Smugtown video study guide Study Guide Main Smugtown Video



  1. Should we limit the use of cars and bring back an interurban rail transportation system? What are the pros and cons of a public transportation system?
  2. How well does the RTS serve your and your family's transportation needs? (Include going to school, going to work, going shopping, visiting family and friends, etc.) How does public transportation impact people's lives and job opportunities?
  3. In 1888 the car drivers who were members of the Knights of Labor tried to reduce the number of hours they worked each day from twelve to ten. They settled on a workday of 11.5 hours. Do you think they won or lost their struggle? Explain.
  4. The streetcar company fired many drivers in 1889. What do you think happens to workers when they lose their jobs?


  1. Based on what you have learned, describe how the interurban rail transportation system came about. Explain why it disappeared.
  2. Compare 1905 streetcar ridership of 49 million with RTS bus ridership today. (Consider increases in Rochester's population). In an essay describe and interpret the differences.
  3. Calculate the annual cost of operating a car including (a) monthly car payments, (b) auto insurance, (c) registration, inspection and license fees, (d) fuel (...miles/year x ... miles/gallon x $......../gallon), (e) maintenance and repair, (f) parking. How many hours would you have to work at the minimum wage ($5.15/hour) to earn enough to operate the car for one year? Is dependence on private, personal transportation economical? What are the advantages and disadvantages of relying on public transportation?






Map/Guide, # 24
K. H. Schaeffer, Access for All: Transportation and Urban Growth. (1980)