Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Rebound Period

Image Number Neg Z9.1857.PP30, Hughes Studio Photograph Collection,
Courtesy of the Prints and Photographs Division, Maryland Historical Society

The streetcar industry was not held under permanently. Although United went into bankruptcy, thanks to new leadership, they were debt free by 1935 and became the Baltimore Transit Company. The importance of streetcars was evident during World War II as the company experienced a major increase in passengers and profits. The operating income for the BTC increased thirty-three percent between 1941 and 1942. By 1945, the income of the BTC was around 1.5 million. Wartime production in Baltimore caused many shortages in products like rubber, gas, and steel all needed to produce and run automobiles. As a result people turned to public transit to travel around the city. Public transit was important during the war because a mass of defense workers moved to Baltimore and needed a stable option for travel. During the war, upwards of 50,000 workers in defense plants used streetcars. Streetcars were the only form of transportation not severely affected by the war that could hold enough people.

No comments:

Post a Comment