The Lima Route By Scott Trostel with dust jacket 1998 FIRST PRINTING 256 pages
When I was a youngster growing up, I would sit at the kitchen table in my grandparents Trostel kitchen, drinking a Frostie Root Beer and listen to the fascinating stories about riding on the "traction." They had been gone for 30 years by the time these stories were being told, and I wondered why, if this was such an amazing form of transportation, didn't it survive? My great-grandfather Harvey Roth, had been a motorman on the street railways of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in the late 1890's and he also told wonderful stories of his time running the trolleys. They sparked my curiosity to know more of this hidden wonder.
The twentieth century has been one of amazing progress and even more amazing set-backs. The interurban railways came about because there was a need to overcome the mud streets and to end the awful isolation of the country dwellers and the monopolies the steam railroads were exercising. It was clean, efficient and generally successful.
The trolley were a part of the American scene in the first half of the twentieth century, they were neighborly affairs, reasonably fast and pleasant to ride. In Ohio, they became a vital link bringing us into thew twentieth century with real progress on the heals of the telegraph, telephone and other conveniences. Their success was short-lived, the greed of owners, politicians and uninformed regulatory agencies brought them to an abrupt end.
This thesis is about a superior transit system that connected people and communites together and made the world a little closer.
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