Railroad Navys

1291 views
24 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 11,257 posts
Railroad Navys
Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, March 01, 2017 4:20 PM

Back in the day, many railroads had Navy's - tugs and car floats and lighters to conduct their maritime interface with ships at anchor and ships at dock as well as freight opeations at locations that were not directly connected to line haul roads.

Most all of these operations ceased in the late 1960's and early 1970's - sending the equipment to the ship breakers, scrap yards and other owners. 

It would be interesting if someone had the inclination to write a factual article on the ending of these opeations and follow the disposition of the equipment.

Save

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    September, 2013
  • 961 posts
Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, March 01, 2017 6:55 PM

Indeed, that is a missing piece of Railroad history..while there are numerous write ups and photo's of individual operations a comprehensive book on this would be a real boon to all of us.

It is a marvellous and fascinating part of Railroad operations, from tiny Central Vermont to giant Pennsy and NYC. 

Great picture by the way!

  • Member since
    August, 2010
  • From: Henrico, VA
  • 6,329 posts
Posted by Firelock76 on Wednesday, March 01, 2017 6:56 PM

Notice what's in the left background of that tugboat photo?

PS:  Got to be the 1970's or thereabout.  I didn't think B&O tugs lasted that long.

  • Member since
    May, 2013
  • 2,769 posts
Posted by NorthWest on Wednesday, March 01, 2017 8:13 PM

A good site on New York-area operations is at http://members.trainweb.com/bedt/IndustrialLocos.html

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 11,257 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, March 01, 2017 9:17 PM

Firelock76
Notice what's in the left background of that tugboat photo?

PS:  Got to be the 1970's or thereabout.  I didn't think B&O tugs lasted that long.

They lasted until the middle 70's.  When I was Asst. Trainmaster at Locust Point yard in Baltimore we had to load the car float that moved cars to and from Fells Point.  Crew had to hold onto 7 idler cars to switch cars to/from the car float as the weight of the engine would have sunk the end of the car float.

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    September, 2013
  • 961 posts
Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, March 01, 2017 11:18 PM

North West- That is quite the website...going to take a while to get through all that...terrific stuff. 

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 11,257 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, March 01, 2017 11:18 PM

 

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    April, 2015
  • 99 posts
Posted by Enzoamps on Wednesday, March 01, 2017 11:51 PM

I always thought the B&O blue/gray livery was handsome, but I have to say, that is a smart looking tug boat too.

  • Member since
    August, 2004
  • 467 posts
Posted by pajrr on Thursday, March 02, 2017 8:56 AM

For interested parties, the Lehigh Valley tug Cornell still exists and can be chartered.

 http://www.tugboatcornell.com/    Also, the Lackawanna ferry the Binghamton, retired and converted to a restaurant many years ago is getting scrapped as I write this. A business venture that died, followed by many years of neglect. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/27/nyregion/binghamton-hudson-river-ferryboat.html?_r=0.  

At South Street Seaport in New York City, the seaport information booth is the pilot house from a New York Central tugboat.  http://www.alamy.com/stock-photo-new-york-central-tugboat-wheelhouse-30237477.html

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 11,257 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Thursday, March 02, 2017 10:08 AM

B&O tugs - Howard E Simpson, Roy B White & William C Baker

 

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

RME
  • Member since
    March, 2016
  • 1,392 posts
Posted by RME on Thursday, March 02, 2017 10:18 AM

BaltACD
It would be interesting if someone had the inclination to write a factual article on the ending of these opeations and follow the disposition of the equipment.

AMES!!  Paging Leo Ames!

Surely there are folks on boatnerd who have links to much, if not all, the information one could desire ... or know further people who do.

  • Member since
    August, 2010
  • From: Henrico, VA
  • 6,329 posts
Posted by Firelock76 on Thursday, March 02, 2017 7:04 PM

Did 'ya know those New York Central tugboats were steam-powered right to the end?

Looks like NYC steam didn't die with the Hudsons, at least not right away.

  • Member since
    September, 2010
  • From: Parma Heights Ohio
  • 1,651 posts
Posted by Penny Trains on Thursday, March 02, 2017 7:53 PM

Canadian Pacific had a very interresting maritime operation.  They operated a good sized fleet of passenger liners so that a person could get from England to Canada by Atlantic liner, Quebec City to Vancouver by rail and then from there to asian ports by Pacific liner.  Probably the most famous of these liners was the Empress of Ireland that went down after a collision in the fog in 1914 with a loss of life equal to the Titanic disaster 2 years earlier.  Events in Europe that erupted a few weeks after the disaster overshadowed the sinking and people soon forgot about the thousand lives lost that night.

