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Mr. Linsky
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Joined: 16 Apr 2007
Posts: 5071

PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2014 3:59 pm    Post subject: 'NORTHERN NEW JERSEY'S PRIVATE OPERATORS' Reply with quote

'New York Omnibus' take note;

In its day, and before the beginning of municipalization of virtually every bus line in the country in the 70's, Northern New Jersey probably had more private operators than any other geographical area in the world.

Not only did they vigorously serve every corner in their marketplaces but did so with very colorful and interesting equipment both new and used.

I am by no means an expert on such matters in the Garden State so I'm going to ask our learned colleague New York Omnibus, whose specialty is in Jersey operations, to add historic notes to each of my photographic submissions.

What I can tell you about the focus of the photo below is that it is fleet #29X - a 45 passenger GM Coach modeled as a TDH-4512 built sometime between 1953 and 1959 and operating for Maria Transportation Company and is seen in Hoboken in 1978 with a destination of Washington Street.

Photo courtesy of 'Vintage-Vault75' and is available at eBay as item # 390962033337.

Mr, Linsky - Green Bus Lines, Inc., Jamaica, New York

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N4 Jamaica

Joined: 16 Apr 2007
Posts: 769
Location: Long Island

PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2014 12:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have let ten days pass because my knowledge of northern New Jersey buses in the 1940's-1970 is only through casual acquaintance. I would distinguish between private operators that owned a fleet of buses on one or more routes (such operators as DeCamp) and the IBOA's that were strongest in Hudson County.
Hoboken is in Hudson County. The Washington Street Bus Owners Association ran a single route, from Hudson Terminal north to 14th or 15th Street. Hence, in this photo the Washington Street route sign never changed, unless perhaps the owner was allowed to do charter or school service. The origin was the 1920's jitneys. County politicians realized that they would get more votes if they conceded one vehicle franchise at a time, thereby gaining the owner's vote and that of his extended family. Other IBOA's were on Broadway (Bayonne), Bergen Avenue, Hudson Blvd. Someone else can probably supply a better list. In general, the fleet of an IBOA was painted in a recognizable scheme, often the name of one street.
I can recall seeing a starter or dispatcher at Hoboken Terminal dispatching the drivers on their trips north on Washington Street, a mile-and-a-half run. Whether there was a southbound dispatcher, I don't know. The man at Hoboken Terminal may have had a tough supervisory job. Crowds poured off the Lackawanna ferry boats from two or more Manhattan terminals. Crowds also poured off the H&M trains, and the buses loaded at the top of the stairway. Would a dispatcher hold a driver for a crowd? Did each owner's income depend on the fares his driver caught, or was the pot split among the owners, I don't know.
BUSTALK GALLERIES has a PHOTO COLLECTION of mostly northern NJ bus companies and IBOA's. Some of the photos not designated as IBOA may in fact be component firms of the Washington Street IBOA. I refer to Agresta Bus Co. and Hoboken Transportation, but there may be others on that page.
The van services of Bergen and Hudson Counties in 2014 seem to operate with each driver competing for fares.
A map link of present-day vans is below:
For more of the situation in 2014, please see:
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