Tue, Jun 12 2012 07:57
Cable Car Museum
|Take me to your nearest crab stand...|
San Francisco, CA
Ah, San Francisco: likely the only city in the world where tourists are giddy with excitement in anticipation of a ride on public transportation.
Travelling at 9.5 MPH has never been so exciting, especially if you factor in the beautiful sights, fellow international occupants and the cable car system's extremely lackadaisical policy against hanging off the sides.
The idea for this unique transportation system was conceived by Andrew Hallidie, who witnessed horses being whipped as they pulled a horsecar up a wet cobblestone street. They slipped, and were subsequently dragged to their deaths. There had to be a better way.
The Cable Car Museum chronicles the nearly century-and-a-half history of these unique cars and provides a close-up look at the cables, grips, track and other system features. On display are three antique cars from the 1870s along with other memorabilia from the era. The museum is located inside the Washington/Mason cable car barn and powerhouse, where you can watch the gigantic engines and wheels that pull the cables.
The Museum also hosts the Annual Bell Ringing Competition, a great opportunity to pay tribute to the cable cars and those who maintain and keep them safe.