Transportation, Rockford, Illinois


Transportation, Rockford, Illinois


A collection of postcards and photographs related to railroads, bicycles, automobiles, airplanes and boats in Rockford, Illinois between 1880 and 1970.





Collection Items

Pioneer Train Engine
The Pioneer, built in 1837, was the first train locomotive to operate in Chicago. It was used by the Galena and Chicago Union railroad which later became the Chicago and Northwestern Railway. It became a work locomotive laying track for the Chicago,…

Rockford and Interurban Car Barn
Streetcar fleet for the Rockford and Interurban Railway Company. The car barn is located south on Kishwaukee Street.

Rockford Street Railway
An early Rockford Street Railway trolley exiting the car barn on Kishwaukee Street. It is being pulled by two mules.

Train Engine
A train engine in front of an unidentified depot. A delivery wagon pulled by mules is near the train.

Rockford and Interurban Service
Rockford and Interurban Railway Company trolley. The company provided passenger and freight service 1880 - 1936.

Illinois Central Crossing Gate
Illinois Central Railroad crossing on Seminary Street. Automated gates were introduced in the 1930s to protect cars and pedestrians. Crossing warning signs were not standardized until 1949. Originally wooden crossing gates blocked the entire…

Interurban Travel in Winter
An Interurban car operating with tall snow piled along the tracks.

Rockford and Interurban Railway Car #703
Rockford Interurban rail car, numbered 703. Closed cars had odd numbers and open cars were assigned even numbers.

CM&G Depot
A group of people waiting at the Chicago, Milwaukee, and Gary (CM&G) Railroad depot at 808 Seventh Street in Rockford.

Train Wreck
A train wreck with locomotive number 430

Railroad Office
The interior of an office at the Chicago, Milwaukee and Gary Railroad (C M & G) depot located at 808 Seventh Street.

Northwestern Railroad Crossing
Northwestern Railroad crossing on South Main Street using crossing gates for safety.

CB&Q Railroad Depot
Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad Company (C B & Q) Depot located on South Main Street near Pine Street. It was built circa 1894.

Trolley on the State Street Bridge
State Street Bridge, looking west. In the foreground is a Rockford and Interurban Railway trolley.

The end of Harlem, Illinois Rail Service
The last train through the Harlem Station, Harlem, Illinois. The Patterson Company grain elevator is in the background.

Harlem Train Depot
The Harlem, Illinois train depot in the snow.

CB&Q Depot
A depot for the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad (CB&Q) which was created in Aurora, Illinois, 1855. Another depot building was a Camp Grant in 1917.

Illinois Central Depot
Illinois Central Railroad depot tower possibly near Kent Creek, Rockford, Illinois.

Railroad Gauntlet
A railroad locomotive rounding a curve. In the foreground is a gauntlet track indicated by the second set of rails inside the outer rails. A gauntlet track is used where space is limited. Two sets of rails run parallel to each other on the same rail…

Railroad Bridge
A railroad bridge over a river. Possible an Illinois Central Railroad bridge.

Railroad Bridge
A railroad bridge over the Rock River, possibly for the Illinois Central Railroad. View of the Rock River from Bremer Street.

Chicago Northwestern Railroad Steam Engine
Rockford; Chicago Northwestern Railroad Class R-1 steam locomotive #1146 Whyte system 4-6-0 Ten Wheeler, (4 wheel pilot truck, 6 drivers, no trailing truck) The building behind the engine is the C&NW, Rockford Engine House or Roundhouse.

Interurban Car Barn
Rockford Interurban and Railway Company car barn with trolleys and a maintenance car sitting on the tracks.

Chicago, Rockford Northern Railroad
First train on the Chicago, Rockford, Northern Railroad that later became CB&Q. During the 1860s and 1870s prominent Rockford citizens worked to bring new railroad companies to Rockford to break the monopoly of the Galena and Chicago Union. A…

Building Track for the Illinois Central Railroad
Building tracks for the Illinois Central Railroad.

