Midwest Electric Railway

Midwest Electric Railway has several streetcars that operate on the Old Threshers grounds. Among these are two open-air cars No.1779 and 1718 which were built in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1911. They operated in that city until 1965 when they became part of a group of cars that came to the US. The design of these cars is called a Narragansett style after a type developed by the Brill Company of Philadelphia. The interior woodwork is constructed of a Brazilian hardwood called Peroba de Camp. The cars joined the Old Threshers collection in 1970 and 1973.

Streetcar No. 9 was originally built for the Albia Interurban line in 1910 and can carry 36 passengers. It was moved to the Old Threshers grounds in 1968 and has operated during the annual Reunion every year since.

The most recently restored car is the Chicago, Aurora and Elgin Interurban car No. 320. One of a group of wooden interurban cars built, this 52 passenger car is 48 feet long, 8 feet wide and capable of speeds in excess of 80 miles per hour. This car was built by the Jewett Car Company in 1914 and operated between Chicago, Aurora and Elgin, Illinois, from 1914 thru 1961. It has been on display and in service at Old Threshers since 1968.

In the spring of 2002, Ameren UE (formerly Union Electric Company) of Keokuk donated a motor flat car No. 1100 to Midwest Old Threshers. This car worked at the Keokuk Dam for the hydroelectric plant and served the plants needs for an amazing 84 years. The new cab is constructed of tongue and groove wood siding, mounted on a 40-foot motorized flat car.

The Waterloo Car No. 381 carries 42 passengers and is still considered a modern car by today's standards. This car was the last streetcar to operate in Iowa, August 1, 1958. The car was donated to Old Threshers in 1971 by the city of Waterloo.

The newest car added to the collection was a Milan Italy Car No. 1945. The car was built in 1927 and was brought to the Midwest Electric Railway in 2002.

Midwest Electric Railway is always looking for a reason to take a ride on the rails. If you or a group that you know would like to take a ride on the rails. The trolleys are available for special events or group rentals. For more information please contact the Old Threshers office at 319-385-8937.