An honest, tough job, the taxi driver’s daily struggles present challenges faced by many in the real world:  hard work for little money that included union battles, accidents and crime. This blog is just a little tribute to the drivers who toiled the streets, highways and bi-ways of America.

Also please note the uniforms. Over the last 100 years Taxidrivers have been known to wear various types of uniform. The Yellow Cab operation established in Chicago by John Hertz had a reputation for being sticklers for dress. Hertz was known for standing uniform inspections before drivers were aloud to take to the streets.

In May of 1924 upon the opening up of the Fuller Taxicab operation and noted Checker Cab franchise,  it was reported in the MotorCab News that the Fuller drivers wore elaborate “costumed chauffeurs wearing Sam Browne belts. Some 50 years later, cab drivers would wear clothing similar to the hippies and other malcontents”.

The following comes from deep inside the Internet Checker Taxicab Archive file.  A large collection of news agency photos has been purchased over the last ten years.  These photos depict the struggles of the taxicab driver .  Please step back and consider the challenges many a drvier face each day.  Cab doors opened to total strangers these drivers are brave men who risk their lives everyday.  The doors even open for Great Danes!

Where possible we always provide photo credit for both the news service and the photographer.  The photos are largely from the ACME service,  Chicago Tribune,  UPI Telephoto and Chicago Sun Times.  These are just a few of the photos that can be found in the Checker Cab archive in the ICTA Facebook Photo Albums.

Please enjoy the photos.  If you want more access to Checker Cab photos, feel free to join our exclusive group.

Navigation difficulties brought this cab driver’s operations to a halt here last night (12/21/50) as he attempted to go throught an underpass. He had to discharge his paggesner via a plank to high ground. As a cold wave moved out of the west torward Chicago, 2.60 inches of rain fell on the city in a steady 36 hour downpour. (ACME TELEPHOTO) Chicago


CAB NO RESPECTER OF TITLES When this taxicab ran amuck at 67Th St. and Broadway, New York City, Dec. 9th. It didn’t quite bring down the house, but it knocked the supports of the Hotel Dauphin Marquee loose so that it came tumbling down, as can be seen in the photo. ACME 12/9/35


Chicago Cab Drivers Strike. An unheralded strike of drivers of the two large Chicago taxi companies, The Yellow and Checker, tied up an estimated 600 cabs on the first day, as leaders continued their efforts to induce other drivers to strike. The men are not at present unionized, but the leaders are attempted to bring the rival drivers together into one unon. The above photo shows stikers stopping a cab driver to induce him to join them 3-5-37 ACME


The Times, August 16, 1945 article name Cabbies, Location Union Depot. Times Reporter Terry Colangelo and Checker Cab Driver Max Leibowitz, 58 of 1341 S Harding who says “Hokay I take anyvere in da city limits” Photo T-199 photographer Pauer


7/18/65 Cab driver Tomed Giles age 61, a Yellow Cab driver for five years rolls the first cab onto the street at 1734 South Indiana as 6000 striking Yellow Cab and Checker Cab employees return to work Sunday after the end of a 22 day taxi strike. Chicago Sun Times Photo by Ralph Arvidson


Chicago Out-HXPDN-110153 11/1/66-Chicago: A cab a day makes a happy dog out of “Serv” as he skips out of a cab in the park area here for a daily stroll & sniff routine. Serv’s mistress works and and is unable to care for him during workday hours, so she has a hired cab for the service, because she says, she wants the Great Dan to “grow up big and strong.” Serv won 1st in the Chicago International Dog show last yeas UPI Telephoto


Veteran Yellow Checker Cab driver circa 1970


5-17-76 cab driver Steve Salgan Chicago Checker. Cab Driver Present Apparrel. Photographer Jerry Tomaselli