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The Antique Motor Coach Association of Pennsylvania

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J.M. Ferguson Bus Service

Acquired by PAT on March 31, 1964

The country club that sparked a bus line. That's probably the most apt description of one of the more out-of-the-way lines that came under Port Authority ownership. Walter Fraser, a well-to-do Ben Avon resident purchased land in 1906 which became the Ben Avon Country Club. Wealthy Pittsburghers purchased summer home sites around the country club, which, even today, retains much of its original splendor. But since this watering spot was at the top of the hill, and the Pennsylvania Railroad Emsworth station at the bottom, how would the guests and workers be transported? By means of a "powerful 4-ton truck with bus body" which was to meet all the "best trains" at the station.

This service fell into disuse until 1929 when J. M. Ferguson, a former Ben Avon Borough employee, asked for permission for regular route and school bus operation. Two years later service started using a station wagon, then second hand transit buses and school buses.

This operation was more of a subscription service as opposed to the pay as you use operation of other systems in Allegheny County. Children and domestics could ride for a flat $12 a month; adults paid cash fares. Mr. Ferguson remained in charge of the operation until 1963. Four of his five school buses were given PAT numbers.

Equipment (with PAT number if acquired)
Ferguson Number Make Model Year PAT Number
1 Superior School Bus 1950 21
2 Chevrolet School Bus 1948 22
3 Ford School Bus 1955 23
4 Reo School Bus ? -
5 White School Bus 1956 24

Note: Coach 4 was not renumbered

Routes (shown with PAT numbers)
20A Ben Avon Heights

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This page was updated on June 25, 2008

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