streetcar


street·car

noun \ˈstrēt-ˌkär\

: a vehicle that travels on streets on metal tracks and that is used for carrying passengers

Full Definition of STREETCAR

:  a vehicle on rails used primarily for transporting passengers and typically operating on city streets

Illustration of STREETCAR

First Known Use of STREETCAR

1860

streetcar

noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Passenger-carrying vehicle that runs on rails laid in city streets. Streetcars in the 1830s were pulled by horses. Electric motors later supplied the power, with electricity transmitted by a trolley from overhead electric lines. From the 1890s to the 1940s, streetcars were widely used in cities around the world; they were gradually replaced by the automobile, the bus, and the subway, and by the 1950s few remained. A variant, the cable car, invented in 1873 for use on San Francisco's steep hills, is drawn by a continuous cable set in a slot between the tracks.

Variants of STREETCAR

streetcar or trolley car

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