Category Archives: Transportation

Springfield traffic rules, 1903

Springfield officials enacted the city’s first ordinance regulating automobiles in 1903, only three years after motorcars were introduced to the city. The rules went into effect on Dec. 3, 1903. The ordinance set a speed limit of 12 miles per … Continue reading

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Last Springfield street car, 1938 (photos)

The last Springfield street car ran on the North Fifth Street route the evening of Jan. 1, 1938, leaving city streets thereafter to automobiles and Springfield Transportation Co. buses. The North Fifth street car went from Fifth and Monroe streets … Continue reading

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Mail robbery, 1923, ‘most daring ever’

Ten men eventually went to prison for a 1923 mail robbery the Illinois State Journal called “the most daring ever staged in this city.” The gang struck at 1:20 a.m. April 1, 1923, at the Chicago & Alton railway station … Continue reading

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Streetcar robberies, 1922

A rash of streetcar stickups culminated in 1922 with the shootings, one fatal, of two car operators. A.D. Mackie, general manager of the Springfield Consolidated Railway Co., responded to the first shooting by offering a reward for apprehension of the … Continue reading

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Seven children die in car/train accident, 1928

Seven young people – six siblings and a cousin – were killed on June 5, 1928, when the car they were in drove in front of a southbound Interurban train near Auburn. The car was traveling west on Divernon Road. … Continue reading

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‘Deadman’s Crossing,’ 16th Street and Sangamon Avenue

The railroad intersection at 16th Street and Sangamon Avenue earned the nickname “Deadman’s Crossing” in the years before an underpass was built to route traffic below the train tracks. At least 16 people were killed at the crossing between 1903 … Continue reading

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First automobile in Springfield

The first automobile in Springfield was a Duryea purchased by shoe shop owners J.F. Miller and E.E. Staley. It hit Springfield streets in the spring of 1900. The Illinois State Register published a brief item on April 16, 1900: J.F. … Continue reading

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Springfield street name changes

One might think that names chosen for streets would remain the same indefinitely unless the name causes confusion or the street was physically removed.  Both circumstances have occurred over the years in Springfield. While the city of Springfield generally discouraged … Continue reading

Posted in Local government, Springfield, Transportation | 4 Comments

Zoo Park

Zoo Park was an ambitious, but short-lived amusement park set on nearly 200 acres of land off Eighth Street Road north of the Illinois State Fairgrounds. Early ideas for the park included not only a zoo, but also a mile-long … Continue reading

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Riddle Hill

Riddle Hill got its name in 1899, when farmers and other residents west of Springfield expected a proposed Springfield-to-Jacksonville electric railway to boost land prices in the area. The Illinois State Journal announced the creation of a new Riddle Hill … Continue reading

Posted in Communities, Prominent figures, Transportation | 2 Comments