Photo provided by the St. Clair Shores Historical Commission

Looking Back: Interurban Station 66 1/2

St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published May 13, 2023


ST. CLAIR SHORES — This train station was located at 25814 Jefferson Avenue (between Statler and Madison streets, north of 10 Mile Road) on the Shore Line Interurban Railway.

Interurban railways were widespread in North America between 1900 and 1925, particularly for passenger travel. The trains averaged 40-50 mph, much faster than a horse and carriage, which would have had to navigate on mostly unpaved roads.

The Shore Line Interurban Railway was begun in 1896 and opened for travel two years later. In 90 minutes, a passenger could travel from Detroit to Mount Clemens along Lake St. Clair, for the charge of about 30 cents. Cars could accommodate up to 64 people and made routine stops, including several in St. Clair Shores, at stations like 66 1/2.

By the late 1920s, interurban travel began to wane; the falling price of automobiles and the rising rate of wages made affording a car easier. Taxes supported the construction of more and better roads, and as privately held companies, interurbans had to support the costs of repairs and infrastructure themselves. Growth in cities also meant there was less space for the sizable train cars.

In St. Clair Shores, the franchise for the interurban expired on June 21, 1927, and the Village of St. Clair Shores did not renew it. The interurban was replaced with bus lines, and with plans to widen Jefferson Avenue for vehicular traffic, the lines were torn up, so little of the era of the electric railway remains.

To view this image and other historic photographs, please visit the digital media archive at

— Submitted by Heidi Christein, archivist, St. Clair Shores Public Library