Just 0.2 miles to the northwest of Monterey Depot, comfortably sitting at the foot of Old Fisherman's Wharf, a flag-stop by the name of Custom House took residence. The station first appeared in late 1889 immediately beside the Old Customhouse along the Southern Pacific Railroad's Monterey Branch extension to Lake Majella. The track originally terminated at roughly the location of Custom House, only extending to the Pacific Grove area in August 1889. In an effort to promote this new trackage, the railroad listed it under a separate header called the "Pacific Grove Extension", although the idea did not last for more than a few years. Custom House, along with Cypress Park, may have been stations added specifically to improve the footprint of the extension in timetables. While there was extensive passenger service to the stop in the first full year of operation (1890), by 1891 no passenger service was listed at the stop and it probably was abandoned within a few years.Oliver Collection. J. K. Oliver, photographer. Credit: Monterey Public Library, California History Room
|Custom House station site in 1897 showing four people waiting for the train.|
(Photo by J.K. Oliver / Monterey Public Library)
|Another view of Custom House during the failed 1897 constitutional convention. (Photo by Charles C. Pierce)|
|The Old Customhouse immediately beside the Pacific Grove Extension track, c. 1900.|
|The customhouse c. 1890 with Captain Thomas G. Lambert and his wife, the residents of the building|
from 1868 to the mid-1890s. (Aztec Club)
|The customhouse in 1902, with streetcar tracks in the foreground.|
|Southern Pacific special X2581 running beside the Old Customhouse on 22 July 1951. (Wilbur C. Whittaker)|
Official Railroad Information:
From late 1889 to roughly 1895 the stop was located between Monterey and Hoffman Avenue, approximately 126 miles from San Francisco via Castoville, Pajaro, Gilroy, and San José. Passenger service to the station disappeared in 1891, after which the stop probably went into permanent disuse.
Geo-Coordinates & Access Rights:
|The Old Customhouse today. (Ezio Armando/Flickr)|
The site of Custom House is located on the oceanside of the Old Customhouse along the Monterey Bay Coastal Trail, which marks the path of the old railroad right-of-way. The station site itself was probably immediately at the base of Fisherman's Wharf, on the northern edge of the customhouse. Since there was probably never any structures associated with the stop, nothing remains of the stop to be seen today.
Citations & Credits: