohio). In Case 2, the shading in the middle column represents a dark strip in the original form. With the omission of the "To" box and of the entire "From" column, it represents exactly the typical Stedmanic form.

        In the matter of how far sections of the transfer-issuing unit are expressed on the transfer, we may simply note that, in general, the more specifically the receiving conditions are indicated, the less of issuing conditions need be specified.

        74. Attached Coupons Indicating Initial Fare Limit.  Although sections of tile issuing unit are usually denoted by punching, sometimes the initial fare limit is indicated by attached coupons. There are two types of this device, which we may call the Long Island type and the Pittsburgh type of route coupon. The Long Island type really indicates receiving conditions, the issuing conditions being only an inference. Both types are intended for use under the overlap arrangement of the transfer privilege.

        To begin with the Pittsburgh route coupon as the simplest, it consists of an attached coupon at the right of the main body of the transfer, which is detached if tile initial fare limit is outside the inner limits of the overlap. Its presence therefore indicates issuance of the transfer within the inner limits, and entitles the passenger to certain repeat transfer privileges. The one instance of this which we have met is in the special inbound form issued by the Third Avenue routes of the Pittsburgh Railways Company. This coupon, besides the name of the transfer-issuing unit at the top ("Third Avenue Routes―In") and the usual "Not Good if Detached" found on most attached coupons, contains the following inscription:

        If this coupon is attached to transfer, it indicates that the transfer was issued in accordance with conditions as shown on reverse side and that person to whom issued is entitled to a Crosstown transfer if requested when this transfer is presented for fare.

        The endorsed matter referred to reads as follows:

        This coupon denotes that transfer to which it is attached was issued upon payment of fare in cash or with Brownsville (306-A) or Beltzhoover (306-B) shuttle transfer for a ride entirely within the City Limits.
        If issued outside City Limits, issuing conductor will detach and destroy this coupon.

The presence of the coupon really defines the section of the transfer-issuing unit as the part of the issuing unit within the City Limits; equally the absence of the coupon defines the section as the rest of the routes in question.

         This differs from the Smithoid types in that the Smithoid attached route coupons are themselves to be punched for fare in case repeat privileges are desired, leaving the rest of the transfer to be used for repeat purposes. The same system, the Pittsburgh Railways Company, also uses attached coupons of this type, as on the Mount Washington route.

        The Long Island type is somewhat different, consisting of a succession of coupons, each giving a definite transfer receiving route, and final fare limit, or a list of them, described definitely or generally. One of these inscriptions is on the main body of the transfer, the rest are on attached coupons. Depending on the point at which the issuing car was boarded, attached coupons are left on or detached in issuing, and the last coupon (the one farthest from the main body of the transfer) indicates the receiving conditions which it is desired to express. This also indicates the section of the issuing unit, usually as to initial fare limit, sometimes also as to zone or other similar condition.

        For an example we cite the forms used in Lowell, Mass., on the cars of the Eastern Massachusetts Street Railway Company. The transfers issued by the Depot lines read on the main body: "Good for fare to any limit of the Lowell Traffic Center except B & M depot." The attached coupon, at the top of the transfer, reads: "This coupon makes attached Traffic Center Extension Check good for fare to Lowell Central Zone Limits on any route not passing B & M Depot." We note that these exceptions as to the Depot lines forms the mode of expressing the issuing unit; the presence or absence of the attached coupon denotes the initial fare limit, since the transfer is issued with the coupon attached only if passenger boarded within the inner fare zone (here referred to as the Traffic Center). This is a good example of the way in which such coupons are used; they actually show the receiving conditions, including final fare limit; but, by inference, they also indicate the section of the issuing unit, as regards zone or portion of zone, and particularly as regards initial fare limit.

        75. Transfer-Receiving UnitsIt is not usual to have transfer-receiving units analogous to the transfer-issuing units, since receiving conditions are usually accounted for otherwise, as we shall see. Still, it occasionally happens that there is such a receiving unit, which may either be an indirect way of expressing the issuing unit (as with the Interborough Rapid Transit system in New York City) or be combined with the issuing unit as in Syracuse, N. Y., where each line issues two distinct forms, one to the north and south routes, and another to the east and west routes. Sometimes special forms to buses are issued; in which case the bus sub-system becomes a receiving unit.

        76. Notation for Transfer-Issuing UnitFor purposes of orderly arrangement of transfers it is convenient to have a code of notation for transfer-issuing units. In Section 67 we have shown how this can be done when said unit is a route or a division; similarly we have seen how to denote a system or sub-system. When a city or other similar region is to be indicated, the same rules may be followed as for divisions; and, when the unit is a group of routes or divisions, they may be listed as a division if described in a group (or as an unnumbered or unlettered line). If the routes or divisions are listed, anyone of them, preferably the first in number or letter, or the first on the list, should be taken. Thus the issuing unit of the Lowell illustration in Section 74 may be described as 1Aiii(1)LWd, where 1Aiii(1) is the sub-system (see Appendix B), LW denoting the city (or division) and "d" denoting the depot group of routes. As here, where more than one item of description enters into the unit, the items should be listed in order, the widest item preferably first.

        Where direction is part of the issuing unit, it should be noted after the other items; for this purpose we may use the ordinary abbreviations for the points of the compass, N, S, E, W; and "i" for inbound, and "o" for outbound. Thus the issuing unit consisting of the outbound West Sixth Street line in Los Angeles would be denoted by: 9BiDo, where 9Bi denotes the system (Appendix A), D the route (Appendix D), and "o" indicates outbound.

         Where the type of vehicle is an item, "b" may conveniently be used to denote buses, while the absence of a letter would mean street cars.

         Where it is important to note in similar code a transfer-receiving unit, it may be done in the same way. The fact that it is a receiving unit may be specified by a little arrow ← over the last characters. Thus, a certain continuation transfer formerly issued in Orange, N. J., had the so-called "Jigger" line as a receiving unit. This receiving-unit could be denoted by 2Di(1)j where 2Di(1) denotes the sub-system (Appendix B); O denotes the division, Orange (Section 67); and "j" stands for Jigger. The arrow indicates a receiving unit.


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