LOUISVILLE TRANSIT HISTORY1838 - Lexington & Ohio Railroad introduces steam powered railway service on Main Street. All streetcar lines in Louisville would be a broad 5 foot gauge.
1844 - Animal power replaces steam power on Lexington & Ohio Railroad.
1850 - Lexington & Ohio Railroad now owned by Louisville & Portland Railroad.
1864 - Louisville City Railway begins operating mule car line on Main St. and 12th St. Additional competing streetcar companies begin operation in subsequent years.
1889 - First electric streetcar line in Louisville opened on Green St., now Liberty St.
1890 - Louisville City Railway acquires all other streetcar companies, and changes name to Louisville Railway Co.
1901 - Electrification of streetcar lines completed. Louisville & Eastern Railroad opens first interurban railway in area, extending northeast to Crestwood.
1904 - Louisville & Interurban Railroad opens its first interurban line, east to Jeffersontown. Louisville & Interurban Railroad was owned by Louisville Traction Co., a holding company which also owned Louisville Railway Co. Line also opened northeast to Prospect, by electrifying a Louisville & Nashville steam railroad branch. This would be the only standard gauge interurban line in the Louisville area, with broad gauge on all other electric railways in area.
1905 - Louisville & Interurban Railroad opens interurban line southeast to Okolona.
1907 - Louisville & Eastern Railroad completes interurban line beyond Crestwood to La Grange. Louisville & Interurban Railroad opens interurban line southwest to Orell.
1908 - Louisville & Interurban Railroad opens interurban line southeast to Fern Creek.
1910 - Louisville & Eastern Railroad opens interurban line east to Shelbyville.
1911 - Louisville & Interurban Railroad acquires Louisville & Eastern Railroad.
1923 - Louisville Railway Co. forms subsidiary Kentucky Carriers Inc., which operates first bus route in Louisville on 3rd St. This route was not successful, and would be discontinued within a few months. Additional bus routes were created that year, which would be more successful.
1927 - People's Transit Co. begins operating bus route on Broadway in competition with streetcars, but is soon ordered to cease operating. Additional new bus routes created, operated directly by Louisville Railway Co. In addition, Virgil Pierce begins operating bus route on Preston St. to Camp Taylor, competing with interurban railway route which operated south to Okolona.
1928 - Kentucky Carriers bus routes transferred to Louisville Railway Co., with Kentucky Carriers subsidiary remaining only as a charter bus operator.
1931 - Interurban line to Okolona abandoned, with Virgil Pierce bus route remaining to provide local service.
1932 - Interurban line to Jeffersontown abandoned. Blue Motor Coach Co. formed, providing replacement bus service.
1933 - Interurban line to Fern Creek abandoned, replaced with bus service operated by Blue Motor Coach Co. Bus service operated into downtown Louisville, not carrying local passengers within city.
1934 - Interurban line to Shelbyville abandoned, with no direct bus replacement. Southeastern Greyhound Lines already provided service along this route, on its route between Louisville and Lexington.
1935 - Interurban line to La Grange abandoned, replacement bus service operated by Chaudoin Bus Lines. Interurban line to Prospect abandoned, replaced with Paxton Bus Line route. After World War II, Paxton Bus Line would be succeeded by Goebel's Bus Line, and later Prospect Bus Line. Interurban line to Orell also abandoned, replaced with Louisville Railway Co. bus route. Virgil Pierce bus line sold to Blue Motor Coach Co.
1936 - Walnut becomes first trolleybus route in Louisville.
1938 - Newberg Bus Line begins operation, serving Newberg and Buechel areas southeast of downtown Louisville. The line would later be sold to Buechel Bus Co., which would later extend service to General Electric's appliance factory, completed in 1951.
1945 - Chaudoin Bus Lines sold to Kentucky Bus Lines.
1948 - Last streetcars replaced with buses. Blue Motor Coach Co. introduces service between Louisville and Middletown, over objections of Southeastern Greyhound Lines, already serving Middletown along its route between Louisville and Lexington.
1951 - Trolleybuses discontinued in Louisville. Louisville Railway Co. sold to Louisville Transit Co. Blue Motor Coach Co. discontinues Middletown bus route after a court battle, leaving Southeastern Greyhound Lines as the only provider of service along this route.
1953 - Louisville Transit Co. assumes Middletown service from Southeastern Greyhound Lines, after service proved to be inadequate and unprofitable for Greyhound. The Middletown route was formed by extending its St. Matthews Express bus route.
1958 - Louisville Transit Co. acquires Buechel Bus Co.
1972 - Louisville Transit Co. acquires Kentucky Bus Lines routes.
1974 - Louisville Transit Co. becomes publicly owned Transit Authority of River City.
1976 - Transit Authority of River City acquires Blue Motor Coach Co.
1977 - Transit Authority of River City acquires Prospect Bus Line.
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