Books on the North Shore

These are the books that I have acquired over the last year. Being a bit of a bibliophile, probably my number one hobby is reading books,  so I tend to buy a lot, and have a lot of books in the flat. Here is a brief overview and guide on what I have read to point people in the general direction for their own research efforts. All opinions are just that, opinions, yours may vary. Please feel free to add comments etc. This page will be updated and added to as time passes, acting a a place holder of resources on the North Shore Line.

Chicago North Shore & Milwaukee in Color Volume 1, by Geoffrey H. Doughty, published by Morning Sun Books Inc.

At its heart this is a photographic album of cool pictures of the North Shore, and it repeats a lot of information in the text, in the captions, which for me feels like a waste of space, as the author could have used it to tell me other stuff that I don't know.

However, saying that, everything one is told is well worth reading, so probably on balance it is worth being repeated.

Chicago North Shore and Milwaukee In Color Volume 2: Point of No Return, by Geoffrey H. Doughty, published by Morning Sun Books Inc.

The second volume and it again has superb pictures, well printed, but in this case takes the story of the North Shore through to its final abandonment by the management.

These two volumes are my go-to books for the North Shore, because the captions are copious, and the the books cover the period I want to model. So a win-win scenario as far as I am concerned.

Days of the North Shore, by George V. Campbell, published by National Bus Trader.

This book is a labour of love. I found it a bit of a labour to read. The paper quality lets the image reproduction down, and the content is largely anecdotal in nature. In some ways it annoys me, because it just jumps from one story to the next. On the other hand it has nuggets of golden information that make it all worthwhile.

Interurban Trains to Chicago, by John Kelly, published by Iconografix.

A photo album that has a nice selection of black & white shots of the North Shore, South Shore and the Chicago Aurora & Elgin.

Interurbans to Milwaukee published by Chicago Electric Railfans' Association #106.

I think it would be fair to say that this and its companion volume on the North Shore published by CERA  are highly regarded. One can see why, as they are chock full of juicy information and details about this interurban.

However, I think they have not aged well, and the layout of the information leaves a lot to be desired, and yes I know these were done by amateurs, but the presentation is chronologically muddled.

North Shore America's Fastest Interurban, by William D. Middleton, published by Golden West Books.

Considered by many to be the finest proponent of American traction I can say that I enjoy his books for what they are. Photographic essays on his passion. For many people this would be one of their top books, but to me it lacks the meat to truly make it the outstanding one volume must have. Partly due to the print quality, and partly due to the structure of the history presented. Still recommended though.

North Shore Line Interurban Freight, by Edward M. DeRouin, published by Pixels Publishing under their Midwestern Rails Series.

The print quality is poor, the pictures suffer, but by golly this is a great book to have. It maybe doesn't have everything one would want to know about freight operations on the North Shore, but until that book comes out, this one will do. Can't recommend it highly enough. if a second edition was to come out that addressed the colour balance issues and general print copy I would buy another copy just on that basis alone.

North Shore South Shore, by Russ Porter, published by Heimburger House Publishing Company.

A collection of very nice quality colour photographs of the North and South Shore railroads.

Route of the Electroliners, published by Chicago Electric Railfans' Association #107.

This volume covers the North Shore after Insull and the Great Depression. It relies on you having the first volume to understand some of the developments, yet repeats other bits of information, and a few pictures, which is annoying. The print quality of these two volumes is poor, which lets down the pictures.

It seems to me that a revised combine edition of this work could be a real opportunity to bring the North Shore history up to date and remind people of the loss of this once great interurban to the transport infrastructure of Chicago.

The Insull Chicago Interurbans in Color, by Gordon E. Lloyd, published by Morning Sun.

Completes the set of Morning Sun books that feature the North Shore, and also covering the other two Insull owned interurbans. Lots of very nice colour pictures abound, which are really useful to someone like me who wants to model the Chicago area.