TRANSIT IN DETROIT - HISTORY
The Detroit City Railway Company began operating Detroit's first street railway in 1863. The original horse car route operated on Jefferson Avenue. Several other street railway companies were formed, and by 1895 all streetcar routes were electrified. And in 1901, all streetcar companies were consolidated into the Detroit United Railway.
Map shows the street railway system as of 1900, immediately before the separate companies were consolidated into one.
Map shows the streetcar system as of 1922, when it was taken over by the city.
Map shows the streetcar system as of 1932, at the time of the city takeover of the Detroit Motorbus Co. The city's Department of Street Railways meanwhile had begun creating its own bus routes.
Five years after World War II - and many streetcar routes had been converted to buses, and new bus routes had been created in the newer parts of the city.
Scanned images from one of the last Department of Street Railways route maps.