Category Archives: New York State

Route of the O&W Main Line

The O&W came into New York as a tenant of the West Shore subsidiary of the New York Central. O&W tracks from Middletown ended in Cornwall-on-Hudson. From there, O&W trains used the West Shore south for over fifty miles to Weehawken, NJ. There the railroad had an engine terminal, yard trackage and coal piers. It shared the passenger terminal with the West Shore and riders used the New York Central ferryboats to reach Manhattan.

Portions of the abandoned O&W were used in the reconstruction of NY Route 17. Shown below are the O&W stations and the towns which are in the proximity to Route 17: (from East to West, an over-80 mile segment; originally double-track but one track taken up and CTC installed in late 1940’s)

 

Burnside

Goshen

Campbell Hall

an ex Central New England station open until 1957. It burned in the 1970’s. O&W connected with the New Haven, with the Erie’s Graham Line, and with the Lehigh and New England.

Stony Ford

Middletown

a large station built in 1892. Site of the famous “10-minute meal stop (in lieu of diners). Junction with the Erie from Port Jervis. Also junction with the shortline Middletown & Unionville (also known as Middletown and New Jersey). This was the O&W headquarters.

Winterton

Highview

Bloominberg

at this point, Tower “BX” guarded a tunnel

Mamakating

the depot remains as a VFW hall

Summitville

the Port Jervis to Kingston line intersected here. There was passenger service to the hotels at Ellenville.

Mountaindale

 

Woodridge

Not on road maps

Fallsburg

 

Luzon

Ferndale

Liberty

beginning of a grade which climbed to 1840 feet at Young’s Gap (now used by Route 17).

Parkerville

Livingston Manor

Roscoe

was the limit of most passenger service in later years. Route 17 goes right over the site of the station.

Cooks Falls

East Branch

connection with the Delaware & Northern to Arkville (D&N roadbed now mostly under the Pepacton Reservoir)

Cadosia

junction of Scranton line with the main line which continued to Walton, Sidney and on to Oswego

Fort Plain versus South Fort Plain

The post card says Fort Plain, but it looks like a 4-track main line, not the 2-track West Shore that went through Fort Plain. Fort Plain, NY is directly across the Mohawk River / Barge Canal from Nelliston which is on the NY Central Main Line. Checked Form 1001 for April 30, 1950. Local service on the mainline referred to the station in Nelliston as “Fort Plain”, while just down the road, Canajoharie (on the West Shore, like Fort Plain) was served by Palatine Bridge on the main line. The West Shore timetable (no passenger by 1950, but freight through Fort Plain) neatly sidestepped the issue by calling it “South Fort Plain”. Little Falls to South Fort Plain was abandoned in 1971.

 

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Did you know Robbie Robertson even sang a song about Buffalo Central Terminal?

Did you know Robbie Robertson even sang a song about Buffalo Central Terminal?

Buffalo, New York, is a lucky city. True, the weather is terrible, crime is high, the economy is dead and the suburbs are usually on fire, but Buffalo still has a lot going for it. The city’s main attraction is a tall, dark tower that bursts forth from otherwise flat land in the middle of a residential subdivision and soars 20 storeys up into the air.

In 1929: The New York Central held dedication ceremonies for its new “Central Terminal” at Buffalo. The modified Art Deco style terminal included seven platforms serving fourteen station tracks.

You can find a lot out about New York Central’s Buffalo Central Terminal plus Buffalo history at Buffalo History Works

Robert Long from Maryland has donated some slides to the Central Terminal Restoration Corp. from the 60s and 70s of train trips he took to and from Buffalo and the area. The photos include some beautiful shots of the building along with a bunch from the DL&W terminal. The photos are part of the CTRC’s growing collection of historical archives.

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Little Falls & Dolgeville RR

About 3 miles North of Little Falls (rt 167) there is a remnant of a fairly large Trestle. This is near a restaurant called the Half Way. What surprises me is the condition of the Trestle. The Dolgeville line closed up in 1964. It ran from the mainline to the Adirondack Bat Co. The line north of this was closed in the 30’s. Industries in Dolgeville were shoes: Daniel Green and others as well as Hal Schumacher’s Adirondack Baseball Bat factory. The first train ran 12/14/1892 and last 7/15/1964. The last train used engine 847, a 600 hp switcher. The NYC purchased the line in 1906. Business on the line consisted of coal, iron ore, piano sounding boards, milk, pulp wood, canned goods, etc.

