Side A: The first railroad to operate west of the Allegheny Mountains was Toledo’s colorful “Erie and Kalamazoo.” Begun in 1832, the line was completed by 1836. Its rails were made of oak topped with thin iron strips. Horses pulled small railcars the 30 miles between Toledo and Adrian, Michigan. In July, 1837, a steam locomotive replaced the horses.
Side B: From the Erie and Kalamazoo’s simple beginning, Toledo’s great rail system developed. By 1900 thirteen railroad companies operated from Toledo’s terminal and port facilities, making it the third largest rail center in the United States. Numerous passenger trains, and thousands of railcars carrying agricultural products, raw materials, and manufactured goods from all over the country, arrived and departed daily.