ROSTER OF GMC OLD LOOK BUSES:

Fleet Nos. Serial Numbers Date delivered
1785-1844 0985-1044 10/54
1845-1882 1084-1121 06/55
1883-1914 1368-1399 08-09/55
1915-1966 2701-2752 03/57
1967 EXP-305 08/58

ABOUT THE GMC BUSES:

The 183 5105s replaced many of the White 798 buses. Original deliveries came with the standard run number in the headsign. Buses from the first group were used to begin new limited stop service on the South Claiborne (Carrollton via Poydras) route in 1955. Amber lamps were installed on either side of the headsign, and the run number was moved down to the curbside windshield. I believe later arrivals of 5105s came with these modifications. Buses from the 1957 delivery were used to start the Express 70 (Carrollton via Earhart) and Express 71 (Nashville via Earhart) routes. On either the limited stop or express lines, the lamps flashed on and off when they were in that type of service. Standee windows were tinted blue. The buses wore a maroon and cream livery like the Whites and trolley coaches. Public Service "lightning bolt" logos appeared in the early 1960s.

Bus 1967 was originally a 5103 rebuilt with air suspension instead of springs. It became a demonstrator touring the country to sell 5105s. One of its stops was San Francisco, where it appeared in Muni green and cream "wings" livery and numbered 5105. General Motors air conditioned the bus and sent it to Washington, D.C. to visit the DC Transit system. In that operator's livery, it finished its tour before being sold to NOPSI, who installed the express lamps for service.

Acquisitions of New Look buses from GMC and Flxible began the replacement of the 5105s during the mid 1960s. A few were sold for continued use. I remember them well from the early 1970s on uptown and Gentilly lines such as Magazine, South Claiborne, Broad, and Franklin. The last old looks were retired with the arrival of the AM Generals in 1975.

Dayton, Ohio bought six of the 5105s; they were numbered 300-305-310-315-320-325. (CPTDB)

Some information comes from Eli Bail's great Motor Coach Age article on New Orleans from the October-December 2001 issue.

GMC 1790:

St. Louis 1200 on the Tulane trolley coach route at Canal and Elk Place. The marquees of the Saenger with "Eighteen and Anxious" and Loew's with "Jailhouse Rock" place the slide in November or December '56. Ahead of the 1200 is GMC bus 1790 turning onto Canal. The diesel is likely operating a branch of the South Claiborne bus line. Both the Carrollton via Poydras and the Napoleon via Melpomene originally came down S. Rampart to Canal, then back up Baronne. I think here we have a rerouting to Elk Place instead of Rampart, but I do not know whether this is temporary or permanent. In later years, Melpomene buses used Loyola and Elk Place, returning via S. Rampart, while Poydras buses took Carondelet down and St. Charles up. Slide in my collection. One photo added 04/10/12.

GMC 1804:

The as-delivered look of the old looks is demonstrated by GMC 1804 as it lays over at So. Claiborne and So. Carrollton Aves. in late 1954 or early 1955. The headsign appears to be turned to "SO. CLAIBORNE SHUTTLE" although the latter word barely appears within the window. Run number is 30. Next to it is bus 1819, and behind the coaches is a filling station. The maroon that appears in the sunlight is beautiful. Slide in my collection. One photo added 11/15/11.

GMC 1807:

GMC 1807 on the South Claiborne bus line at Baronne and Julia Sts. on August 25, 1955. Note the track turnouts that truncate. A number of streetcar lines used to take Julia, particularly S. Claiborne in the 1920s. Baronne is one-way upbound, so the St. Charles streetcar line that used to operate here must now be rerouted to Carondelet and St. Charles Sts. Overhead are twin wires for the Jackson trolley coach line, and a single wire over the river side streetcar track is visible. And at the curb in the foreground is a truck of Charles L. Franck Commercial Photography. Charles L. Franck / Franck-Bertacci Photographers Collection, The Historic New Orleans Collection (www.hnoc.org). One photo added 05/20/11.

GMC 1839:

GMC 1839 turning across Canal St. near the loop in an April 1964 slide. It's operating on the Elysian Fields or the Express 91 bus line. One photo added 04/24/15.

GMC 1853:

GMC 1853 on the Desire line outbound at Bourbon and St. Louis Sts. in June 1956. Slide in my collection. One photo added 11/26/11.

GMC 1927:

Car 930 still shows its rebuilt splendor a few months after suffering a fire in this slide dated January 1971. GMC 1927 sits in the next bay at right. One photo added 07/08/13.


