Central Electric 
Railfans' Association

Upcoming Events

    • Friday, May 25, 2018
    • 7:00 PM - 10:00 PM
    • University Center 525 S. State St. Chicago, IL


    May at CERA


    Presented by William Shapotkin

    Friday, May 25, 2018, at 7 p.m.

    University Center

    Loop River Room

    525 S. State Street, Chicago, IL

    (Located between Congress Parkway and Harrison St.)

    The Loop River Room is located on the second floor. After entering the lobby, go through the glass doors on your left for stair and elevator access to the area. Doors open at 6 p.m.

    Over the years at CERA we have been treated to numerous presentations on city car operations of the CSL (Chicago) and TMER&L (Milwaukee). Almost forgotten is that city car services existed in several smaller cities along Lake Michigan between Chicago and Milwaukee. Tonight we will take a look at one such city -- Racine, Wisconsin. We will follow the routes of the various horse (and later electric) carlines to see where they operated and who they served during their all-too-brief period of operation. Additionally we will take a brief look at the "other" railroads serving the Belle City -- the C&NW, CMStP&P and CNS&M.

    Following our trip behind the “Cheddar Curtain" we will take a look at the "other" Illinois Central suburban rail operation out of Chicago. While the IC famously electrified its Mainline to Matteson (subsequently extended to University Park) and its Blue Island and South Chicago branches in 1926, one suburban operation remained in operation under steam for nearly five more years. Operating out of Central Station, the IC continued a limited suburban service west to the town of Addison, IL until June of 1931. Often referred to as the "Addison Man," the train made its daily trek westward, serving such communities as Addison, Elmhurst, Hillside and Maywood. The service operating in virtual obscurity...so much so that of all but one the available photos of this train which will be seen tonight were taken from the camera of one man -- Al Johnson.

    We invite you to join us for a trip on these two all-but-forgotten rail operations as historian William Shapotkin once again "slides" us into the past from the present.

Past Events

Friday, April 27, 2018 A Fifty-Year Transit Retrospective
Friday, February 23, 2018 Relive Recent CTA History
Friday, January 26, 2018 Relive CERA History: CERA Fan Trips From 1938 - 1962
Friday, December 22, 2017 On Electric! The Milwaukee Electric Railway & Light Company Part 2
Friday, November 24, 2017 Vintage Chicago Traction
Friday, October 27, 2017 Frankfurters! The Electric Railways of Frankfurt am Main
Friday, September 22, 2017 The Red Arrow Lines
Friday, June 23, 2017 Traction Along the Fox River
Friday, May 26, 2017 The Laurel Line
Friday, April 28, 2017 Modern Light Rail and Streetcar Systems
Friday, March 24, 2017 "Totem" Across the Cities: A Review of Electric Transit in the Pacific Northwest
Friday, February 24, 2017 Milwaukee Traction in the 1950s
Sunday, February 19, 2017 Cubs "L" Photo Special
Friday, January 27, 2017 Tribute to the North Shore Line
Friday, December 23, 2016 Pittsburgh Railways Interurbans 1960 - 2015 Presented by Richard Aaron
Friday, November 25, 2016 The Lake Street "L" presented by Bruce Moffat
Friday, October 28, 2016 A Tour of the Milwaukee Electric’s Milwaukee Northern and Milwaukee-Racine-Kenosha Divisions By Thomas J. Jervan and Scott Greig
Friday, September 23, 2016 Midwest Traction Review Part 2 and Southern California Transit Review by Harvey Laner
Friday, June 24, 2016 Kansas City Public Service, Los Angeles Transit Lines, Chicago ‘L in the 40’s, 50’s, 60’s Films
Friday, May 27, 2016 Railroad and Interurban Advertising Posters From the 1920's Insull Era
Friday, April 22, 2016 Traction Properties of Northern Indiana
Friday, March 25, 2016 The Trolley Came Back!
Friday, February 26, 2016 Are You HUNGARY For Streetcars? CZECH out this CERA Program!
Friday, January 22, 2016 NOTICE OF ANNUAL MEETING
Friday, January 22, 2016 North Shore Line: A Visit to Highwood
Friday, November 27, 2015 The Lehigh Valley Transit Company
Friday, October 23, 2015 Canada 1958
Friday, September 25, 2015 21st Century Movies, etc.
Friday, May 22, 2015 Craig Allen Cleve - "The Green Hornet Streetcar Disaster"
Friday, April 24, 2015 Slide Presentation of San Francisco’s F-Line by Peter Ehrlich

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Central Electric Railfans' Association is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.  P.O. Box 503, Chicago, IL  60690

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