The first streetcars ran in New Orleans on April 23, 1831. Spectators looked on, not knowing just how important this transit would become to the city. Later, in the 1890s to 1920s—what is known as “The Golden Era” of streetcars—they were built and put onto growing street lines and belts across the busy city. Of course there were advances in technology that led to shuttle buses being put on the streets, which many people preferred. Private forms of transit were also becoming common, leading to the decrease of streetcar ridership by the late 1920s.
This roll was placed on the side or front of a streetcar around 1940. The rolls showed the main lines that streetcars traveled on, and they were made out of canvas material and covered to make them waterproof. The lines listed were So. Claiborne, Magazine, Napoleon, St. Claude, Desire, Canal, Gentilly, West End, City Park, Freret, Jackson, Tulane, and St. Charles. Although these are very common street and place names now, not all still hold lines for streetcars to proceed. Currently New Orleans is attempting to rebuild these forms of transportation, keeping its rich history in transportation alive.
Citation 1: 
ca. 1940
Accession #: 
gift of Robert Brewster James, 2004.0094.2
Valeria Rodriguez, student, International High School