Timeline - 1905

  • February 1: Delray Terminal Railroad completes 2 mile line from Delray to the Detroit Edison Co.  Active corporation as of 1992. [MRRC]

  • February 10:  The Michigan Railroad Commission approves three interlockings in Cheboygan. All three protect the D&M main line. MCRR Tannery Spur and Paper Mill spurs are protected by half interlockers, with signals on the D&M and a gate across the crossing. The 3rd crossing, across the MCRR McArthur dock track is also protected by a swing gate, but has a signal system on a pole (with two lower quadrant semaphores) and a ground switch stand. [MSAI]

  • February 25: A street car strike affecting all parts of the Houghton County Street railway commenced just after midnight this morning.  There has been no violence by any member of the union, so far as can be ascertained, and the union disclaims any responsibility for any "molestations" that have taken place.  The trouble has arisen over the importation of outside labor by the street car company, following immediately upon an organization of a union there. [CCEN]

  • March, 1905. The Michigan Central railroad begins work to double-track their main line from Kalamazoo to Niles. [RG]
  • April 3: The Houghton County Street Railway experiences some difficulty with its Wolverine branch, owing to the tracks being greased by unknown persons. It was some time before the car coming from Woldering to Red Jacket could negotiate the trestle just below Albion. This may have been related to labor problems at the nearby Wolverine Mine. [CCEN]

  • April 15: Houghton-Hancock bridge is rammed by steamer ship which was enroute to Quincy Mining Shelter in Ripley. Bridge out of service until 1906. [SSJB][CCEN]

  • April 17: Owing to the drawbridge connecting Houghton an Hancock becoming a complete wreck, all traffic between Calumet and the Portage Lake towns is tied up. The freight traffic is absolutely at a standstill and will remain so until this evening. Several stores [in the Calumet area] are completely out of meat. [CCEN]

  • April 21: As a result of the destroyed Houghton drawbridge, a scow is being rapidly converted into a car ferry to transport cars across Portage Lake. It should be ready tomorrow and will have a capacity of two [rail] cars. The Mineral Range's Houghton yards are full and cars are being dropped off at Chassell, Baraga, L'Anse and other points down the line were sidetracks are available. There is now a congestion of 150 cars of freight for Calumet. There is n average of 50 cars of freight handled here a day, including logging trains, etc., in and out. The logging cars are being held in the woods as much as possible. A pontoon bridge which was rigged up Monday temporarily relieved the situation, the bulk of Sunday and part of Monday's shipments being brought across. The meat train was successfully run across the pontoon bridge, but stalled on the other side of the lake and the meat was loaded on boats and brought across to be reloaded for Calumet. Providing that the car ferry begins tomorrow, the Copper Country will have been without rail service for about one week. [CCEN]

  • April 21: Continued trouble on the striking Houghton County Street Railway. Two sticks of dynamite were found near the rails of the railway, wrapped up in small boughs and tied fast. While striking railway employees were parading up Hecla Street in Laurium, a gang of youths threw stone sat a passing through car. One stone entered the window of the car and struck a lady who was riding and received a severe blow across the head. Last night a similar attack occurred in Red Jacket when a car proceeding from the Mineral Range depot to Laurium was bombarded with a fusillade of stone. Windows were smashed. A deputy named Schulte was on the ar and proceeded to the vestibule, displaying his revolver. The car proceeded on its journey up the street and further trouble was avoided. On April 25th, two cars of the railway were fired upon just before midnight near Boston. No one was injured. The shots shattered the windows and some of the lead was picked up off the floor of the cars. [CCEN]

  • April 26: A petition was signed by business men of Red Jacket and Laurium declaring themselves in favor of using the cars of the Street Railway, and asking residents to do the same.  The strike has been dragging on with seemingly no means of settlement. "The corporation has no idea of acceding to the striker's wishes". [CCEN]

  • April 17: The Durand Union Depot is nearly destroyed by fire. It is rebuilt and opened on 9/25/1905. [MDOT] [MHM]

  • May 1: Detroit adopts Standard Time (no longer on Sun Time). [DWS]

  • May 2: Detroit, Toledo & Ironton RR charted as a reorganization of the Detroit Southern Railroad. [MDOT]

  • May 28: Boyne City, Gaylord & Alpena RR incorporated, takes over operations from the Boyne City & Southeastern RR. [MDY33]

  • June 21: Pere Marquette RR gains control of the Toledo Railway & Terminal Co. [PMHS]

  • June: Wyandotte Terminal Railroad opens 1.5 mile line in Wyandotte.  [MRRC]

  • July: The 20th Century Limited makes its Toledo to Elkhart run in 1 hour 52 1/2 minutes. [RG-1905-0721:17]

