The Pacific Electric Railroad was once the most extensive electric Interurban globally with 1,100 miles of electrified track over four counties; now, all that remains is 88 miles of light-rail track in Los Angeles. Why was the P.E. important to our local history, and who even cares about some old trains? This paper intends to link the development of "Greater Los Angeles" with the Pacific Electric and its predecessor companies. Great men who have left their lasting mark like Henry Huntington, Edward Harriman, Isais Hellman, and "General" Moses Sherman did so by using a combination of land speculation, utility development, and privately owned transit companies to lure millions of migrants to Southern California.

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