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  • Writer's pictureTim Burke

Gilded Age Cincinnati by Map

Updated: May 20, 2019

Cincinnati in 1900

(Each map can be expanded nicely on a touch screens making street names clearly visible)


Cincinnati of 1870 was much smaller (less than 7 square miles) than the Cincinnati of the present. The city's western boundary was along the Mill Creek. The northern neighborhoods of the city included the Over-The -Rhine, Pendleton and to the northeast Mount Adams. The eastern edge of the city extended to the vicinity of Kemper Road.

Cincinnati in 1870


On the map below ( Cincinnati 1901) you will find a city that has almost tripled in size. To the west, Cincinnati has expanded well beyond the Mill Creek adding Price Hill and Fairmount. To the north, parts of Northside, Clifton and Mt. Auburn became part of Cincinnati while to the northeast Walnut Hills was added extending the city's boundaries to Hyde Park.


The Cincinnati Traction Company was the consolidated street car system that existed from 1910-1925. With more than 220 miles of track organized into 42 routes the Cincinnati streetcar system existed until 1951 when it was permanently closed.


On the map below notice the three major railroads extending Cincinnati's commercial reach deep into the South. Additionally another major rail line ran through Cincinnati on an east /west axis.

Railroads Circa 1900

Three railroads extended Cincinnati's commercial reach deep into the South: the Southern Railroad ( Cincinnati & Southern), the L & N Railroad ( Louisville & Nashville) and C & O (Chesapeake & Ohio). Additionally the B & O (Baltimore & Ohio) ran through Cincinnati on an east /west axis.

Cincinnati actually built its own railroad stretching more than 300 mile to the Chattanooga. In 1869 Cincinnatians voted to authorize the issuance of $10 million in bonds to build the rail line to access raw materials for its growing industrial base and to send its manufactured goods to the region. Completed in 1880 it was, and remains today the only major rail line (337 miles) owned by a municipality in the US. Throughout its history the Cincinnati & Southern was leased to larger railroads and is currently part of the Norfolk Southern system with an estimated average of 50 trains a day using its track with the revenue generated from its lease dedicated to city infrastructure projects.

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