|Santa Maria Valley Railway Historical Museum
A Rich Rail HeritagePictured at right is an original painting commissioned and owned by Jon Aldrich of Aviation Antiques, used by permission. Click on the picture for a larger version. The plane is being piloted by owner Capt. Hancock as it flies over Hancock's SMVRR No. 21 steam locomotive! The piece was done by Michael Boss, a reknowned transportation artist whose research and accuracy on locomotive and aerial images has many followers, and is titled "Santa Maria Schedule 1933".
Railroads have operated in the the Santa Maria Valley since the 1800s. The Pacific Coast Railway, which connected San Luis Bay to San Luis Obispo, Santa Maria, and Los Olivos, built branches extending east to Garey Ranch and Palmer, and west to Betteravia and Guadalupe. The latter was operated for a few years as a trolley route to Guadalupe.
By 1911, the Santa Maria Valley Railroad (SMVRR) was extended from the Betteravia area to Roadamite in the hills near Sisquoc where an oil refinery was located.
In 1925, oilman and real estate developer Allan Hancock bought the SMVRR along with the oil fields at Roadamite and ranch land in the eastern portion of the valley.
One of the SMVRR cabooses sits at the depot in Oceano, CA in the summer of 2004.
Who? What? When? ...
pictures that you might help us with the stories...
SMVRR's No. 10 GE 70-ton diesel
KSMR Radio at the Railroad Office
See Bruce Morden's Santa Maria Valley Railroad: Shortline on California's Central Coast
A Collision at Guadalupe Yard, 1952
A Treatise on Gauge: Why 4'8½"?
Summary of Central California narrow gauge railroads
The Sugar Mill at Betteravia
Some SMVRR Steam Locomotives
Final Run of Old 21
"Notes Along the Pacific Coast Right Of Way"
A series of articles by Andrew Merriam on the Pacific Coast Railway.
D&RGW Coach (currently at Betteravia)