Museu da Carris


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Be aware of Museum major news and activities!



21.12.15 Carris Museum closed on Christmas and New Year period

The Carris Museum will be closed on 24, 25, 26, 27 and 31 December and 1st, 2nd and January 3rd .







Sousaphone is a wind instrument of the brass family. It’s a special tuba supported on the musician shoulder and it can be played while being carried. It is the largest of wind instruments. This model was used by the Carris’ Band between 1960 and 2004.

The instrument was developed by John Philip de Sousa, composer of the United States of America, known as “The March King”, which needed an instrument capable of producing bass sounds while marching. His musical production includes about 15 operettas and several songs, the most famous being the march, The Stars and Stripes Forever, national march of the United States of America.

John Philip de Sousa was born in the United States of America, the third of ten children, from a Portuguese father of Azorean origin and a German mother.

With his own band, he held 15623 concerts, between 1892 and 1931. In 1900, his band represented the United States of America at the Paris Universal Exhibition.

He died of heart failure at the age of 78, on March 6, 1932, in his room at the Abraham Lincoln Hotel in Reading, Pennsylvania and is buried in Washington, D.C.’s Congressional Cemetery.

30.06.15 ´DIORAMA´

‘Diorama’ representing double-decker buses circulating in the ‘Rotunda do Marquês de Pombal’, in the mid 50s.

These buses, brand AEC Mark III, entered service in the early 50s, have been withdrawn from circulation in the 80s. Representative of the first double-decker used by Carris, we can see them on display in Museu da Carris.



20.05.15 Core II of the CARRIS Museum closed

Next Friday (22th May) the core II of CARRIS Museum will be closed all day for a private event.
Clients can visit the cores I and III, as usual, with reduced ticket prices 50%.


01.05.15 Cartoon by Francisco Valença

Francisco Valença was born in Lisbon in 1882. He cultivated various genres in the arts, like watercolours but it was cartoons which he made popular.
Of the many works he produced, we emphasize the creation of an “ex-libris” and theatre scenes, illustrations of author’s fictional works and inevitably many caricatures in various newspapers like ‘Diário de Notícias’ and ‘Sempre Fixe’ which he directed for many years.
In Carris’ history the above cartoon was produced around the time of the introduction of the double-decker buses in 1947.
This cartoon illustrates the Company’s initiative to improve and innovate but also at the same time, the typical humour of the Lisbon people, represented here by ‘Zé Povinho’, and in the title which accompanies it:
Miss Trolley’s Gift
“  Here you are Zé… what do you think of this bus with two floors?
The only thing missing is the attic….”

Francisco Valença died in Lisbon in 1962.


18.04.15 Tram n.º 802

In 1939 CARRIS increased the public service fleet with five new trams numbers 801 to 805.

Although this original tram had a different destination indicator to the 802 launched later that year, it kept the same characteristics of all the trams of this series for a few years.

A few aspects of this tram are very noticeable: its robust size and wooden doors which substituted iron folding doors. This was the first time these doors were used, as well as the nine windows on both sides of the roof, unique to these trams.

What really caught the public attention was the exterior painting design which still maintained white and yellow bands along the sides of the tram ending in a point on the front.
The same applies to the Company’s name originally written in full and substituted with an abbreviator of CCFL.

Another unique characteristic was the tram drivers’ cabin made of wood and closed, separating him from the public.

Over the years other alterations were done, the most visible being the destination indicator, the removal of the roof’s side windows and a new painting design making yellow the dominant colour on the lateral panels as well as in front.

In 1943 the series was increased with another five trams numbered 806 to 810.

31.03.15 Tramcar n.º 283

Tramcar nº 283, from the ‘glorious days’ of electric traction, was part of the series numbered 283 to 322 and started service in 1902. The body was completely open and comprised of a roof with lanterns supported on columns. A footrest ran along the length of the car for easy boarding. Inside it had 12 wooden seats, able to accommodate 48 seated passengers and on the rear platform, space for another 6 standing passengers. More than its appearance was its size which probably created a sensation in Lisbon. Measuring 11,35 meters, it was nicknamed, as was the other tramcars of this series, ‘formidable monstrosity’. 

