Sunday, May 14, 2006

The Trolley Information Booth

Located at the corner of Eugene O'Neil Avenue and Golden Street, the last of New London's trolley booths performs a vital role in the city's bustling tourist economy. The booth originally served the Cedar Grove Cemetery, way out on Broad Street on the Waterford border. It was moved to a corner just past the train station in the 1980s. To be more conveniently located to parking, and at a site where automobile traffic is coming into the city rather than leaving it, the booth finally settled into its present location.

The booth was built in 1893. This year, it got a new cedar shingle roof. It is open most days from 10-5, and staffed by volunteers who pass out brouchures and give directions. Most of the volunteers have a healthy love of New London and the gift of gab. They don't mind discussing the city's history or tutoring the unindoctrinated.

Hidden on the back wall of the closet inside the information booth is a wooden plaque inscribed with pencil. It reads, in impeccable handwriting:
Relocation and rebuilding by:
JULY 1986
The little trolley booth is a work of fanciful, Victorian architechture, like many of the buildings that make up New London's streetscape. If you need to find your way in the city's maze of streets, feel free to stop by. The friendly volunteers who staff the booth will be happy to see you.

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