Website owned and operated by the:
Rail City Historical Museum
162 Stanley Drive
Sandy Creek, NY 13145
Robert J Groman, Owner/Curator
Electric rail cars operated in Rochester, NY from 1927 to 1956. When the subway neared
completion in 1927, agreements were reached for the New York State Railways to operate the
system. On February 4, 1928 the Rochester, Lockport and Buffalo interurbans began using
the subway. On April 15, 1928 the Rochester and Syracuse cars began using the line. And
the Rochester and Geneva line began using the line on October 1, 1928. The use of the
subway by interurban cars one of the reasons the system was built. But it was short lived as
all of the interurban lines were abandoned by June 28, 1931.
In 1938 the Rochester Transit Corporation (RTC) began operating the subway and
surface lines. Surface lines in the city of Rochester were abandoned in 1941 and the last
streetcar ran in the city on April 1, 1941. The 8 1/4 mile subway lost money consistently from
1938 and the Rochester Transit Corporation finally won its plea for abandonment in the mid
1950's. The last day of service was June 30, 1956.
"The first steam-operating railroad museum in the U.S.A."
Through the efforts of the Rochester Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society,
one of the 12 cars was requested to be donated to Rail City Museum. It was the only
Rochester Transit Corporation car saved from the scrap heap.
RTC car #2010 was built in 1925. From 1939 to 1956 it operated on the RTC subway
system. Prior to 1939, it belonged to the Mohawk-Little Falls division of the New York
State Railways. It was 55 feet long and weighed 27 tons.
One of the RTC trolleys does a 'run by' on a portion of a surface line of the Rochester subway system in early
1956. Dr. Groman and his wife, Doreen, are passengers. [RCHM Collection.]
RTC street car #2010 on display at Rail City Museum in 1967. Behind car #2010 is the Lake Erie and Northern
car #797. A portion of the water tower from Lowville, NY is to the right. On the left is part of locomotive No. 11
from the Bath and Hammondsport Railroad. [Kodachrome slide taken by Stanley Groman, RCHM Collection.]
While enroute to Rail City Museum on October 11, 1956, the flat-bed trailer carrying
RTC car #2010 buckled under the weight of the streetcar. It occurred during rush hour traffic
on a railroad spur of the New York Central Railroad at a crossing in Ridge Road East between
Hollenbeck Street and Clinton Avenue North. Road and rail traffic was blocked for several
hours. Unfortunately for Dr. Groman, incidences like this would occur all to frequently while
moving equipment to Rail City Museum.
In addition to car #2010 from the Rochester Transit Corporation, Dr. Groman
acquired two other antique streetcars from Rochester, NY to display at his Rail City
Museum. The two cars were owned by the Rochester Museum of Arts and Sciences but
were collecting dust in storage sheds at Edgerton Park. At the urging of the Rochester
Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society, the two cars were loaned to Rail City as
their storage shed was scheduled to be razed and the equipment would have become
An 1890 vintage, horse-drawn, Toonerville Trolley, in mint condition, is loaded for delivery to Rail City
Museum on April 24, 1956. The horse-drawn streetcar was the center of attention in a 1934 centennial
celebration in Rochester, NY. Dr. Groman, second from the right, was on hand to observe and assist with the
loading of the car. [RCHM Collection.]