A Brief History Of Taxis From Europe To The United States

by | Feb 10, 2014 | Transportation and Logistics

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Taxis are known around the world by different names. They are taxis, taxicabs or cabs. These vehicles have a variable reputation. Whether you take a Malden MA taxi or are riding in one in New York City, New York, your ride may be pleasurable or a subject of horror. The tenor of the experience depends upon both the company and the driver.

This has been a constant throughout history. People have complained and praised taxis and their drivers for centuries. Taxis, while not ancient have a lengthy history. It is one that began in Europe.

European Origins

The first taxis originated in Europe. They began in the 17th century. The vehicles were Hackney carriages serving London, England and Paris France. The earliest documentation provides the date of 160, but the first actual “Taxi Stand” was located in The Strand in 1636.

The Hackney continued to provide taxi service until the early 10th century. A faster vehicle for hire – the Hansom Cab, replaced it in 1834. This newer vehicle also featured the first taximeter. This mechanical clockwork device not only measured the fare but eventually led to the name of “taxicab” being attached to the vehicles that sported them. This included the first gas-powered taxis introduced in 1897.

One version says Harry Nathaniel Allen of The New York Taxicab Co, coined the phrase after he imported 600 of the latest versions – gas powered vehicles by 1907. It is an abbreviated form of their name “taximeter cabriolet”.

The Taxi Arrives in America

It was in the 19th century, after the introduction of the taximeter that taxis first arrive in the United States. Although it might be debatable about whether you could catch a Malden MA Taxi, you most certainly could find one in New York City. Samuel’s Electric Carriage and Wagon Company operated 12 electric hansom cabs from 1897 to 1898. In 1907, H.N Allen was running a fleet of 65 brightly painted gasoline taxis. By 1925, John Hertz in Chicago has the largest fleet in America and in the world.

The 1920s saw an increase in taxi cabs on the streets of cities throughout the United States. These included the famous black and yellow cabs of the Checker Cab Company. In the late 1920s and into the Depression years of the 1930s, legislation began to implement regulations on various cab companies across the States. This included the state of Massachusetts. Boston had a ceiling implemented, as did other cities. This has become a common practice in other places since including Malden MA. A taxi company, here, as elsewhere operates under state and municipal regulations.

Since its early beginnings, cabs have provided a service. In Malden MA, taxi service supplies a valuable service. Although viewed as a modern invention, its roots lie several centuries back in time, to a past where horse provided the power.

If you want a cab, contact the Metric Cab Company. We serve Medford and the surrounding area, including Malden MA. Taxis service is safe, reliable and dependable. Our clean cabs will get you to your destination on time. To get in touch, check out our website at Metric-cab.com.

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