The Houston North Shore Railway was chartered on June 27, 1925, as an interurban railway to connect Houston with Baytown and Goose Creek, thirty-three miles. The railway has the distinction of being the last new interurban built in the United States. Other branches were also projected to be built but only the Houston to Goose Creek line was built. The Houston North Shore was promoted by Harry K. Johnson, who built six other electric lines, to provide transportation facilities for his land development project near Highlands.
The line also served the Goose Creek oilfield and the Humble Oil and Refining Company refinery at Baytown. When completed in 1927, the Houston North Shore began handling carload freight in addition to operating electric interurbans between Union Station in Houston and Goose Creek.
Houston North Shore Railway tells the history of the railway with photographs, maps, operating schedules and equipment schematics.
When the streetcar line was discontinued in 1931, the interurban schedules ended at Market Street with connecting bus service to Union Station. In 1948 railbuses, which ran until 1960, were substituted for the electric cars. Johnson sold the Houston North Shore to the Beaumont, Sour Lake and Western on May 1, 1927. This made the interurban a subsidiary of the New Orleans, Texas and Mexico Railway Company and a part of the Missouri Pacific system. The line continued to be operated separately until it was merged into the Missouri Pacific Railroad Company on March 1, 1956.
The publisher of Houston North Shore Railway is the Central Electric Railfan’s Association (CERA) was formed 1938. The CERA encourages the study of the history, equipment, and operations of urban, suburban, interurban and main line electric railways. This book is Bulletin number 133 published by the organization. A number of those publications are available on this site. Meetings are also held monthly by the organization in Chicago, IL. More information about the CERA is available at www.cera-chicago.org/.
If you are an electric interurban railfan, you will love the Houston North Shore Railway. Add this book to your collection.