Third & Townsend, Part 3
Interior & Exterior, 1974 (mostly)

SP Index
Part 1, Vintage Facade Photos
Part 2, 1974 in Color
Part 4, Tracks, Trains & Towers

Wx4 staff shot the following photos in June, 1974, except as noted.
(above) Across Third Street from the station in the '60's and '70's stood a San Francisco institution, the Doggie Diner. Part of a small local chain, its hot dogs fed an entire generation of railroaders and passengers, until it closed in the 1980's. The building itself survived under different ownership until the 1990's, when it was replaced by a McDonalds.

(left) The baggage room stood along Townsend Street, next to one of several bus stops.

(below left) In the days before alcohol testing, drinks with or without lunch were SOP for trainmen during the long layovers between the morning and afternoon Fleets. Jimmie's was not an employee watering hole of choice however, for obvious reasons. There were plenty of dives up Third Street where a guy could have 'a couple' without being spotted.
In 1974, after 'temporarily' serving the traveling public for six decades, the depot stood in crumbling elegance, repair patches upon patches (above left) and shopworn paint (above right) attesting to its antiquity.

Palo Alto-based Rickey's Hyatt House operated both the Rendevous Room restaurant and the Coach Room bar inside the depot. The architecture of the latter SCREAMED post-war schlock, and couldn't have been more out of place sitting within a Mission Revival building.
(right) Soon after operations moved to the new Fourth and Townsend depot on June 21, 1975, SP took a wrecking ball to 3rd Street's waiting room - and then stopped demolition for many months. Here's how things stood (and did not stand) on December 13 of that year. The folks in the picture are waiting for the Freedom Train to depart from the San Francisco Belt Railroad yard down King Street near the wharf.
(left) In better times, about 1970: note the neon sign advertising Rickey's. Southern Pacific photo, courtesy of the Doomster.

(below) Looking roughly northwest, we see the back side of the depot, (with a Bay Bridge tower looming behind) and a line of cars parked along King Street. The tracks in the foreground led to SP's freight houses out of sight to the left.
The Snack Bar, home of the Depot Dog (above) and the News Stand sat adjacent to each other in the main waiting room (right) at the Townsend end of the depot.

January, 1968

(above) January, 1968
(above left) Given that the Alco PA's gave out in 1967, and the Daylight paint scheme was superseded in 1958, the huge sign at the west end of the west end of the main waiting room was a curious anachronism in 1968, given that the depot served SP's headquarters city. The sign remained until the end.

(above right) This sign exhorting the public to buy their monthlies early to avoid the first-of-the-month lines, hung over one set of doors to the corridor connecting the track gates (left). The venerable clock (below) hung at the entrance to track one. A more prosaic clock (far bottom left) topped another corridor entrance. The chandelier (below right) illuminated the main waiting room, where the plain, recent-vintage ticket counter stood (extreme bottom right).

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