Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Portland Railroad - A History of Public Transportation in Portland, Maine 1860-1941

Starting in 1863, Monument Square was the hub for the
Portland Railroad Company's far-reaching public
transportation system.  Print courtesy - PWM

     Seen in this image of Congress Street are Portland Railroad trolley tracks that pass left of the Victory Monument and continue on towards Munjoy Hill and the Eastern Promenade, as well as access to the route to Falmouth, Yarmouth, and on up along the coast. Middle Street veers off to the right of the monument with Federal Street branching off Middle to the left. The Middle Street route would lead to South Portland, Cape Elizabeth, Saco, and Old Orchard Beach. Preble Street connects with Monument Square seen on the left in this image. The Preble Street route would lead to Deering, Westbrook, Gorham, South Windham, and to a connection to Lewiston that would lead to many more Maine communities.

A reprinted map, circa 1910, "Trolleying through the Heart of Maine"
Distributed by the Portland Railroad and the Lewiston, Augusta, &
Waterville Street Railway. Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum

     This post is a companion to the slide presentation program done by Phil Morse as a guest speaker at the 470 Railroad Club in Portland, Maine on the history of the Portland Railroad Company. The presentation began at 7 p.m. on October 17, 2018, at 75 State Street, Portland, Maine.

     Photo and research resources used in this blog post are courtesy of Seashore Trolley Museum's Library; specifically from the O. R. Cummings Collection and Phil Morse (PWM), and O. R. Cummings books, "Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957, and Part 2, 1959, the Osher Maps Library at the Smith Center for Cartographic Education at University of Southern Maine Portland Campus, 314 Forest Avenue, Portland, ME 04101, and the from the Penobscot Maritime Museum; specifically from the Eastern Collection, which has more than 47 thousand images available to view online!!! From Eric Morris (spring 2007), "From Horse Power to Horsepower" (PDF) Access. No. 30. US Trans. Center.pg-2-9). Douglas I. Hodgkin, "Lewiston Politica in the Gilded Age 1863-1900). I also received assistance with research from staff and volunteers at the South Portland Historical Society at Cushing's Point Museum in South Portland, ME. 

     Monument Square in Portland, Maine was the hub for all the early horse-drawn and electric railway systems running into and out of Portland. This blog features the high-speed, luxury interurban, No. 14, Narcissus of the Portland-Lewiston Interurban (PLI) that is now being restored at Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine. With that in mind, from 1914 until 1933, the Narcissus, as a PLI interurban, did operate into and out of Monument Square to pick up and discharge passengers. The Narcissus and nine other Maine vehicles used on electric railways have been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1980. Though we are deep into the research of information and materials related to the PLI and the Narcissus for use in creating the interpretation portion of the Narcissus project, it's too hard to resist posting other interesting electric railway tidbits from Maine's transportation history. As we approach Maine's Bicentennial year (2020), this blog will release posts that relate to many electric railway operations throughout the State of Maine. This is the first in that series and will take a more comprehensive look at the Portland Railroad Company.

Here is a list of initial posts released that included portions of the Portland Railroad Company.
     Click Here to go to the post: Portland Railroad - Congress St. Revisited: Monument Sq.-Union Sta
     Click Here to go to the post: Portland Railroad - Munjoy Hill Revisited
     Click Here to go to the post: Portland-Lewiston Interurban No. 14, West Falmouth, Maine
     Click Here to go to the post: Portland Railroad - Forest Avenue to Riverton Park Revisited
    Click Here to go to the post: Portland Railroad - Westbrook, Gorham & So. Windham Revisited
     Click Here to go to the post: Portland Railroad - South Portland & Cape Elizabeth Revisited
     Click Here to go to the post: Trolleys Through Scarborough, Maine

     The History of the Portland Railroad is a long and complicated journey ranging from the time of the Civil War years until the early years of World War Two - 1860-1941. Over those years, the Portland Railroad owned more than 300 passenger railway vehicles (horsecar & Electric), most being manufactured by the J. G. Brill Company of Philadelphia, PA or one of its subsidiaries, Wason Manufacturing, Springfield, MA, and Stephenson & Son, Troy, NY. 
     In Maine, during 1915, there were ninety communities that had electric railway service, operating on about 520 miles of tracks. That year, more than fifty-seven million passengers were carried on those railways in Maine. The Portland Railroad system carried a little more than twenty-four million of those passengers (1916 would be a little more than 25 million). More than 4 million miles traveled in 1915. Grossing more than $1 million ($25 million in 2018) in revenues with a net of a little more than a quarter million (more than $6 million in 2018). (PRR statistics from Public Utilities Reports). Clearly, the Portland Railroad in particular and in general, the electric railways in Maine were vital to the local economies for many years.
     
Horsecars

A horsecar travels along Congress Street as it enters what was
City Hall Market prior to the building being raised in 1888.
What we know as the Victory Monument in Monument
Square was in place by 1891. 
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_098

     March 19, 1860 - Portland & Forest Avenue Railroad Company was chartered by an act of the Maine legislature. Authority to construct, maintain and operate a horse railroad in the city of Portland and the town of Westbrook was granted. The company was capitalized at $100,000 and was authorized to issue mortgage bonds in an equal amount. It would be three years later, March 26, 1863, when the Portland City Council granted a 25-year franchise to the company and approved its proposed locations.

Grand Trunk Railroad depot on India Street in Portland, ME
Postcard postmarked July 29, 1909 - PWM

     The proposed route in Portland started at the Grand Trunk Railroad depot on India Street, continued up India Street to Middle Street, through Middle Street to Monument Square and the head of Preble Street, down Preble Street to Portland Street, through Portland and Parris Streets to Kennebec Street and along Kennebec Street to Forest Avenue (then Green Street) and Deering's Bridge at the Westbrook town line. All single track with turnouts as necessary.
     
In yellow, the proposed route in Portland starting
at Grand Trunk Railroad depot on India Street to
Westbrook town line at about Woodford's Corner.
Map from, O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957.

     From Congress and Preble Streets, a double track was to extend along Congress Street to High Street and single track down High Street to Spring, through Spring to Clark, over Clark Street to Pine Street, through Pine to Congress Street and along Congress Street back to High Street (Clark & Pine Streets section - no evidence could be found of ever being built).

The balance of the initial proposed route in
Portland included Congress Street to High and
Springs Streets, along through Clark and Pins
Streets and back to Congress to High Streets.
Map from, O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957.

     The Westbrook portion of the proposed line began ay the Derring bridge near Woodford's Corner, extending along Forest Avenue to Pleasant Avenue. Through Pleasant Avenue to what is now Stevens Avenue. Along Stevens Avenue and to a point at or near Evergreen Cemetery. This portion of Westbrook would become the town of Deering in 1871 and later the city of Deering was annexed to Portland early in 1899.

Town of Westbrook portion extended from
Woodward's Corner to Evergreen Cemetery.
Map from, O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957.

     All the terms of the franchise were accepted by the Portland & Forest Avenue Railroad Company on the 24th of April, 1863; including the provision that the franchise prohibited the company from removing snow and ice, if the depth exceeded six inches, without first obtaining permission from the municipal authority. If permission was refused, the company might use sleighs or mount its cars on runners in order to maintain service until tracks were clear.

     Service began later in 1863 from the Grand Trunk Railroad Depot to Monument Square and on to Clark Street.

Seen here in red, the 1.37 miles of horsecar
service track opened later in 1863.
Map from, O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957.