Carrollton Station scene in a slide dated April 1971 shows car 971 on the left with some GMC buses, old look 1927 and new looks 122 and 110. One photo added 01/07/12.


Perley Thomas car 926 ready for a charter by the National Railway Historical Society is the center of attention in this Earl W. Hampton, Jr. photo, but you can see GMC 1927 signed for Tulane at the right. Carrollton Station, September 1973. This location once housed buses for the Tulane, Carrollton, and Palmer Park bus lines. One photo added 03/15/11.


GMC 1927 in front of the Willow St. side of Carrollton Station in an April 1973 slide. One photo added 07/25/16.


Another Earl W. Hampton, Jr. shot of GMC 1927, this time with car 963 also signed for the NRHS. One photo added 04/12/11.

GMC 1928:

This 1970 Earl W. Hampton, Jr. photo shows the proud handiwork done on Perley Thomas car 930 after suffering a fire. At right is GMC 1928 signed for Tulane. One photo added 03/15/11.


GMC 1928 turning from Willow St. to South Carrollton Ave. outbound, likely to do a Tulane run. Slide from my collection dated April 25, 1973 added 07/25/16.

GMC 1930:

GMC 1930 between St. Charles streetcar 910 and GMC 123 at Carrollton Station on May 15, 1968. H. George Friedman collection. One photo added 10/17/13.

GMC 1932:

From the Redden Archives collection comes GMC 1932 on the Desire bus line in the French Quarter. One photo replaced 03/15/11.

GMC 1936:

GMC 1936 on the St. Claude to Refinery line at N. Rampart and St. Ann Sts. about January 1974. Slide by Earl W. Hampton, Jr. One photo added 04/13/11.

GMC 1940:

The front interior of GMC 1940 in a slide dated January 1971. The Grant farebox NOPSI installed on all vehicles during 1970-71 is visible. The headsign reads "Bus Garage" through the view window. A dual fare register is mounted above the windshield. One photo added 07/08/13.

GMC 1943:

GMC 1943 on St. Claude to Lizardi at N. Rampart at St. Ann Sts. about January 1974. Note how beat up the bus looks, especially the rear, as it nears seventeen years of age. The full St. Claude route was to the American Sugar Refinery (now Domino Sugar) in Chalmette, just across the parish line. The Lizardi turnback allowed it to meet the Barracks bus at St. Claude Ave. and Forstall St. after crossing the Industrial Canal. In this picture, the bus is heading up to Canal Street. Slides by Earl W. Hampton, Jr. Two photos added 04/13/11.

GMC 1964:

GMC 1964 has stopped at NOLA Fabrics in the French Quarter about January 1974. Slide by Earl W. Hampton, Jr. One photo added 04/13/11.

GMC 1967:

A nighttime rear shot of GMC 1967 at Canal Station in a slide dated January 1971. The air conditioning was installed by GMC as part of the coach's tour of transit facilities. One photo added 07/08/13.

UNKNOWN NUMBER GMCS:

An unknown number GMC is stopped at Waterbury's drug store at S. Rampart and Canal Sts. on April 4, 1955. The trolley coach wires are for the Jackson route, and the bus is on the South Claiborne line. Charles L. Franck / Franck-Bertacci Photographers Collection, The Historic New Orleans Collection (www.hnoc.org). One photo added 03/20/11.


An unknown number 5105 sits in the middle of Howard Ave. and Carondelet St. taking on passengers from St. Charles streetcar no. 910, circa March 1974. This may be a Carnival short turn for the trolley. Slide by Earl W. Hampton, Jr. One photo added 04/12/11.

DAYTON CITY TRANSIT/MVRTA 300:

Before repainting in Dayton City Transit colors, we see ex-NOPSI GMC 1859 with a label on the front of the dash indicating number 300. This image, which likely dates before the RTA takeover on November 5, 1972, comes from the Gerald Squier collection courtesy Scott Richards. One photo added 10/22/14.

DAYTON CITY TRANSIT/MVRTA 310:

Dayton no. 310 in an August 1972 slide. One photo added 04/24/15.


Dayton no. 310 on June 8, 1974. One photo added 09/11/13.

DAYTON CITY TRANSIT/MVRTA 315:

Dayton no. 315 in a November 24, 1978 slide by G. Gerrish Williams. One photo added 04/24/15.

DAYTON CITY TRANSIT/MVRTA 325:

Dayton no. 325, an ex-NOPSI 5105, on July 16, 1971. Louis Adler photo, used with permission. One photo replaced 03/15/11.