Chicago, Ottawa and Peoria Railway

Running along the Illinois Valley between Joliet and Princeton was the Chicago, Ottawa and Peoria Railway.  It was one of the largest  interurban electric lines in the state of Illinois.  It was also unique in that it was an isolated section of the Illinois Traction System.  It was originally intended to be a part of the proposed Chicago–Peoria–Saint Louis system.
     This rail system was incorporated in 1902 as the Illinois Valley Traction Company.  It was acquired in 1904 by the Illinois Valley Railway Co.  It was acquired in 1909 by Western Railway and Light Co. as a subsidiary Chicago Chicago, Ottawa and Peoria Railway Co.  In 1913 it became a subsidiary of Illinois Traction Co.  In 1924, a subsidiary Illinois Power and Light Co. was formed to operate the railway.
     The railway was constructed in stages.  The first section was constructed in 1904 from Ladd through Peru and LaSalle to Ottawa.  An extension from Ottawa to Marseilles was completed later in 1904.  Two years later, the line was extended west from Marquette to Princeton and east from Marseilles to Seneca. Eastward construction reached Morris in 1909;  Joliet in 1912.  Here it connected with the Chicago and Joliet Electric Railway.  A branch to Streator was built in 1908.
     In 1924, the cars were modernized from wood to lightweight steel coaches.  The line was predominately a passenger service with little freight.  Beginning in the late 1920’s to the 1930’s there was a gradual discontinuation of service.
     Service Joliet–Morris discontinued 1934.
     Service Morris–Seneca discontinued 1934.
     Service Seneca–Marseilles discontinued 1934
     Service Marseilles–Spring Valley discontinued 1934
     Service Spring Valley–Ladd discontinued 1924
     Service Spring Valley–Depue discontinued 1934
     Service DePue–Princeton discontinued 1929
     Service Ottawa–Streator discontinued 1929.


Illinois Valley Interurban

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