.

Over the last hundred years, the "L" has been shaped and affected by the minds and efforts of many men (and women). Some of these unsung heroes have been ignored by historians and forgotten by many railfans, but presented here are the individuals without whom, for better or worse, the "L" would not be the marvel it is today.


Britton I. Budd

Britton Budd was Samuel Insull's right-hand-man who oversaw his companies' daily operations and led them in critical modernization and public relations programs. A serious man with a good head for transportation administration, Budd was responsible for many of the "L"'s most famous and popular programs.

Samuel Insull

Insull was a powerful traction and utilities magnate in the early-to-mid 20th century. The owner of the Commonwealth Edison Company, Insull used his considerable wealth to keep Chicago transit solvent and operating as head of the Chicago Elevated Railways Collateral Trust, Chicago Rapid Transit Company and many of Chicago's interurbans.

George Krambles

A transit professional, historian and enthusiast, Krambles started as a student worker for the CRT and rose to be Executive Director of the CTA®, the last to have been promoted through the ranks. Krambles was responsible for many of the "L"'s most famous publicity and modernization programs, with the effects of his efforts still seen in the "L" and CTA® today.

Charles Tyson Yerkes

Charles Yerkes was a powerful banking and transit magnate in the late 19th century. A shrewd, if not ruthless businessman, Yerkes controlled many of Chicago's street railways interests and eventually owned the Lake Street, Metropolitan West Side, Northwestern and Union Loop Elevateds, being a driving force behind the construction of the latter two.