Picture 78.

This picture shows Canal Street in the process of converting from horse/mule and steam power to electric power.  It comes from a glass slide that itself appears to have been made from one side of a stereo view.  It is clearly dated June 1896.  Note the West End train on the center (fifth) track at the left foreground of the picture.  It is being powered by a steam dummy; it would be another two years before a group of double truck electric cars would arrive to replace the steam power.  There is a switch in the track ahead of the steam dummy; it will probably drop its train then take the switch and run around the train to recouple at the other end, reversing direction for its next trip.  In the center foreground, electric car 32 marked Dryades St. is following a horsecar on the outer riverbound track.  Car 32 was one of the original electric cars, numbers 1-40, built in 1895 by the Pullman Co. for the St. Charles Street RR.  The rest of the many cars in the picture also seem to be electric cars.  We see the electric tower astride the intersection of the Canal Street neutral ground with Bourbon and Carondelet Streets.  In the distance, Henry Clay's statue seems almost to float on top of its stepless base at the Royal/St. Charles intersection.  The big banner over the neutral ground advertises: “Grand Concert / Audubon Park Night / Matinee Concerts 2 to 4 / Sunday Wednesday Thursday”. — Wm. F. Booth


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