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Take a Bike Ride and Explore the Old Streetcar Routes

Tomorrow evening they’ll have 70+ neighbors/Richmonders riding the path of the Forest Hill and Hull St streetcar lines of the past.

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May is bike month and members of Bike/Walk RVA will be leading a bike tour through the neighborhood.
Tomorrow evening (Wednesday, May 22nd 6PM) we’ll have 70+ neighbors/Richmonders riding the path of the Forest Hill and Hull St streetcar lines of the past. The bikers will be following this route: https://www.strava.com/routes/3218365762708715504
And stopping half a dozen times to learn southside history and highlights of Richmond’s streetcar network.
Feel free to join and/or share the event with your neighbors:

The picture above from an unknown source is from the RTD Archives.

Trolley at Forest Hill Park, circa 1910. Standing at left of the trolley in the dark suit is Richmond businessman T. J. Cousins. In 1889, the property that would become Forest Hill Park was sold to the Southside Land and Improvement Company, and became a terminus for the Forest Hill trolley, part of one of the first successful trolley systems in the United States. To attract passengers to the countryside, the residence on the property was converted into a trolley terminus and an elaborate amusement park was built on the grounds, complete with carousel, roller coaster, fun house, dance hall, penny arcade, and golf course. The park also included a bath house, swimming area, and boat lake. The park remained a popular Richmond attraction until it closed in 1932 due to the economic constraints of the Great Depression.

If you’re interested in seeing some great pictures of Richmond from the eyes of a streetcar operator find a copy of  From A Richmond Streetcar Life Through the Lens of Harris Stilson.

In the 1900s Harris Stilson worked as a streetcar operator. His camera never left his side. He was constantly capturing the daily minutiae of Richmonders simply living. Looking at his photos is the closest you can come to a time machine. Harris’ great-granddaughter, Kitty Snow went through his collection and published the book.

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.