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The Cleveland and Eastern Interurban Historical Society and Museum
P.O. Box 34 - Chardon, Ohio 44024

Newspaper Stories From The Days Of The Interurban

   The stories that follow are from period newspapers and are a sample of those included in our monthly newsletter. They are displayed here in chronological order. You can read them in the order displayed or click the links below to jump to selected months. Check this page for updates each month and join our organization to receive our monthly newsletter with additional stories (now available by email or regular mail).

January 1913 February 1913 March 1913
April 1913 May 1913 June 1913

To learn more about the early years of Geauga County's Interurban Era visit our new  Museum Shop  page.



January 1913

1. Saved by the guard rails, trolley nearly plunges off Gates Mills trestle.

2. Disaster narrowly averted by B&O engineer's quick action.

3. Unseasonably wet January weather disrupts Geauga travel.

* * *

he Geauga County Record, Friday, January 3, 1913, Page 1

Train and Car Are in Peril - Trolley Nearly Plunges from Trestle Near Gates Mills

     Guard rails saved a Cleveland & Eastern car from a plunge of 100 feet off the east trestle near Gates Mills one day last week. The freight car Geauga, in charge of Motorman Michael Fisher and Archie Green, of Chardon, was on the trestle when the rails suddenly spread.
     The car bowled along over the ties and finally stopped, held by the guard rail at a dangerous angle. It was with difficulty that Green and Fisher got off the car. They fully expected the car was going off the bridge and know the sensation of facing death.

* * *

Engine and Cars Saved from Burning Bridge

     Heroic work on the part of the crew on an eastbound freight on the B. & O. railroad saved the train from destruction near Burton Station Sunday afternoon when a large wooden bridge crossing the Cuyahoga River burned.
     The crew was headed to New Castle from Painesville and the train was making good time. Smoke from the burning bridge was noticed some distance away but a curve in the track hid the view and the engine crew supposed it to be a burning barn. As the train rounded the curve the burning bridge a few hundred feet up the track greeted the engineer’s eyes. Unable to stop the train he applied the air and with the rest of his crew “unloaded.”
     The train stopped near the middle of the burning bridge. When the crew saw the bridge was still able to hold the engine and several cars, the engineer and fireman made their way across the stream on the thin ice and walked through the heavy smoke to the engine. The train was cut in two at the other end of the bridge and the engineer took the engine and three cars to the other side.
     The cause of the fire is unknown. The fire was reported and crews sent immediately to the scene to repair the bridge so as not to delay traffic.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, January 15, 1913, Page 4

Auburn

     Mrs. Stella Goodrich and nephew, William Bemus, were with friends in Cleveland Thursday and Friday. On their way home between Chagrin Falls and Newbury the car was blocked by a snow drift and they were obliged to remain there until Saturday morning.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, January 15, 1913, Page 5

Burton and Vicinity

     Last Friday a special car load of Burton Grangers went to Chardon to do degree work for the Chardon Grange. Burton has a competent degree team and the lodge is in good condition. They were treated nicely by the Chardon friends.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, January 22, 1913, Page 1

South Newbury

     The water has been so high this side Troy the cars could not run and passengers were obliged to hire rigs to take them through.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, January 22, 1913, Page 8

Middlefield

     The Cuyahoga river flats west of this place have been making a noise like the Mississippi for several days, on account of the heavy rains. It is nearly a mile wide (as the car goes) and makes an interesting appearance.

* * *

Bainbridge

     The milk shippers from Stop 57 are having trouble with a sneak thief who takes tickets off cans left to be shipped.

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, January 31, 1913, Page 1

Flashes of News from Round About Us

     Surveyors are running a line for a proposed electric railroad from Lake Erie to Kingsville and Youngstown.

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, January 31, 1913, Page 8

Burton

     It is expected that the C. & E. Ry. will furnish this town with electricity.

