Snippets of Bay Village History: Walking the interurban tracks, 1941

The family walks east along the old interurban railway and through the vineyards toward the Daviders' houses on Bradley Road.

On the David Foote farm, west of Bradley and Lake roads, the Lake Shore Electric Railway laid tracks for the interurban service that connected cities from Cleveland to Detroit. In 1897, the trolleys were up and running. By May 1938 the interurban was bankrupt and ceased operation.

Some residents, whose properties adjoined the tracks, had the opportunity to purchase track footage. I lived on the south side of Lake Road, 500 feet west of Bradley Road. My dad purchased 500 feet of track with our 100-foot lot in the middle. My dad said it was his "buffer against the world."

One winter day in 1941, Dad took his three girls, Kay, Gay and Barbara, for a walk on the tracks. Looking east down the tracks from our lot, we could see the four Davider houses on Bradley Road and their back fields. The Daviders, part of our German community, grew berries and kept a fruit orchard and grape vineyards. Looking west down the tracks we saw nothing but woods to the county line.

On the north side there was a line of oak trees with our Lake Road houses scattered among them. Mr. Bailes came in and built a sawmill near Eagle Cliff. He had a contract to cut wood for the shipyard. I remember hearing the sawmill while growing up. Today, this area of land is part of Huntington Woods.

kay laughlin

I am a historian for the Bay Village Historical Society. Member and Past President of the society. Lived in the village since 1936.

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Volume 7, Issue 6, Posted 9:52 AM, 03.17.2015