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Trains In Martinez: A Very Brief Video History

Do you like the sound of the trains through Martinez, or do they drive you to distraction?

In 1877, the first steam train huffed and hissed its way through the city of Martinez, carrying freight and passengers, including Gov. Leland Stanford. Since then, residents throughout the city have become used to hearing the train whistle blow many times a day.

Though the noise of the whistle can drive those living nearby to distraction. The occasional traffic tie-up at the Ferry Street crossing can be frustrating for those trying to get in and out of Waterfront Park. But for the most part Martinez residents love the trains. They represent a solid link to a rich and vital past.

There are many train tales in Martinez, many stories from many eras of the city. Too many to list here. But if you close your eyes and listen to the whistle in the distance, you can perhaps hear the echo of those stories as they whisper their way through the streets and alleys and rafters. Shadow tales that might shed a little light in the darker corners of your own life.

What are your train experiences in Martinez? Tell us in the comments.

Robert Rothgery February 06, 2013 at 09:53 PM
For our honeymoon my wife and I boarded the California Zephyr here in town and rode to Chicago and back 10 days later. Wonderful experience except for the two hours we were stuck beside the State of Nevada Vehicle Impound Yard. The trip yielded many smiles from us and over 1800 photos.
Robert Smith February 07, 2013 at 06:49 PM
I moved to Martinez in 1958. I loved hearing the trains. I now am in Ontario, Canada and miss Martinez and the sound of the trains. I still have family in Martinez and when I visit will be sure to listen for the trains. It brings back good memories. My Father also helped build the Martinez/Benicia bridge.

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