* * *

Back to Top



February 1913

1. Renewed talk of Chardon - Jefferson electric line.

2. Chardon roads in worst shape in years, poor drainage to blame.

3. Munson man struck and killed by C&E car.

* * *

The Geauga Republican, Wednesday, February 5, 1913, Page 5

Jefferson - Chardon Line May Be Built

     There is a persistent rumor to the effect that this year is to bring developments to the proposed Jefferson and Chardon electric railroad. Little has been heard of the project for nearly a year, but the promoters of it have been working continuously.
     A man who is in a position to know, and who is not one of the promoters of the railroad, informs us that a thousand grade stakes, planed on one side, have been ordered, and that the return of settled weather will probably see a start made on the Jefferson and Chardon line, which people generally in this vicinity believed had been abandoned because of a lack interest on the part of those who would be most benefited if it was built.
     If this enterprise is ever built, and there are indications that it surely will be, it will enrich the land owners who live along the line of its route more than they dream of. The building of an electric railroad from Jefferson to Chardon, where city connections are made with the C. & E. Ry., is a project that should meet with hearty encouragement every foot of the way, if from no other motive than a selfish one – that it will pay land owners to have it built.
     The Jefferson-Chardon railroad project has met with some opposition, but this might be expected, for there are always a few men in every town who do nothing but stand on the street and whine about mooted improvements and projects which, if carried out, would benefit them as much, and often times more than anyone else.
     A great many farms would be made valuable by an interurban line between Chardon and Jefferson. One has only to learn the present price of acreage land along the C. & E. Ry., and compare the figures with what the same land could easily be bought for before the railroad was built.

* * *

The Geauga Republican, Wednesday, February 5, 1913, Page 5

Chardon Highways Are Simply Fierce

     Chardon highways off the brick pavement are in a worse condition than for many years, and there’s a reason for it. There was little money used on the village roads last year. The village part of the Claridon macadam is also in bad condition, and no one seems to know whether it will repaired or not.
     It has been a great many years since village roads were neglected to the extent of last year, when the Center Street highway resembled a section of the Bad Lands in North Dakota. As long as ditches and the matter of drainage are ignored, it is a waste of money to attempt road improvement in the village or anywhere else. The idea that a ditch, which once constructed, is permanent without further inspection, has taken a deep root here, as in many other places.
     The lack of ditches causes most of the damage to roads. This was demonstrated last fall on the village macadam. No ditch had ever been maintained at either side of the road under the B. & O. bridge, and when a heavy rain storm came, the water all flowed onto the road and washed away the top course of limestone for about 200 feet. An adequate ditch has since been constructed on the south side of the road, extending under and beyond the bridge, but there is no ditch under the bridge on the north side of the road.
     For some unknown reason Street Commissioners have always balked when it came to establishing a drainage ditch under the railroad bridge. For years they have invariably ran a ditch up to the ground level when they came to the railroad bridge; probably for the same reason that the tile drain under some men’s driveways about town have never been lowered so the water might be carried along a ditch. We would like to see some adequate ditches constructed about the village this year, and maintained, and we believe that Frank B. Knapp, who was recently appointed Street Commissioner, can be relied upon to do it, and do it right.

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, February 14, 1913, Page 1

Bull Moosers Hold Banquet

The Progressive Party banquet at Burton, Friday night, was a success

     About 100 men partook of the fine three-course served by the Cong. Church ladies, in the parlors of the church. An orchestra discoursed fine music and the rooms were decorated with patriotic pictures and colors.
     Dr. A. D. Warner introduced Dr. Stocking, who pronounced the invocation, after which John C. Riley was presented as toastmaster. In his witty way, Riley introduced the three speakers of the evening, Prof. A. R. Hatton and Hon, John D. Fackler, of Cleveland; and Hon. W. R. Davis, of Chardon.
     The speeches were well received and enthusiasm was prevalent. A crowd of county officials and others attended from Chardon, having a special car for the trip.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, February 19, 1913, Page 1

