Chicago Surface Lines, Destination Division/Austin, Chicago, IL - Birney Safety Car
In 1921, the Chicago Surface Lines took delivery of ten single-truck, double-end, single-door Birney Safety Cars, equipped with two trolley poles. These six cars were numbered 2000 through 2005 and were intended for the underlying company, Chicago Railways. They were the first modern one-man cars to operate in the city and were assigned to lightly traveled lines. But even in light service, they were considered unsatisfactory due to the bumpy ride.
A complete list of the routes the Birney cars operated is impossible to find, as there is little photographic evidence from this era. They were known to operate on the West Division Street branch, 71st Street, 87th Street and likely on Noble Street and the West Pershing Road shuttle. The cars were repainted in the standard CSL red and cream colors, but were taken out of service upon the arrival of newer, sturdier cars and probably never ran again. They all went to scrap in early 1937.
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