Photo Credit: Library of Congress April 25, 1859 The first streetcars in Chicago made their debut. These horse-drawn vehicles began their service on a single rail track on State Street between Randolph and 12th Streets. Chicago’s inaugural streetcars – also known as horsecars – measured 12 feet (3.7 meters) in length and traveled three miles... Continue Reading →

April 24, 1834 The Long-Island Rail-Road (LIRR) Company was chartered by the New York State legislature. The genesis of that transportation enterprise can be traced to two years earlier when the Brooklyn & Jamaica (B&J) Rail Road was incorporated to build a 10-mile (16.1-kilometer)-long route from the East River in Brooklyn to the neighborhood of Jamaica. Civil... Continue Reading →

Photo Credit: Steve Morgan (licensed under Creative Commons) April 23, 1933 The first electric trolleybus system in Ohio began regular operations in Dayton. These trackless trolleybuses -- powered by overhead electric wires rather than gasoline – started their initial runs early that Sunday morning. The day’s edition of the Dayton Daily News outlined one of... Continue Reading →

April 22, 1904 The Visalia Electric Railroad (VERR) Company was incorporated under the laws of California to provide transit service within the central region of the Golden State.  Paul Shoup was president of the fledgling enterprise, while H.A. Culloden was named its secretary. A wholly owned subsidiary of the Southern Pacific Railroad, VERR was a... Continue Reading →

January 24, 1954 It was the end of an era in Cleveland when that city’s streetcars made their final runs. Approximately 10,000 people – some from as far away as Maryland – showed up to bid farewell to those streetcars and take advantage of the free rides being offered on that last day of operation. Those... Continue Reading →

January 11, 1913 In France, a transportation milestone in Paris took place when the last of the city’s horse-drawn omnibuses (horse-buses) made its final run. This means of transit first became a major part of daily life in France’s capital in 1828, when horse-buses began running on a regular basis between the right bank of... Continue Reading →

January 7, 1907 Three days after a streetcar franchise in Enid, Oklahoma, had been awarded to C.H. Bosler, the Enid City Railway Company was established to build and run that public transportation network. The Enid City Council awarded the franchise with conditions such as streetcar speed limits of 10 miles (16.1 kilometers) per hour in the... Continue Reading →

October 17, 1943 Chicago’s first rapid transit subway route began regular operations for passenger service just after midnight. This occurred the day after Mayor Edward J. Kelly of Chicago officially opened that new 4.9-mile (7.9-kilometer) subterranean transportation system in a ribbon-cutting ceremony beneath the intersection of State and Madison Streets, an above-ground location described by... Continue Reading →

October 1, 1979 Hong Kong’s Mass Transit Railway (MTR) made its debut with the opening of the first five miles (8.1 kilometers) of the Kwun Tong Line. “As champagne corks popped and a Chinese dragon danced for luck,” reported the Associated Press later that week, “Hong Kong christened its new subway system on Sunday and sent... Continue Reading →

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