About the Akron Railroad Club

The annual member’s night program is one of the Akron Railroad Club’s most popular events. Members relax between programs during the 2011 member’s night.

The Akron Railroad Club is a non-profit organization of railroad enthusiasts who meet monthly in Akron,  Ohio.  Our club has more than 100 members who enjoy the drama and color of modern railroad operations and have a passion for railroad history. Our members come from all walks of life and include a number of professional railroaders.

Whether riding a steam-powered excursion train, traveling to a nearby railroad hotspot to watch and photograph the action, or enjoying a program at one of our monthly meetings, the Akron Railroad Club has an activity sure to please railroad enthusiasts of all ages and interests.

We are one of the largest railroad enthusiasts groups in Ohio. Join us at one or our meetings or during one of our many activities. We look forward to meeting you.

Welcome aboard!


67 Responses to “About the Akron Railroad Club”

  1. Peter Bowler Says:

    Incredible photograph of the Wheeling (just kidding!).

    I think it would publicize the club to publish an archive of Marty’s Northern Ohio railfan hotspots. It would prove very useful to out of state railfans as well as provide a way to drive internet traffic to our site from search engines. We could make sure we have some “hot” keywords sprinkled on his articles as a way of optimizing for the search engines. I frequently see people on Trains or Classic Trains or other forums asking about where the best spots are around the country and we could leverage our local knowledge. PB

  2. Peter Bowler Says:

    I have no idea whether this Blog software has a mechanism for its users to “Bookmark this site”, but it is a common way for sites to make certain you will find it again easily. It would be worth a look to see if they have a little tool to add that feature somewhere prominent.

  3. Richard Thompson Says:

    A wonderful job has been done so far on this website, and I look forward to contributing photos, if wanted, or necessary. Otherwise, keep up the great work, and hopefully we’ll draw in some more members.

  4. Jonathan Says:

    Hi, this is Jonathan. I need help contacting one of your members, Richard Thompson. We’ve known each other for awhile but I haven’t been able to contact him myself. If he shows up I need him to e-mail me at jonhan24@gmail.com. Thanks a lot !

    • csanders429 Says:


      I copied your message and passed it along to Richard Thompson. You can reply to you directly.

      Craig Sanders
      Akron Railroad Club

      • Beverly Wytiaz Says:

        I am with the Silver Lake Garden Club and would like to find out if anyone in your orgainzation has information on the miniature train that was built for the Silver Lake Amusement Park in the early 1900’s.
        The garden club would appreciate any information or help you can give. Thank you Bev Wytiaz

      • ashley heinemeyer Says:

        Mr. Sanders,
        Perhaps you could help me with a photo that is on your website. I would like to see about getting permission to use in some memoirs I am helping write. Could you contact me please? Thank you for your help in this matter.

  5. Ed Knight Says:

    I happened on your blog while collecting information about the Interurban System in the midwest. I have a small site about my little home town in Indiana and I’m now doing a section about history of transportation there.
    Congratulations on a really fine site..! I intend to browse the whole site eventually. Have a look and let me know what you think. Maybe you can give me a few tips.
    cheers, Ed Knight

  6. Jim in Maryland Says:

    This is a very interesting and informative website. I look forward to future updates, and plan to revisit the area to check out sites I missed in 2008.

  7. Sam Webb Says:

    I have recently moved to a corner office and can see the trains on the old Pennsylvania Rail Road in Pittsburgh, PA. To what system these trains ride on or belong to, I do not know. Amtrac pulls out around 7:15 every morning from the Pennsylvania Station.

    Anyway, are there any RailFan Clubs in Pittsburgh similar to yours?

    I can only find Blogs of Western Pennsylvania Railfans, but no one in the City of Pittsburgh. Can you help?

    Sincerely Sam Webb

  8. Jim guthrie Says:

    I went to school in Kent and used to visit a lot of RR spots around Kent, Ravenna, Akron. I very much enjoyed the blog. I hope that your club continues to enjoy railfanning and thanks for the blog. Jim Guthrie

  9. Joseph McGovern Says:

    How do you become a member ?
    Thank’s, Joe

  10. Priscilla Drach Says:

    Re: Silver Lake train – I recently confirmed with the museum that the second engine is located in the Travel Town Museum, Los Angeles CA. It went there in Oct. 1989. Both the first and second engines were named The Little General.

