Northern Pacific in Everett, WA

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  • Member since
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  • From: McKinney, TX
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Northern Pacific in Everett, WA
Posted by Road Fan on Tuesday, November 18, 2008 12:13 PM

To All,

I'm looking for information on the Northern Pacific's presence and history in Everett, WA.  Did the NP have a passenger depot in Everett?.  The Sanborn maps show it had a trestle across the Snohomish river into Lowell very close to the Milwaukee Roads- are there any links to photos to see what it looked like? It appears from the maps that the NP may have turned locomotives on a wye, is this true, or did the NP have a turntable somewhere? 

I would also appreciate any info on the NP in the city of Snohomish. What kind of traffic did the NP carry. Did the Milwaukee Road have customers in Snohomish too?

I would sure appreciate anyones help and knowledge on this.

I also want to extend a great thanks to everyone who has provided me with information on the Miliwuakee Roads history in Everett- keep it coming, every little bit of info adds another piece to this great railroads mosaic.

  • Member since
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  • From: Mpls/St.Paul
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Posted by wjstix on Tuesday, November 18, 2008 12:30 PM

 Well I was able to find pics of the Great Northern depot in Everett....but nothing so far on the NP.

Front caption: Great Northern Depot, Lower View, Everett, Washington.
Date: c. 1917
Printer: Made in America by Edw. H. Mitchell at San Francisco, California.
Notes: 2756
Description: The Great Northern Railway came to Everett in 1893, the same year the city was founded.

  • Member since
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  • From: McKinney, TX
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Posted by Road Fan on Tuesday, November 18, 2008 2:04 PM

Thanks for the great photo's.

Road Fan.

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Posted by Articulus Maximus on Sunday, November 21, 2010 9:56 PM

Unfortunately the NP never made it to Everett.  From North Bend the NP ran through Fall City, Carnation, Monroe, Snohomish (where the line split south to Seattle).  Then it turned north from Snohomish up the Pilchuck basin through Machias, Lake Stevens (then called Hartford), Arlington, Lake McMurray, Big Lake, Clear Lake, Sedro Wooley, then north to the Canadian border via Nooksack and Sumas. 

BNSF operates the line north from Sedro Wooley to Abbotsford, B.C. but the tracks have almost all been pulled up south back to Arlington.  From Arlington south Snohomish County has developed the old NP right-of-way as a bike and running path (the Centennial Trail) all the way to the City of Snohomish.

Everett was the northern terminus of the Milwaukee when it operated in Washington, and the depot is still present.  Ironically, it's now located 1/2 block west of the entrance to new Amtrak/Sound Transit station on 32nd and McDougall Ave. 

  • Member since
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  • From: McKinney, TX
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Posted by Road Fan on Friday, January 7, 2011 3:31 PM

Hi Articulus,


Sorry that I didn't respond sooner- my subscription lapsed and it was my wife who renewed it for me as a Christmas gift. 


My premise for the Northern Pacific being in Everett, is the 1914 and 1955 Sanborn Fire Insurance maps that are free to view in the Everett Public Libraries on-line digital collection.  The maps show both the NP and  the CMSP&P line paralleling each other from Snohomish and crossing the Snohomish river into Everett on separate swing bridges.  The GN is shown on the  opposite side of the river (now BNSF).  Within the city of Everett, several map pages show NP passenger and freight facilities.


On page 19, at Pacific and Walnut is a NP passenger/freight station, along with coal sheds.  At Broadway and Everett Ave (page 34) is another NP freight station. Between Everett and Hewitt fronting Highland (page 11) are NP locomotive facilities including a 2 stall locomotive shed, car repair shed and sand dryer.  Closer to California is the coaling bunker.  It looks as though the NP turned their locomotives on a wye, while the GN and the CMSP&P had turntables.


So it looked like the NP had a good presence in Everett- but I haven't found any pictures to verify anything.  It would be great if there were photos of the passenger, freight and locomotive facilities.  Did NP use standardized plans for its structures or were they regionalized? If I found photos of a NP structure in Montana or ND, could I project such a structure accurately to a Pacific coast city like Everett? 


This leads me to another question about facilities.  Trains wrote in its 'roundhouse' special that locomotive roundhouses were usually spaced about 100 miles apart.  Aside from the NP's round house in Auburn, did the NP have other roundhouse locations north of Seattle like Sedro Wooley, Bellingham or Arlington?  Did the GN or Milwaukee Road have roundhouses north of Everett?  I know that the GN had a roundhouse in Everett, but did the GN or CMSP&P have a roundhouse in Bellingham.  Did the CMSP&P have any roundhouses on its Olympic peninsula operations?



Road Fan- happily back as a subscriber

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Posted by Axe on Friday, December 30, 2011 4:07 PM
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Posted by Deggesty on Saturday, December 31, 2011 1:08 PM

Looking in the January, 1930, Guide, I see that the NP station was 1 1/8 miles from the Milwaukee station, and 1 3/4 miles from the GN station, whuc was 3/4 miles from the Milwaukee station.

The passeger service then was motor that ran to Bellingham and back, bypassing Everett on the way back to Seattle.



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