Thanks to Paul Butcher for sending the Hopper article, and Laurel Moriarty for the photo of converting the G&U from
    steam to electricity.

    Was the Hopedale Electric Company located in Hopedale? I don't think it was. I've never seen anything on it here,
    and I have heard that the company that made batteries for the trolleys was located in Milford. The battery
    manufacturing building later housed the Lapworth Elastic Fabric Company (which was originally in Hopedale) and
    is now the home of Grandma's Attic Moving & Storage.

    Here's a bit on this from Bob Heglund's history of trolleys in Hopedale.

                                              Milford and Hopedale Street Railway Co.

    This line received a franchise in Milford on June 19, 1890 to operated a storage battery system. The line would run
    out W. Main Street entering Hopedale on Mendon Street to Hopedale Street and ending at the intersection of
    Hopedale and Freedom streets. This would provide service to the Draper plant. Six single truck storage battery
    passenger cars were ordered from the Ellis Car Co., Amesbury, MA.

    The company began service on the 6 ½ mile long line on April 13, 1891. On April 28, 1893 the company constructed
    a building in Milford for the manufacture of storage batteries. This ultimately led to the end of operations. Another
    storage battery manufacturer brought suit against the railway for patent infringement. The resulting litigation resulted
    in the line ceasing operation on October 1, 1893.

    The information on Usher below is from an Usher genealogy site.

    EDWARD PRESTON USHER was born Nov. 19, 1851, at Lynn. He graduated from Harvard College in 1873,
    received the Degree of Master of Arts in 1875, and that of Bachelor of Laws in 1880. He practised law in Boston, and
    published, in 1886, a treatise on the " Law of Sales of Personal Property," having special reference to the law as it
    existed in Massachusetts.

    On the occasion of the dedication of the Soldiers' Monument in Lynn, Sept. 17, 1873, he delivered an original poem.
    He was a member of the Lynn School Committee for several years. He projected and built the Grafton and Upton
    Railroad, running from North Grafton to Milford, a distance of sixteen miles. He became President of this company in

    1887, and has held that position up to the present time. He was also President of the Milford and Hopedale Street
    Railway Company, and General Manager of the Hopedale Electric Company, which companies were organized to
    exploit the use of storage batteries for traction purposes. He devised a new type of cell, by which the cars were
    run successfully, and secured twelve patents there-on. This led to protracted litigation, which is still pending. From
    1873 to ^78, he was Deputy United States Marshal. He moved to Grafton, Mass., in 1888, where he has since
    resided, retaining, however, his office in Boston.

    He married, June 25, 1879, Adela Louise Payson. She was born March 31, 1852, and was the daughter of Edwin
    Payson.  

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