LITTLE FALLS AND DOLGEVILLE RAILROAD COMPANY
This company was incorporated December 27, 1902, as the successor of a company of the same name, incorporated February 20, 1891, construction of whose road was completed December 31, 1893, at a cost of $575,000, to cover which $250,000 capital stock, $250,000 first mortgage bonds and $75,000 second mortgage bonds were issued. The original company went into receivership May 27, 1899, and the first mortgage was foreclosed. The property of the company was sold July 24, 1902. Reorganization was effected and $250,000 of new capital stock and $250,000 of new first mortgage bonds were issued. The holders of the original first mortgage bonds received an amount of the new issue equal to their holdings of the old bonds and capital stock equal to the amount of unpaid interest which accrued during the receivership. The balance of the capital stock was used to pay the expense of reorganization. The operation of the road under the new organization commenced on January 1, 1903. The control of the road passed to The New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Company on July 24, 1906, through its purchase of a majority of the capital stock. Consolidated April 16, 1913.

DOLGEVILLE AND SALISBURY RAILWAY COMPANY
Organized July 8, 1907, to construct a railroad from Dolgeville to the iron mines belonging to the Salisbury Steel and Iron Company at Irondale, a distance of 3.89 miles. Under the terms of a contract dated July 24, 1906, entered into between the Salisbury Steel and Iron Company and the Little Falls and Dolgeville Railroad Company, the latter named company was to operate the road on its completion. The road was reported as completed September 1, 1909. Under the conditions of the contract, the Little Falls and Dolgeville Railroad Company agreed to pay the sum of $2.00 for each car passing over the line, the amounts so paid to be considered as installments for the purchase of the capital stock of the Dolgeville and Salisbury Railway Company. When the amount of those installments should reach the sum of the cost of construction of the Dolgeville and Salisbury Railway, the entire capital stock of $150,000 would become the property of the Little Falls and Dolgeville Railroad Company. Up to the time of the consolidation of the Little Fall and Dolgeville Railroad Company into The New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Company, April 16, 1913, the Little Falls and Dolgeville Railroad Company had paid, in the manner above described, an aggregate sum of $35,724.00. The agreement was assumed by The New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Company and the payment of the installments continued, the amount reaching the total of $40,210.00 on December 31, 1913. On completion of the necessary payments the capital stock will become the property of The New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Company.

 

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Buffalo Creek Railroad

See some of the grain elevators that once were a part of Buffalo’s past. The Buffalo Creek, or the “Crik” as it is often fondly referred to, was the main railroad that served nearly all of Buffalo’s grain elevators — those not controlled by the Pennsylvania Railroad and others. The Buffalo Creek was founded in 1868 and was used as a local terminal switching road completely within the city limits. It’s main purpose was to service waterfront industries, but mostly the grain elevators.The Buffalo Creek was controlled by both the Lehigh Valley and Erie Railroads and offered connecting service with every major railroad that serviced Buffalo. In this manner, grain was able to get in and out of Buffalo by rail in quantities just as large as if by freighter.

See more of the railroads of Buffalo.

See more pictures of the Buffalo Creek here.

4.6 miles. According to old Railroad Magazine rosters, the line owned 2 EMC SWs numbered 40-41; an EMD SW1 numbered 42; an Alco HH-660 numbered 43, and 7 Alco S-2s numbered 44-50. A more complete roster of the Buffalo Creek

See this ALCO-GE Model HH660 High Hood Switching Locomotive that started work for the Buffalo Creek in 1940.
The former Buffalo Creek (BCK) mainline is now the CSX mainline between CP437 and CP2, (between what was once Tower 47 and BC Tower in pre-Conrail days. The Buffalo Creek RR bridge over the Buffalo River is in use. The adjacent Nickel Plate bridge is permanently raised.When Conrail was formed in 1976 the Buffalo Creek RR went along into it with the EL and LV.
Here’s busy section of Buffalo from the early 1930s. A small switching engine from the Buffalo Creek Railroad is making a delivery to one of the many warehouses. The Buffalo Creek was the workhorse for the grain industry in Buffalo and was the liason between this section of the city and the major railroads that delivered grain and other products to be milled and/or stored in Buffalo’s grain elevators. The General Mills elevator can be seen in the upper left corner of this image. The truck in the foreground is more than likely loaded with sacks of flour or some other type of grain product.
From the October 1968 “Official Guide of the Railways”:BUFFALO CREEK RAILROAD (Erie Lackawanna Railway and Lehigh Valley Railroad Co., Lessees.)

C.M. Johnke, Superintendent, 824 Ohio St. Buffalo, N.Y. 14203

A Terminal Switching Railroad serving waterfront and other industries, for carload freight only. Operates 5.66 miles with a total trackage of 34.22 miles and connects with all railroads in the City of Buffalo.

Its switching charges for road haul movements are collected by connecting carriers for whom the Buffalo Creek performs the terminal switching service.

It receives from and delivers to all direct connections, without preference, providing the same service to industries located on the Buffalo Creek, as though located on the road of the line carrier.