Early Portland horsecar on Congress Square turns towards
Longfellow Square circa 1864.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_064

     Service in Westbrook was extended beyond the initial Evergreen Cemetery proposal site to 
Morrill's Corner. In addition, the Congress Street line had a single track extension to
Longfellow Square and a single track extension along Congress Street to Atlantic Street on Munjoy Hill.

Seen in the mustard yellow is the lines opened
for horsecar service in 1864. 3.3 miles from
Morrill's Corner to Monument Square and
2.08 in extensions to Longfellow Square &
Atlantic Street, sidings, and carhouse track.
Map from, O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957.

Horsecar No. 46 at Longfellow Square
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_038

     In 1865, an amendment to the charter was enacted by the state legislature and, among other things, it shortened the name of the corporation to the Portland Railroad Company (PRR). The PRR was authorized to extend its lines into the neighboring town of Cape Elizabeth (part of which is now South Portland) but with a two-year time frame placed on the extensions. An increase in the company's capital stock from $100K to $300K was authorized to operate steam dummy engines on its routes as long as there was consent from the municipalities. The line extensions into CE and the purchase of any dummy engines never took place as far as is known.

1865 PRR horsecar system included three
lines: 6.75 miles of track
                                           * Spring Street - Grand Trunk Railroad - Red
                                           * Longfellow Square - Munjoy Hill - Green
                                           * Monument Square -  Morrill's Corner - Yellow
Map from, O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957.

Spring Street line horsecar turns onto Middle Street
circa 1870
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_102

Horsecar traveling on Congress Street towards Munjoy Hill
circa 1880
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_038

Horsecar coming out of Preble Street to Congress Street.
The PRR waiting room was on the corner (right) circa 1875
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_097

     There is little information on the PRR from 1865 til 1882, but there is evidence that is was prosperous. Additional equipment was purchased from time to time and by 1874 the company owned 26 cars and 82 horses. There were challenges to the operations during the winter months and the company was forced to use sleigh barges and mount its cars on runners. Snow-fighting equipment wasn't acquired until the 1880s. There were other challenging factors to consider as well. I was not able to locate specific data related to the PRR and the issues of public health concerning its horses, however, based on other communities that had horsecar service, Portland's public areas were most certainly impacted. 

Spring Street carhouse and stable circa 1877
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_33_045

Spring Street carhouse and stable circa 1892
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_33_044

     Issues with horses in other horsecar communities; the average horse, pulled cars twelve miles per day during four or five hours each day. They needed housing, feed, grooming, and medical assistance, day in and day out. Each horse produces a lot of manure, on average 15 to 30 pounds per day. The company was responsible for cleanup and storage. The average street car horse had a life expectancy of two years. Horses were expensive for the company to maintain.
     The next expansion of the PRR line took place in 1882 with the extension from the Grand Trunk Railroad depot down India Street to the wharves along Commercial Street and up Pearl Street to connect with the track on Middle Street, forming a loop. (1882 was the first full year of horsecar service in Lewiston, 5.75 miles of track - More than 37K trips. More than 90K miles traveled. Just under Quarter million passengers carried) 
     Another line built in 1882, was from Morrill's Corner along Ocean Street (now Ocean Avenue) to Lunt's Corner on Washington Avenue. This line was built by the Ocean Street Railroad. It was not profitable and the PRR took it over in May 1885.

1882 had horsecar lines extending services within
the greater Portland area to include Commercial
Street on the waterfront and Ocean Avenue.
Map from, O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957.

Lucky horsecar No. 13 on the Ocean Street line circa 1882
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_035

     In 1886, Maine Central Railroad built Union Station along the corner of Congress and St. John Streets. Portland Railroad extended tracks from Longfellow Square to Railroad Square (Union Station) and along St. John Street.

Horsecar at Union Station - still under construction
circa 1887
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_004



West End Hotel in the background at Union Square.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_030

Horsecar No. 54 at the train shed of Union Station
circa 1888 - a section of the shed is in use at 
Thompson's Point for ice skating & concerts.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_038

     1887 - Spring Street tracks were extended from Clark Street along Spring Street and through Neal, Carroll, Vaughn, and Bramhall Streets to connect with Congress Street line at Bramhall Square. A new carhouse was built at St. John Street.

Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_005

     About 1888, maybe 1889,  the Congress Street tracks from Railroad Square (Union Station) were extended to Bradley's Corner (midway between Libbytown and Rosemont).

     1890 - The Congress Street tracks at Atlantic Street on Munjoy Hill were extended along Wilson and Beckett Streets to Fort Allen Park on the Eastern Promenade. A large brick carhouse and stable building were built at the corner of Beckett and Wilson Streets. Tracks were extended along Pearl Street, connecting the Congress and Middle Streets lines. As of June 30, 1890, the PRR operated on a total of 14.90 miles of single track miles, with 50 horsecars (open & closed), and 225 horses.

On St. John Street at Union Station Square and will travel
to Munjoy Hill and Fort Allen Park on the Eastern
Promenade. circa 1890
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_006

At Fort Allen at the Eastern Promenade circa 1890.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_35_021

Large Bennett Street carhouse built on Munjoy Hill 1890.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_002

Bennett Street Carhouse  
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_004

     1891 - The Congress Street track from Bradley's Corner between Libbytown and Rosemont was extended to Stroudwater and opened on August 3.

Map from, O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957.

Stroudwater circa 1891 ( the building on the far left has 
been repurposed and is now Stroudwater Village Church
and Community Center.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_043

1891 PRR Horsecar System included five
lines: 15.7 miles of track
                                           * Union Station - Fort Allen Park - Green
                                           * Spring Street - Grand Trunk Railroad - Red
                                           * Monument Square -  Morrill's Corner - Yellow
                                           * Woodfords Corner - Lunt's Corner - Blue
                                           * Monument Square - Stroudwater - Pink
Map from, O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957

Stroudwater circa 1892
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_044

Electrification
      The Deering line was the first to be electrified. However, beginning the process of electrifying the Portland Railroad system, then expanding the electrification to encompass the complete system was a bit of a drawn-out process over a few years.

     Bangor Street Railway was the first to electrify trolley car operations in the state. April 29, 1889, electric trolley cars commenced operations in the Queen City. Even the seven-mile route between Augusta and Gardiner was electrified before the PRR Company decided to give it a go.

      Authorized by the State Legislature early in 1889, a year elapsed before the PRR Company voted to take steps towards electrification. Another year elapsed before the hesitant company decided to electrify one line as an experiment. Municipalities of Portland and Westbrook granted permission to erect overhead wires. In April of 1891, poles were being erected at the Deering end of the line and construction of a power station commenced at Morrill's Corner. There was a change made in the track route. There were multiple steam railroad grade crossings at Parris and Kennebec Streets. These could be bypassed by extending the PRR tracks on Portland Street to Forest Street (was Green Street), and down Forest to the original line at the corner of Kennebec. Trial trips were made between Morrill's Corner and Woodfords starting on June 19, 1891. On June 25th, the first electric trolley car ran from Morrill's Corner to Monument Square. Regular service began on July 2.

     Rolling stock for the Deering line included six electrified closed horsecars, two 10-bench open cars, and two twenty five-foot closed cars (one equipped with 6-wheel Robinson Radial Trucks). All were converted to electric or built at the Portland Railroad Shop.
Open horsecars were used as trailers in the summer months.

No. 70 was one of the two original open cars for the  Deering
line. Built 1891 by the Portland Railroad in their shop.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_041

     1891 also brought challenges from a new opponent to the PRR for supplying electric trolley service to Westbrook, Portland & Westbrook Street Railway. Ultimately, the PRR won out and plans were made to construct the 4.6-mile route. Six new trolley cars - four, 12-bench, double-truck open cars, and two 25-foot double truck closed cars were built for the new extension. Regular service between Portland and Westbrook commenced on June 30, 1892, on an every-fifteen minutes schedule and a 15-cent fare. 

