TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Old Interurbans (was Skokie Swift)

Re: Old Interurbans (was Skokie Swift)

Carl Navarro (
Thu, 08 Mar 2007 09:56:58 -0500

On 7 Mar 2007 07:42:32 -0800, wrote:

> On Mar 1, 7:13 pm, Neal McLain <> wrote:

>> Unfortunately, most of the history of the old interurbans has been
>> lost.

> There are a great many books on the history of interurbans. Some deal
> with interurbans in general, others are detailed stories on a specific
> line. Some are out of print, but new ones are being published.

> Do an author search on William Middleton who has been a prolific
> writer on the subject. Also, has new books
> out.

> A brand new interurban is running between Trenton NJ and Camden NJ,
> operated by NJ Transit.

> [dupe of prior lost post]

> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: Another excellent interurban line for
> many years was the Chicago, South Shore and South Bend Railroad
> (the electric orange train which ran between Randolph Street in
> downtown Chicago and South Bend, Indiana. In its hey-day, it ran every
> thirty minutes round the clock between those two points, with six or
> eight car trains. It ran on its own tracks all the way from South Bend
> to 115th Street/Kensington Station in Chicago, at which point it leased
> the Illinois Central tracks for the remainder of its trip. (ICRR was
> also an electric train with overhead catenary-style wires. Quite a few
> years back, they cut down service to South Bend to once per hour, then
> eventually just a few trains daily. Now I understand they only run the
> train as far east as Gary, Indiana and possibly one or two trains
> daily to Michigan City, or possibly further east to South Bend. All of
> their 'own' stations -- that is, east of the split-away from Illinois
> Central at 115th Street are in terrible decay, just like CTA's
> stations. PAT]

Wow, the demise of the South Shore Line is greatly exaggerated :-)

We vacationed to Rolla MO last summer down Route 66, but we started
our vacation in Michigan City. The station in Beverly Shores was a
typical RR depot; unattended with an average rest room and a closed
gift shop. The next station up the line was the HQ for the NICTD so
it was in better shape.

In most cases, alcohol is allowed on the train and I hear the Bears
and Notre Dame games get a lot of passengers. We're planning our next
vacation to be a CTA tour and we'll take the train from South Bend to
Chicago. It's not a bad deal for less than $15 round trip.

Carl Navarro

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