The 1902 City Speed Limit

Main Street, 1901
South side of the 700 block of Susanville’s Main Street, 1901
The City of Susanville was incorporated in 1900, and with any new institution there was a lot of foundation work to be done. Take for instance speed limits. In 1902, the city passed an ordinance for speeding, the limit set an eight miles per hour whether motorized or not. However, an automobile had yet to grace the streets of Susanville. Bicycles were all are the rage then, some considered them a nuisance. In 1911, the city increased the speed limit to fifteen miles per hour, but it went ignored. On January 10, 1913 the Lassen Advocate noted: “Another man’s dog got under the wheel of a gasoline juggernaut this week. Sooner or later it will be somebody’s child that will fall victim to the speedomaniac’s disregard of the law. Then (maybe) our officers will recognize the difference between forty and twelve miles per hour.”

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