Photo of the Day: The Intercity Monorail that Never Was

A year after the Minnesota Zoo monorail ceased operation, we look back at another short monorail in Dakota County that was a prototype for grander plans that never materialized.

" 1,260 foot demonstration line was built in South Park, Dakota County, Minnesota, in 1888" Photo: MNHS

“A 1,260 foot demonstration line was built in South Park section of South St. Paul, Dakota County, Minnesota, in 1888” Photo: MNHS

Enos Electric Railway Company of St. Paul, an excerpt from Larwence A. Martin’s Railroads in Minnesota page. Check it out for more fascinating history.

“Businessmen sought a franchise from St. Paul in 1887 to build an overhead monorail railroad to Minneapolis. … The franchise was granted in 1888 … [despite the] discovery of an attempted bribe of a St. Paul city council member by a member of the investor group. The investor group never formally accepted the franchise and the company appears to have disbanded by 1889.”

For more photos like this, check out the fascinating wormhole known as the Minnesota Historical Society Collections Online. There, you’ll find a photo of a vehicle on this test track packed with people.

Matt Steele

About Matt Steele

Matt's passion is fostering resiliency in local transportation and land use decisions. He's at @matthewsteele.