  • July: The Lake Shore & Michigan Southern orders removal of all facing point switches on its Buffalo-Chicago main line where possible to assume safe passage of 18-hour express trains. [RG-1905-0707:2]

  • August: The Michigan Central double track from Kalamazoo to Mattawan is completed, 12 miles in length. The old line between the same locations is abandoned. [RG-1905-0804:40]
  • August 13: As part of a statewide upgrading program, Michigan Central opens the "Miller Cut-off" between Kalamazoo and Lawton.   Amtrak now owns the segment. [MT]
  • August: MCRR will not renew their contracts with Swift and Armour companies for use of refrigerator cars. [RG-1905-0818:49]

  • After August: Marquette and Southeastern Railway adds line from Marquette to Big Bay. [MRRC]

  • September: The LSMS moves the dispatchers for their Grand Rapids division from White Pigeon to Elkhart.  At this new location, they were under closer supervision of the assistant superintendent who was located at Elkhart. [LS]

  • September. The Michigan Central announces that they will grade separate all crossings on their main line between Livernois Avenue and 15th Street in Detroit. [RG-1905-0908:79]

  • September: The LS&MS begins experimenting with concrete ties. [RG-1905-0901:194]

  • September: The Olds Motor Works exhibits a new gasoline motor car for section gangs. [RG-1905-0901:66]

  • September: The New York Central says they will abolish painting names of trains on their [passenger] cars. RG-1905-0901:65]

  • November: The Pere Marquette announces they will build a new YMCA in their Grand Rapids yard. [RG=1905-1117:1551]


  • Michigan United Railway interurban extends its tracks from Lansing to the Pine Lake resort area (Lake Lansing) - [GTWHS 08/01]

  • The Lake Shore begins buying 100 lb. rail.  Up to this time, the heaviest rail on the route was 80 lbs. with some still at 65 lbs. [LS]

  • Many of the Lake Shore's track cars have been changed from hand pump operation to gasoline operation. [LS]

  • The Lake Shore moves locomotive headlights from the top of the smoke box to the front of the boiler. [LS]

  • The Lake Shore discontinues the use of the "mail bag" as their insignia. [LS]

  • The Pere Marquette abandons their 4-mile long branch line between Charlevoix and Ironton. [GM]

  • Railroad depots in Michigan reach an all-time maximum of 1,776 buildings. [MDOT]

  • Wisconsin & Michigan Railway completes a plush resort on Miscauno Island, in the Menominee River.  The railway's patrons were housed in the elegant hotel, which had telephones, marble baths, and electric lights. 

  • Grand Trunk builds it's Spier and Rohns Mission style depot in Battle Creek, and a depot in Clarkston. [MDOT/IT-12/1974/MRP-I]

  • Detroit & Mackinac Railway. builds a line to the Black River Quarry near Black Lake. [NK]

  • Boyne City, Gaylord and Alpena railroad reaches Gaylord (date/year unknown). [MRRC]

  • Pere Marquette RR builds new shops complex at Wyoming MI. [PMHS]

  • The Michigan Central double tracks it's main line at Wayne. [MRC-11/1976]

  • The Grand Trunk Railway of Canada builds a large Richardsonian depot in Durand, designed by Spier and Rohns. The depot is destroyed the same year it opened, but was rebuilt immediately. [BOM]

  • Pere Marquette builds a new swing bridge at St. Joseph over the St. Joseph River. [COHS-2/1998]

  • Packard and Cadillac (on Cass Avenue) plants are served by the Michigan Central Belt Line railroad; congestion along that line prompts  plans for development of an outer belt line railroad. [DWS]

  • GTW electrifies the Port Huron - Sarnia tunnel, after several asphyxiations of train crews under steam operation. [MRP-I]

  • The Delray Terminal Railway is built by the Detroit Edison Company, for the purpose of bringing in coal and other supplies to their Delray plant site and South Street coal yard.  To get to the Union Belt of Detroit, the railroad line passed over the "Price Trusteeship" trackage.  The short railroad also served Fort Wayne.  [EMR4]

  • The Packard automobile plant is built in Detroit near Milwaukee Jct.  [BOM]

  • The GTW builds a new stone and brick station at Battle Creek, which serves as it’s Chicago Division general office. [MRF-2/1981]
  • The American Locomotive Company buys the Rogers Locomotive Works.  [SAM]
  • The Federal Railway Signal Company is organized by the owners of the former Standard Railroad Signal Company. The company is reorganized in 1908 as the Federal Signal Company. The plant of the Federal Signal Company is located on the New York Central Lines at Albany, NY. [RSG-1923]

 Timeline Key:

  • Railroad event in Michigan
  • Event relating to mining
  • Event related to car ferries
  • Event outside of Michigan
  • Improvement in Technology
  • Railroad built or extended
  • Railroad abandoned and/or removed
  • Economic panic or depression