In preparation for the Westbrook electrification, four
double-truck open trolley cars were
built during 1892 in PRR's own Bennett Street carhouse
shop on Munjoy Hill for use specifically in Westbrook.
Seen here is No. 77, one of the four open cars built in 1892.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
 O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_36_040

     A small wooden carhouse was built on Main Street in Westbrook, however, most of the trolley cars that operated on the route were kept in the Bennett Street carhouse on Munjoy Hill. Electrification of the tracks from Monument Square to Munjoy Hill wouldn't take place for three more years. This meant that the electric trolleys that were kept in the Bennett Street carhouse, for use on the Westbrook line, would be towed by horses to and from the carhouse to Monument Square each day.

For three years, prior to electrification of the Munjoy Hill
area, horses were used to tow electric trolley cars each day
for use on the Westbrook line from the Bennett
Street carhouse to Monument Square.
O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957.

     1892 - End of June, the PRR utilized a total of 20.54 miles of single-track. Rolling stock included; sixty-four passenger cars and four gravel cars. Of the passenger cars, sixteen were electric. PRR still owned 225 horses. Further electrification of the PRR lines would not take place until 1895 and would not be completed until 1896.

12-bench Open No 77 was built in 1892 in the Portland
Railroad shops for the Westbrook line. Seen here with a
former open horsecar as a trailer circa 1892.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_36_055 

     1894 - New construction included an extension from Lunt's Corner down Ocean Avenue to the East Deering post office (.65 miles) and various other upgrades or turnouts added to other sections of the city line.

     1895 - Electrification of the remaining city lines began in April. About ten miles of track was upgraded to 90-lb girder rail in order to handle the heavier electric trolley cars. Elsewhere, 56-lb "T" rail was laid. Ties were set on two-foot, six-inch centers, the track was ballasted with clean, sharp gravel and paved with granite blocks. A new steam plant was built on Forest Avenue near the foot of Kennebec Street. An extension was constructed from Fort Allen Park through Morning Street to Congress Street and down Congress to connect with the track at Atlantic Street, forming a loop. The Stroudwater line had some adjustments made prior to electrification as well. Rails were laid westerly on St. John Street from Railroad Square to Portland Street (Park Avenue), under the Maine Central Railroad's overhead bridge and along Portland Street to the connection of the existing line at Portland and Congress Streets.


The layout of the power plant on the corner of Forest Avenue
and Marginal Way.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_074

Inside the "new" steam power plant on Forest Avenue
near the foot of Kennebec Street.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_073

     October 16th, 1895, at 8:29 p.m., Car 105, a single-truck closed trolley car, left Beckett Street carhouse, down Congress Street to the head of Exchange Street, returning to the carhouse visa Morning Street and Fort Allen Park.  A few minutes later, Car 108, also a single-truck closed trolley car, pulled out of the carhouse and traveled to Union Station, then on to Stroudwater, back through the Spring Street line and Grand Trunk Station loop before returning to Munjoy Hill.

PRR No. 103 (sister car to No. 105 & 108) was built in 1895
by J. G. Brill Company, Philadelphia, PA. Motormen would
operate in vestibules open to all elements and temperatures
for another ten years.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_35_019

PRR No. 104 (sister car to No. 105 & 108) was built in 1895
by J. G. Brill Company, Philadelphia, PA. Vestibules were not
enclosed until 1905. Here at Fort Allen Park.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_024

     Regular operation of trolley cars over the Congress Street and Stroudwater lines commenced on October 24, 1895, after the City Council approved the schedules. Routes as of December 31, 1895, included; Congress Street, Stroudwater, Spring Street-Grand Trunk Station, Deering, Ocean Avenue, and Westbrook lines. The electrification of the Ocean Avenue line did not happen until April 1896, following its extension from East Deering post office along Washington Avenue to the northerly end of Tukey's bridge over Back Cove.

No. 113 was the first PRR trolley that came with a vestibule.
It was built in 1895 by the Wason Company, Springfield, MA
seen here at Stroudwater circa 1895.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_045

Built 1895 by the J. G. Brill Company, Philadelphia, PA,
No. 65 is seen here on St. John Street across from
Union Station circa 1897. Sadly, No. 65
was lost in the fire of the St. John Street carhouse in 1901.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_011

No. 114 on Ocean Street line circa 1900, built in 1895 by
J. G. Brill, Philadelphia, PA.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_067

     Total trackage, December 31, 1895, was 21.67 miles (single track).

     For many years the trolley cars were painted different colors according to the line (or later the division) on which they were operated. The company name was on the lower side panel (closed) & sill (open).
          *  Light green - Union Station-Munjoy Hill
          *  Blue with gold striping - Spring Street-Grand Trunk Station
          *  Red - Union Station - Grand Truck Station
          *  Red (different shade) - Stroudwater (and later South Portland)
          *  Yellow - Deering (later Yarmouth were also yellow and then changed to green)
          *  Brown (later dark green) - Westbrook (same as Saco Div. later)
About 1920, the company settled on one paint scheme for all divisions. Red body with white and blue trimming and gold leaf numerals. Roofs gray. The company name was omitted when standard colors applied.

Parlor Car - Bramhall - arrives 1896
     The double-truck parlor car trolley, "Bramhall", was built in 1896 by the J. G. Brill Company, Philadelphia, PA, and is said to have been given free to the Portland Railroad in appreciation for past and anticipated future business. Seen below, it was primarily for use by PRR officials, but it was available for charter by special parties - at an extra rate, of course. It was a handsome one, painted in shiny black with gold leaf trim and lettering, and had ornamental iron grillwork on the ends. In terior was fitted with 20 wicker chairs with plush seats, tasseled curtains at the windows, and two cupboards (for spirits) at each end. In 1916, it was rebuilt as an experimental pre-payment car and became No. 500. It was scrapped in the 1920s.

The parlor car, Bramhall, at Fort Allen shortly after arriving
in Portland in 1896.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_034

The parlor car, Bramhall.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_033

The interior of the parlor car, Bramhall.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_49_003

Major Expansion Starts in 1896
     One of the first major projects that the PRR embarked upon following electrification of the entire system was the creation of an amusement park, Riverton Park. Developed on the banks of the Presumpscot River in Deering, tracks were laid from Morrill's Corner along Forest Avenue to Riverton. The formal opening of the park was June 27, 1896. To handle the increase in riders, double track was laid on Stevens Avenue from Pleasant Avenue to Morrill's Corner, and on Pleasant Avenue, and on part of Forest Avenue, from Woodfords to the Portland city line.

Riverton Park
     Riverton Park was a photographer's paradise. An abundance of natural beauty along the Presumpscot River.  On any given summer or early fall day, thousands of visitors taking an advantage of numerous outdoor activities; canoeing, outdoor theater, bandstand entertainment, zoo, and of course the trolley ride to and from the resort.

