Transportation & Communication
Kane County, Illinois
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Transportation and Surrounding Settlements had a great impact on Kane County, hence their inclusion here.
Water Ways of Northern Illinois
I & M Canal (Includes History of Chicago Land)
Indian Trails &
A plank road was started to connect St. Charles with Sycamore. It ran from Main Street west to 8th Street where a toll gate was located, then it followed what is now Dean Street. It continued three miles west of town where it ended, some miles short of Sycamore. Heavy wagon traffic caused the road to fall apart and was torn out some eight years later, a failure.
Lincoln Highway (Route 31 N. Aurora) - part of historic transcontinental highway
Stage Coach Lines
Early Public Transportation
1840 circa - Weekly, Frink & Walker, stage coach ran from Chicago to McCarty's Mill (East Aurora) and on to Galena.
1849 - 1860 Branch rail road operated in St. Charles.
1880 - Great Western Railroad in St. Charles
St. Charles - The Galena and Chicago Union Railroad offered to lay tracks through St. Charles but the City Fathers declined wanting highway traffic for business. This caused many business' to fail. Elgin raised the money for the railroad allowing Elgin to expand.
The Chicago and Northwestern Railroad ran through Geneva and Aurora won the Burlington Railroad. St. Charles eventually got a branch line of the Chicago Northwestern from Geneva.
Electric railways and the automobile came in the late 1800s. Electric trolleys connected every community between Aurora and Elgin, and from Aurora and Elgin to nearby counties. The street car line connecting Aurora & Elgin came to St. Charles in 1896. The line went down main street turning north on 5th Ave (Hwy25) and south along 3rd Street - to Anderson Blvd in Geneva.
The old bridge on Main Street in St. Charles collapsed under the weight of the street car in 1902 causing much excitement.
About 1908 a new line was under construction connecting Woodstock to Sycamore. Construction was to begin linking Elgin to Lake Geneva, Wisconsin and the resorts.
The A.E. & C. Railway company bought the Aurora-Elgin Line, the Belvidere line and the Aurora, Elgin & Chicago third rail. Trains left every hour for Chicago, with the trip taking 1 hour and 25 minutes.
Today train service runs from Aurora to Chicago; Geneva to Chicago & Elgin to Chicago. A bus runs between Carpentersville and Aurora. Many of the abandoned rail lines have been converted to beautiful bike paths.
Aurora Municipal Airport - near Montgomery - general aviation
DuPage Airport is just east of the St. Charles border.- general aviation
Several private grass strips
O'Hare International Airport - Chicago
Midway Airport - Chicago
Trolley - Yorkville to Carpentersville
Electric Interurban - Aurora-Kaneville-Maple Park-De Kalb; Aurora-Plainfield-Joliet
Burlington Railroad - Aurora
Source Kane County History, Joslyn & Joslyn, 1908, Reflections of St. Charles by Ruth Seen Pearson 1976, personal knowledge.
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Last Updated 4-Nov-1999 KaneCoIL@aol.com