Lake Shore Electric Railway, Ohio (Images of Rail Series)

Lake Shore Electric Railway, Ohio (Images of Rail Series)

by Thomas J. Patton
     
 

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The Lake Shore Electric Railway commenced operation in 1893 on the north coast of Ohio, providing transportation to Cleveland, Lorain, Sandusky, Toledo, and on to Detroit, Michigan. The Lake Shore Electric Railway connected with many other electric railroads to offer a comprehensive quilt of transportation. This allowed increased commerce, ease of transportation,

Overview


The Lake Shore Electric Railway commenced operation in 1893 on the north coast of Ohio, providing transportation to Cleveland, Lorain, Sandusky, Toledo, and on to Detroit, Michigan. The Lake Shore Electric Railway connected with many other electric railroads to offer a comprehensive quilt of transportation. This allowed increased commerce, ease of transportation, and access for the industrial-era family to visit such recreation spots as Linwood, Crystal Beach, Avon Beach Park, Mitiwanga, Rye Beach, Ruggles Grove and Beach, and Cedar Point, among others. An unimaginable feat in the late 1800s, the Lake Shore Electric could travel from Lorain to Cleveland (approximately 30 miles) in under one hour, making the railway a huge success. Unfortunately this success only lasted about 40 years.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Title: Local authors release book on the Lake Shore Electric Railway

Publisher: Sun Sentinel

Date: 7/16/09

A local history book released this month, "Images of Rail: Lake Shore Electric Railway," delves into tales of heroic conductors, the shaping of our suburban landscape and an industry that profited off building amusement parks and bringing electric lights to our hometowns.

The fading photos take readers back to a time when a quarter paid for grocery deliveries to the neighborhood railway stations and the tradition of "Sunday-ing" was a matter of course.

"At that time electricity was not all that common and electricity was considered magic things were very primitive considering what we're sued to," co-author Dennis Lamont said. "All the sudden there's no need to take the horse and buggy down the muddy roads or trim the kerosene lamps."

The book explores the short-lived history of the railroad with photos and their captions.

It explores the birth of "Vacationland," what commuters dubbed the west side, especially as cottages sprung up from Bay Village to Sandusky and a number of railroad-commissioned amusement parks were erected as destinations for their passengers.

"I have in my newspaper reports there were churches and organizations in Cleveland that would charter cars to go out to Beach Park for a weekend. Something like 5,100 people from one organization in Cleveland chartered Lake Shore Electric cars to go out to beach park for a Saturday," Lamont said. "It was a very big money maker for them. It was a completely different day and age."

Co-author and Avon Lake business owner Tom Patton said he spent the winter exploring the history of his shopping center after he found it was an old railway station over a century ago.

He said it's amazing how the powers that be disassembled the electric railway, and are currently trying to bring it back with groups like All Aboard Ohio.

"You hear all this talk now about rail," Patton said. "It's just a big circle -- they did away with this in order to benefit the auto industry and the rubber industry, but we can't get to Cleveland faster or cheaper today than they did in 1900."

Co-author Dennis Lamont has been engaged in researching the Lake Shore Electric Railway and its counterparts for considerably longer than just this last season, giving talks along with co-author Albert Doane "to anyone who will listen," according to Patton.

Working with the Lorain Street Railway, a nonprofit, educational organization attempting to bring street cars back to Lorain, the three authors have agreed to donate the proceeds of the book to the restoration of Lake Shore Electric Car No. 167, the last car to operate on the Lake Shore Electric.

It is Doane's hope that No. 167 will operate again if and when the Lorain Street Railway project comes to fruition.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780738561233
Publisher:
Arcadia Publishing SC
Publication date:
04/28/2009
Series:
Images of Rail Series
Pages:
127
Sales rank:
1,091,206
Product dimensions:
6.50(w) x 9.25(h) x 0.31(d)

Meet the Author


Thomas J. Patton, owner of what was once the Beach Park station, now home to Artstown Shopping Center, has been collecting Lake Shore Electric Railway photographs and memorabilia for the past nine years. Dennis Lamont, of the Lake Shore Railway Association, and Albert Doane, administrator of the Lorain Historical Society, assisted Patton with the creation of this book.

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