Shore Line Trolley Museum


Although the early horse railways were preferable to walking, they were expensive to run and could be brought to a halt by equine flu or bad weather. So virtually from the beginning of urban public transportation, engineers were called on to search for cheaper and more reliable modes of transport. In 1884, electrical engineer Frank Sprague formed a company to develop a practical electric streetcar system. His successful electric streetcar installation in Richmond, Virginia, in 1888 marked the beginning of a new era in mass transit. The history and technology of this era can be seen and experienced at the Shore Line Trolley Museum.

Activity Details

Activity Type:Trips and Destinations
Discipline:Civil
Topic(s):Space/Transportation
Grade:K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12
Time:Full day

Fun Fact:As cities grew bigger, so did the need for inner-city transportation. The first forms of mass transit were generally horse-drawn vehicles. By the late 1880s, when electric trolley cars began making their appearance, there were more than 500 horse-car railways running in some 300 U.S. cities, requiring the use of more than 100,000 animals.
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