The Kid Should See This

Mt. Tamalpais & Muir Woods Railroad, 1926

From the Marin County Free Library, cars, boats, trains and a motorless gravity car in 1920s California.

The Mount Tamalpais and Muir Woods Railroad ran from 1896 until 1929 between downtown Mill Valley to near the summit of Mt. Tamalpais, with a second line descending the West side of Mt. Tamalpais to Muir Woods beginning in 1907. 

The first part of this film from 1926 depicts the journey taken from the San Francisco Ferry Building (notice the cars boarding the ferry), across the bay, to Sausalito. From there, passengers would board a passenger train to Mill Valley. At the Mill Valley depot, an open-aired train traveled up the mountain, on the “Crookedest Railroad in the World.” At the terminus was a tavern; the one pictured here was the third incarnation, rebuilt after a fire in 1913.

The second part of this film begins at the Tavern of Tamalpais where, travelers depart on a motorless gravity car, which traveled down to Muir Woods.

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