 The casino as seen here in the background through the
pedestrian entrance had a large dining room and dancehall,
card rooms, and spacious porches for relaxing and viewing the
landscape. Photographers of the Eastern Company took many
photographs and from the glass negatives many popular
colorized postcards of the park were made.
See the example below
Courtesy Penobscot Marine Museum LB2007.1.111567

A colorized postcard most likely created from the above photo
Riverton Park opened on June 27, 1896. Regular Portland
Railroad cars left Monument Square for Riverton Park
every 15 minutes starting at 8:30 a.m. and generally, one
or more extra cars were required to handle the rush.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_072

The PRR trolley cars would enter the park and stop in front
of the casino to let passengers disembark and then to load
passengers for their return trips to any number of different
locations throughout southern Maine.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_088

One of the very early electric trolleys from Westbrook
has arrived and discharged its passengers at Riverton Park.
Bridal shower parties, card parties, and other private groups
could hire a trolley car to transport their group. The bandstand
in this image was one of the many attractions at the park.
Image from Seashore Trolley Museum Library 2015 book,
The Illustrated Atlas of Maine's Street & Electric
Railways 1863-1946

Another busy day at Riverton Park. Open trolley cars like
the ones in this image could each carry 75 passengers.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_103
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_103

The boathouse and dock area of Riverton Park.
Courtesy Penobscot Marine Museum LB2007.1.111572

Canoeing along the Presumpscot was a favorite pastime
for many of the visitors to Riverton Park.
Courtesy Penobscot Marine Museum LB2007.1.111566

Riverton Park's outdoor rustic theater could seat 2,500 guests.
Courtesy Penobscot Marine Museum LB2007.1.111558

     1897, 1898, & 1899 brought extensions to Deering and following the reconstruction of Tukey's Bridge, rail was laid on Washington Avenue from Congress Street to the northerly end of the bridge and from Lunt's corner to connect with the Allen Avenue line. The Brighton line was built and the Stevens Avenue line was extended from Highland Square to Brighton Avenue as well. These lines and extensions brought about new routes; the Ocean Avenue Belt Line (August 1, 1898), the Kite Line (October 7, 1898), North Deering Belt Line (June 10, 1899). June 30, 1899, PRR listed a total trackage of 34.89 miles.

This version of Tukey's Bridge was built during 1897/98.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_26_056

Wages  - 1900
     Electric Railways in Maine employed 941 (up from 1899) with a total payroll of $423,500.
Portland Railroad  - Daily Wage - Motorman $1.60, Machinist $1.82, Other Shop $2.25, Other Employee $1.50 (1900 $1 = $30 2018)

Acquisitions 1899 -

     Portland & Cape Elizabeth Street Railway - Electric railway service began in South Portland and Cape Elizabeth in 1895 with the Portland and Cape Elizabeth Railway and the Cape Elizabeth Street Railway. Before the year of 1895 ended, the two systems consolidated and retained the name of Portland and Cape Elizabeth Railway. The Portland Railroad took control of the Portland and Cape Elizabeth Railway in February of 1899. The line had a total of 16.43 miles of track.
As finally completed, the Portland & Cape Elizabeth Railway had four routes:
                                            * Portland-Cape Elizabeth via Meetinghouse Hill
                                            * Portland-Cape Cottage via South Portland (Ferry Village)
                                            * Portland-Willard Beach via Broadway
                                            * Portland-Cash's Corner vis Pleasantdale and Ligonia

Originally built in 1899 by the Laconia Car Company,
Laconia, NH for Westbrook, Windham & Naples Rwy,
No. 1 was used by the PRR to service the CE vis
Meetinghouse Hill route.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_002


When the PRR first took over the Portland & CE line they
made some changes to the route to the SP bridge.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_002



View of SP from Portland as the trolleys would enter
the bridge circa 1900.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_005


With the Masonic Hall in the background,  No 17 is in Legion
Square in Knightville, SP heading to Cash Corner via
Pleasantdale.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_019

At Thornton Heights, Route One, South Portland.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_36_052

No. 03 is a "Root" scraper that would be used to clear snow
from the tracks. Originally, No. 03 was an express car
for the Portland & Yarmouth Rwy. It was built in 1897.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_073


At the end of Sawyer Road, entering Front Street in the Ferry
Village section of SP  as a parade is forming.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_020


PRR freight service was used for Fort Preble armament.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_142

Willard Beach - 1896- 1898
     The Grand Casino at Willard Beach, South Portland, built by the Portland & Cape Elizabeth Railway opened on June 10, 1896. 10,000 visitors attended opening day, just two weeks before rival Riverton Park opened in Portland. The Grand Casino at Willard Beach burned down in January 1898, under suspicious circumstances. The $35,000 insurance settlement was reinvested in the Cape Cottage Park built in Cape Elizabeth.

The Grand Casino at Willard Beach.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_114


No 16 was built in 1895 for the Portland & CE Rwy
and used here for the Willard Beach line.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_002

Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_002

Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_002

Cape Cottage Park - 1898 - 1922
     The 1910 brochure, "Trolleying Around Portland Maine:, describes Cape Cottage Park; "In marked contrast to the pastoral beauty of Riverton (Park) is the rugged beauty of Cape Cottage Park, facing the sea whose restless tide constantly breaks into foam on the cliffs which form its center embattlements. Cape Cottage Park ranks as one of the foremost on the Atlantic Coast and excels them all in the grandeur of nature's settings."

Postcard of PWM

Postcard of PWM

Cape Cottage 
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_002

Postcard of PWM

The theater at Cape Cottage was very busy.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_002

The theater at Cape Cottage Park. Managed by Bartley
McCullum, a local actor, is credited with pioneering summer
stock theater in Maine. The park officially closed in 1922.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_124


Map showing the extensive area serviced by the SP Div.
Map from, O. R. Cummings book,
"Portland Railroad" Part 1, 1957.

The siding at Mount Pleasant Cemetery on Cottage Road.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_027

No. 249 built in 1911 with destination Pond Cove.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_090


The "Million Dollar Bridge" from Portland entered  the
SP community of Knightville. The former Snow Squall 
Restaurant was the carhouse.  The brick power station
is still in place as well. The storage and scrap yard for the
trolleys is seen in the background on the right.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_011

On "A" Street and then loop around the back of the carhouse
to the storage tracks.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_017

Inside the Knightville power station.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_029


No. 274 was the first trolley car to cross the new million
dollar bridge from Portland to SP - 1916
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_015


Another photo of No. 274 in Knightville 1916.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_35_006


One of the original 10-bench open cars of the Portland &
Cape Elizabeth Railway was built 1895-97 by Jones.
Filled to the brim on the million dollar bridge to SP.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_010


Power Station an "former" carhouse. The carhouse closed
May 1928.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_132


Tankers going to Portland.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_34_134

     The fifteen-mile Scarborough-Old Orchard Beach extension was approved in 1901. The line was completed and opened in July 1902. Trolley cars had to operate through Knightville (South Portland) and Pleasantdale until 1909 when a more direct route was provided by way of the then completely rebuilt Vaughn's Bridge.

14-bench No. 190 waits outside next to the PRR waiting
room in Monument Square for passengers heading to Saco.  
 Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_33_003
  
Portland Railroad map from Cash Corner (top rt.) through
Scarborough, to Main Street, Saco and OOB.
Map from 2015 NEERHS book,
"The Illustrated Atlas of Maine's Street & Electric
Railways 1863-1946."