    The first engine was last seen in Navarre OH when a man bought it in the 40’s. He passed away a few years ago at age 95. I will soon be in contact with his church to see if there are any known relatives who might know what happened to it.

  11. Mary McClure Says:

    While we are on the subject of the marvelous Silver Lake Park near Cuyahoga Falls, do any of your members have any photos or images of the Cleveland, Akron and Columbus railway station near Silver Lake Park? According to some information I have read it was located 77 rods (1270 feet) from the uppermost dock on Silver Lake. I don’t know if tthis was a “station” in the truest sense of the word or a simple covered waiting platform, but it reportedly had wooden benches with curvy metal embellisments on the sides, as would have been the Victorian style. Thank you in advance for any insights you may have on this part of local history. Great Web site by the way! Very informative.

    • Priscilla Drach Says:

      Mary, please contact Bob Zimmermann, new president of Silver Lake Historical Society. He recently (June 2011) gave a talk to the Silver Lake Garden Club about the trains of the Silver Lake Amusement Park. Had lots of photos. Village Hall can give you contact information.

  12. Cincinnati Railroad Club Says:

    I’m a member of the Cincinnati Railroad Club and on August 13 we will be having Summerail at the Cincinnati Union Terminal. It will be a day long event with railroadiana, etc. for sale and slide shows throughout the day. Hope to see some of your members in attendance.
    Dennis Teagle

  13. Priscilla Drach Says:

    For Mary McClure: Please contact Bob Zimmermann, the new President of the Silver Lake Historical Society. He recently (June, 2011) gave a talk to the Silver Lake Garden Club about the trains of the Silver Lake Amusement Park. Village Hall can give you contact information.

  14. Sue Says:

    I am looking for a picture of the pedestrian RR bridge that used to be on Seiberling Street in back of Hotchkiss School. I remember going to school and crossing that bridge. I would love to see a pictures. Does anyone have an idea of where I may be able to find one. Thank you.

  15. Barb Says:


    I have my home collection for sale if anyone is interested)


  16. Rodney Johnson Says:

    Good day all,

    On Sundays on the History of Akron and Summit County Facebook page I share a picture taken within Summit County. I’m sure anyone who reads this will be able to guess this weeks pictures with one eye closed.


    My question to you all is, where are a few other spots within Akron/Summit County that SCREAM railroad history?

    Thanks, Rod

  17. Larry Kehres Says:

    I have a friend who has an extensive collection of Lionel items for sale. Would you be interested in seeing the list?
    Thank you.

  18. zac pettit Says:

    can you please email me information on joining your group

    thanks so much

  19. Ken Summers Says:

    I am curious to know if anyone could tell me whether or not the city pulled up all of the old streetcar track or not along the old lines. I heard that at least the Main Street tracks were removed, if not all of them, but haven’t found anything concrete. Any chance someone here might know? I’m researching it as possible incentive for what–at the moment–is a one-man effort to convince the city to take steps to bring them back. Thank you in advance.

  20. Jim Podlich Says:

    When and where is the 2012 longest day activity? A friend and I will be headed to Ohio for a railfan trip in June.

  21. Dennis Breda Says:

    I am interested in attending a meeting.

  22. Keely Says:

    Please tell me how I can find out about upcoming club events. We went to ride the track cars in Orville and thought it was great. My office is in the old Quaker Square building in Akron so I see trains every day. My son is 12 and also collects MTH trains. We love the railroads. Thank you

  23. Dave Says:

    I live in Akron and your website fails to say where you meetings are or how to join the club. Been looking for an hour now.

  24. Dennis Weldon Says:

    I have a 1908 state of Ohio railroad map for sale that is in fairly good condition except for a rip in one corner. I live in North Carolina, and would like to find a nice home for it in Ohio. If anyone is interested, please contact me at dweldon@nc.rr.com. Thanks Dennis Weldon

  25. Julie Wherry Says:

    What fun and adventures you all have! I am a high school classmate of Jerry Joe Jacobson of AOSR in Sugarcreek. I remember the times in high school, Jerry had me climbing coaling towers, waiting and watching for mail pickups on the run, etc. On our 50th High School Reunion, Jerry and the folks at AOSR hosted a private walkabout at AOSR. What a place! Jerry is grown up now and doing and living his dream!

  26. ashley heinemeyer Says:

    I would like to speak with someone about a photo in one of your stories. I am assisting a local gentleman in writing his memoirs and I would like to speak with someone about permission to use a photo.

