Houghton County Traction Company

“The boom years that occurred at the turn of the 19th century quickly transformed Calumet and the surrounding communities into a modern metropolis. Electric lights, paved roads, modern plumbing, and even opera houses quietly ushered in a new modern era. The coming of the trolley line in 1901 yelled it from the rooftops.

The Houghton County Traction Company started in 1900, building an interurban line between Houghton/Hancock and Boston Location. While the villages and towns across the copper country welcomed this development, the mines (most notably C&H) were adamantly opposed to them. Trolleys would allow dispersed workers from across the communities to easily travel to centralized locations – possibly even union meetings. The ugliness climaxed with C&H threatening the village of Red Jacket with cessation of water service if the trolley was allowed right-of-way on village streets. In the end however the trolley – and the progress it represented – could not be stopped. The line was fully extended to Calumet and further north to Mohawk by 1908.”