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 The Incline Railway route

The Incline Railway route

Start of service: After June 1, 1893
End of service: 1941
Route: From Hamilton & Barton Incline Railway at top of James St to James & King. Later extended to Gore St

In the fall of 1892 the HSR negotiated with Barton township on extending the tracks on Barton street to the new racetrack at Ottawa St. The Barton township council demanded that in exchange for permission for the Barton extension, the HSR extend its tracks on James St south from Herkimer to the base of the new Hamilton & Barton Incline Railway (HBIR) (At this time, Hamilton mountain was still part of Barton township)

May 15, 1893
Construction of a single track from the corner of Herkimer & James up James to the base of the HBIR begins.

After June 1, 1893
Service begins on the new Incline Railway route, connecting the HBIR with King & James.

In later years the route was extended to the Gore St turnback, and the route name was lengthened, becoming Incline Railway-King and James Streets. The route kept its lengthy name even after the closing of the Hamilton & Barton Incline Railway in 1932. The route itself was discontinued in the summer of 1941.

HSR 59 on the Incline Railway Route at the James St Incline. Taken from an old postcard circa 1905

HSR 59 on the Incline Railway Route at the James St Incline. Taken from an old postcard circa 1905

HSR 420 at the Hamilton & Barton Inclined Railway on James St South, date unknown.

HSR 420 at the Hamilton & Barton Inclined Railway on James St South, date unknown. (From the Stephen M. Scalzo collection, used with permission)

Sources

Hamilton Spectator

“Street Railway Extension - Progress of the Work in Various Parts of the City-Over 400 Men Employed” May 12 1893, pg 8
“Probably Fatal Accident - Frank Heslop Struck by a Trolley and Very Badly Injured” Jun 1 1893, pg 1

"The Dominion Power and Transmission Co.'s Railway System" Canadian Railway and Marine World June 1913: pg 281-284

Mills, John M. Cataract Traction; The Railways of Hamilton. Toronto: Upper Canada Railway Society/Ontario Electric Railway Historical Association, 1971

Westland, S. I. "Steel City Traction" Upper Canada Railway Society Newsletter May 1971: pg 69-74