Poskin Bus Lines had it
origins as a trucking business in 1918 and hauled coal as well as oil field machinery in
Washington County. The business was started by the brothers A.J. and J.V. Poskin and
operated under the name of McDonald Express & Transfer Company.
early 1920's bus service between Carnegie and Burgettstown via McDonald and Oakdale was
started by unknown operators, possibly jitneys, and operated as two separate companies and
had a total of 25 buses along 45 miles of route miles. In 1928, the rights to this service
were acquired by the West Penn Railways System's Penn Bus Lines McDonald Division which
operated 2 Yellow Coach type X buses as feeders to its 3 1/2 mile Oakdale-McDonald
streetcar line. This rail line was abandoned in 1927 and the Yellow Coaches continued to
operate the route.
route that was acquired by Penn Bus Lines in 1928 from the purchase of the 2 independent
operators was a irregularly scheduled run from McDonald to the Shaw Mine of the Pittsburgh
Coal Company. Penn Bus Lines was not particularly interested in operating this line and
abandoned it in April of 1933. Miners who worked at the mine complained to the PSC about
the lack of transportation so Penn Bus Lines hired A.J. Poskin (his brother left the
partnership a year prior) in October of 1933 to operate the Shaw Mine run that was
recently abandoned but still certified to Penn Bus Lines.
do not clearly indicate this but it is believed that Penn Bus Lines gave Poskin the rights
to operate the all of the 1928 acquired routes as an inducement to run the Shaw Mine
service. This is due to the fact that Poskin applied for rights to these lines with the
PSC and there was no objection by Penn Bus Lines which held the rights. Currently there is
no record as the the disposition of the original Oakdale-McDonald line and shuttle lines
Penn Bus Lines started with but it is assumed they were absorbed into the routes acquired
by Penn Bus Lines in 1928 as the McDonald Division was gone by 1934.
February of 1934, Poskin Bus Lines officially came into existence. Service commenced with
3 Graham model YD coaches purchased from Penn Bus Lines. It is not known when but the
first abandonment occurred very early on and was the Midway to Burgettstown portion of the
route in Washington County. While not officially an abandonment as the certification for
the route was never cancelled, service was eliminated and never reinstated.
next change in service occurred on February 17, 1947 when Poskin received permission to
extend service from Carnegie to Downtown Pittsburgh. This service ran closed door, in
favor of the Oriole Motor Coach Lines, from Carnegie to Downtown via Noblestown Road. By
this time Poskin was running a mix of buses which included White model 65's, International
K5's and Yellow 739's.
1948, a large portion of Poskin's route was duplicated by a new operator named
Auto Bus. It is unclear as to why but Gradison had no closed door restrictions on the
Burgettstown to Oakdale portion of the route that Poskin held rights to (Poskin was not
operating from Midway to Burgettstown by then but still held the rights). Gradison also
overlapped, without restriction, a large section of the
Montour Motor Coach Lines route
from Pittsburgh to Carnegie. This overlap of service continued until 1951 when Montour put
the Pittsburgh-Carnegie-Oakdale line up for sale.
purchased the line from Montour and immediately filed a motion before the PUC against
Gradison which was upheld. Gradison was now required to run the route closed door over
long portions of the route and as it was not a very profitable route for Gradison, it was
sold to Poskin in 1954 along with two alternate routings for the line after Gradison
purchased the remaining lines of Montour on July 1, 1954.
May of 1957, certificates for all of the Poskin operations, as well as the McDonald
Express and Transfer Company were transferred from A.J. Poskin to Donald A. Poskin and
Graves Bernie. No other changes of operation were made until December of 1960 when Poskin
received permission to run many of its Pittsburgh routes through the newly opened Fort
service was always rather infrequent from the early days of the company up to the PAT
takeover. Many of its 14 buses at the time of takeover were used except for the Beavers
and a couple school buses. As was the case with Montour, a destination sign in a Poskin
bus was rare and probably came with the used bus. Ridership the year prior to the PAT
takeover was approximately 1,000 passengers a day. It should be stated, however, that the
area Poskin served was sparsely populated during this time. Even today, the old Poskin
territory still has many low population areas although if they had today's population back
when Poskin was operating, they would have been considered crowded.
did not acquire the trucking company that was also held by Poskin and Bernie. That was
sold approximately the same time however to Wray Fullerton who continued to operate it
through the 1970's.