Way, Way Back in Time in Berea

Many, if not most, railfans who spend time in Berea watching trains are unaware or only vaguely aware that there used to be another railroad line there.

The sandstone quarries in town were served by a railroad that interchanged with the Big Four (New York Central) near where railfans gather today to watch Norfolk Southern and CSX trains.

Stephen Titchenal, who lives in the Cleveland area, said he was reviewing some Interstate Commerce Commission valuation information that he collected at the National Archives in College Park, Maryland.

He noticed that Berea had an Engine house between 1875 and 1918 that was located at the start of the quarry spur so it probably served engines assigned to that.

The property for the quarry branch was purchased in 1868 and its tracks retired in sections between 1938 and 1950.

Titchenal said the building information came from the ICC Form 561 Final Engineering Report that includes information on bridges, passenger and freight stations and other buildings, signals and interlocking.

The accompanying map above shows the location of the quarry branch as well as the engine house.

The branch crossed Rock River Drive just south of where it today intersects with Depot Street.

The branch crossed the latter just east of the intersection.

Aside from bridge abutments next to the East Branch of the Rocky River there are few remnants of the quarry branch left in Berea and you have to know what you are looking for to find them.

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