Forgotten Conrail Memory

I was going through some color negatives this week looking for images to scan when I came across this forgotten photograph.

I’m standing on the platform of the Cleveland Amtrak station on Nov. 7 1998.

That was the day that Amtrak extended operations of the Pennsylvanian west of Pittsburgh to Chicago, giving Northeast Ohio a daylight train.

Back then there were two tracks adjacent to the Amtrak platform and they were heavily used by Conrail traffic going to or coming from the traditional Water Level route.

All of that changed after CSX acquired the Water Level Route and began routing its trains through Cleveland on the Short Line rather than through downtown on the Lakefront Line.

Conrail 6748 is an SD50 that was built in May 1984 and was the second locomotive on the roster to have that number, the first having been an Alco C628 built for the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1965.

SD50 No. 6748 would later join the Norfolk Southern roster and eventually be rebuilt into an SD40E carrying roster number 6330.

This was not the only Conrail train I photographed at the Cleveland Amtrak station, but it’s one of the few I have. I rarely went down there to photograph, much to my regret now.

Article and Photograph by Craig Sanders

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