Middlesex and Somerset Traction Company stock certificate circa 1900 (New Jersey)
Great streetcar collectible. Fantastic vignette of an early electric trolley with conductor. Unissued and not cancelled. Dated 19__. Circa 1900 from company records and issued examples.
One of the most notable routes in Central Jersey was the Middlesex Car Line, which first began in 1867 with the formation of the New Brunswick City Railroad Company as a line for horse-drawn streetcars. In February 1886, he New Brunswick City Railroad Company won a lengthy court battle with the New Brunswick and Suburban Railroad Company.
But the company, unable to keep up with transportation modernization, was purchased by the Brunswick Traction Company in 1895. The lines were electrified, and extended to nearby Milltown. In 1897, the line would be further expanded to include routes to Metuchen, Piscataway and Highland Park. A year later, a line was laid down that would travel out of New Brunswick, then cross the Raritan to the river's north bank before heading to the small villages of Bound Brook, Somerville and Raritan.
Come 1900, the Brunswick Traction Company would merge with the New Brunswick City Railway and the New York & Philadelphia Traction Company, forming the Middlesex & Somerset Traction Company. They would in turn, purchase the small nearby Perth Amboy Railroad Company.
Middlesex & Somerset merged into the Elizabeth & Raritan Street Railway Company, which gave the lease on the Middlesex Car Line to the Public Service Corporation of New Jersey (PSC) in 1904. Originally, there were two separate lines from New Brunswick to Perth Amboy, with a layover in Metuchen. When the Public Service Corporation took over the route in 1904, the two lines were merged together. The 13.5 mile route became the Perth Amboy Line that year, before operations of the line were assigned to a subdivision company known as the United Street Railway Company of Central Jersey.
The Public Service Railway Company, a subsidiary of the PSC, would own and operated the line until July 1928, when the Public Service Coordinated Transport took over. The line would cease operations in two years later.