Bound for Saco, trolley car no. 174 crosses the new Vaughn's bridge
across the Fore River between Danforth Street, Portland, and Main
Street, South Portland shortly after the newly built span was opened
in August 1909. Through trolleys were operated between Portland
and Saco during the fall, winter, and spring and between Portland
and between Old Orchard Beach in summer and trolleys like No.
174 were run the year round.
From O. R. Cummings Collection
Seashore Trolley Museum


The carhouse and power station at Dunstan Corner in
Scarborough shortly before the turnoff to OOB.
 Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_33_024

Knight's store seen here on the right near Dunstan Corner
in Scarborough.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_33_014

The 700-foot, S-shaped viaduct carried trolleys on the
OOB branch across the eastern division of the Boston &
Maine Railroad in Scarborough to Portland Avenue, 
through Milliken Mills to Old Orchard Street near the pier
on OOB. The high trestle was the only structure of its type
on the Portland system. Built in 1903, it was torn down in
1932 immediately following the abandonment of the Saco
Division.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_33_025

Top of the trestle as the trolley heads towards OOB.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_33_027

The buildings at left disappeared during the great
conflagration of August 15-16, 1907 when 17 hotels, 20
stores and 60 cottages were destroyed. Only three lives were
lost as the flames swept from building to building.
Trolleys were jammed on the weekend on August 17-18
as thousands flocked to the beach to view the ruins.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_33_037

PRR No. 173, waiting on Main Street, Saco, on the
Biddeford & Saco RR trackage circa 1903, was
destroyed by fire at Oak Hill, Scarborough, January
22, 1915. Trucks and electrical equipment salvaged 
were installed on bo. 502, which operated until 1941.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_33_022

One of the 14-bench open cars picking up passengers in
Portland on Congress Street. It will head to OOB.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_33_004

     Portland & Yarmouth Electric Railway - Chartered later in 1894, locations were obtained in 1895, but little else happened until 1897. After some lengthy legal issues (Tukey's Bridge and ROW) were resolved, construction was well underway by August. The rebuilding of Tukey's Bridge delayed the opening of the line. Operations for the full line was in place on August 18, 1898 - Portland to Grand Trunk depot in Yarmouth. Interestingly, the operation was carried out by the building contractor until January 1, 1899, when the Portland Railroad had officially taken control of the Portland & Yarmouth Electric Railway. June 30, 1900, the line had a total of 14.27 miles of track.

From Oxford Street to Washington Avenue
across Tukey's Bridge and on to Yarmouth.
Map from 2015 NEERHS book,
"The Illustrated Atlas of Maine's Street
& Electric Railways
1863-1946"

Route - From the beginning, 30-minute headway between Portland and Yarmouth, 15-minutes to Underwood Springs during summer months, afternoons and evenings. Fall, winter, and fall had 60-minute headway. Cars left Monument Square, Congress to Elm Street and Oxford Street to Washington Avenue, across Tukey's Bridge to East Deering, Veranda street, past the Marine Hospital, over Martin's Point Bridge to Falmouth, Cumberland, and Yarmouth.
     In Yarmouth, passengers could then board a Portland and Brunswick Street Railway to continue along the coast or in Brunswick, could board a trolley car for Lewiston and then on to Augusta and Waterville, etc. Eventually, an agreement was reached between the two lines and through service was provided starting in 1906.

Yarmouth Division Milage
Monument Square to:
Washington Avenue Carbarn    1.25
Veranda Street Siding               2.14
Marine Hospital Siding            2.55
Martin's Point Siding               3.25
Cemetery Siding                      4.60
Foreside                                   5.97
Underwood                              7.08
Spear's Hill                               8.78
Russel's Siding                         9.50
York Siding                             10.36
Moxey's Siding                        11.40
Yarmouth Carbarn                   12.11
Terminus - Yarmouth               12.44

Combination car No. 3 of the Portland & Yarmouth Elec.
Rwy., carried passengers and light freight and
 was later converted to a box motor express.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_26_016

J. G. Brill Co., Philadelphia, PA built Nos. 4, 5 & 6
10-bench open trolley cars in 1896 for the  P & Y Elec. Rwy.
Here No. 5 is in the Underwood Springs Park loop.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_26_038

Built 1899 by J. G. Brill Company, Philadelphia, PA,
No. 25, a 20-ft. semi-convertible, at the original carhouse.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_26_025

Original carhouse and freight shed.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_26_028

The original battery house was used as a temporary carhouse
in 1920 when the original carhouse and freight shed burned
down in 1920.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_26_029

Brick carbarn was built on Washington Avenue in
Portland in 1898 for the Portland & Yarmouth
Electric Railway.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_26_058

What remains as the repurposed Portland & Yarmouth Electric
Railway carbarn at 165 Washington Avenue in Portland.
Image Google Maps 2018

No. 2 single-truck shear snow plow was built for the
P & Y Elec. Rwy in 1898 by the Taunton Co. in NY.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_26_004

No. 1, four-wheel rotary snow plow built for the P & Y
elec. Rwy in 1899.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_26_005

J. G. Brill Co., Philadelphia, PA built Nos. 32 & 33
14-bench open trolley cars in 1900 for the  P & Y Elec. Rwy.
No 228 of the Portland Railroad was originally a 14-bench
open purchased by the Portland & Yarmouth Electric Railway.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_26_032

Underwood Springs Park - 7-18-1899 - 1907   
Built upon an underground spring that gushed forth a quarter of a million gallons of healthy water every 24 hours. Day-trippers from Portland could depart Monument Square every 30 minutes, every 15 minutes during peak times. 20 cents roundtrip. Every evening between 8  p.m. and 9 p.m., an engineer would operate the electric fountain, manipulating its controls to create a shifting rainbow of color in the water. 

Built 1897 by the J. G. Brill Company, Philadelphia, PA
for Portland & Yarmouth Electric Railway showing 
Underwood destination while sitting at the Yarmouth carhouse.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_102


Underwood Springs Park view.
J. A. Waterman Glass Plate Negative Collection
Title: Underwood Park from Casino Looking Toward Ocean

Large crowd on that hillside seating at the theater 
at Underwood Springs Park (theater burned down in 1907)
J. A. Waterman Glass Plate Negative Collection
Title: Underwood Park Shows Rustic Theater, Piano

Spring House and Gazebo at Underwood Springs Park in
Falmouth Foreside
J. A. Waterman Glass Plate Negative Collection
Title: Underwood Park, Falmouth

Gazebo with the famous Underwood Springs Park fountain
seen in the background in front of the casino.
2012 NEERHS book, "The Trolley Parks of Maine."

Casino at Underwood Springs Park (burned down in 1907)
                                      2012 NEERHS book, "The Trolley Parks of Maine."

     Westbrook, Windham & Naples Railway - Chartered originally as the Westbrook, Windham & Harrison Railway, in 1897, was authorized to build from Westbrook through the towns of Gorham, Windham, Raymond, Casco, and Otisfield to and into Naples, with the intention to extend to Harrison and possibly to North Bridgton. Construction started in September 1898, from Westbrook to Mosher's Corner in South Windham. Operations started in August 1899. The extension Raymond, Casco, and Naples never happened. The line totaled a little over five miles of track. The Gorham extension (2-miles) was planned but didn't happen until after the PRR took stock control of the Westbrook, Windham & Naples Railway (January 1901). A route from Mosher's Corner to Gorham Village opened in June 1901.

Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_001


No. 3 was one of the two original closed trolley cars built in
1899 by the American Car Company in St. Louis, MO for the
Westbrook, Windham & Naples Railway.  c 1899
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_36_051

No. 3 clearly had trouble staying on the tracks this day.
c 1899
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_36_052

No. 158 in the snow with destination sign; South Windham
via Brighton Avenue. 158 was built in 1901 by the
J. G. Brill Co., for operation on the Westbrook line of PRR.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_36_062

Central Square Gorham, ME - June 1901
J. A. Waterman Glass Plate Negative Collection

Central Square, Gorham, ME - June 1901
J. A. Waterman Glass Plate Negative Collection

A busy day in Gorham, ME as five 14-bench open trolley
cars, each with at least 75 passengers, are in line preparing to
leave Central Square.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_36_058

1903 - The Portland Railroad System
     Following the opening of the extension to Saco-Old Orchard Beach, the PRR operated 77.82 miles of route and 93.75 track miles, employed more than 500 persons; including 133 motormen and 133 conductors, and owned a total of 217 passenger trolley cars, while serving the communities of:
     * Portland
     * South Portland
     * Cape Elizabeth
     * Scarborough
     * Saco
     * Old Orchard Beach
     * Westbrook
     * Gorham
      * South Windham
      * Falmouth
      * Cumberland
      * Yarmouth

     More than 13 million passengers were carried during the year ending June 30, 1904, with revenues of $686,000. Net profit of $86,000. Stockholders shared dividends of nearly $60,000.

