Cash, tokens, and transfers: a history of urban mass transit by Brian J. Cudahy

By Brian J. Cudahy

This colourful heritage will entice borth the reader and transportation historian. Brian Cudahy's skillful narrative is mixed with a wealth of interval images. the 1st complete background of public transportation in North the United States to be released in additional than 60 years, the ebook strains the grwoth of city mass transit from the horse-drawn highway vehicles of the 1830's during the improvement of cable vehicles, electrical road autos, subways, and buses, to the recent mild rail platforms which are enjoying a key function in modern city transit renaissance. The ebook isn't really certain to any nation-state and examines transit rail structures during the usa and Canada.

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It should not be surprising to learn that the manure which naturally accrued in the stables of a horse-powered railway was able to generate some income for the company. A system that took in $250,000 per year in passenger fares might realize another $10,000 from the sale of manure, and if times were Page 20 In the mid-1880s a typical urban horsecar waits at the end of the line for its scheduled departure time. tight this could mean the difference between profit and loss for the company's investors.

Now, street railway cables were formidable objects, especially when rolled up on a series of giant wooden spools outside their intended habitat; nor were they particularly easy to manipulate. 4 To replace an existing cable was one thing; one spliced one end of a new cable to a freshly cut end of the old cable and then, slowly and carefully, the old cable was used to haul the new one into and through the underground vault, the Page 32 ordinary cable-powering machinery providing the energy. The old cable was then retrieved and rolled up onto empty spools.

The unnamed reporter from the Tribune did manage to catch one midwest transit executive in a terrible faux pas. The issue was whether to heat streetcars during cold-weather months. While there were arguments of a technical and safety nature on either side of this question, the general manager of one of the Saint Louis street railways delivered himself of some terribly unfortunate opinions. If we give Page 25 them heat in the winter, the next thing you know they'll want fans in the summer, the man advanced with undisguised sarcasm and the kind of ''us vs.

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