EARLY STREET RAILWAYS IN NORTHERN KENTUCKY
Several street railway companies were eventually consolidated into a single streetcar system in the Covington/Newport area.
COVINGTON STREET RAILWAY CO.
Opened 1867, merged 1882 into South Covington & Cincinnati Street Railway.
SOUTH COVINGTON & CINCINNATI STREET RAILWAY
Opened 1875 as Covington & Cincinnati Street Railway, reorganized 1876 as South Covington & Cincinnati Street Railway.
NEWPORT STREET RAILWAY
Opened 1867, merged 1883 into South Covington & Cincinnati Street Railway.
NEWPORT & DAYTON STREET RAILWAY
Opened 1871, merged 1887 into South Covington & Cincinnati Street Railway.
In 1892, the South Covington & Cincinnati Street Railway was acquired by Cincinnati Newport & Covington Railway Co., which was a holding company. In 1907, the company became a subsidiary of Columbia Gas & Electric Co., the area utility. In 1922, Cincinnati Newport & Covington Railway Co. was adopted as the operating company name. In 1944, Columbia Gas & Electric Co. sold the Cincinnati Newport & Covington Railway Co. to Allen & Co. In 1955, Allen & Co. formed American Transportation Enterprises (ATE) as a subsidiary, which owned the Cincinnati Newport & Covington Railway Co., along with other transportation properties. In 1956, the Cincinnati Newport & Covington Railway Co. was renamed Cincinnati Newport & Covington Transportation Co. And in 1972 when the Transit Authority of Northern Kentucky (TANK) was formed, ATE was retained as a management company for TANK.
HORSE CAR ROUTES
Early streetcar routes, and the companies which operated them.
EARLY BUS OPERATIONS
Between 1910 and 1912, three individuals began operating bus routes serving the Ft. Thomas and Cold Spring areas, using modified trucks. Those operations were generally unsuccessful, and in 1931, Cold Spring Bus Co. became the surviving operator of bus service in the area.
In 1915, J. W. Bentler began operating a bus line southwest to Erlanger, connecting with the Ft. Mitchell streetcar line. That line failed in 1918. But in 1922, Dixie Traction Co. began operating buses in that area. The company originally considered using trolleybuses, thus "Traction" in its name. Through service into Covington and Cincinnati began in 1925, competing with the streetcar line.
In 1929, Dixie Traction introduced two bus routes between Cincinnati and Ft. Thomas, meaning further competition to the streetcars. And during that period, several other bus companies introduced competing routes throughout the Northern Kentucky area.
The Cincinnati Newport & Covington Railway Co. first operated buses in 1936, with its first conversion from a streetcar route. And after the area was devastated by a flood in 1937, Cincinnati Newport & Covington acquired most of the competing bus companies, eliminating such competition and to have buses available to temporarily substitute for the damaged streetcar system. The last independent bus companies were Dixie Traction Co., Cold Spring Bus Co., and Black Diamond Stages. By 1940, Cincinnati Newport & Covington completed acquisition of those independent companies. Dixie Traction Co. remained a separate wholy owned subsidiary until 1955.
Always operating independently, was Newsom Bus Lines, connecting Covington with Visalia, until its demise in 1956.
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