Classic Train Questions Part Deux (50 Years or Older)

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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, June 7, 2020 3:44 PM

Now you're too far east.  This is in one of your favorite stomping grounds.  Tunnel and grade separation surely identify it...

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Posted by rcdrye on Monday, June 8, 2020 9:46 AM

Hartford-Bristol-Waterbury (New Haven)?

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, June 8, 2020 1:23 PM

rcdrye
Hartford-Bristol-Waterbury (New Haven)?

Not at all what I was thinking.  but is that route wholly grade-separated, with a tunnel, and wiped out nearly at a stroke by one road improvement?

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Posted by rcdrye on Monday, June 8, 2020 2:15 PM

Overmod

 

 
rcdrye
Hartford-Bristol-Waterbury (New Haven)?

 

Not at all what I was thinking.  but is that route wholly grade-separated, with a tunnel, and wiped out nearly at a stroke by one road improvement?

 

 

No, but it was an early route that was used by railbuses, and was wiped out by I-84.

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Posted by ZephyrOverland on Sunday, July 5, 2020 10:30 PM

Bumping this up...any more clues, especially since this question has been around since early May?

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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, July 5, 2020 10:53 PM

I thought this had been answered!

A notable consequence of ending service was that, as I recall, one of the railroad's cars was left in the (elevated) terminal when the track approach was taken down.

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Posted by daveklepper on Monday, July 6, 2020 8:58 AM

All-right, the CA&E had one named eastbound Aurora - Chicago Wells Street Express. and I think it was the only named train on the Interurban.  But I forget the name, and there is no reason the Central could not have used it earlier for a New York - Chaigo Limiited.  Possibly some name associated with Chicago Board of Trade?  

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Posted by rcdrye on Monday, July 6, 2020 9:21 AM

Other thread (answered - LaSalle Street Limited, NYC 1910-1911, CRI&P Omaha-Chicago 30s ) . Overmod is still looking for the upgraded intercity link killed by a highway improvement.

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, July 10, 2020 6:08 AM

I know Mr. Klepper knows what this is.  

If no one answers this in the next little while, I'll try a different question.

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, July 21, 2020 7:36 AM

The only thought that comes to me is that the Skokie Valley route did improve the Chicago - Milwaukee service greatly, and seemed to survive until construction of the Edens Expressway, which did remove any possibility of the North Shore remaining profitable.

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, July 21, 2020 11:38 AM

A nd rather than a CA&E car left at Wells, it must have been a CNS&M car left on the Congress stub that is no more/ 

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, July 21, 2020 12:18 PM

Pennsylvania...

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Posted by rcdrye on Wednesday, July 22, 2020 5:51 AM

I think the reason this has taken so long is that the answer really involves two adjacent electric railways.

The Lackawanna & Wyoming Valley had a superb right-of-way between Scranton and Wilkes-Barre PA, with a nearly mile-long tunnel as part of its approach to Scranton.  The line opened in 1895, the tunnel in 1904.  The "Laurel Line" was a third-rail standard gauge line that operated passenger service until 1953.  Diesel freight operation continued for some time both independently and after bought by the Delaware Lackawanna & Western in 1957.  Some of the line is still in use, including the tunnel used by the Electric City Trolley Museum at Steamtown in Scranton.   The Central Scranton Expressway was built over part of the ROW in 1964, but that may not be the highway project you're thinking of.

The neighboring Wilkes-Barre & Hazleton also had a superb ROW, almost entirely grade-separated except for street running in Hazleton. Also standard-gauge and third rail, the WB&H dropped electric passenger service in favor of railbusses in 1930, and dropped all service in 1933.

Both railways handled coal and interchange freight.

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, July 22, 2020 2:55 PM

It's the WB&H, notably shut down at a stroke, essentially, by improvements to PA Rt. 309.  

This was a more interesting, and instructive, example of an interurban because of its careful and excellent construction, one of the better examples of a road with meaningful competitive advantage.  And it did not succeed, either with a 'railbus' model of cheap operation or once a good road was available as an alternative.

If someone has recognizable pictures (or data) for the rail buses used, I'd appreciate it ... months of looking around has produced exactly nothing.

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Posted by rcdrye on Wednesday, July 22, 2020 5:26 PM

Carstens published a book on the WB&H around 1975. The article on https://www.yumpu.com/en/document/read/14763620/excellent-history has some photos.

 

Here are a couple from northeast.railfan.net .  Both railbuses built by Mack.

 

WB&H 204

 

WB&H 206

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Posted by rcdrye on Thursday, July 23, 2020 6:28 PM

This rural Pennsylvania interurban system had three connections to its major city, two on its trunk and one on an isolated line.  Freight and passengers were carried on two of the three, and one (by then passenger only) lasted until 1942.

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Posted by daveklepper on Friday, July 24, 2020 8:27 AM

 

West Penn Rys.  Alleghany Valley Division isolated, but reachable by Pittsburgh Railways tracks.

 

Greensburg Trafford line cut back to Irwin in 1942, loosing the Trafford connection, the last one, in 1942.  Had been used for through freight service, but there never was through passenger service, change always required.

 

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Posted by rcdrye on Friday, July 24, 2020 8:20 PM

West Penn it is.  Though many West Penn cars were conventional, West Penn also had some cars that only had track brakes and gooseneck hand brakes.

