Viewing Pittsburgh’s Trolleys and Inclines is a photographic essay covering Pittsburgh’s trolley car system that under Pittsburgh Railways Company (PRC) operated about 600 miles of trolley car lines that linked with other systems, making it possible to travel from Pittsburgh to Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, by trolley car. PRC completed the Mount Washington Tunnel in 1904, and placed in service in 1936 the Presidents’ Conference Committee (PCC) car that transformed trolley car service.
PRC purchased 666 PCC cars, making it the second largest PCC car system in the United States. As late as May 3, 1962, PRC operated thirty-six full-time trolley car routes. Following the acquisition of PRC by Port Authority Transit (PAT) in 1964, buses replaced most of the trolley car lines.
However, a change occurred, and PAT rebuilt the system into a modern light rail system.
Pittsburgh also has two operating inclines in service: the Monongahela Incline (oldest in the United States) and the Duquesne Incline (saved by residents). Most of Pittsburgh’s many inclines were served by PRC trolley car lines.
Viewing Pittsburgh’s Trolleys and Inclines documents Pittsburgh’s trolley and incline history.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR(S)
Kenneth C. Springirth, with a lifelong interest in rail transportation. Born and raised in the United States, he commuted to Drexel Institute of Technology (now Drexel University) in Philadelphia by trolley car, subway, and sometimes commuter train. His father was a trolley car motorman in Philadelphia, and his grandfather was a trolley car motorman in Washington D.C. A detailed researcher, Ken's interest in rail transportation by 2013 has culminated in writing 20 books on trolley car systems and railroads covering a variety of locations.