Chicago As The Railroad Hub Of The US???

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Posted by Convicted One on Tuesday, May 08, 2018 7:21 PM

CSSHEGEWISCH
interchange was cheaper than new construction or a buyout.

Your point  is well taken, but let me speculate a step further.

I've seen it mentioned in the magazine a few times that originating roads get to pick the hand-off (interchange) point. (For example, Wabash west of the Mississippi worked because a substantial portion of their business was shipping autos from Detroit westward.

It might have been nice for (just pulling these out of the air) a New York Central to get control over Rock Island, with all the freight they originated in the east to get hauled all the way to Colorado, or New Mexico on it's way west. But what Kind of return traffic might they expect?  If Northern  Pacific, or Santa Fe (etc) are originating traffic on the west coast, I'd imagine that their priority would be to hand-off as far east as they possibly could. So in that sense,  NYC extending farther west  from Chicago might not have sufficient incentive to justify the investment if primarily one way traffic is all they'd really gain. 

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Posted by ELRobby on Saturday, May 12, 2018 12:21 AM

It looks like this post has moved onto the last railroad into Chicago - the CC&L.  Unfortunately I am away from my source material and must do this from memory, but a good source on the CC&L and it’s Chicago entry can be found in a George Hilton article in R&LHS Bulletin #113 or 114 from the mid sixties.  I’ve also done a little bit of research in the microfilmed Hammond newspapers and looked at the Hammond Belt route on a 1915 map.

From the papers and map, I would disagree that the Belt went north out of HY and crossed the Erie and NKP.  It went around the south side of Hammond.  Not mentioned in the Hilton article, but in the newspaper account, when the CC&L started to build towards Chicago its first connection was at North Judson and it used the Erie from that point.  That only lasted a short time until it got to a Griffith (1903 or 1904) and used the GTW from there into Chicago.  That situation lasted until 1906 and they started building further west.  From the newspaper you find that in 1906 the CC&L ran into a problem because their route on the south side of Hammond had them crossing the Monon - in effect bisecting two Monon yards there.  The Monon resisted and the dispute moved onto the state railroad commission.  The Monon’s problem was the effect that the CC&L line through the middle of their existing yard would have.  The CC&L eventually crossed but I haven’t got to that in my search through the microfilmed newspapers yet (they’re not indexed).  It also crossed the PRR’s SC&S line and junctioned with the IHB west of there at the appropriately named Louisville Junction.

From Louisville Jct it did use the IHB as described and then west of Dolton had a connection to the IC at Riverdale (which at that time was not elevated).  Their first train into Central Station was April, 1907.  Note at the time that this was not the IHB yet.  It was still the Chicago Jct. as the CJ’s sale of their former Chicago Hammond & Western to the Vanderbilts didn’t take place until July, 1907.  There was no IHB in April, 1907.  I couldn’t find any mention in the CJ Board of Director’s minutes of any agreement with the CC&L.

The CC&L used the IC until 1912 or 1913.  After the C&O took over they started to use Dearborn Station.  I assume, without having the exact date, that this is when they negotiated trackage rights over the Erie from HY Hammond to State Line.

I don’t know when the last train used the Hammond Belt from HY to Louisville Jct and Riverdale, but the 1915 map still shows the line in place all the way to Louisville Jct.  However, the map shows gaps at the Monon and SC&S crossings and the connection at Louisville Jct also shows vacant.  I don’t know the date when the joint double track agreement between the Erie and the CC&L or C&O was negotiated.

In the 1920’s, from Hilton’s article, the C&O started to use Central Station again.  That continued until about 1931 when they started to terminate and originate the train at Hammond.  A ride on that route is mentioned once or twice in some 1940’s trains as a favorite of Al Kalmbach’s.

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Posted by Sunnyland on Tuesday, May 15, 2018 5:10 PM

We were the 2nd largest railhub "back in the day" but no longer.  Our Union station would be packed with people riding everywhere.  We have slipped a lot and Chi did have the lake. We had the river and many boats did use it but when cargo got larger, we could not handle those loads either There still is a fair amount of barge traffic using Mississippi, but can't compare to Lake Michigan access.  

 

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Wednesday, May 16, 2018 7:02 AM

Lake Michigan access doesn't mean what it did in the past, mostly because of containerization.  Bulk traffic (ore and grain) isn't what it was in the past, either.

The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
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Posted by DONALD BAKER on Wednesday, May 16, 2018 8:08 AM

So I guess we could say, we can thank the French.  Also, go up to Wisconsin some time and notice the tribal and French names of cities and towns.  My favorite is "Lac Courte Oreilles", which mean lake of the short ears.  Either the Ojibwa thought the French had short ears, or the other way around.  Too much.

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Posted by MidlandMike on Saturday, May 19, 2018 8:25 PM

Sunnyland

We were the 2nd largest railhub "back in the day" but no longer.  Our Union station would be packed with people riding everywhere.  We have slipped a lot and Chi did have the lake. We had the river and many boats did use it but when cargo got larger, we could not handle those loads either There still is a fair amount of barge traffic using Mississippi, but can't compare to Lake Michigan access.  

 

 

Can I assume you are talking about St. Louis?

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Posted by Convicted One on Sunday, May 20, 2018 4:13 PM

While CP Huntington did in fact build railroads that were physically west of Chicago, I don't believe he ever built any substantial rail lines west FROM Chicago, did he?  

I don't think that SP reached Chicago during CPH's life time.

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