At the County Seat

     The funeral of Fred Warner, killed by a car on the C. & E. railroad at Spauldings crossing in Munson Tuesday evening, Feb. 11, was held in the Christian church here Friday, Rev. Crocker of Niagara Falls officiating. His age was 48 years, and he left a wife and four children, namely, Franz P., Ried B., Jay D., and Hilda G Warner. The body was brought to Chardon on a car and kept in Burr & Smith’s undertaking room till the funeral. An inquest was held Wednesday and W. E. Fuller, the motorman, testified that Mr. Warner stepped on to the tracks a very short distance in front of the car, apparently to flag it, and and (sic) the car struck him, knocking him into the ditch. He was carried into the car but lived only a few minutes.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, February 19, 1913, Page 8

Middlefield

     It is rumored that there is a prospect that the abandoned Middlefield & Eastern electric road may be revived and constructed soon, at least as far as the Pennsylvania railroad at Bloomfield. Here is a road bed graded for most of the way awaiting the arrival of the money and the enterprise to fill a long felt want among the farmers along the twelve or thirteen miles of good country.

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, February 28, 1913, Page 1

Want Cars to Stop

     Mayfield, Feb. 25 – A petition is being circulated here for a stop on the Cleveland & Eastern line at the intersection of Mayfield and Ford roads.

* * *

Back to Top



March 1913

1. Cleveland & Eastern Railway to shutter Gates Mills power house.

2. Gates Mills residents flee flood waters.

3. Severe flooding disrupts local travel.

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, March 7, 1913, Page 1

Maybe Chester Folk’ll Have Electric Lights

     Chesterland, March 4 – Residents of this place are anxiously hoping that a new booster station will be built at Scotland. In that case they will discard smoky lamps and have electric lights. Booster stations have been erected at several places along the line of the Cleveland & Eastern Railway in preparation for the electric power which is to be furnished by the Cleveland Electric Illuminating Co. instead of the power house at Gates Mills.

* * *

The Geauga Republican, Wednesday, March 12, 1913, Page 5

Local and Personal

     Carloads of fire-place wood are being shipped from the Edwards farm north of Bass Lake, where a large tract of timbered land, formerly part of the Kilbourn farm, is being cleared up preparatory to underdraining. Much of the timber cut is elm and black ash.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, March 19, 1913, Page 5

Burton and Vicinity

     A special car took about fifty Burton people out to the Geauga county sugar eat in Cleveland last Friday night. They all report a fine time and large crowd of former Geauga people who now live in the Forest City. With feasting on the new Geauga county sweetness, dancing and visiting the evening was spent in a very profitable way.

* * *

The Geauga Republican, Wednesday, March 26, 1913, Page 5

Gates Mills People Flee From Flood

Geauga Streams Overflow

     At 9 o’clock Tuesday morning the Chagrin River rose several feet above its banks at Gates Mills, and swept through the valley. People living at the Mills were compelled to flee from their homes. The water surrounded the hotel to a depth of 3 feet, and was still rising at 10 a.m.
     The heavy downpour that prevailed Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, caused a greater flood in the Cuyahoga Valley in Claridon than has been seen for years. Early Tuesday morning the valley north and south of Aquilla Lake resembled the Missouri River during a spring freshet. The roof of Proctor’s boat house was nearly submerged.
     At Burton Station the main channel of the Cuyahoga was enlarged to like proportions Tuesday morning, the indications pointing to a still higher rise before night. Every creek or water source in Geauga County was running over its banks. Many rail, fences have been carried away on the lowlands, and plowed fields have been badly washed.
     Bass Lake was higher Tuesday morning than nearby residents remembers seeing it. The Chagrin River valley south of the lake was flooded by rushing waters, which overflowed the road knee deep near Mansfield Crossing of the C. & E. railway.
     There was three feet of water in the power house at Gates Mills early Tuesday, and a higher rise was threatened. The flats east of Chardon resembled a large lake, and the water was over the roads. Large tracts of low land west of the village were also submerged, while water found its way into numerous cellars.
     There were no washouts on the interurban line, and the 8 o’clock car from the city arrived here on schedule time. Enroute the few passengers aboard were treated to the sight of a real inland flood. No cars were running on the Middlefield line Tuesday. The rainfall in Geauga County probably broke the record.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, March 26, 1913, Page 8

South Newbury

     The severe wind on Friday uprooted trees, broke down telephone poles, laid up car traffic on the south road to Chagrin.

