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 The Wentworth route

The Wentworth route (I)

Start of service: June 5 1899
End of service: October 1913
Route: From Mount Hamilton Incline Railway at top of Wentworth to King & James, via Wentworth and King.

With the opening of the Mount Hamilton Incline Railway in 1895 at the end of Wentworth St, there came a large demand for service to and from the base of the inclined railway. On September 14 1898 a bylaw was passed calling for tracks to be laid on Wentworth from King St to a point '150 feet north of the TH&B line'. Tenders were called for the construction of a single-track line on April 4, 1899, and construction began April 17. Track laying was completed by April 27, with the exception of the diamond crossing with the HG&B at Wentworth & Main, which was installed a few days later. The line opened on June 5 1899, and the Wentworth route was created by diverting half of the cars that formerly ran to Main & Sherman, with service every 12 minutes. The Wentworth route ran from the Mount Hamilton Incline Railway at the top of Wentworth to King & James, via Wentworth and King.

With the formation of the Belt Line route in October 1913, the Wentworth route was discontinued. Service on Wentworth was replaced by the Wentworth-Stuart route.

An old postcard showing the Wentworth streetcar and the Wentworth Incline.

An old postcard showing HSR #22 on the WENTWORTH route and the Mount Hamilton Incline Railway.

The Wentworth route (II)

Start of service: 1930s
End of service: October 11, 1942
Route: From Mount Hamilton Incline Railway at top of Wentworth to King & Wentworth. During rush hours, from Mount Hamilton Incline Railway at top of Wentworth to Gore St turnback at James & Gore, via Wentworth, King and James. Later cut back to Wentworth & Cumberland.
Antecessor route: Wentworth-Burlington route

At some point during the 1930s, the Wentworth-Burlington route was discontinued. The Wentworth route reappeared, the first time that the HSR would reuse an old route name. The Wentworth route ran from the Mount Hamilton Incline Railway at the top of Wentworth to King & Wentworth. But during rush hours, the route was extended to the Gore St turnback at James & Gore, via Wentworth, King and James. When the inclined railway was closed in 1936, service was cut back to Cumberland Ave, just north of the TH&B’s Wentworth St crossing. The Wentworth route was abandoned on October 11, 1942.

HSR 408 on Wentworth St at King, Sept 1942.

HSR #408 on Wentworth St at King, Sept 1942. The streetcar is facing the wrong way because the motorman has just swung the pole around, and is about to head back down the single track along Wentworth (From the Richard Vincent collection, used with permission)

Sources

Hamilton Spectator
"Passed the By-Law - The Finance Committee Has Sent The Street Railway Measure On to The City Council" September 9, 1898, pg 8
"Carried the Extension - Street Railway Company's New By-law Passed by a Vote of 11-10 at Last Night's Council Meeting" September 13, 1898, pg 7
"Signed The By-law - Mayor and Street Railway President Affix Their Names to the Document" September 14, 1898, pg 1
"He Wants a Raise - Street Railway Extension Work Begun and the Steam Roller in Active Service" April 17, 1899, pg 8
"Asphalt Favored - General News of The City Hall - Track Laying on Wentworth Street Nearly Finished" April 27, 1899, pg 8

Brief Local Items
April 4, 1899
April 18, 1899
June 5, 1899

"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