http://www.thegreatoceanliners.com/index2.html

A waking Lithium Flower just about to bloom

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 11,257 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Thursday, March 02, 2017 8:44 PM

Penny Trains
Canadian Pacific had a very interresting maritime operation.  They operated a good sized fleet of passenger liners so that a person could get from England to Canada by Atlantic liner, Quebec City to Vancouver by rail and then from there to asian ports by Pacific liner.  Probably the most famous of these liners was the Empress of Ireland that went down after a collision in the fog in 1914 with a loss of life equal to the Titanic disaster 2 years earlier.  Events in Europe that erupted a few weeks after the disaster overshadowed the sinking and people soon forgot about the thousand lives lost that night.

http://www.thegreatoceanliners.com/index2.html

Don't overlook Canadian Pacific Air Line that operated from 1942 to 1987

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_Pacific_Air_Lines

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

NDG
  • Member since
    December, 2013
  • 437 posts
Posted by NDG on Friday, March 03, 2017 3:30 AM

 

OT? 

 

Memories.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xgPg9wt-c8U

Thank You.

  • Member since
    March, 2016
  • From: Burbank IL (near Clearing)
  • 9,780 posts
Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Friday, March 03, 2017 10:05 AM

Erie also had a small carfloat operation on the Chicago River.  It's mentioned in Hilton's "The Great Lakes Car Ferries".

The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
NDG
  • Member since
    December, 2013
  • 437 posts
Posted by NDG on Sunday, March 05, 2017 12:13 AM
  • Member since
    September, 2013
  • 961 posts
Posted by Miningman on Sunday, March 05, 2017 12:42 AM

-NDG- Great addition to my digital library. The Port Burwell area was very close to where I grew up. All of South Western Ontario was criss crossed with branch lines, many to Lake Ports and very very little remains. It is astonishing actually. 

They still talk about the Ashtabula in Port Burwell.. 

Still has a great beach and great burgers and fries on those hot summer days by Lake Erie. Magical.

  • Member since
    October, 2008
  • From: Calgary
  • 1,413 posts
Posted by cx500 on Monday, March 06, 2017 11:52 AM

For Port Burrell, please read Port Burwell!

John

  • Member since
    September, 2013
  • 961 posts
Posted by Miningman on Monday, March 06, 2017 5:39 PM

cx500- Yes thanks, edited to correct. It happens, even when you proofread ...you see what you want to see at times. 

Had a nice discussion on Port Burwell on Classic Trains forum a while back...it's a very old community, with an Anglican Church dating to the 1830's. Lots of old railroad habitats along the North Shore of Lake Erie. 

Nearby a bit East was the old Grand Trunk, then CNR, into Port Dover and Port Rowan to meet the Bessemer and Lake Erie lake freighters. 

 

  • Member since
    March, 2013
  • 421 posts
Posted by SD70M-2Dude on Wednesday, March 08, 2017 11:49 PM

NDG

NDG did you ever work around any of the CPR's inland lakes operations in Interior B.C?  Some of that lasted until the 1980s:

http://www.railpictures.ca/upload/gp9-8641-unloads-ties-from-the-slocan-lake-barge-for-installation-on-the-isolated-line-to-nakusp-sadly-the-line-was-abandoned-years-later

Greetings from Alberta

-an Articulate Malcontent

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 11,257 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Thursday, March 09, 2017 9:39 AM

SD70M-2Dude
NDG

NDG did you ever work around any of the CPR's inland lakes operations in Interior B.C?  Some of that lasted until the 1980s:

http://www.railpictures.ca/upload/gp9-8641-unloads-ties-from-the-slocan-lake-barge-for-installation-on-the-isolated-line-to-nakusp-sadly-the-line-was-abandoned-years-later

Rickety looking float bridge to the barge!

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

NDG
  • Member since
    December, 2013
  • 437 posts
Posted by NDG on Thursday, March 09, 2017 2:05 PM

SD70M-2Dude

 

 
NDG did you ever work around any of the CPR's inland lakes operations in Interior B.C?  Some of that lasted until the 1980s:

 

 

Yes, Tail End Man, Three-day Turn.

First day ex Nelson to South Slocan-Slocan City by Rail.

Then Barge and Tug Slocan City to Rosebery as shown in photo.

Overnite @ Rosebery.

Second day Rail Rosebery to Nakusp and return

Power then CP 7109 or CP 7110 as anything else deemed too heavy for slipways.

http://www.trainweb.org/galt-stn/cproster/locomotive/7100s/cp7109.jpg

http://www.trainweb.org/galt-stn/cproster/locomotive/7100s/cp7110.jpg

CP 7109, and others of this class had extended-range fuel tanks on running boards ahead of cab, as here ( Both Sides )

http://www.mountainrailway.com/Roster%20Archive/CP%207100/CP%207112-3.jpg

CP 7110 had Watchman's Heater right side in place of E-R Fuel Tank.

