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by Charles Lowe

N. Y. S. Rys. 1114                                                           Charles Lowe Collection

Now that we have sampled a few classic trolley cars, a question poses itself: What exactly is a Rochester streetcar: Street railways mostly owned rail vehicles but does this mean we would exclude Rochesterís Driving Park Avenue trackless trolleys? Must a Rochester streetcar be an electric car, or can we consider horsecars? Or, for that matter, must a Rochester streetcar even require a motorman? Trailer 1114, having no motors of its own, was just such a motorman-less car, but it most surely was a Rochester streetcar. Built by Kuhlman in 1913 as part of a 25-car order (1100 - 1124, shop order 559), car 1114 and the other 1100ís were intended for use on heavily traveled Rochester city car lines. These cars did not have trolley poles and were entirely reliant upon their motor cars. The 1100ís were ordered along with the motor car 1000ís (1000 - 1024, Kuhlman S.O. 558). Curiously, it would not be the 2-motor 1000ís that would pull the 1100ís, but rather the low 700ís (700 - 724), the low 800ís (800 - 814), and two 600ís (604 and 609) that would tow the 1100ís (note 1). The 47í 8" long 1100ís seated 62, the most of any Rochester car including the N. Y. S. Rys. interurban cars (note 2). With their center doors and conductor stationed nearby, the 1100ís could swallow rush hour and weekend crowds alike.

As shown here on June 30, 1936, car 1114 awaits the call to duty at East Main Station having been most recently used on the Park line. By 1936, trailer car days in Rochester were numbered. The abandonment of eleven car lines in August, 1936 seriously reduced the routes available to the 1100ís. As late as the summer of 1938, 1100ís were used on the Lake lineís "Sunshine Express" to Charlotteís Ontario Beach Park (note 3), but this appears to have been one of the last uses of trailers in Rochester. During the summer of 1939 or thereabout, the 1100ís were either sold off the property or scrapped outright (note 4).

1. King, Roster of the N. Y. S. Rys., pgs. 5, 6 and 8.

2. N. Y. S. Rys. Equipment Chart (1933), sheet 3845A.

3. Conversation with Gordon Pulleyn, ex-N. Y. S. Rys./R.T.C. motorman (badge no. 1217) on August 10, 1997.

4. William Gordon, 94 Years of Rochester Railways, Vol. 1, pg. 154 and Vol. 2, pg. 22; King, Roster..., pg. 6.

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