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Posted by daveklepper on Sunday, July 26, 2020 3:40 AM

Hand brakes, magnetic track brakes and regenerative braking, the latter doing most of the work, most of the time, and so the majority of the cars, like below near Hecla Juncrion, between Greebsburg and Connolsville, where the branch to Latrobe met the Greensburg Connolsville-Uniontown main line.

;

Bridge on the branch near the junction

Although the Alleghainy Valley line quite before WWII, most of the Coke region, excepting Irwin - Trafford, survived.  But conversion to bus started in ernest in 1949 with Fairchance, Mason City, and Brownsville, with the main line. the last. in 1953.

 

The Cincinnati lightwieght was an Alleghany Valley modernization car, used only  on this local streetcar line.

 

 

 

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Posted by daveklepper on Sunday, July 26, 2020 3:49 AM

Name a route, a double-tracked route, between two cities, both in the same state, that handled trains with two completely different kinds of electrification, diesel trains, and steam trains, as an every-day, revenue, occurance. Name the primary railroad user and any other user.  Give the destinatins of the trains using this track.

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Posted by rcdrye on Monday, July 27, 2020 9:41 AM

PRR Newark-Jersey City NJ.  600vdc third rail, 11.5 KV AC overhead.  Exchange Place station in Jersey City was the destination of owner PRR's trains which used electric MUs or steam/diesel power depending on destination.  Hudson & Manhattan was the tenant, running rapid transit type trains to Journal Square. PATH still operats the former H&M service.

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Posted by daveklepper on Monday, July 27, 2020 11:24 AM

H&M was not the tenant.   Newark - Hudson Terminal trains were a joint operation, H&M east of Jersey City/Journal Square, and  PRR west of that point.  Crews were evenly divided between the two railroads and so were the MUs.  And here was the strange case for the PRR that freights were diesel while the Broker still had its K4.

Western terminals for the PRR MUs were mostly New Brunzwick, Trenton, and South Amboy.  Steam and then diesel passenger to Bay Head via the NY&LB.

Who was a tenant?  There was one.  Its eastbound passenger trains (few in number) were extras in the PRR timetable, but its westbounds were scheduled.

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Posted by rcdrye on Monday, July 27, 2020 2:01 PM

Lehigh Valley?

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, July 27, 2020 3:11 PM

rcdrye
Lehigh Valley?

Could be... but we'd need more specific information about the eastbound vs. westbound schedule.

LV major trains used Exchange Place up to 1913, then went via Newark Penn into Penn Station.

LV locals used the Exchange Place LINE ... which, note, is the question ... but went into the CNJ station instead.  There was a Classic Trains thread circa 2011 that likely has all the information in it; it's how I know much about this and Mr. Klepper was a major contributor...

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Posted by rcdrye on Monday, July 27, 2020 5:58 PM

1923 OG shows Lehigh Valley trains 1, 27  and 33(x7)  Hudson Terminal-Mauch Chunk (Jim Thorpe) westbound, 34(x7), 72(7) and 74(7) eastbound from Easton to Husdon Terminal.

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, July 28, 2020 2:05 AM

RC, you now have provided the full answer.  Of course the LV trains did not run into Hudson Terminal, but to the PRR Exchange Place terminal, where a walk downstairs brought one to the Hudson and Manhattan platforms.

When the LV used the CofNJ terminal, instead of the PRR, the easstern destination was shown as Jersey City, not Hudson Terminal, in the LV public timetable. When I rode LV, 1947, PRR Exchange Place was used.   But of course I used the LV Penn Station trains, and there were at least two at the ime each way.

RC  your question

Today, the line of the question sees only PATH trains and is owned by PATH.  The switches remain for renewal of freight use if ever required (both east of Harrison and west of Journal Square), and are used for delivery of PATH equipment and material to the PATH shops.

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Posted by rcdrye on Tuesday, July 28, 2020 5:49 AM

The 1923 OG had both Exchange Place and Hudson Terminal listed for LV trains.

I'll post a new question later today.

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Posted by rcdrye on Tuesday, July 28, 2020 8:59 AM

In 1940, this became the second electric railway with a car preserved by a museum.

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Posted by daveklepper on Wednesday, July 29, 2020 4:32 AM

Biddiford and Saco was the railway, still operating but about to quit, and your Seashore was establshed as a museum specifically to obtain and operate the car, with purchase of the present RoW and track-laying and all else to follow.  You can post a true picture, but the car is similar to Lyncburg VA - Wildwood NJ 34 shown below:

The first to go to a museum was in Germany, a high-speed Pre-WWI 3-phase AC record-braking experimental car. 

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, July 29, 2020 5:09 AM

daveklepper
The first to go to a museum was in Germany, a high-speed Pre-WWI 3-phase AC record-breaking experimental car.

Well pre-WWI, if it's one of the Studiengesellschaft fur elektrische Schnellbahnen cars, which both made faster-than-GG1 test speed in 1903.  I literally had no idea that one of these had survived and can't even find which one it is (presumably the AEG car, slightly faster on test).

 
Was it in a collection damaged or destroyed in the '40s?

Here is the Siemens-Halske car, with some of the justifiably proud people responsible for it:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Experimental_three-phase_railcar

Note that this, as you see it, in a form obviously suitable for sleeper conversion, is ten hours to Chicago with only three vertical wires in the power wiring.  At a time that steam in Britain (and elsewhere) could barely touch the magic tin under the most ideal conditions.

No wonder electric railways proliferated up to 1907!

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