* * *

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April 1913

1. Geauga daily life slowly returns to normal after heavy March rains.

2. Manager Beatty inspects Cleveland & Eastern line after storms.

3. Chagrin Falls and Garrettsville electric road ends service east of South Newbury.

* * *

The Geauga Republican, Wednesday, April 2, 1013, Page 1

Burton

     Boating across the flats, stalled cars, watered cellars, delayed mails were about the extent of the flood inconveniences here.

* * *

Middlefield

     Middlefield people welcomed the street cars Saturday with smiles and cheers. There had been no cars over the C. & E. since Monday. The good people of this little town had sort of forgotten how convenient street cars were until they ceased running. The track from the Cuyahoga to the onion patch was covered with water. No real suffering was caused here by the flood, although the water was high enough to cause inconvenience to the merchants, and to hold Dr. Ide and family prisoners in their apartments over Shetler’s store for a few hours. Del Thompson was also marooned in his shop for a short time.

* * *

The Geauga Republican, Wednesday, April 2, 1913, Page 5

Local and Personal

     Owing to a lack of power last Thursday forenoon, the 8 o’clock C. & E. car from the city did not reach Chardon until about 12:50 p.m. The rural carriers left on their routes at 10:00 and made part of their trips. There was no 2:00 mail from the city that day.

* * *

     General Manager Robert D. Beatty, of Cleveland, was in town Thursday and Friday on a tour of inspection of the Cleveland & Eastern railway, to see how many washouts there were on the line. The most serious damage by the flood was to bridges west of Middlefield, it was learned.

* * *

Faster Cars to City Some Day

     It is worthy of note that the only interurban car to enter Cleveland during the flood early on Thursday morning of last week, was a Cleveland & Eastern car, which arrived in the city on schedule time, and returned to Chardon at 10 a.m., passing over a submerged track and through dangerous flood conditions at Gates Mills enroute. This is worth remembering.
     The Cleveland & Eastern cars are rarely off schedule time, and the service is excellent for a railroad with so many curves. But one criticism is made of the present service, and that is the crowding into some of the cars in the city of people who live in East Cleveland and the Heights. They fairly swarm into the Chardon cars, which are easier to ride in than any other city cars traversing the same route. The company, of course, is not responsible for this condition.
     Since the C. & E. cars have been running with the new and adequate power supplied by the Cleveland Illuminating Co., the hope is generally expressed by patrons of the road that the company will shorten the running times east of Lee Road, the city limits.
     The usual schedule time from Lee Road to Chardon is about 1 hour and 22 minutes. It seems that a little faster running schedule east of the point mentioned might be made with safety, but the traveling public may be totally unaware of the conditions which would have to be considered in shortening the present schedule.
     We believe the time is not far distant, however, when an express car, making only certain stops once or twice a day, will be run over the Cleveland & Eastern interurban road. If the car leaving Cleveland at 4 p.m. ran in this way, it is probable that the entire distance from the Square to Chardon could be made in 1 hour and 30 minutes, and not run faster than now, with stops at Lee Road, South Euclid, Gates Mills hill, where a large number of Clevelanders have their homes, Gates Mills, Scotland, Junction and Chardon.
     If such service is ever established, it will bring great development to all the territory contiguous to the railroad east of Gates Mills. Thirty minutes time, or half that, saved to business men in car service, means a good deal to them.
     For some years the Cleveland & Eastern railroad was in the hands of a receiver, but able, conservative, strict business management during the time . . ., and made the road, now greatly improved, a paying proposition.
     It is not unreasonable to presume that further improvements will be made to the Cleveland & Eastern railroad, but about the only improvement lacking now, in the minds of Geauga County people, and many Clevelanders who desire to live out this way, is to shorten the running schedule to and from the city at certain hours of the day.
     However, there are unavoidable congestions of traffic, which delay cars within the city limits, and numerous curves, which unavoidably lessen the speed of all cars. The running of express cars with seven stops east of Lee Road, would shorten the schedule of those runs, but it would seem an extraordinary accomplishment to run all the cars on the Cleveland & Eastern on such a schedule, and stop for passengers at innumerable points as now. And then, too, the question of safety must always be considered.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, April 2, 1913, Page 1

