Brazil is divided into 23 states, three territories and a federal district. This arrangement has prevailed through most of the tram era, although borders have changed slightly, Mato Grosso state was recently divided into two states, and new states have been created out of former territories. The federal district - and the nation's capital - was moved from Rio de Janeiro to Brasília in 1960. Tram systems existed in 19 of the 23 states: 16 states and the federal district had electric systems. The majority of the tram systems were in the southern states, but most of the state capitals in the north had at least an animal-powered system, and many of these were later electrified. As far as the author knows there were no street railways in the states of Acre, Goiás or Rondônia, in the area occupied by the new state of Mato Grosso do Sul, nor in any of the territories.

The following pages contain individual descriptions, maps and photographs of each of the tram systems, arranged geographically by state, approximately from north to south, from Amazonas and Pará down the Atlantic coast. In each state the capital city is discussed first. For locations, see map of Brazil overleaf. There is an alphabetical index of cities and states in Part 9.

Obviously, a book which discusses a hundred tram systems cannot provide extensive detail for each system. The individual descriptions, therefore, concentrate on what the author considers essential facts: opening and closing dates, system length, track gauge, company name(s), rolling stock. Descriptions of several mule lines, where not all this information is known, are brief. Even when a system is well known the reader will not find much space devoted to corporate history, finances, franchise dates, plans for new lines, jitney competition and the fact that trams deteriorated with age - which the author considers irrelevant or obvious. In the text "o.n." = tram order number(s). In the photograph captions "pc" = postcard; "coll." = collection; "AM" = the author.

The maps show the electric tram systems at their maximum extent, although not all tram routes necessarily operated at the same time. They also show mule and steam tramways and railroads, which in many cases have also disappeared. Only principal streets are named and, because many have four or five words, names are often abbreviated. When they have changed, the modern name is used. The neighborhoods indicated on the maps are names of tram routes; therefore there are no lists of tram routes. "P.r.w." = private right-of-way. Asterisks (*) show location of carbarns, where known. North is squarely at the top of every map in this book.

Documentation for the individual histories and maps can be found in the Bibliographies for Each City, Part 8. Footnotes in the text refer to sources not on these lists, to other pages in the book and to works in the General Bibliography, Part 7. Documentation from Part 8 is not repeated in the footnotes, for this would have meant a footnote after virtually every sentence in the book. Some of the titles in the General Bibliography that are cited frequently are abbreviated:

BFC = Brazil-Ferro-Carril. Rio de Janeiro, 1910-50.

IBGE = Brazil. Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatística. Anuário Estatístico do Brasil, 1912-59. Rio de Janeiro, 1917-60.

Petrobrás = "Bonde: uma Saudade ou uma Solução?" Petrobrás (Rio de Janeiro), 1977/4, 22-29.

Stiel, Brasil = Stiel, Waldemar Corrêa. História do Transporte Urbano no Brasil. Brasília, 1984.

WSFR = U.S. Bureau of Foreign & Domestic Commerce. World Survey of Foreign Railways. Washington, 1933.


The descriptions of individual tram systems are grouped by state. See index of cities on the: