WP's William Street Yard
Photos by Ken Rattenne

Western Pacific's William Street Yard is nestled amongst the older suburban houses of downtown San Jose along San Carlos and William Street. 

The yard, also called San Jose Yard, was once a busy little terminal, complete with a three-stall roundhouse which was dismantled in 1956. 

As late as 1978 the yard saw two tricks (yard shifts) a day  during the week, with the yard handling enough traffic to warrant a pair of First Generation Geeps to be assigned. The morning and afternoon turns from Stockton would occasionally make their way south to San Jose if there was enough San Jose traffic to warrant using the road locomotives. If not then one of the San Jose switchers would run north to Milpitas and pick-up the cars. 

(Here's a bonus: the white streaks in the background behind the unit and to the right is snow! - click to enlarge) 

(Above) WP GP7 708 enters William Street Yard after servicing customers in East San Jose and Milpitas in 1979. If the San Jose Turn did not have sufficient traffic for San Jose to continue down the branch from Milpitas, then one of the roadswitchers would go retrieve the cars in a transfer move. 

Middle left) Here's one for the modelers. GP20 2008 is not wearing a modified Zephyr scheme. Witness the affects of time and weather on the classic silver and orange paint. The puddle in the forground is mostly fuel oil with a light coating of water on top from a recent rain. 

Below left: With Mt. Hamilton dominating the background, GP7 705 switches in west San Jose on July 10, 198, not far from where the branchline crossed Southern Pacific's Vasona Branch

Silver and orange GP9 731 kicks cars in a scene once common at William Street Yard. (Jon Pullman Porter Photo)