Social History: Oldest living Pullman porter looks back. Lee Wesley Gibson, 100, began working for Union Pacific in 1936. The railroad job helped him lift his family into the middle class.
Lee Wesley Gibson, 100, stands next to a 1937 Pullman dormitory/club car at the Travel Town Museum in Los Angeles’ Griffith Park.
By Ann M. Simmons, Los Angeles Times
July 5, 2010
(Courtesy of the Los Angeles Times)
When Lee Wesley Gibson began his new job as a coach attendant with Union Pacific Railroad in 1936, the country was in the grips of the Great Depression.
Millions of Americans were out of work. Like so many others around the country, Gibson moved from Texas to California in search of new opportunities. Within a year he landed a job with the railroad in his new hometown, Los Angeles.