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A holiday gift from me to you: the very first Buzzer!

The very first Buzzer, ever. Click to download it.

The very first Buzzer, ever. Click to download it.

You’re getting an early holiday treat this year — click to see the very first Buzzer from 1916! (~2.6MB PDF)

This little gift comes early because I’m on vacation for the next two weeks. A couple of scheduled posts will be popping up to alert you of holiday transit service, but other than that, I’ll return to regular Buzzer blogging starting Monday, Jan. 5.

Anyway, to the issue at hand. As you can plainly see, the first Buzzer wasn’t even called the Buzzer — it had no name at all and implored riders to enter possible names for the newsletter. (The next issue of course announced the Buzzer as the winner, with “Current Comments” in second place, and “Between The Lines” third!)

This Buzzer hails from our mostly complete Buzzer archives. We’re only missing a bunch from 1916-1923, and a few here and there in the 1950s and 1960s. Feel free to get in touch if you have old Buzzers to donate or share!

We are also indeed looking to create a digital Buzzer archive, but this project has its own challenges. One of the biggest is that almost all of our Buzzers are in little bound books, since that’s how they collected Buzzers at the end of each year—and it’s tricky to unbind and rebind the books to scan each issue. (We also don’t want to damage the paper itself, as lots of them are newsprint.)

Nonetheless, this 1916 issue was a loose copy and thus scannable. And we have a few more issues of that nature, which I’ll share with you in the upcoming year. Rob, a transit enthusiast, also has some images of older Buzzer issues on his page, too, if you’d like to see more, and you can also check out our 92nd anniversary Buzzer PDF for more Buzzer history.

As for this year: have a happy holiday season! Celebrate with family and friends, take care of yourselves, and I’ll see you on Jan. 5!


3 Comments

  • By buzzerman, December 31, 2008 @ 5:09 pm

    Who won the contest?!?!?!

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, January 6, 2009 @ 9:49 am

    Well, buzzerman, there were indeed 11 people who submitted the name “The Buzzer” and won the contest:

    W.J. Buckingham
    Charles J. Cameron
    Frank P. Downes
    A.J. Harrison
    Miss Kathleen M. Hartley
    Mrs G. W. Isaacs
    E. J. Judd
    Joseph A. Macfarlane
    Mrs. J. J. Miller
    Mrs. F.W. Parkin
    Miss Marguerite Philip

    All this comes from the July 14, 1916 issue of the Buzzer. We don’t have an actual copy of the next issue, but we do have a really bad photocopy of it for you to download. Take a look at the winners list and you’ll see that the Buzzer listed all of their addresses in the article too. Privacy? What privacy?

    As for prizes, there was also a bit of a change. Since there was only $30 available for prizes in general, the Buzzer just redistributed the amount over the total number of winners. First place winners got $2 each, and second and third place winners received $1.50 and $1.25 each. Huzzah!

Other Links to this Post

  1. The Buzzer blog » Happy 94th birthday to the Buzzer! — June 2, 2010 @ 10:31 am

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