Lovely job, as steep grade north from Rosebery to Summit Lake limited tonnage to 400 Tons, about 6 loads, max. and you had to use Retainers as no D/B. ( Hard to get into trouble switching with a half dozen cars.)

North from South Slocan Jct. you could haul 1000 Tons to mill at Slocan City and Throttle was wide open all the way. Neet sparks at night. 8 mph for an hour. Turbo churping.

To attain last step in downward Transition, the throttle had to be shut, then reopened.

We stayed in Caboose @ Rosebery,  Engr. and Fireman had a bunkhouse.

On second day made Rosebery-Nakusp Turn, as mentioned and usually brought back long Hydro poles on skeleton flats ex  pole mill at N. the reason the line was still in as poles that long could not be handled by road re cliffs and their overhang on curves.

Overnite at Rosebery coming south ex Nakusp.

( At that time there was still a bus btwn Nelson and Nakusp. )

There was a sawmill at Denver Canyon south of Rosebery, then the end of steel that once continued on to Kaslo via Retallack over to Kootenay Lake, lifted c. 1957. 

There was still a slipway at Silverton for Concentrates. Cars moved by gravity and winch.

On third day barged Rosbery-Slocan City. Switched Mill, took wood chips South to Slocan Junction and set over into siding Fraine for pick up West to Kraft Mill at Castlegar. Took east tons to Nelson F F.

As back on good rail, you could move that S along as fast as it would go!! A thrill in it's own right. Yes, it was fun, at times. White cloth flags setting up a Purr of their own.

A year or two later, by use of a little ink in the ETTs. GP9s were NOW allowed to use slipways (  B&B not involved ) as units could haul more over Summit Lake and had D/B.  Footboard were raise, so it was said, so they would clear on slipways.

FWIW Barges Kootenay Lake had three 3 tracks, Slocan Lake, only two 2, as shown.

Idlers w arch bar trucks used at Proctor to load/unload cars and by then, units did not travel up K. Lake to Kaslo

Another story, loading/unloading same. Concentrates ex Riondel for CM&S Smelter @ Tadanac.  End-door Auto boxes for Dimensional Timber ex Mill Kaslo.

Great trip in summer!  Lots of snow in winter.

A person has to stand back and think as to just where railways went in the 1800s with the technology available then.

Surveying over cloud-covered ranges in snow sixty feet deep to lay out route for tunnels not yet drilled. Bridges not yet constructed, and so on.

Bringing in materiel by rail, some even from salt water ports far to the east before Last Spike. 


http://i157.photobucket.com/albums/t62/NDGee/06%20T.T.%2095%20%20%20April%20%2024%201966%20BDY_zpsxlvuiafa.jpg


http://i157.photobucket.com/albums/t62/NDGee/07%20T.T.%2095%20%20%20April%20%2024%201966%20SCN_zpsb32zjmyf.jpg 


http://i157.photobucket.com/albums/t62/NDGee/08%20T.T.%2095%20%20%20April%20%2024%201966%20KSL_zpsisp93f5u.jpg


http://i157.photobucket.com/albums/t62/NDGee/ETT%2061%20%20January%20%201%201931%2009%20Lrdu%20Kslo%20N%20Fork_zpspkjnbrat.jpg



Thank You.

  • Member since
    September, 2013
  • 961 posts
Posted by Miningman on Thursday, March 09, 2017 11:13 PM

Wanswheel- Thanks so much for the information on Lt. Col. Burwell.

If anyone ever wants to be a forensic railroad historian then the North shore of Lake Erie from Fort Erie to Windsor is one heck of a great place to start tracing down things "in the field". Every port and harbour had a rail line serving it and just about every one of them is now gone yet artifacts remain. Also 2 really important nearby parallel high speed well engineered main lines that have been taken up...Pere Marquette, CNR, Wabash and the NYC Canada Southern. The London and Port Stanley is the sole remaining piece and it's really just a touristy thing. 

The whole area along the North shore is very rural and is mostly farming. Lots of fruit and vegetable stands along the secondary highways such as the Talbot Trail. Also, it is the only area of Canada that has Carolinian Forest along a narrow 20 mile strip the entire length of Lake Erie. Great beaches everywhere, very inexpensive mom and pop motels, great burger shacks and the ghosts of all those magnificient stations, trains, tracks, and industry. 

SUBSCRIBER & MEMBER LOGIN

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!

FREE NEWSLETTER SIGNUP

Get the Classic Trains twice-monthly newsletter

Search the Community