Operations were conducted in six divisions, each with its own superintendent, carhouses, cars, and crews:
     * St. John Street
     * Deering
     * Westbrook
     * South Portland
     * Saco Division
     * Yarmouth
     Hub of the system was Monument Square, at the junction of Congress, Preble, Middle, Federal and Elm Streets in downtown Portland. All trolley cars on all lines, both city and suburban, passed through this point. The company offices and a large waiting room were located on the westerly side of the square between Preble and Elm Streets.

1901 the PRR waiting room moved to the corner of Elm
and Congress Streets.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_133

A postcard depicts Monument Square as the hub of
the electric railway systems.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_119

A busy Monument Square
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_32_187

No 195 was built in 1902 by Brill.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_073

The interior of Nos. 194 &195.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_074

No. 196 was also built in 1902 but by Wason. No. 196
operated early in its life in the Westbrook Div.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_076

The interior of No. 196
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_079a

The interior of No. 196
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_079

As of 1900, the St John Division consisted of four routes:
                                                    * Union Station - Munjoy Hill
                                                    * Union Station - Grand Trunk Station
                                                    * Spring Street - Grand Trunk Station
                                                    * Stroudwater
     
     Schedules in 1900 for the Union Station-Munjoy Hill route called for 10-minute headway on the Congress Street run and 12-minutes on the Spring Street-Grand Trunk Station route and 30-minute service to Stroudwater. Later the headway time on the Union Station-Munjoy Hill route was dropped to six-minutes during the greater part of the day and eight-minutes the rest of the day. Spring Street went to 10-minutes.

Lincoln Park in Portland  where the trolleys would travel
along Pearl Street to and from Commercial and Congress
Streets to connect with Grand Trunk station and
Monument Square.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_35_070

     The carhouse at Congress Street and St. John Street was destroyed by fire in July 1901. Five cars were lost. Three years later a new larger carhouse and shop setup was built on St. John Street, near what is now D Street. A system of fixed stops marked by white posts was installed on Congress Street and Spring Streets in April 1906 and was gradually extended to other lines. In 1909, a starter was hired as a dispatcher at Monument Square. Previously, it had been necessary for each conductor to step into the waiting room at the square and announce his car before leaving. Open cars were put into service during winter months. The experiment did not work out.
   
The large brick carhouse and shops on St. John Street.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_040

The large brick carhouse and shops on St. John Street.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_037

      In 1910, only about 10% of the population had electricity in their homes - Early Electric Power companies’ major revenue was from lighting Main Streets, major mills/manufacturing, & Electric Railways.

Middle Street, Portland, Maine.
Postcard postmarked November 5, 1909, from PWM

Spring Street via Grand Trunk Depot open car No. 122.
Built 1896 for the PRR by Brill.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;

O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_35_074
  
A reprinted map, circa 1910, "Trolleying through the Heart
of Maine." Distributed by the Portland Railroad and the
Lewiston, Augusta, & Waterville Street Railway. PWM

     
Various trips and rates are listed in this reprinted map, circa
1910, "Trolleying through the Heart of Maine. Distributed by
the Portland Railroad and the
Lewiston, Augusta, & Waterville Street Railway. PWM

Closeup

Closeup

Closeup

Closeup

Closeup

Closeup

     December 23, 1916, Portland had its first trolley funeral cortege. An electric trolley car was chartered and conveyed the funeral party for Mrs. Ludy D.  Augustino from Washington Avenue to Hampshire and Congress streets for services at St. Peter's Church. From there, the group went to Calvary Cemetery for the burial and then rode back to Portland

1916, one-way rates. From O. R. Cummings
1957 book, Part 1, "Portland Railroad."


     Prepayment cars were brought into the division in 1914. Fifteen Birney cars were put into service in 1919. 

Built 1905 by Stephenson, Troy, NY, No. 201 on Commercial
Street probably from Stroudwater to Grand Trunk Depot.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library -
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_35_085

Commercial Street was busy with many railway and railroad
vehicles. PRR No. 197 next to No. 107 Portland Terminal 
tendee No. 826 circa 1938.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library -
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_35_087

No. 502 in front of the Grand Trunk Depot. No. 502 was the
largest and fastest car on the Portland system. Built 1915, by
Wason Manufacturing, Springfield, MA, and was used
occasionally over the Portland-Lewiston Interurban.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_35_073

     The Union Station-Grand Trunk station line was discontinued in about 1926. In 1926, the St. John division took over the Saco/OOB and the Yarmouth routes. South Portland Division was assigned to St. John in 1928. Deering and Westbrook's cars began running from St. John in 1933.

As of 1900, the Deering Division consisted of five routes:
                                                        * Morrill's Corner Line
                                                        * Riverton Park Line
                                                        * Ocean Avenue Belt Line
                                                        * Fessenden Park - Deering Highlands Line
                                                        * North Deering Belt Line

Deering Carbarn built in 1897.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_011

Behind  Deering Carbarn is a storage shed and where
cars scrapped.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_012

Inside Deering Carbarn
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_008

     Trolley cars on the Morrill's Corner line operated on 15-minute headway, while those on the Riverton line followed the same route to Morrill's and then continued out Forest Avenue to Riverton Park. 30-minute headway except in the summer, when it was 15-minutes.  Ocean Avenue Belt Line  ("Little Belt") cars ran in both directions. Also 30-minute headway on the Fessenden Park - Deering Highlands Line ("Kite Belt"). The two "Belt Lines" were basically combined to form a "figure-8" in mid-1910.  This really didn't work...so, it went back to separate belts in 1913.
     The division's longest route was the North Deering Belt Line, known as the "Big Belt." Trolley cars operated in both directions, from Monument Square, the 9-mile loop took an hour. Cars kept in Beckett Street Carhouse until the new carhouse was built on Stevens Avenue in 1908. 

On the outer edge of the Deering line at Pride's Corner.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_006

North Deering - Union Station via Bradleys - Belt Line
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library -
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_042

Passengers traveling on trolley cars heading to and returning
from the Westbrook line (South Windham, Gorham, and
Westbrook) to access parts of Portland would travel
along Brighton Avenue to Woodford Street then
to Woodford's Corner. Seen here is the intersection of
Brighton Ave. and Woodford St where 
Woodford Street is on the left of the gas station. The trolley
is stopped on Brighton Ave. where Colonial Road
connects.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_31_017

     Considerable traffic congestion in Monument Square. Various traffic pattern trials resulted in a workable plan in 1910. Traffic continued to grow and additional plans were implemented over the years, resulting in 1918, the "Little Belt, "Kit Belt", and "Big Belt" routes all being discontinued.
     Riverton Park closed in 1922. Abandonment of the Deering Division began August 17, 1932, with the North Deering Belt Line ended. Ocean Avenue Line, October 1932. April 1, 1933, the Deering carhouse was closed. Washington Avenue, 1935. Pleasant Avenue, 1936. 

