On February 8, 1888, the Tacoma City Council passed Ordinance No. 188, granting Randolph Radebaugh the city’s second street railroad franchise.
Along Delin street from Pacific avenue to Wright avenue, or so much thereof as is or may hereafter be dedicated to public use; G street from Wright avenue southward to the corporate limits of the city of Tacoma.
Randolph F, Radebaugh
Radebaugh had an 80-acre homestead on Wapato Lake where he built a cottage and lived. He owned the Ledger, a weekly newspaper in Tacoma. Each day he was carried to and from his office by horse, a distance of twelve miles. At that time there were but two families living between his home and town, one was the Thomas Kenevan family and the other that of a war veteran, William H. Lang.
He interested Thomas F. Oakes, vice president of the Northern Pacific Railroad and George Browne in platting the Oakes Addition, which was the old Kenevan Farm. Later the Lang place was bought and the Hosmer Addition was made of it. Browne, Oakes and Radebaugh put in $2,000 each for the street car line, the purpose of which was to open their real estate holdings. The outlook for disposing of them was so favorable that they had no difficulty in raising the remainder of the money necessary to build the line, buy cars and a steam dummy.
Street Railroad Franchise Transfers
The Tacoma and Fern Hill Street Railroad Company was incorporated on May 24, 1888 by George Browne, Randolph F. Radebaugh, and Newman Kline, announced that it would build a street railway from the intersection of Pacific Avenue and Delin Street southerly to the Oakes Addition and then southeasterly toward Fern Hill.
Tacoma City Ordinance No. 360 tells us that Radebaugh transferred the franchise granted him in Ordinance No. 188 to the Tacoma and Fern Hill Street Railroad Company on January 9, 1889. The ordinance then states that the Tacoma and Fern Hill Street Railroad Company sold and transferred the franchise granted to Radebaugh in Ordinance No. 188 and just now granted to them, to the Tacoma and Puyallup Railroad Company on July 30, 1890. This ordinance, Ordinance No. 360 was passed on September 17, 1890 – one year and eight months after the first transfer occurred , and two months after this last transfer occurred.
The Tacoma and Fern Hill Street Railroad Company is now the Tacoma and Puyallup Railroad Company.
- Tacoma City Ordinance No. 188, Revised Charter, Amendments and Revised Ordinances of the City of Tacoma, Washington – 1898; Compiled and Revised by Authority of the City Council By Henry C. Beach Attorney at Law; (Western Blank Book Printers, Tacoma, Washington), 416-418
- Herbert Hunt, Tacoma: Its History and Its Builders, A Half Century of Activity, Vol. I (Chicago: S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1916), 416-417
- R. F. Radebaugh, Tacoma Ledger, Notable First Ride, February 27, 1916, Tacoma, Washington
- Tacoma & Fern Hill Street Railroad Company, Articles of Incorporation, May 24, 1888, Tacoma, W.T.
- Tacoma City Ordinance No. 360, Revised Charter, Amendments and Revised Ordinances of the City of Tacoma, Washington – 1898; Compiled and Revised by Authority of the City Council By Henry C. Beach Attorney at Law; (Western Blank Book Printers, Tacoma, Washington), 418-423