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History General

Streetcars of St. John's

by (author) Kenneth G. Pieroway

foreword by Patrick Kennedy

Flanker Press
Initial publish date
Sep 2018
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2018
    List Price
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2018
    List Price

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Streetcars of St. John’s is a photographic “then and now” celebration of the former St. John’s Street Railway on the 60th anniversary of its closing.

For the first half of the twentieth century, the most easterly city in North America had a public transportation system that was on par with those found in Toronto, Chicago, Boston, and San Francisco. From 1900 to 1948, the streetcars of the Reid Newfoundland Company and, later, Newfoundland Light and Power, travelled along narrow-gauge rails on some of the oldest streets to be found anywhere. From the famous cobblestones of Water Street to Duckworth Street, Military and Queens Road, and powered by electricity from nearby Petty Harbour, residents could avail of the most modern form of inner-city transport of the day.

The reader is taken on a trip back in time to the St. John’s of not quite so long ago when the roads were shared with automobiles, horse and buggies, and the famous trolley cars. From the crossroads in the west end to the shops of Water Street, the steps of the Newfoundland Hotel and the ice cream parlours of Rawlins Cross, this visual journey around the city is simply breathtaking and bound to rekindle memories for many readers. For the younger generations, it will be an opportunity to see how life used to be and how St. John’s looked in their parents’ and grandparents’ day.

The black and white photographs supplied by The Rooms, the City of St. John’s, Memorial University, Newfoundland Power, and others are contrasted with modern-day colour retakes by the author of the same scene as it now exists. When compared side by side, it is fascinating to see just how much St. John’s has changed in the past hundred years and yet, in so many ways, remained the same.

About the authors

Kenneth G. Pieroway was born in Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador, and grew up in the rural outports of Colinet and Harricott. He obtained his B.S.W. from Memorial University of Newfoundland and retired from a full and rewarding career with Veterans Affairs Canada. His passion for trains and all things rail-related was inspired by his father at a very young age. Whenever possible, he still rides and photographs them at every opportunity, having travelled by rail across Canada twice on the legendary Canadian, as well as across the US and Europe numerous times. Always wanting to be a writer, he authored the national award–winning Rails Across the Rock in 2013, which was quickly followed up by its sequel, Rails Around the Rock, a year later. In 2019, as an homage to his mom, Ken released Streetcars of St. John’s, published by Flanker Press. Trains of Newfoundland is his fourth publication on Newfoundland’s transportation history, a tribute to his dad for giving him a lifelong fascination and hobby. The proud father of two, Kenneth now resides in Conception Bay South with his wife and international rail travelling companion of thirty-three years, Michelle.

Kenneth G. Pieroway's profile page

Patrick Kennedy's profile page

Other titles by Kenneth G. Pieroway