Brian J. Cudahy's books include Around Manhattan Island: And Other Maritime Tales of New York and A Century of Subways: Celebrating 100 Years of New York's Underground Railways (both Fordham). He lives in Bluffton, SC.
A lively, descriptive historical sketch of the evolution of public
transit in the North American city. Beginning with the stagecoach
in the 1820s, horsecars, electric streetcars, els, subways, buses,
and contemporary light-rail trolley systems are surveyed in turn.
The writing is fast paced, well supported by dozens of appropriate
photographs, and imbued with the zeal of a true transportation
aficionado. Cudahy's book, however, cannot be regarded as a work of
serious historical scholarship. No attempt is made to link this
overview with the rich historical literature on the physical growth
of the metropolis and with the new societies that emerged in new
transit corridors. The author, once a philosophy professor, works
for the US Department of Transportation. Although the book is only
a marginal contribution to the field of urban history, it is
recommended for enthusiasts and general readers. * -Choice *
"Written by a transportation expert, who knows how to bring his reader aboard, conduct a tour, and finally discharge all passengers safely, somewhere between history and nostalgia." * -The Hudson Valley Regional Review *