Sunset Limited Los Angeles to New Orleans 1954
The Sunset Limited is a passenger train that for most of its history has run between New Orleans and Los Angeles, over the nation's second transcontinental route. It is the oldest named train in the United States, operating since November 1894 along the sunset route (though originally named the Sunset Express). The Sunset Route (originating in New Orleans) is the southernmost of the three gateways to the West Coast, envisioned through the Transcontinental Railroad Act. The other two embarked from Chicago, IL, and St. Louis, MO. The advantages of the Sunset Route were that unlike the other two, it did not have to assault the front range of the Rockies, and was an all-weather, year-round route that didn’t face the crippling snows of the Wasatch or Sierra mountain ranges to reach the Pacific coast. In 1930, the route was cut back to Los Angeles and the train carried coaches for the first time. In 1936, the train resumed running to San Francisco and was one of SP's first trains to receive air conditioning. In January of 1942, it was cut back to Los Angeles; the Sunset Limited was never again all-Pullman and never again ran beyond Los Angeles. Today Amtrak operates three Sunset Limited trains a week in both directions.
Courtesy Private Collection.
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