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Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

CLEVELAND & BEREA STREET RAILWAY CO.

CLEVELAND & BEREA STREET RAILWAY CO.

The CLEVELAND & BEREA STREET RAILWAY CO. operated the original line of track that evolved into the CLEVELAND SOUTHWESTERN & COLUMBUS RAILWAY. The local railway, began in 1884 as a horsecar line in the college town of BEREA, OH, and consisted of a 1 1/ 2-mile track from downtown Berea to the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway depot. In 1890 the line was acquired by Berea businessman ALSON H. POMEROY. Observing the rapid development of street railways in Cleveland and other cities, Pomeroy and his associate, W. D. Miller, who had operated horsecar lines in Sandusky, OH, and Mt. Clemens, MI, located additional investors, acquired the needed right-of-way, and laid rail on Rocky River Dr. from Berea to KAMM'S CORNERS (West Park), down Lorain Rd. to Cleveland's city limits at W. 98th St. There passengers connected with the Woodland Ave. & West Side St. Railway. Service officially began on 2 Oct. 1895, with 1 car making 6 roundtrips a day. The new railway had to resort to storage batteries for power, since Cleveland power companies claimed it was impossible to send electric power through the wires as far as Berea. The batteries had to be charged after each roundtrip, which took about 2 hours. This line was eventually consolidated with other local street railways into the Cleveland & Southwestern Traction Co. Through further consolidation with other railways, it became the Cleveland Southwestern & Columbus Railway Co. in 1907.


Wilcox, Max E. The Cleveland Southwestern & Columbus Railway Story (ca. 1962).