Beautifully engraved antique stock certificate from the Boynton Bicycle Electric Railway Company dating back to the 1890's. This document, which has been signed by the company President, was printed by Hosford & Sons Eng. & Ptg. Co. and measures approximately 10 3/4" (w) by 7" (h).
This certificate's unique vignette features the company's hanging rail car system. The piece also features a bold underprint of the same type rail car on an elevated support system.
Very rare piece. Seldomly scene.
Eben Moody Boynton (who has signed this piece as the company President) was an entrepreneur and inventor in the 1880's and 1890's. Though railroads had already been in common use for nearly 60 years at that time, experiments with their efficiency were still ongoing. It was Boynton’s idea to reduce the loads carried by traditional tracks laid on the ground by placing one track on the ground and another track overhead, resembling a monorail but with two tracks instead of one. Boynton claimed such an arrangement would enable trains to run at the unheard-of speed of 60 miles per hour.
An experimental locomotive and trainset, as well as tracks, were constructed in the Coney Island grasslands. Critics dubbed Boynton’s creation the “Flying Billboard” since the loco and passenger cars were only four feet wide. His train did exceed 60 mph, but he was never able to obtain enough backing to expand. Rails from the experimental railroad later replaced those on the nearby Sea Beach line (today’s N train).
The inventor is remembered by Boynton Place, which reportedly is in the train’s old right-of-way.