  27. Peter Bowler Says:

    Ashley – suggest you let Craig or others know exactly what photo you seek. SInce there are many photographers published here it may save time and trouble if you provie the link to it or describe in details where on the site it is…..

  28. Mitchell Klein Says:

    I have a question. How would one get to Atlantic City from Akron by train in the mid 1930s? Is there a specific type of train or station?

    • csanders429 Says:

      More than likely you would have boarded a train at Akron Union Depot and taken either the Erie or B&O to New York. Neither of those railroads went into Manhattan as both had terminals in New Jersey and passengers went by boat to Manhattan. As far as getting to Atlantic City, the B&O served Philadelphia and you probably could have changed trains there to get to AC. If going via the Erie, you might have had to go into New York and take a PRR train to AC. But maybe the Central of New Jersey had direct service to AC. Without having schedules from that period I can’t say for sure.

  29. Mary McClure Says:

    I don’t know whether this is the type of railway that interests your club members, but I thought I would mention a new book (“Silver Lake Park”, part of Arcadia Publishing’s Images of America series)that has been published regarding the history of Silver Lake Park in Silver Lake, Ohio (1870s-1917). The book includes a chapter on the park’s miniature railway, including several photographs of the railway in operation. As many of you know, after Silver Lake Park closed, several of its miniature railways went to other area amusement parks, including Buckeye Lake. One of the engines is now at the Travel Town museum in Los Angeles.

  30. Cheri Says:

    How can I find out when any trains pass through Copley, Ohio?
    (We have cousins coming in for a visit and they are really interested in trains.)

  31. Gene Gleason Says:

    How do I find a rental car agency that would pick up and drop us off at the toledo amtrack station. Our train club is thinking trip by train to toledo by cap limited need rental cars . Any suggestion please

  32. Kevin E Pyle Says:

    I grew up in Kent in the mid-60s. One of our favorite pranks was to lift the counter weights on the crossing arms. And it was always neat to be on the Main St bridge when both a B&O and a EL train went thru at the same time.
    Any way, does any one have any pix from 1959 – 1968 of Kent and the B&O and Eerie Lackadaisical?

  33. Michael Mayher Says:

    Hello, I am originally from Sagamore Hills but I live in Europe since 2001. I am trying for a long time with no luck, to find any photos of the former Brandywine Creek Rail Trestle, which was removed prior to the constuction of I-271. all I can find is a grainy photo from 1948 taken from the Twinsburg Road side. Can anyone assist or advise me?

    Greetings from Prague.

  34. prr4ever Says:

    I grew up in Kent as a youngster and teenager during the 1940’s and 50’s. During WWII the Erie, B&O and Nickel Plate had almost constant troop and goods and war material trains 24/7. I did not have a camera so only have the memories. The Erie used to stop at the Kent Pax station. The fireman would take water and the engineer oil around. All steam in those days, They were always happy to talk with us kids. During winter the scenes would be quite dramatic. On the river side of the Erie tracks right at main street, was a small watchmans shack. At the approach of a train he would activate the crossing gates then walk out into the middle of Main Street and swing a red lantern to stop all traffic. His little shack had a potbelly stove for winter and a coffee pot on top. In the station was another pot belly stove, a ticket agent and probably a baggage agent. I also remember Railway Express who took packages and mail to and from the trains.

    On the bridge over the B&O tracks we would stand and watch for trains (again all steam). In winter us kids would try to drop snowballs down the exhaust stacks of the steamers. All we ever got was a face full of smoke and cinders.

    Our house was behind what was then Twin Coach company and the lumber yard where the NKP crosses main street. Loved those steam whistles for the crossings at night. On cold clear nights you could hear the whistles from all three RR’s as they approached the crossings in Kent.

    My question today is what/who operates the old Erie line after ConRail folded? Is it still in place from Akron to Youngstown or parts thereof? How about the NKP? I also lived for a few years in Twin Lakes. I remember two RR bridges over two lines between Kent and Twin Lakes on rout 43. Never did know what RR’s those were.

    If anyone has any questions from when steam was king around Kent I will try to answer them.