History of a Week

     Geauga County was entirely without railroad facilities part of last week, the B. & O. and C. & E. being both out of commission on account of washouts, etc.

* * *

South Newbury

     It seemed like living in “the good old days” the past week without rural mail, street cars or telephone.

* * *

Left One Bridge

     Rapids, April 1 – The continuous rain last week caused much anxiety and labor in this section. It is said the lower bridge at this place was the only bridge between Burton and Kent whereby people could cross the Cuyahoga River.
     Many cellars were filled with water and the car track was washed out, holding up traffic. The section hands are at work now and it is hoped cars will soon be running daily.

* * *

The Geauga Republican, Wednesday, April 9, 1913, Page 5

Local and Personal

     A special theater car will carry High school pupils and their friends to Cleveland, Thursday night, to attend the performance of “Twelfth Night,” at the Colonial.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, April 9, 1913, Page 1

History of a Week

     It is reported that the Chagrin Falls and Garrettsville electric road has been abandoned east of South Newbury. Cars have been running no farther than South Newbury for about two weeks.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, April 23, 1913, Page 8

Middlefield

     What good can it do Cleveland saloons to advertise in the Burton and Middlefield street cars?

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, April 25, 1913, Page 1

Enters Moving Picture Field

     Hartley Palmer, wife and son will move to Painesville next week. Mr. Palmer, who was an efficient dispatcher on the C. & E. road for several years, will go into the moving picture business in Fairport in a large new building erected for that purpose.

* * *

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May 1913

1. Stakes arrive in Chardon for proposed electric line, engineers to follow soon.

2. Geauga County Association of Cleveland to hold annual picnic at Euclid Beach.

3. Rock Creek Signal editor encourages financial support for Chardon - Meadville electric line.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, May 21, 1913, Page 4

General Interest

     Earl Fuller is a new C. & E. motorman having a passenger run out of Burton. He and his family have moved from Chardon to Burton and occupy the Isaac Town house on Hickox street.

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, May 23, 1913, Page 1

Surveying for Jefferson Line to Start Soon

Five Hundred Stakes Arrive in Chardon; Engineer May Be Here Next Week

     Surveying for the Chardon, Jefferson and Meadville electric line will begin soon. Five hundred grade stakes for the surveyors arrived in Chardon Wednesday. They were consigned to the care of John H. Cheney. The Pease Engineering Co., of Cleveland, has the contract for the engineering work of the line. It is expected that work will begin Monday. A feature of the new line will be the absence of trolley poles and wires. The cars will be of new design and carry storage batteries to furnish power. The headquarters of the Chardon, Jefferson and Meadville Railway Co. is 735 Williamson Building, Cleveland.

* * *

Cleveland Team Here May 30

     A fast game is promised local fans on Decoration Day afternoon when the Chardon ball team and the Calvarys, representing the American Upholstery Co., of Cleveland, will cross bats on the Chardon diamond. The Calvarys will come to Chardon in a special car and will be accompanied by 50 routers. The Chardon team is practicing two nights a week to be in good trim for the game.

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, May 23, 1913, Page 4

Local News

     Three cottages are being erected just north of Bass Lake station on the C. & E. railway, on what is known as the Smith farm, now owned by Geo. Murray, of Painesville, and C. L. Smith, of Chardon.

