Union Pacific Streamliner Timeline

Index For This Page

This page was last updated on May 17, 2023.

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Timeline for 1st through 10th Trains, 1934-1953

(Portions of this Streamliner timeline are included as part of the larger UP Passenger Service Timeline)

1st Train (M-10000)

M-10000 (1934-1942)

February 12, 1934
The three-unit fully-articulated M-10000, the first streamlined internal-combustion passenger train, was delivered to Union Pacific at the Pullman plant at Pullman, Illinois; on February 11, 1934, the train had made two trial runs between Pullman, Illinois, and Michigan City, Indiana.

April 19, 1934
M-10000 made its first revenue trip, a special move for the Omaha Chamber of Commerce between Omaha and Gering, Nebraska (445 miles)

(Read more about the 1st Train, including its consist)

2nd Train (M-10001)

M-10001 (two versions: 1934 and 1935-1939)

October 2, 1934
M-10001 was delivered as a six-unit (later seven-unit), fully-articulated train; returned to Pullman for improvements in December 1934.

May 23, 1935
The revised M-10001 (more horsepower, with added car) was accepted by Union Pacific at the Pullman plant, then it ran to the C&NW Station in Chicago for display, after which it ran to Omaha.

June 4, 1935
M-10001 and its six-car train was christened as "City of Portland" on June 4th, at a ceremony at Portland, Oregon. (Ranks and Kratville, The Union Pacific Streamliners, 1974, pages 82)

(Read more about the 2nd Train, and the Revised 2nd Train, including the consist of both trains)

3rd Train (M-10002)

M-10002 (1936-1947)

May 15, 1936
City of Los Angeles (3rd train) started service, operating every 6th day, 39 hours 45 minutes (equipment consolidated in 1938 with "4th COSF"; withdrawn February 15, 1947)

(Read more about the 3rd Train, including its consist)


M-10003 was built at the same time as M-10005 and M-10006 (all three delivered in July 1936), and was a spare locomotive set to protect the operating schedules of the City of Los Angeles and the City of San Francisco.

There were no cars assigned to the M-10003 locomotives.

June 1937
M-10003 was assigned to City of Denver service and was renumbered to CD-07-A and CD-07-B in June 1937

4th Train (M-10004)

4th Train (1936 to 1938) (COSF)

June 14, 1936
City of San Francisco (4th train) began service, operated every 6th day, 39 hours 45 minutes (equipment consolidated in 1938 with "3rd COLA"; withdrawn February 15, 1947)

4th Train (1938 to 1941) (COLA)

4th Train (1941-1947) (COP)

4th Train (1947 to 1951) (COD)

(Read more about the 4th Train, including its consist)

5th and 6th Trains (M-10005 and M-10006)

5th Train (1936 to 1953) (COD)

6th Train (1936 to 1953) (COD)

June 18, 1936
M-10005 and M-10006 entered revenue service as the "City of Denver," making the 1,048 mile trip between Chicago and Denver in 16 hours.

These two trains were assigned to City of Denver service, and were the first Streamliners with separate motive power units, and a mix of single non-articulated cars and two-unit articulated cars.

(Read more about the 5th Train, including its consist)

(Read more about the 6th Train, including its consist)


July 8, 1937
The Forty-Niner made its initial run from Chicago to San Francisco. This train used Union Pacific's only streamlined steam locomotives, 4-6-2 number 2906 and 4-8-2 number 7002

7th Train (E2 Locomotives)

7th Train (1937 to 1941, and 1941 to 1947)

December 27, 1937
A new 14-car 7th Train entered service as the City of Los Angeles train, powered by the three-unit set of EMD E2 locomotives LA-1-2-3, replaced the 3rd Train (M-10002).

By the time of its first anniversary on December 27, 1938, the City of Los Angeles will have traveled 282,165 miles. By the time of its first anniversary on January 2, 1939, the City of San Francisco will have traveled 274,854 miles. Neither train had been out of service at any time during the year of service. (Union Pacific press release dated December 24, 1938)

(Read more about the 7th Train, including its consist)

8th Train (E2 Locomotives)

8th Train (1938 to 1939, and 1941 to 1947)

January 2, 1938
A new 14-car City of San Francisco train, powered by the three-unit set of EMD E2 locomotives SF-1-2-3, replaced the 4th Train (M-10004).

(Read more about the 8th Train, including its consist)

1938-1941 Changes

Jeff Koeller described the changes in 1938 and 1941, as the car and locomotive consists of the City trains were shuffled to improve the Streamliner service.

The consists shown for March 25, 1938, have M-10004 (cab and booster) as power units for the 9-car 3rd Train (a.k.a. 3rd COLA). I don't know how long this lasted, but on 5-2-38, Richard Kindig photographed M-10004 on the City of Denver, so M-10002 was back on the 3rd COLA by this time.