Building Track for the Illinois Central Railroad
Building tracks for the Illinois Central Railroad.

Illinois Central Track Building
Men building tracks for the Illinois Central Railroad at the viaduct on South Winnebago Street. The house at right is facing South Winnebago Street on property adjacent to Robert Tinker's cottage.

Illinois Central Train Wreck
Train wreck in Illinois Central railroad yards. A car carrying corn kernels is split open.

Rockford and Interurban Railway Car # 717
Rockford and Interurban Railway car number 717.

Chicago and Northwestern passenger Depot
Chicago & Northwestern Railroad passenger depot located at Main and Cedar Streets. There were two Chicago & Northwestern passenger depots located on Rockford's west side and two depots on Rockford's east side. These depots were at Fourth Avenue ad…

Shriners Riding the Rockford and Interurban Railway
Shriners on a Rockford and Interurban Railway Company streetcar, number 115. The streetcar is near the Rockford Bill Posting Company, located at 115 North Main Street in Rockford. Railcar number 115 was smaller than most of the cars, seeing less…

Trolley Car After a Fire
Photo of trolley after a fire.

Rockford and Interurban Rail Car
Rockford and Interurban Railway Company car crossing a bridge.

Rockford and Interurban Railway Car #603
Rockford and Interurban Railway Company, car number 603, labelled "Harlem". The tracks are on a dirt road. The interurban company provided transportation for 600,000 people annually to Belvidere, Beloit, Janesville and Freeport. Interurban service…

Harlem Village Train Wreck
Harlem Village train wreck. About ten trains per day served Harlem Village by transporting mail, freight and passengers. Train service ended May 3, 1937. The woman at left may be Erma Taylor. The Taylor family were farmers and founders of Harlem…

East State Street Trolley Tracks
Trolley tracks on East State Street, near 9th Street, for the Rockford and Interurban Railway Company. Rockford Street Railway began operation in 1880 with horse pulled cars, changing to electricity in the early 1890s. The company expanded its city…

Ice Wagon
An ice wagon advertising "Excursion Penitentiary-Chicago Drainage Canal - $2.00 round trip." The Ice house was on the river bank. The wagon is full of ice and the two men are wearing large metal tongs.

Horse Drawn Carriage
Two unidentified children and a dog are in a carriage outside of a grocery store advertising Coca Cola.

Wilcox Family Outing
Two children in a horse drawn buggy. Identified as Wesley (age 6) and Raymond (age 4) Wilcox, children of uncle and father of Marion Wilcox Eklund, all Rockford natives. The buggy has an advertising umbrella to provide shade.

Adams Express at the Opera House
Liveried drivers in two horse drawn delivery wagons in front of the Opera House. One wagon is an Adams Express wagon, for the national shipping company.

Horse Drawn Buggy
Two unidentified men and a horse drawn buggy.

Rockford Fire Engine
Horse drawn fire engine with steamer in Rockford, Illinois. The horses are wearing heavy neck yokes to help pull the weight of the engine.

Work Wagon
Junk men with horse-drawn cart picking up old newspapers

Betts Family Outing
Horse named Morgan is pulling a surrey with "Ma" Edith Betts driving, Mrs. lena Bentley, Eddie Bentley, Joe Stevens and his mother Belle Stevens. The picture was taken at 1328 North Church Street, Rockford, Illinois.

Riding horseback
Man dressed as a cowboy on bucking horse with men and horses in the background. Boys standing on the ground are wearing suits. It is possible that this is Wild West Show.

Horse Drawn Buggy
Man in a horse drawn, two wheeled buggy.

Horse Drawn Sleds
Horse pulled sleds on a busy city street on a cold winter day.

Riding Horseback
Lucy E. Waldo on horseback.

Horse Drawn Buggy
Man in a horse drawn two wheeled buggy.

Fly Net
Horse drawn carriage. The horse has a fly net over its back as part of its tack. The fly net was used to keep flies off the horse and was used on horses pulling vehicles.
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