    • csanders429 Says:

      Most of the former Erie Railroad mainline between Akron and Youngstown is still in place, but most of it is no longer used. The tracks from the east side of Akron to Middlebury Road in Kent have been railbanked for potential future commuter rail use. There are no plans for implementing that service anytime soon and it might never come about. A short piece of the ex-Erie between Middlebury Road and the bridge carrying the ex-NKP tracks over the Erie and B&O is used today by Shelley Materials. From the connection with the ex-NKP to Ravenna the ex-Erie is owned by the Portage County Port Authority and used by the Akron Barberton Cluster Railway, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Wheeling & Lake Erie. Trains operate over this track on weekdays, almost always in the morning to late afternoon. From Ravenna to Levittsburg, Ohio, the former Erie mainline is still in place but has not been used for years. I understand it was once leased by the Ohio Central System, but the OC hasn’t used that track in many years. From Leavittsburg into Youngstown the ex-Erie mainline track is gone.

      The former Erie passenger station in Kent is now used as a restaurant.

      As for the Nickel Plate line through Kent, it is still very much in use today. It is the Cleveland Subdivision of the W&LE.

      In Twin Lakes, the former Pennsylvania Railroad mainline is now the Cleveland Line of Norfolk Southern and is part of the busy NS route between Chicago and the East Coast. The other railroad that ran through there was a former joint New York Central-PRR operation although the Pennsy rarely used it. Those tracks have been removed save for a siding from the NS line to a sand and gravel company in Twin Lakes at a location on the railroad that was called Hugo. The tracks to west of Twin Lakes are now a hike and bike trail. The sand and gravel company has not received or shipped by rail for years.

      Craig Sanders
      Akron Railroad Club

  35. prr4ever Says:

    Thanks Craig, very interesting! I was last in Kent in 2000 when my dad passed away. Mom and Dad are buried in Standing Rock Cemetery in Kent, in sight across the river, from the CSX Tracks. Dad was retired from the PRR in Altoona where I was born.The Nickel Plate had an interchange with the Erie just over the B&O bridge. There used to be a slaughter house right by the sewage plant in Kent that the NKP serviced also. From Google Earth it looks like that switch is still in for the interchange.. How far does the NKP run SW of Kent?

    • csanders429 Says:

      The former Nickel Plate line extends all the way to Canton via Mogadore. It is now owned by the Wheeling & Lake Erie.

  36. prr4ever Says:

    There is/was a small NKP yard across from the lumber company just after the tracks crossed main street. Our property backed up to that yard so the NKP was my favorite RR at the time. Lots of action there in those days!

  37. Nancy Says:

    I am looking for photos of W&LE during the 1924 to 1941 periord, My husbands father worked in the Mail Car, he died when my husband was 2 and there are no photos of his dad Chester Arthur Amond. I am working on a Christmas present if someone can send information or photos thank you.

    • csanders429 Says:

      I might be able to help you. I have some scanned images of W&LE operations in Canton and Cleveland that I copied from originals at the Cleveland State Library special collections. Send me an email and we can talk about what I have and if that will fit your needs.

      Craig Sanders
      Akron Railroad Club

      • Nancy Wilson Says:

        My father in law worked on the Post Office Mail CarSo if you have a photo of a Postal Car that would be wonderful. He worked 1924 to his death in 1940  Enjoy your day,Nan From: akronrrclub.wordpress.com To: nanwilson1@yahoo.com Sent: Tuesday, November 18, 2014 12:10 PM Subject: [New comment] About the Akron Railroad Club #yiv6174969534 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv6174969534 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv6174969534 a.yiv6174969534primaryactionlink:link, #yiv6174969534 a.yiv6174969534primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv6174969534 a.yiv6174969534primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv6174969534 a.yiv6174969534primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv6174969534 WordPress.com csanders429 commented: “I might be able to help you. I have some scanned images of W&LE operations in Canton and Cleveland that I copied from originals at the Cleveland State Library special collections. Send me an email and we can talk about what I have and if that will fit” | |

  38. Julie Wherry Says:

    url for more info:http://postalmuseum.si.edu/rms/history/1864-1875.html
    old photo: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Railway_post_office

    • Nancy Wilson Says:

      Thanks Enjoy your day,Nan From: akronrrclub.wordpress.com To: nanwilson1@yahoo.com Sent: Friday, December 26, 2014 2:58 AM Subject: [New comment] About the Akron Railroad Club #yiv6216452661 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv6216452661 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv6216452661 a.yiv6216452661primaryactionlink:link, #yiv6216452661 a.yiv6216452661primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv6216452661 a.yiv6216452661primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv6216452661 a.yiv6216452661primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv6216452661 WordPress.com Julie Wherry commented: “url for more info:http://postalmuseum.si.edu/rms/history/1864-1875.htmlold photo: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Railway_post_office” | |