On April 15, 1938, sleeper LANAI, from the now idle 4th Train, was added to the 3rd COLA (per Line 4302) making it a 10-car train with two power units. The UP public time table for June 12, 1938, thusly lists this train as a "12-car" COLA, running with five sleepers.

When the "revised" 4th Train began running in COLA service in place of the 3rd Train, it also had five sleepers: the original four COSF cars plus MORMON TRAIL from the 3rd Train.

The 3rd Train, now an 8-car train with M-10002, began running as the City of Portland on March 28, 1939, replacing M-10001 (2nd) and the 2nd Train.

After the 3rd Train was bumped from COP service by the 4th Train in August 1941, the now idle 3rd Train was eventually assigned to Portland-Seattle service as a connecting train for the City of Portland. Unofficially known as the City of Seattle, but listed in the time tables as "Streamliner" Nos. 405/406, the 3rd Train had lost another sleeper to the 4th COP and operated as a 7-car train (with only two sleepers) from April 12, 1942 through March 13, 1943. During this run the 3rd Train's section seats were sold at parlor car rates since this train did not run overnight. I have photos of this train in Armour Yellow and Harbor Mist Gray. Although the train may have worn these colors at an earlier date, this is the only example I've seen of M-10002 having been painted as such.

Most of the 3rd Train's cars ended up on the 4th COP, and by February 1946 that train had been increased to 15 cars, including all eight of the original 1936-built sleepers. UP called this train the "consolidated" 4th Train. (Jeff Koeller, email dated May 17, 2023)

Timeline Continues...

August 18, 1938
The remodeled 13-car 4th Train (M-10004), with locomotives renumbered as LA-4, replaced the 3rd Train (M-10002) on the City of Los Angeles route.

May 7, 1939
All UP passenger trains serving Los Angeles began using the newly completed Los Angeles Union Station. (Los Angeles Times, May 1, 1939)

June 1939
The 3rd Train (M-10002) replaced the 2nd Train (M-10001) as the City of Portland. The M-10001 power unit was rebuilt later in the year as CD-07-C

New E3 Locomotives (COLA)

March 1939
Union Pacific took delivery of an EMC E3A and E3B locomotive, numbered as LA-5 and LA-6, which replaced the two-unit LA-4 (ex M-10004) locomotive in City of Los Angeles service.

The two-unit LA-4 (former M-10004) was removed from service and rebuilt into booster units CD-05-C and CD-06-C for the City of Denver trains.

Derailment in Nevada

August 12, 1939
The City of San Francisco derailed on vandalized track near Harney, Nevada. A replacement train was put into service until the consist can be repaired. Five cars were completely destroyed and had to be replaced. This was the 8th Train, with E2s SF-1, SF-2 and SF-3 as motive power.

(Read more about the 1939 derailment of the City of San Francisco)

August 28, 1939
The replacement City of San Francisco train went into service; made up of the cab and booster E3 locomotives, LA-5 and LA-6, and 11 cars from other trains.

9th and 10th Trains - Standard Locomotives and Cars

February 1941
E3 locomotives LA-5 and LA-6 were renumbered 5-M-1-A and 5-M-2-B

February-March 1941
Union Pacific took delivery of two sets of new E6 locomotives from EMC, painted in yellow and gray. One set, a cab unit and two booster units, was numbered as LA-4, LA-5 and LA-6 and was assigned to the City of Los Angeles (9th Train). The second set, also a cab unit and two booster units, was numbered as SF-4, SF-5 and SF-6 and was assigned to the City of San Francisco (10th Train).

July 1941
A new 14-car City of Los Angeles train (the 9th Train) entered service, powered by the three-unit set of EMD E6 locomotives LA 4-5-6.

August 1941
A new 14-car City of San Francisco train (the 10th Train) entered service, powered by the three-unit set of EMD E6 locomotives SF 4-5-6.

August 13, 1941
After being in storage since 1939, M-10001's cars were scrapped

December 16, 1941
M-10000 was removed from service and retired after running over 899,000 miles in revenue service

February 13, 1942
M-10000 and its entire train set was sold for scrap to Aaron Ferer and Sons, Omaha, Nebraska.

April 12, 1942
M-10002 entered service between Portland and Seattle

March 1943
M-10002 was taken out of service; some of the cars were scrapped, and others were transferred to M-10004 when it began running as City of Portland.

...Then They Ran Daily

June 2, 1946
Daily City of St. Louis service was established between St. Louis and Cheyenne in conjunction with the Wabash Railroad. This train was the only streamliner to be painted two-tone grey, due to its connections.

February 1947
M-10004 was taken out of service

February 15, 1947
Daily City of Portland service was established.

May 14, 1947
Daily City of Los Angeles service was established.

September 1, 1947
Daily City of San Francisco service was established.

February, 1948
The M-10004 cars were put into storage

April, 1951
The M-10004 cars were scrapped

CD-05 (M-10005, 5th Train), CD-06 (6th Train, M-10006) and CD-07 train sets were retired from City of Denver service and scrapped

(See Passenger Timeline for continued coverage, including sources)