* * *

Geauga Folks to Hold a Picnic

     Saturday, June 14, is the day selected by the Geauga County Association of Cleveland, for holding the annual picnic at Euclid Beach. A cordial invitation is extended to all Geauga County people to meet with them on that date, and spend a day with old acquaintances.
     Round trip rates on the C. & E. will be 75c on regular cars to the city limits. Special cars will run to the park at a less rate if enough go to fill one. There will be games and contests, and ball game between the country rubes and city dudes.

* * *

South Hambden St. Will Not Be Paved

     . . . One of the worst pieces of road in the village at times of wet weather is on South Hambden Street east of the C. & E. tracks to the east line of the Fiedler residence. It will hardly be possible to pave this short strip next year, as no paving contractor could afford to submit a reasonable bid on so small a job.

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, May 30, 1913, Page 8

Tells How Road Project Stands

E. R. Williams in the Rock Creek Signal:

“Thinking perhaps the readers of the Signal would like to know how the proposed Chardon, Jefferson and Meadville R.R. was progressing, I thought I would inform them how I found the situation in Cleveland after examining the books, and making a thorough investigation of the question, I can say that I believe the prospects for the completion of the road to be very favorable. The contract with the Pease Engineering Co. to do the surveying, and making a prospectus and blue print of the road, is signed, and the money to pay for their work is on deposit in the bank. The grade stakes are paid for, and on the ground, and the surveyors are expected to being work this week. The Pease Engineering Co. is a reliable firm, and their work will be taken as correct with any bonding company that furnishes the money to complete the road. After the survey is made, the next step will be to sell bonds. In order to do this we must have sufficient assets to induce a bonding company to buy the binds. The right of way, franchise, survey and stock subscriptions, will constitute the assets on which the bonds will have to be sold, in order to have enough assets to induce a binding company to take the bonds. We must have a large amount of stock taken; 10 per cent of this stock is to be paid after the survey’s completed, 30 per cent to be paid when the road is built and in operation from Jefferson to Rock Creek, 30 per cent to be paid when the road is completed and in operation from Rock Creek to Footville and 30 percent is completed and in operation from Footville to Chardon. This certainty is a favorable proposition, which no fair minded man can object to. Now if the people along the line of this road, who are to be benefited, refuse to take stock in an enterprise that will add thousands of dollars to the value of their property, supplying a way for all kinds of farm produce to be sent to market, putting the producer and consumer in closer touch with each other, that alone would be ample proof that they do not want to better their condition,

“Some one may say that they do not believe that the sock (sic) will ever be worth anything, and that they will never receive any dividends in said work. If that should prove to be true, which we can see no reason why it should be, it is fair to presume that every one who takes stock within 6 miles each way from the line will be benefited two dollars for every dollar they pay for stock.

“If the people along the line who are going to be benefited don’t take stock, how do they expect people living in Cleveland and New York City, who will not be benefited only as an investment, to take stock. I believe the people along the line will consider this important question, and subscribe for stock liberally, and increase the assets of the road so there will be no trouble to float the bonds, and rush the road to completion in the near future.”

* * *

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June 1913

1. Financing sought for proposed electric line, engineers in town to talk up prospective investors.

2. Chardon business man boards wrong car in Cleveland, gets lesson in reading road names.

3. New modern cars proposed for Chardon - Meadville line generate own power.

* * *

The Geauga Leader, Wednesday, June 4, 1913, Page 8

Middlefield

     A recent change in the B. & O. passenger schedule sends the afternoon passenger train south at 4:31. No change in the northbound passenger train at 11:48. The change makes a close but pretty sure connection with the C. & E. car leaving Burton at 4:10 arriving at Middlefield at 4:25.

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, June 13, 1913, Page 4

Local News

     The 2 o’clock car got off the track making the curve on the south park Wednesday afternoon.

* * *

The Geauga Republican, Wednesday, June 18, 1913, Page 5

Surveyors at Work on the J. & C. Line

A Jefferson special says:

“The interest in the proposed Jefferson-Chardon electric line is not dead yet.

