The original horse and mule powered street railway in Springfield began operation in 1879. It operated on a line connecting the Square to the Commercial Street district along Boonville, then down Benton to what was then the passenger train depot.

By 1929 the electric streetcar system covered what was then the entire city limits, giving citizens universal access to public transportation. Streetcar lines radiated in four directions from Park Central Square, creating a beehive of activity in the heart of the city.

In 1936, the Springfield Traction Company announced that the next year the electric streetcars would be replaced by gasoline powered buses. To them, it seemed “the modern thing to do.” A final streetcar parade was held on August 2nd, 1937, with people cramming into the cars for one last ride.


Note: this page is under development and will be updated as historical information is compiled.


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