Archive for the ‘Railroading as it Once Was’ Category

EL Monday: One Day at Wilbeth Road

January 17, 2022

It is the late 1960s/early 1970s in Akron where Erie Lackawanna C424 No. 2409 is westbound long hood forward with a train underneath the pedestrian bridge where Wilbeth Road once crossed the tracks. The signal in the foreground belongs to the Baltimore & Ohio. You may notice the signal has a letter “P” on a plate on the signal mast. That means “proceed,” which tells the crew of a train that if it gets a red signal indication here it can proceed at restricted speed to the next signal. It does not have to stop here.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Another Detroit Edison Memory

January 16, 2022

A Detroit Edison coal train is westbound in Easton on the former Baltimore & Ohio mainline on Aug. 28, 1986. The locomotives pulling the train include SD40 Nos. 015, 016, and 001. The latter was built by EMD in 1970 while Nos. 015 and 016 were built two years later.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Quite a Find During a Michigan Trip

January 16, 2022

The late Mike Ondecker and I found Manistique Pulp and Paper’s recently-repainted Whitcomb (possibly No. 3) in Manistique, Michigan, on Aug. 27, 1975. We trust you also noticed the Rock Island boxcar behind the switcher.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Faded Pennsy Glory

January 14, 2022

I made this photograph of the former Pennsylvania Railroad freight station in Canton on July 10, 2008, when I was working on my book Canton Area Railroads.

Obviously, the brick structure was unused at the time and had not been for several years. It was just a matter of time before it had a date with a wreck ball. But that would not occur for another decade.

The freight station was built by the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago in 1865 and expanded in 1903 and 1908.

It sat just to the east of Cherry Avenue near Madison Street. At one time the PFt.W&C had a passenger station 100 feet west of its freight station.

That depot was replaced by the PRR with another passenger station in 1915 on Market Street South and Ninth Street NW. It was razed in 1976 when Amtrak built a much smaller station at the site that it used for its Broadway Limited and later Capitol Limited until November 1990.

As far as I know the former Amtrak station still stands but remains unused.

Article by Craig Sanders

Looking Out the Window of Fairhope Tower

January 14, 2022

I took this photo of Penn Central SW7 No. 9098 from Fairhope Tower in Canton in mid/early-late 1972. The tower was located just just east of the Pennsylvania Railroad yard in Canton. Fairhope was where the Bayard Cutoff diverged from the Fort Wayne Line.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

I’ve Grown to Like This Image

January 13, 2022

Back in 1967, I caught this lash-up in New York Central’s Collinwood Yard in Cleveland. Even a decade or so ago, I would not have posted this because part of the lead unit is behind a building.

Today, I really like this shot of NYC 1763, 3463, and 3372. There is so much to see including an F7A, F7B, and an ALCO FB-2. Then add in the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy covered hopper. 

As my wayback machine is in the shop, I don’t think I’ll be going back to reshoot this even if I could remember the exact day.

Article and Photograph by Robert Farkas

Under the Signal Bridge in Canton

January 12, 2022

Penn Central GP40 No. 3186 is westbound about to cross under the ex-Pennsylvania Railroad signal bridge just west of Broadway Avenue in Canton in September 1972. 

Photograph by Robert Farkas

EL Monday: An E8A in Kent

January 10, 2022

I’ve long thought my favorite E8As are Southern Railway E8As. The Erie Lackawanna had my second favorite E8As. EL 830 is getting fueled as it stops at the EL passenger station in Kent in the late 1960s. Soon, it and the Lake Cities will be westbound for Chicago. The man seen on the left is Mike Ondecker and the worker is unidentified.

Article and Photograph by Robert Farkas

During a Transitional Era in Ashtabula

January 9, 2022

It is a late November day in 2008, a Sunday to be exact. A few days earlier a snowstorm had swept through Northeast Ohio but on the CSX Erie West Subdivision the passing trains have blown the snow off the tracks.

Peter Bowler and I got together on a photo outing that covered CSX between Perry and Ashtabula. We made a stop at North Bend Road, which crosses the CSX tracks west of the entrance to the yard.

I had photographed this signal bridge a year earlier when it had signal heads for Tracks 1 and 2. But now a track configuration within the past year has resulted in the removal of the Type G signal heads for Track 1 eastbound.

Shown is a westbound approaching North Bend Road that appears to be coming out of the yard.

A decade later on Jan. 14, 2018, Peter and I would visit this location again. By then modern signals had been installed and were in operation further to the east to control movements at the west end of the yard.

The signal bridge shown in the image above was still standing but sans all signal heads. I haven’t been back to this location since then but a check of Google Maps streetview showed the signal bridge has since been removed.

Article and Photograph by Craig Sanders

Sharks on Parade

January 9, 2022

The original slide of this image has a greenish-orange cast to it. This is the first time I have been able to get that cast mostly out of the image. Maybe the off-color look was due to a processing problem. Nonetheless what we have are a pair of “sharks,” Monongahela 1216 and Monongahela 1205 in Brownsville, Pennsylvania, in May 1974.

Photograph by Robert Farkas