“A. H. Bacon, of Footville, was in town today, and he stated the surveys of the line are being made from Chardon east. Mr. Bacon claims that if property owners along the right of way will subscribe about $60,000 to the capital stock, the balance of the cost can be financed. He also wants Jefferson business men to subscribe $25,000, payable one-half when the road is built and in successful operation from Jefferson to Rock Creek and Footville, and the balance when the road has been completed from Footville to Chardon.

“Mr. Bacon further stated that the road would use cars with self-contained motive power, and thus eliminate the cost of a power house, trolley poles and line. The cars would probably be the same as will be used on the L. E. & Y. road between Conneaut and Youngstown.

“If this road should be built, it would be a great help to people in this northeastern part of the county, as it will make a much shorter route to Cleveland and much cheaper. In Chardon the road would connect with the Chardon-Cleveland electric line, and as Cleveland is about due west of there it would cut off quite a bit of mileage.”

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, June 20, 1913, Page 4

Local News

     A well-known Chardon business man was in the city one day last week, and when he was ready to start for home boarded what he took to be a Chardon car, and settled back in the seat in the smoker to read the papers. He is a great reader, by the way. He had never seen the conductor before, but flattered himself that a new man was being “broke in.” There was not a familiar face among the passengers, and the Chardon man was thinking about this when the conductor called out “Miles Avenue.” The Chardon inquired the destination of the car. “Akron,” replied the conductor, and then the car stopped and the Chardon man got out on the city’s outskirts and waited for a return car to the Square, where he noticed that while many of the interurban cars bore a striking resemblance in color and form, there was a difference in the lettering.

* * *

The Geauga County Record, Friday, June 27, 1913, Page 1

Passengers on New Electric Line to Have Comforts of Pullman Car

     Gas-electric motor cars are now operating so successfully on a number of important railways in the United States and Canada, that this type has been selected for use on the new Chardon, Jefferson and Meadville road, surveying for which is already underway.
     In performing service on connecting lines, or as adjuncts to the main line equipment, wherever self-propelled cars of this type have been adopted, they have merited the favor of railway officials, and gained popularity with the traveling public. Operations under nearly every traffic condition has demonstrated that they afford a safe, reliable, pleasant, convenient and economical means of travel, and fulfill the requirements of steam roads for supplementary service in every respect.
     Branch lines are sometimes operated at a loss by steam, due in the small amount of travel, and in this province, the gas-electric car is solving an annoying problem of railroading and is proving its ability to reduce operating expenses. Not only are transportation costs per passenger lowered by the introduction of these cars, but traffic is greatly stimulated through the readiness of the public to take advantage of the increased traveling in cars with the comforts of Pullman service and with an absence of smoke and cinders.
     The gas-electric motor is essentially a locomotive and car combined in one unit. It has been developed and perfected by the General Electric Co. and in its designs are embodied the essentials of simplicity, ease of control and resultant safety in operation. The motive power centers in an internal combustion engine, generator and motors. In view of the high character of the power equipment, the aim has been to produce a car with commensurate solidity and durability, and with both beauty of design and finishing. Several standard styles of car bodies have been established to meet practically all requirements, including a wide range of types in response to demands for special arrangements of seating, smoking, mail and baggage compartments. But one motorman and one conductor are required to operate the car.
     One of the smallest types of gas-electric motor cars is in operation on the Pittsburg & Lake Erie Railroad out of Pittsburg. This type of car, a picture of which appears, is selected for operation on the Chardon, Jefferson and Meadville road. It is designed essentially for operation with a trailer, the unit forming a train. The motor car is 42 ½ feet long, 10 feet 5 inches wide, weighs 36 tons and seats 42 people. It is partitioned into large compartments, one 20 feet 5 inches long designed for a smoker, a small section for baggage 6 feet long and a cab 12 feet long containing the power plant apparatus. It is equipped with a rear platform entrance. The trailer is 38 feet long over the body, weighs 22 tons and seats 80 people, making a total seating capacity for 122 passengers. At present 25 railroads are operating gas-electric motor cars for branch line service.