The following quote, from the ‘Novidades’ newspaper, dated the 30th of January 1902 confirms this impression:
“Today one of the huge tramcars which the ‘Companhia dos Tramways’ recently imported began its operation. It is an open tramcar with 12 seats, 8 wheels, 4 in front and 4 in the rear. It is a formidable monstrosity. Whatever it crashes with, will certainly be demolished and it will be final”.

In the 50’s of the last century, all the cars of this model were progressively scraped with the exception of nº 283 which became a driving instruction car. Ten years later, CARRIS donated it to the ‘Monsanto’ children’s park until it was returned to the Company in the 80’s to be integrated into the CARRIS Museum collection.

28.02.15 The Elliot Bross Theodolite

The Theodolite is an optical instrument which measures vertical and horizontal angles and which is used in various sectors such as navigation, civil construction, agriculture and metrology.
The structure of the Theodolite is made with a circular movement of two independent axis – one fixed and the other movable (double angles). The movable angles are bound by pressurized screws. The horizontal limb permits a blockage in any position making a reading possible in degrees, minutes or seconds. Other parts necessary for a reading are the tripod, a counterweight, the horizontal limbs, a nonius, an air bubble leveller, a light filter, and magnifying glasses.

This apparatus is equipped with a compass to measure topographic horizontal and vertical angles and was used for the installation of the electric trams in 1900.


30.01.15 BUS N.º 851

In 1986 Carris, together with the Ministry of Culture used 3 of its double decker buses in a project to create a  specially designed painting   by artists for exhibition to the public.

Eduardo Nery who was dedicated to artistic activities such as mosaics, tile painting & tapestry making,  and who also decorated the 'Campo Grande' Metro station of Lisbon, was one of these artists. 
A project using two single deck buses put one on top of each other  to create the height of the vehicle used, suggests an 'orange' bus suspended in  the air by using tones of blue shades on the lower part  representing the sky and creating the effect of space. The headlights, bumper and other accessories of the top bus contributed to increase the illusion of a real bus in suspension, on the the top part of the work.
These buses did not survive the passage of time and were suspended from service, therefore giving way to the recuperation of this project with bus no. 851, identical to the original which is exhibited in the Museum.


With the decline of the first tram modes in the 60´s and 70´s, a relaunch of this means of urban transport was initiated in the 90´s.
Therefore, in 1992 CARRIS launched a public tender for the acquisition of the modern electric trams for greater capacity, comfort and safety.
This miniature tram was a pilot project for the current articulated trams in use.

01.12.14 SPAL pieces for sale at the Museum Store

CARRIS Museum launched in December a new collection of SPAL pieces by Eduardo Alarcão. Visit our online store or the CARRIS Museum in ´Santo Amaro´ and get to know them!

Artist: Eduardo Alarcão
Birth Date: 01/10/1930
Eduardo Alarcão was born in 1930 and died in February 2003.

 SPAL Coffee cup and saucer
 SPAL Pine boxes
 SPAL Pencil holder

A 30 years´ work painting streets, alleys, trams, Lisbon houses and beyond, in a work that spans more than 500 frames.
A very personalized and easily recognized painting that delighted all those who love art, during the 80s and 90s were highlighted throughout this artistic journey.
We can dentify two periods:´naivismo´ and ´gestualista´ expressionism. 
Two phases as distinct , as if it were two completely different artists. The first, detailed, colorful and substantially distorted. The second period covers practically all the 90's and the early years of the new century, until his death. Recreates a free expressionism, intense and satirical , where the work of Artur Bual and even Martins Correia, serve as a references in the struggle for freedom trace, which has become a constant obsession in this period. it is at this stage that works of rare beauty are created, some with very generous dimensions.
The "Marches of Lisbon" 1981 is perhaps the icon of the first period, that many will remember for sure. However, the works "Dali", "Lapp" and "The girls learn", deeply marked the work of this artist.


Few people remember what these objects were used for by
the CARRIS company.
These coordination bats were used for many years in one way streets
before the introduction of traffic lights.
They were used on several routes such as the famous n.º 28 tram
route. In 'Rua das Escolas Gerais' for example, this one way street
is used alternatively in different directions by one tram at a time.
At the time, these bats were used to indicate the free passage
or not, of the tram.