EAST ST. LOUIS TRANSIT HISTORY


PRIVATE BUS COMPANIES

ST. CLAIR COUNTY

These bus companies in 1963 were acquired by the Bi-State Development Agency. Many of these bus operations had evolved from the electric railways operating in the East St. Louis area.

Belleville-St. Louis Coach Co. - began operations in 1933, operating local service in Belleville. Replaced Blue Goose Motor Coach Co., which had replaced streetcars with buses in 1932. Originally known as Centralia-Belleville-St. Louis Coach Co., but by 1938 renamed Belleville-St. Louis Coach Co., after discontinuing a route which had extended east to Centralia. Operated east to Carlyle until 1941, when that route was sold to O'Fallon-Belleville Coach Co. Belleville-St. Louis Coach Co. tried to expand again in 1941 by acquiring a route from St. Louis to Sparta and Du Quoin from St. Clair Bus Line Co. That route had operated since 1926. But by 1945 only intercity segment was from St. Louis to Sparta, and that segment was sold in 1949 to Dixie Greyhound Lines. After then, focused on local service in Belleville, along with route into St. Louis, and route to Scott Air Force Base which was acquired in 1941. Scott Air Force Base route was begun during 1920's by Belleville-Scott Field Motor Bus Co., and from 1924 to 1931 was operated by Superior Motor Bus Co. By 1948, subsidiary Belleville Suburban Bus Lines was operating a route between Belleville and Swansea.

Caseyville Bus Line - began operations in 1942 with route from Caseyville through Collinsville to East St. Louis, and also with routes to Washington Park and Hollywood Heights. By 1952 also serving Belleville.

County Coach Co. - in 1924, St. Louis Red Bud & Chester Bus Co. began operations with route from Waterloo to Chester, initially connecting with East St. Louis Columbia & Waterloo Railway Co. interurban line. Service extended from Red Bud to Belleville in 1926. Route extended north into St. Louis after interurban railway was discontinued in 1932. Route sold in 1940 to Gulf Transport Co., and in 1944 to Belleville-Red Bud Coach Co. In 1949, Belleville-Red Bud Coach Co. acquired route from Belleville to Carlyle from O'Fallon-Belleville Coach Co., discontinued by 1956. In 1955 acquired route from Belleville to Millstadt from Baltz Motor Bus Co., which in 1920's had acquired route from Belleville-Millstadt Bus Line. By 1956, Belleville-Red Bud Coach Co. renamed to County Coach Co., operating only from Belleville to Smithton and to Millstadt. By 1962 acquired route from Belleville to Mascoutah from Baltz Motor Bus Co., which in 1931 had acquired route from from Superior Motor Bus Co. This route had begun operations in 1923.

East St. Louis City Lines - began operations in 1936, operating local service in East St. Louis, owned by National City Lines. Replaced East St. Louis Railway Co., which had replaced streetcars with buses in 1935.

Industrial Bus Lines - began operations in 1943, transporting defense workers between Lebanon and East St. Louis. By 1955 acquired routes of St. Clair Transit Lines, which had begun operations in 1942 as Millstadt Bus Lines, renamed in 1943 to Millstadt Line Bus Co., and by 1950 renamed St. Clair Transit Lines. That company served East St. Louis, Alorton, Monsanto, Maplewood, Cahokia, Centerville, Pearl Harbor.

O'Fallon-Belleville Coach Co. - began operations in 1940 between its namesake cities, acquiring route from Superior Motor Bus Co. which had begun operations in 1923. In 1941 extended service to Scott Air Force Base and Mascoutah. From 1941 to 1949 also operated route from Belleville to Carlyle, acquired from Belleville-St. Louis Coach Co. In 1949, that route was sold to Belleville-Red Bud Coach Co.

Vandalia Bus Lines - in 1925, East St. Louis & Suburban Railway Co. subsidiary Blue Goose Motor Coach Co. acquired Red Line Motor Co., which during the 1920's had introduced bus service between Collinsville and Vandalia. In 1927, Blue Goose Motor Coach Co. acquired Herzog Motor Bus Transportation Corp, which during the 1920's had introduced bus service between Edwardsville and Glen Carbon. In 1928, East St. Louis & Suburban Railway Co. interurban service between St. Louis and Collinsville was replaced with buses operated by Blue Goose Motor Coach Co. In 1932, Vandalia Bus Lines was incorporated, acquiring route between St. Louis and Vandalia from Blue Goose Motor Coach. Vandalia Bus Lines Eventually operated local bus service in Collinsville, and also acquired Davis Transportation Co. which in 1944 began operating between Collinsville and Edwardsville. After takeover of metropolitan service by Bi-State, continued to operate intercity service from St. Louis to Effingham at least into the 1970's. Vandalia Bus Lines continues to exist as charter operator, including contract operation of an Amtrak "Thruway" van between St. Louis and Carbondale.


TRANSIT ROUTES - PAST AND PRESENT

How today's bus routes the East St. Louis area evolved from the streetcar and interurban railway systems.


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