As of 1901, the Westbrook Division consisted of four routes:
                                           * Portland-Westbrook via Brighton Avenue
                                           * Portland-Westbrook via Woodford's
                                           * Portland-South Windham via Brighton Avenue
                                           * Portland-Gorham via Woodfords

Westbrook Carbarn
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library -
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_30_057

     Fifteen-minute service was provided two times an hour between Portland and Westbrook via Woodfords (35 mins), and two times an hour via Brighton Avenue. One Brighton avenue car going on to South Windham (one hour) and one from Woodfords going on to Gorham (55 minutes).
     During 1918, all Westbrook Division cars were routed through Woodfords. Ridership was very heavy on the line, with extra cars put in service during high volume times during the day. Eight double-truck trailers were purchased in 1918 to help handle the heavy ridership. They were discarded in 1928.
     The Gorham and South Windham lines were abandoned early in August 1931 and the carhouse in Westbrook was closed. The Westbrook line ended in 1941.

As of 1916 - South Portland Division Consisted of six routes:
                                           * Cape Cottage via South Portland
                                           * Cape Cottage via Meeting-House Hill
                                           * South Portland Heights - Pond Cove
                                           * Cash's Corner
                                           * Ligonia
                                           * East Broadway - Willard Beach

     Shortly after taking over the South Portland and Cape Elizabeth Railway, the Portland Railroad made significant changes to improving the routes. Starting in 1901, double track was laid down High Street, through York and Park Streets to connect with Commercial Street. All SP lines, except Willard Beach, followed the new route. Saco and OOB route was also rerouted through Lincoln Square to Cash's Corner.
      As of 1907, Cape Cottage trolley cars via Ferry Village had a 20-minute headway. Meeting-House Hill, Ligonia, and Cash Corner routes were 30-minutes, and South Portland Heights and Willard Beach were one-hour. 
     Willard Beach line had the first pay-as-you-enter car (No. 132) assigned on December 14, 1916. The first one-man trolley car on the Portland Railroad system operated between Bradley's Corner and Pond cove on August 28, 1918. This was a wartime measure and was discontinued after the  1918 Armistice.
      The Willard Beach line was abandoned in 1918, though trolleys cars did stop at the entrance of Willard Street. The Cape Cottage via Ferry Village route was discontinued in 1918. A new run was established. Little by little rail was removed. Meantime, Freight switching service to the shipyards at Ferry Village was established in 1917. Spur tracks to Fort Preble and switching in the industrial plants and oil storage yards in Ferry Village. Tank cars of fuel oil were taken to the new power plant on the old dry dock site. 
     Cape Cottage theater and casino closed in 1921. The Knightville carhouse closed in 1928. Rail service ended in South Portland in summer 1940.
     
1903  Saco Division had two routes:
                                                             * Portland to Saco
                                                             * Portland to Old Orchard Beach

     During the summer months, through service to OOB was provided by passengers changing cars at Dunstan Corner in Scarborough. 30-minute headway, although on Sundays and Holidays, 15-minute was common and trips often ran in sections of two or three cars to handle heavy ridership. Winter service did 60-mins to OOB and 30-mins to Saco.

Three 14-bench open cars approach Monument Square
from Saco/Old Orchard Beach. these three open trolleys
were built in 1902 by the J. G. Brill Company,
Philadelphia, PA for the Saco Division.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_35_066

     A new bridge over the Fore River, the Vaughan's Bridge, opened in 1909. For many years, these routes were two of the most profitable routes for the PRR.
     High Tides flooded the Scarborough marshes and winter storms sometimes caused suspension of service. One winter the rotary plow from the Portland & Yarmouth line was clearing snow through Pleasantdale and its stream of snow broke two-thirds of all the glass in a large greenhouse. In general, big eight-wheel plows were used to clear the line. 
     From 1915 - 1927, this division did a fairly heavy freight service. PRR built a freight house on Alfred Street in Biddeford and a switch connected to the Atlantic Shore Railway with the Biddeford & Saco Railroad at Birch and Alfred Streets. 1917, the PRR and the ASL combined to provide service between Portland and Sanford - 43 miles. Two round trips a day. 
     Abandonment was proposed in 1928. 1929 found sharply reduced trips. Only ten trips a day on an hourly headway. Early in 1932, state highway route 1 was to be widened. That proved to be the end. April 16, 1932, was the end of service from Dunstan Corner and several days later, Thornton Heights in SP was the end of the line. Buses of the Boston & Maine Transportation Company took over the route immediately. 

Yarmouth Division

     Through service to Brunswick ended in 1919. Service between Portland Yarmouth was on a 60-minute headway in 1921. Yarmouth carhouse, substation, and freight shed, and two cars were lost to a fire in 1920. The old battery house was converted to the carhouse until the new brick carhouse was built.
     The end of the Yarmouth Division came in June 1933. Maine Central Transportation buses began operating between Portland and Brunswick. Trolleys did continue to the Marine Hospital until 1939.

Passing the Marine Hospital.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_35_066

Tidbits
     The 1920s - Difficult times for the PRR - Bad winter storm 1920/21 & 1922/23.   
     One-man operations were extended to all lines to reduce costs. Service reductions as well.
     A subway for Portland was proposed seriously by Police Chief Irving S. Watts in 1923. Chief proposed it run from Portland Street to Monument Square and would greatly reduce traffic congestion in the downtown area.  

     By 1926 the Portland Railroad was down to four Divisions:
     * St. John Street
     * South Portland
     * Deering
     * Westbrook
     
     The 1930s - Abandonment of the Gorham-South Windham, Saco-Old Orchard Beach and Yarmouth lines in 1931 reduced the Portland Railroad to a city traction system with few suburban branches.
     August 1935 trackage was abandoned on Washington Avenue. 
     September 1936 all service through Pleasant Avenue ended.
     By January 1937 the PRR was down to 37 miles of operating track, all services from the St. John Street carhouse, with the Deering carhouse used for storage and serving as headquarters for the line and track department.
     Portland Coach Company buses first arrived in 1932 to service Ocean Avenue. More streets were serviced in the coming years. The Portland Railroad started substituting buses for trolley cars in 1938.
     Yellow buses arrived and operators were trained and started servicing more of the PRR lines in April 1939. September 1939 buses took over Stroudwater and some of the South Portland/Cape Elizabeth lines.

     The 1940s - The remaining SP/CE lines converted to buses in Jun1940. Christmas Eve 1940 saw the final trolley car operate on the Union Station-Munjoy Hill line.
     Only four lines remained on January 1941. Westbrook line motorized in April. The Brighton Avenue line followed a week later, and on May 4, 1941, buses took over the on Riverton and the North Deering routes.
     The Deering carhouse was where the remaining rail vehicles were scrapped.

Cars were burned prior to salvaging the metal for scrap.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_010

In the end, only one Portland Railroad trolley body was
sold and not scrapped, No. 238. Built 1900 by Brill for the
P&YRwy, it was a semi-convertible with cross seats, was sold
to Portland Glass in 1941 for use as a workmen's shanty
and was scrapped shortly after WWll.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library;
O. R. Cummings Collection 2009_2_38_110

One surviving Portland Railroad trolley - 
     No. 615 was built for the PRR in 1920 by the Wason Manufacturing Company, Springfield, MA. In 1936, it was sold to the Biddeford & Saco Railroad and operated in the Biddeford, Saco, and Old Orchard Beach area until 1939. The body of 615 survived being scrapped when the buses
took over by becoming the track department's shanty while overhead wires and other track-related work was being done. A Seashore Trolley Museum member bought 615 when the work was complete. 615 came to the Museum in 1941.

