May at CERA
BELLE CITY (RACINE, WIS.) STREETCARS & IC SUBURBAN SERVICE TO ADDISON
Presented by William Shapotkin
Friday, May 25, 2018, at 7 p.m.
Loop River Room
525 S. State Street, Chicago, IL
(Located between Congress Parkway and Harrison St.)
The Loop River Room is located on the second floor. After entering the lobby, go through the glass doors on your left for stair and elevator access to the area. Doors open at 6 p.m.
Over the years at CERA we have been treated to numerous presentations on city car operations of the CSL (Chicago) and TMER&L (Milwaukee). Almost forgotten is that city car services existed in several smaller cities along Lake Michigan between Chicago and Milwaukee. Tonight we will take a look at one such city -- Racine, Wisconsin. We will follow the routes of the various horse (and later electric) carlines to see where they operated and who they served during their all-too-brief period of operation. Additionally we will take a brief look at the "other" railroads serving the Belle City -- the C&NW, CMStP&P and CNS&M.
Following our trip behind the “Cheddar Curtain" we will take a look at the "other" Illinois Central suburban rail operation out of Chicago. While the IC famously electrified its Mainline to Matteson (subsequently extended to University Park) and its Blue Island and South Chicago branches in 1926, one suburban operation remained in operation under steam for nearly five more years. Operating out of Central Station, the IC continued a limited suburban service west to the town of Addison, IL until June of 1931. Often referred to as the "Addison Man," the train made its daily trek westward, serving such communities as Addison, Elmhurst, Hillside and Maywood. The service operating in virtual obscurity...so much so that of all but one the available photos of this train which will be seen tonight were taken from the camera of one man -- Al Johnson.
We invite you to join us for a trip on these two all-but-forgotten rail operations as historian William Shapotkin once again "slides" us into the past from the present.