     All-steel construction, except the interior finish, prevails throughout these cars. The frame consists of steel beams and channels, strongly cross-braced, and steel plates form the outside sheathing. The underfloor of the car is of wood, sheathed with sheet iron on the lower side; while between this and the floor proper a heavy felt lining is inserted, and the car sides are also interlined with felt.
     The interior trim is of mahogany, highly finished, and the ceiling is sheathed with composite board. The windows are fitted with plate glass, the seat are made long enough to accommodate three persons, are covered with friezette plush in the passenger compartment and with genuine Spanish leather in the smoking room, and the entire car is lighted with attractive electric incandescent fixtures.
     The generating unit is located above the floor line of the cab, free from dust and dirt and under immediate observation of the engineer. It consists of an 8-cylinder, 4-cycle gas engine of the “V” type, direct connected to a 600 volt, commutating pole electric generator, designed to meet the special conditions the service demands. Flexibility of control and economy of operations are assured through electrical transmission of the power. The starting of the engine is effected by compressed air taken from the main reservoirs of the air brake system, which are built with surplus capacity for this purpose. The main air compressor is driven from the crank shaft of the main engine, and is fitted with an automatic governor which maintains constant pressure. The engine can rotate at normal speed, irrespective of the speed of the car, and deliver its maximum power, a feature of great advantage on grades in the case of snow storms or other emergency conditions.
     An auxiliary equipment id also provided, consisting of a 2-cylinder, 4-cycle gas engine direct connected to a single cylinder air compressor and lighting generator. The function of this set is to supply an initial charge of air for starting the main engine to deliver power for lighting the car. This set is started by hand.
     The control is simple, substantial and similar to that of any standard electric trolley car. Mounted on the axles of the forward truck are two 205, 600 volt, box frame, oil lubricated commutating pole railway motors of 100 hp. each. Years of experience have demonstrated there is no piece of apparatus less liable to derangement than the railway motor built for heavy, high speed traction work. By means of a special controller they are placed progressively in series and parallel connection. Energy is transmitted directly without the intervention of mechanical change speed gearing. The voltage is governed by varying the strength of the generator field, which is accomplished by the movement of a single handle on the controller, and the resultant speed changes of the motors produce a smooth and rapid acceleration without rheostatic power losses or gear changes. Separate handles are provided for throttling the engine and for reversing the car. The latter is accomplished instantly by changing the motor connections in the usual manner, without stopping the engine, which always rotates in the same direction. This allows the car to be stopped quickly independent of the brakes in an emergency. All the levers are located within convenient reach of the operator. The radiators are placed on the roof and circulation for cooling the engine is maintained by the thermo-siphon system.
     The trucks are of the swing bolster type with elliptic bolster springs and coil equalizer springs. The bearings, threads and flanges of the wheels and axles conform to standards. The brake equipment includes hand brakes in addition to the combined straight automatic air brakes. A high power Mazda incandescent headlight and reflector, an air whistle and pneumatic gong are provided. A hot water heater, coal fired, is installed for heating the car. To prevent freezing in cold weather when the car is lying idle, the heater circulation may be connected with the engine cooling system. A 150 gallon gasoline tank for the power supply is suspended under the car. While the car is running the gasoline is pumped automatically by the engine, and by a hand pump when starting.

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The Geauga County Record, Friday, June 27, 1913, Page 4

Local News

     The preliminary survey of the Jefferson-Chardon trolley line is now being made which reminds us that a trolley line from Painesville to Warren was once talked of. What we really need next to a county trunk line pavement is a trolley line or a good pavement to the Geauga County seat. – Painesville Telegraph Republican.

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Thanks to our Newsletter Editor Bill Jackson for collecting and organizing these news stories from various newspaper and library archives.





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UPDATED 06/11/2013