May 22, 2019


Trolley's on Fayette Street, and a Death

Trolley’s on Fayette Street and a Death


by Brian Coll

       We are down to our final few days of taking orders at the pre order price of $120 for the set of Conshohocken & West Conshohocken books… call us at 610-825-7072 and order yours…..


          Trolley cars operated in Conshohocken for forty years and made for a delightful scene as the cars rolled along Fayette Street. But… on January 3rd, 1914 just after 7 a.m. a trolley car came down Fayette Street at a high rate of speed. The trolley tracks turned from Fayette Street on East Hector Street but the trolley jumped the tracks and continued on down Fayette Street. (Fayette Street looked a little different then, actually a lot different back then) At the scene of the crash, the motorman had been decapitated and eight other residents were seriously injured.

        A Fayette Street grocer Patrick Leary rushed to the scene outside his store and covered the decapitated motorman with his store apron. It was a cold bitter day that, many residents talked about until the day they died.

          Read about this and many other trolley mishaps that made the 40 year trolley scene on Fayette Street not so delightful and find out what the trolley cars had to do with modern day Fayette Street.

        Here are more details about the books, this is about book one:

In Volume One of “Conshohocken & West Conshohocken—People, Places and Stories” are the following chapters:


INDUSTRY —————–There Was A Time

RESIDENTS—————–All Good People

FEMALES——————–Prominent Ladies About Town

TROLLEY’S——————They Looked Good, But

SPRING MILL—————They Had Their Own Village

HOUSES———————-It’s Pretty Interesting


FAMILY BUSINESSES——So You Think You Had It Rough

CORNER STORES (Part One)—– You Might Remember Some Of These

WEST CONSHY————What A Great Story

POLICE———————–Short And Sweet

SCOUTS———————-They Deserve A Chapter

EVENTS———————-Way Too Many To Mention

The Industry Chapter will have lots of photographs and will touch-on many of the long-gone and long-forgotten factories the town was built-on. Current residents, parents and grandparents likely worked at one or more of these factories.

The Residents chapter is also a chapter of photographs while the Females chapter gives a brief history of some of the more prominent women that have lived in the two boroughs.

The Trolley’s chapter gives a detailed history of the trolley cars that ran in Conshohocken along Fayette and Hector Streets from 1894 until 1933, while trolley cars running up and down a tree lined Fayette Street sounds very charming, the trolley story is and was far from charming.

The Spring Mill Chapter covers a little bit on the far end of Hector Street, Barren Hill and the section in-between where Lee Park and the Spring Mill Fire Company now stand.

We couldn’t write about every House in the borough so we picked out some of the different sections in town and talked about the time of their construction in an attempt to give all the residents an idea as to when their house might have been built, it really is a pretty interesting chapter.

That brings us to the Murder/Mystery and Scandal chapter of the book. Every town has had a good scandal and Conshohocken is no different, it a sad story. The Murder stories in Conshohocken are many, we picked a few out that dominated the headlines back in the day.  The mystery tag in the title “Murder, Mystery and Scandal refers to the many sink-holes or cave-ins that have taken place in the borough over the years and makes me wonder do we really have an underground river flowing through the middle of the borough.

Family Businesses and Corner Stores just might be my favorite part of the book. These stories will inspire you and make you take a look at what Conshohocken really is all about. Conshohocken has always been about the residents and there is no better way to tell that story than to recall some of the corner stores and family owned businesses.

West Conshohocken is always a good story but in this chapter a heartwarming story by a former resident who grew up at Front and Ford streets recalls her childhood memories and will take you back to a great era these two boroughs shared.

The Police chapter is a short chapter made up of mostly photographs, Conshohocken has a long police department history, one that was written in “Remembering Conshohocken and West Conshohocken.” Residents of the borough are very blessed that we get to brag about living in one of the safest boroughs in the state of Pennsylvania.

The Scouts chapter is also a very short chapter due to lack of photographs but over the years the boroughs scouting programs have worked extremely hard for our children and should be included in the history memoirs of our borough.

Events and Celebrations The book highlights quite a few of these events and celebrations with photographs as recently as 2016 showing off highlights from the St. Patty’s Day Parade, to the car shows and parades. The chapters also looks back on events like St. Mary’s Church feast and SS Cosmas & Damien 100th, and final feast in 2013.

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