  39. Phil Taylor Says:

    I ran across your sight and noticed some trolley articles by Alex Bruchac and a few old pictures of Frank Kellogg. I knew these two gentlemen when I was growing up, but then moved to the east coast about thirty years ago. We were in the old Lake Shore Electric MODEL Railway Club in the sixties, along with Walter Stoner and Eugene “Bud” Schmidt. I remember meeting Gary Dillon on some fan trips. Could you pass along my email address to at least Alex so we could reconnect? There is no rail activity where I live in southern Delaware so I have been active with antique cars.

    You guys have a great sight and looks like one of the top clubs in the country.

    Ps I am always looking for trolleyiana from the Lake Shore

    Many Thanks,

    Phil Taylor

  40. Marv Benedetti Says:

    Ran across your site while searching for info on where my grandparents used to live. I was searching for Piney Fork Ohio and saw a recent article about tracks in Piney Fork by Todd Dillon. What I’m wondering is if anyone would know where the rail trestle in Piney Fork was located, we could see it from my grandparents home as it was only about a quarter mile away or less, it was way up in the air. There were also tracks that ran right in front of the house down a steep embankment. I will be traveling to the area in a week or so and any info anyone has would be greatly appreciated.


  41. prr4ever Says:

    Marve, I looked it up on goggle earth and see there is still some right of way and track in there. Abandoned I suppose. I used to live in Canton and got down that way sometimes but do not remember anything you describe. Do you remember which RR it was? Probably a little far from Akron for anyone there to remember or know of it. Maybe someone in Wheeling would know? I believe C&O was active around there.

  42. Marv Benedetti Says:

    Thanks for getting back to me. I think I may have found my grandparents house or rather the lot because no house is visible on Google Earth. The way I found the location is to use Zillow. If you go on Zillow and zoom in, lot lines appear. I could also see lines parallel to Piney Fork rd. that I believe is the railroad right of way. If you follow the lines you can see what looks like the rail bed in places.

  43. joseph dzurinda Says:

    I live in Grafton and was wondering what I would need for a scanner to be able to pick up the railroad traffic? Was hoping to find answers here.

    • csanders429 Says:

      You need a scanning radio that picks up the railroad band frequencies of 160.050 to 161.565. Most of the radio traffic in Grafton will be on the CSX Greenwich Subdivision. Trains there use frequency 160.860 and 160.800. There is a CSX branch that goes through Grafton and I believe its frequencies are 160.230 and 160.320. Commercial scanners come with an antenna and can either be table top models or hand held. I’d suggest checking with Radio Shack or a radio supply store.

  44. Brian Paulus Says:

    Hello. I was wondering if anyone in your group has photos from a couple of North Eastern Ohio locations. Both locations deal with used railroad equipment. One place is in Orrville and named DABO. The other is (was) in Canton, I believe, and is named Mar-Ke and associates. Wreck cranes are my hobby and both places dealt with them in the late 70’s to late 80’s. The Orrville location still has three cranes on site. There was one more at one time that I have never seen and would like to see pictures of it. The Canton location purchased some Conrail wreck cranes. I have never seen any pictures of this facility, so pictures would be welcomed. Thanks for any info

  45. Jeff Routh Says:

    The Old Milwaukee Depot in Bedford, Indiana, is being moved. Currently it is moving up J Street to its new home about three blocks from its former location. I saw it had been mentioned here before.

  46. Jeff James Says:

    Would the club be interested in several books about full-size trains?

  47. Jeff James Says:

    Let me know when is a good evening to bring them by, preferably a Wed, Thu or Fri

  48. Jeff James Says:

    What is the postal address, and the time?

    • csanders429 Says:

      The Akron Railroad Club meets at the New Horizons Christian Church, 290 Darrow Road, in Akron at 8 p.m. The next meeting is Friday, March 24.

  49. Brittany Lavelle Tulla Says:

    Hello! I am interested in learning more about the 21st Century Ashtabula Depot Rail Experience and its mission to restore the Ashtabula depot. Is there someone specific I can connect with? Thank you!

  50. Helen Pratt Says:

    I have a question about the Brandywine Trestle in Sagamore Hills. I volunteer at Bedford Historical Society and wan email request came in asking for a photo or information.

    Thank You
    Helen Pratt

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