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To produce the needed power either substations were built or it was purchased directly from energy companies.

While most interurbans were small, local operations this was not always the case.

The Panic of 1903 ended this fervor but it reignited again between 19 when another 4,000 miles were built.

Once more, a financial setback, the Panic of 1907, ended investment although afterwards another great construction period did not materialize.

Much of the trackage was situated east of the Mississippi River as the interurban offered flexibility and affordability for the everyday commuter.

It is rather amazing so much capital was expended on these operations, which struggled to make a profit right from the start.

As interubans expanded they did indeed initially prove popular offering quick service, multiple schedules daily (the large Illinois Traction system, for instance, was dispatching 106 trains out of Springfield, Illinois everyday by 1906), and with fares only a few cents each way.As these technologies found their way to the United States the first examples appeared in the 1880's; in 1880 Thomas Edison tested an experimental electric locomotive, powered by a dynamo, which was operated on a stretch of track in Menlo Park, New Jersey. George Hilton and John Due's authoritative piece, "," points out the birth of the true American interurban began when Frank Sprague developed an electric motorcar in 1886 for the New York Elevated Railway whereby the motor(s) were situated between the axle, along with a trolley pole and multiple-unit control stand.This gave way to the typical streetcar which became such a common sight throughout America.Visually, the interurban was classic Americana as a car sped along a grass-covered right-of-way with its trolley pole extended high.While postdating the industry, one the great depictions of interurban right-of-way is illustrated in Trains Magazine's October, 1993 issue under a segment entitled, "" (Page 57).