Jun 26 2013

The “Automobile Stages” of Long Island

At a time when only William K. Vanderbilt, Jr. could afford an automobile, William Miller proposed in 1900 a solution for travel between villages on Long Island- the Long Island Traction Company.


Howard Kroplick



As reported in the December 27, 1900 issue of The New York Times, Miller's "automobile stage" resembled a trolley car was operated by steam and ran on pneumatic tires. He was hoping to run the "automobile stages" from Jamaica to Freeport.

Long Island Traction Company Flyer-1901

This flyer was prepared by Miller to sell his "rapid transit system" to the Town of Hempstead.

PDF of Long Island Traction Flyer


Jun 27 2013 Ariejan Bos 3:09 AM

It appears that this is a similar omnibus as the steam omnibus produced by the New York Motor Vehicle Co, who showed this omnibus at the automobile show in Madison Square Garden at the end of 1900 (see Horseless Age Vol.7 No.6 p.37 and 38). It is unclear if this omnibus was already in actual service by then. Anyway, the company was apparently looking for more interest in the neighbourhood. Around the turn of the century the number of plans for motorized public transport grew often faster than reality could cope with. Many plans failed because of political, technical or whatever reason. So I’m interested if mr. Miller did succeed? In the Netherlands public transport with motorized vehicles in rural areas was successful only after WW1 (in which success the T Ford had a major role, by the way)!

Jun 30 2013 Bob McMulkin 7:11 AM

There was a traction system in Northport and one in Port Jefferson to Patchogue also

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