Connections:
B.& O. R.R.
Erie Lackawanna Ry.
Lehigh Valley R.R.
South Buffalo Ry.
Can. Nat. Rwys.*
Chesapeake and Ohio Ry. (Northern Region)*
N. and W. Ry.*

* Listed as “Via Erie Lack., L.V. or PC”

The 1964 Guide, of course, listed Pennsylvania and New York Central as connections.

Before the redredging of the Welland Canal in the mid/late1950’s, the size of ships travelling between Lakes Ontario and Erie was limited. Thus much of the marine traffic from the western lakes (Michigan, Huron and Superior) got as far east as Buffalo on Lake Erie and then had to be transshipped via rail. This is why Buffalo became a major port and had so many railroads entering the city. With the redredging of the Welland Canal (and the opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway) Buffalo’s importance as a port rapidly decreased.The flour sack on the logo is a reference to one of the primary commodities that was carried by the BCK. Grain is one of the major cargoes carried on the Great Lakes (as well as iron ore, coal & limestone). Much of this grain was offloaded and milled in Buffalo. At one time Buffalo was home to the world’s largest cereal packing plant and was a center of the flour and feed milling industries.
The Buffalo History Works has a great description of flour milling.

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Cities Embrace “Transit Hubs” To Boost Business, Jobs

Curbed Feb 27, 2017

Are transit hubs the new malls? Several major nerve centers of U.S. transportation—like Union Station in Washington, D.C., and Penn Station in New York City—are planning major overhauls that would transform them from pass-through structures into glittering corridors of restaurants, retail, and event spaces. Meanwhile, expanding local rail systems around the country are also sparking the development of new transit hubs, trying to take advantage of built-in foot traffic to boost business and job markets.

“[Transit hubs are] a way to [achieve] balance and attract people during off hours and use the structures that exist, which are an attraction in themselves,” real estate attorney B.A. Spignardo of Shapiro Lifschitz & Schram in Washington, DC tells Construction Dive.
The Santiago Calatrava-designed Oculus hub in lower Manhattan is a prime example of this next-gen transit center trend. The striking architecture just might entice travelers to stick around and peruse its 75,000 square feet of retail—unlike the cramped, underground labyrinth of Penn Station. But Penn Station has its own ambitious renovation in the works, including the integration of the more architecturally impressive Farley Post Office along with 112,000 square feet of retail.

Central New England Railway Historical Tours

This is a heads up for those planning to join us for the 2016 segment of the annual bus tour along various portions of the former Central New England Railway.
Our trip will take place on Sunday April 3 starting at Waryas Park in
Poughkeepsie.  There is a parking lot on Water street just across from
the Metro North parking garage. within sight of the Hudson River and the Walkway Bridge. The buses cost less on Sunday and traffic is less at least in the morning. It seems like the weather is better the first weeks of April than March and that is another factor. Please notify your friends so that everyone who wants to go has a chance. The price will be $55 per person again.

This years trip will include the former railroad bridge ( now a Walkway) in Poughkeepsie,

The line from Highland to Maybrook and Campbell Hall.
After lunch one of the stops will be the  restored Hopewell Junction
Depot and Museum. and  the newly built replica of the New Haven Switch Tower ss 196.

Then return to Poughkeepsie. As usual lunch will be
provided.

We have planned this trip to reach as many of the remaining historical spots as our intrepid scouts could locate. In many cases we have had to rely on photographs, new and old, to fill in parts of the puzzle. We hope that you will gain a better understanding
of the part that the railroads played in the history and development of New York. As usual, everybody will get a copy of the 2016 CNE Tour guide book. We have a lot of ground to cover so we will have coffee and buses will roll at 9:00. Try to get there by 8:30 or earlier.

The cost of this year’s tour will be $55.00 per person and payment
should be made out to:
Joseph Mato CNE 2016
Joe Mato
62 Wood RD CNE 2016
Redding, CT 06896
(home): 203 938-9992     e-mail: joemato@sbcglobal.net
Be sure to include your E-Mail address so we can contact you if we need
to. If you don’t have
E-Mail then include your phone number.

Any money that is left after expenses will be used as “seed money” for
next years trip.
As we did last year, we have two buses with 47 seats each. In past years we sold all seats and had a waiting list so don’t wait too long to send in your reservation. Please note that any request for refunds must be received thirty (30) or more days in advance of the tour date. If you can find a replacement to take your bus seat, that’s OK just let us know who it is. We have to know who to let onto the bus when the tour starts.
If you can’t find a replacement then we may have somebody on the waiting list to suggest but we can’t refund money that has already been spent on tour expenses.
Bernie Rudberg
7 Marion Ave.
Wappingers Falls, NY    Phone 845 221-9330
12590-6017       E-Mail Brudberg@optonline.net

We will also post information on our WebSite