At Thornton Heights (Route One), South Portland,
No. 615 being loaded for delivery to Saco - 1926
615 is awaiting the funding to be restored.
Courtesy Seashore Trolley Museum Library:
O. R. Cummings Collection

Portland and other Maine City Buses:
     Seashore Trolley Museum is a Mass Transit Museum and has about 70 busses and trackless trolleys too!

Three Maine Trolleys
Photo courtesy Tom Santarelli

195o Portland bus Monument Square and SP
Matt Cosgro photo


Please Consider a Donation to the Narcissus Project
to help us tell the incredible story of the Narcissus through the interpretation portion of the Narcissus Project.
Thank You

Donations made to the Narcissus Fund 816-A, during 2018 and until further notice,
 will be used for the interpretation portion of the Narcissus Project. Funds are needed for the research, development, and implementation of a comprehensive plan to tell the incredible story of the Narcissus that has taken place over more than one hundred years! 

See below for Donation options -

It starts with YOU
Your Donation Matters
Make a Donation TODAY

Please Help the Narcissus
Donations are now being raised to restore the interior of the Narcissus.

Donation Options to Help Restore the Narcissus:


The New England Electric Railway Historical Society (NEERHS)
is the 501c3 organization that owns and operates the Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, ME and the National Streetcar
The NEERHS is registered with the IRS (EIN# 01-0244457) and was incorporated in Maine in 1941.

Check or Money Order ***** should be made payable to:
New England Electric Railway Historical Society (NEERHS)
In the memo please write: Narcissus Fund 816-A
Mail to: Seashore Trolley Museum
              P. O. Box A
              Kennebunkport, ME 04046

Credit Card ***** donations can be a one-time donation or you
may choose to have a specific amount charged to your card
automatically on a monthly basis. Please contact the Museum bookkeeper, Connie, via email at finance@NEERHS.org or by phone, 207-967-2712 ext. 5.

Online Donations - may be made by using a Credit Card: 
Click Here to make an online donation through the Museum's website - When at the Donation page: Fill in donor info, etc., when at "To which fund are you donating? Scroll down to "Other" and type in: 816-A Narcissus, then continue on filling in the required information.

Click Here for PayPal - to make an online donation: you can use email: finance@NEERHS.org and in the message box write:
For Narcissus fund 816-A

Donation of Securities ***** We also accept donations of
securities. You can contact the Museum bookkeeper, Connie, via email at finance@NEERHS.org or by phone, 207-967-2712 ext. 5,
for brokerage account information for accepting donated securities.

BONUS ***** If you work for a company/corporation that will
"match" an employee's donation to an approved 501c3 non-profit,
educational, organization, please be sure to complete the necessary paperwork with your employer so that your donation is matched :)

Questions? ***** Please contact Narcissus project manager:
Phil Morse, pmorse31@gmail.com or call 207-985-9723 - cell.

Thank You :)

Thank You for our Current Funding Partners
20th Century Electric Railway Foundation - 2018 - Major Gift, 2017/2014 Matching Grants
Mass Bay RRE - 2018 Railroad Preservation Grant 
Thornton Academy (Saco, ME) - Staff & Alumni - Matching Grant Challenge 2014
* New England Electric Railway Historical Society (Kennebunkport, ME) - Member Donations
Amherst Railway Society - 2015 Heritage Grant
National Railway Historical Society - 2016 & 2015 Heritage Preservation Grants
Enterprise Holding Foundation - 2015 Community Grant
Theodore Roosevelt Association - Member Donations
John Libby Family Association and Member Donations
* The Conley Family - In Memory of Scott Libbey 2017/2016/2015
The W. S. Libbey Family - Awalt, Conley, Graf, Holman, Libbey, McAvoy, McLaughlin, Meldrum, O'Halloran, Salto, - 2017
* The Hughes Family 2017/2016/2010
New Gloucester Historical Society and Member Donations
Gray Historical Society and Member Donations
Gray Public Library Association - Pat Barter Speaker Series
Scarborough Historical Society - PRR/PLI
* IBM - Matching Employee/Retiree Donations
* Fidelity Charitable Grant - Matching Employee Donations
* Richard E. Erwin Grant - 2017/2016

The Narcissus, with interior back-lit, stained glass windows are majestic.
Make a donation today to help restore the interior of this Maine gem.
Help Theodore Roosevelt's Maine Ride get back on track! Once restored,
you will be able to ride in luxury on this National Register Treasure at
Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine.
PWM photo

Please Consider Making a Donation to the Narcissus Project. We are currently raising funds to tell the incredible story of this Maine gem.

Various News stories during the summer of 2015 about the
Narcissus and its connection to Theodore Roosevelt. TR
was a passenger on the Narcissus on August 18, 1914.


Click Here to See the list of All Previous Blog Posts - 100-Plus
Link to Libby/Libbey Family connections

Click Here - Portland Public Library Presentation - History of the Portland-Lewiston Interurban
Click Here - W. S. Libbey - The Man and His Mill
Click Here - W. S. Libbey - His 1908 Stanley Steamer K 30-hp Semi-Racer
Click Here - W. Scott Libbey's 1908 Stanley Steamer History to be Featured - July 21, 2017
Click Here - Scrapbook Celebrates the People of the Portland-Lewiston Interurban
Click Here - May 18, 1914, Newspaper Story on the Passing of PLI Builder, W. Scott Libbey
Click Here - 102nd Anniversary of the Opening of the Portland-Lewiston Interurban
Click Here - the 83rd anniversary of the Closing of the Portland-Lewiston Interurban
Click Here - Sophia, W. S. Libbey Descendant Visits the Narcissus
Click Here - LibbylLibbey Family Connection to Narcissus becomes Personal
Click Here - Ode To the Grand Old Interurban
Click Here - The Portland-Lewiston Interurban "Bouquet" is Ordered (1912)

Links to Narcissus Restoration Work:
Click Here - Ornate Leaded Stained Glass Work
Click Here - Narcissus Enters Town House Restoration Shop
Click Here - Sorting and Cleaning Materials on Interior of the Narcissus
Click Here - September 7, 2015, Restoration Report
Click Here - December 7, 2015, Restoration Report
Click Here - December 14, 2015, Restoration Report
Click Here - Beautiful Brass of the Narcissus
Click Here - December 28, 2015 Restoration Update
Click Here - January 4, 2016, Restoration Update
Click Here - Vallee Family Photos of Narcissus 1960s
Click Here - February 11, 2016, Restoration Update
Click Here - A Wooden Interurban - Restoration Info
Click Here - NRHS 2016 Heritage Grant Award to Narcissus
Click Here - Announcement of 2016 Teddy Roosevelt Days Fundraising Event for the Narcissus
Click Here - Series of Restoration Posts related to work on exterior poplar frames
Click Here - Vintage Poplar used in Narcissus restoration
Click Here - Mahogany Sash passenger windows being restored
Click Here - "A President Has Ridden in My House!" - Video of Dan Vallee
Click Here - Teddy Roosevelt Days 2016 - Weekend Event Benefits the Narcissus
Click Here - August 2016 Restoration Update
Click Here - Mid-September Restoration Update
Click Here - Theodore Roosevelt & the Narcissus: Connecting Maine Communities
Click Here - How to Make New Seats for the Narcissus?
Click Here - 2016 Summary of Research and Outreach
Click Here - 2016 Restoration Summary

The Narcissus - July 31, 2015. Make a donation today.
Help Theodore Roosevelt's Maine Ride get back on track!
Once restored, you will be able to ride in luxury on this
National Historic Treasure at
Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine.