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Fenelon Place Elevator

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1882, 1893, 1916, J. W. Graves. 4th St. west of Bluff St.

Small inclined railroads were built in several American cities in the late nineteenth century; needless to say, almost all are now gone. This short incline was built for private use of a banker, J. K. Graves, so that he could travel from the lower town up the bluff to his home in suburbia. The first railroad was powered by steam, which was replaced in 1893 by electricity. A second inclined railroad, now destroyed, existed at the west end of Eleventh Street (from 1887 to 1927). The Fenelon Place Elevator is still in operation and is a major tourist attraction in the city.

Writing Credits

David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim


What's Nearby


David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim, "Fenelon Place Elevator", [Dubuque, Iowa], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Iowa, David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 83-84.

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