Posts Tagged ‘PRR position light signals’

Conrail in Alliance Two for Tuesday

September 13, 2022

I only visited Alliance during the Conrail era once. That came on May 23, 1998, when I was with Dan Davidson. We spent much of our time there that day photographing the westbound signal bridge at the east end of the interlocking plant. At the time, it still had Pennsylvania Railroad position light signals. Both trains shown above are headed eastward on the Fort Wayne Line. Since then I’ve visited Alliance numerous times in the Norfolk Southern era.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

More Snow Trains

November 16, 2021

Here are some other trains we got on Sunday in the snow while railfanning along the former Pennsylvania Railroad’s Fort Wayne Line.

In the top image is CSX train I132 at Dunkirk. This is a run-through train that CSX gets from Union Pacific. It terminates on CSX in Detroit and usually operates with UP motive power.

The next two photographs were made at North Robinson. This was the second of three 171s running on this day.

Due to crew shortages three of these trains had been tied down at various locations on the Ft Wayne line one for almost a week. On Sunday they found crews to run them.

The last image is the 55K at Mansfield. This was an extra grain train for the big elevator in town.

Photographs by Todd Dillon

Through a Signal Bridge

June 5, 2021

Conrail SD 60 No. 6754 SD 50 No. 6711 are on the point of an eastbound train in the Canton yard on Jan. 17, 1987. This is former Pennsylvania Railroad territory as evidenced by the position light signals on the Fort Wayne Line.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Friendly Wave at Alliance

May 30, 2021

It’s July 1972 in Alliance. The fireman of Penn Central Alco C628 No. 6314 is giving a friendly wave as the train enters the Bayard Branch on its way to Conway Yard near Pittsburgh. Also in the motive power consist are PC 6314, 6300, and 6317. The track under the rear trucks of No. 6314 is the Fort Wayne Line to Canton and Chicago.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Pure Pennsy

April 14, 2021

Everything about this scene says The Pennsylvania Railroad from the Keystone herald on the locomotive nose to the position light signal giving the train a clear indication.

It is 1967 in Dennison on the former Pan Handle line between Pittsburgh and Columbus and we’re watching an eastbound saunter through town.

In less than a year this will all become part of Penn Central and today the rails are operated by the Ohio Central.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Still a Touch of Penn Central

March 16, 2021

Conrail was more than three years old when this image of an eastbound was made in Alliance. But note that the third and fourth locomotives in the power consist still wear Penn Central markings and colors.

Conrail SD40-2 No. 6405 was built in September 1977 and would later become CSX 8819.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Massilon Two for Tuesday

December 8, 2020

Here are two views in Massillon that show some of the changes in the past 40 plus years.

In the top image, Conrail GP38 7793 is at Mace Tower in March 1978.

Notice the freight cars in the small yard. The steel industry (now gone) and local industries made this yard needed.

The Baltimore & Ohio crossed Conrail (ex-Pennsylvania Railroad) on a diagonal here and there were two tracks west out of Massillon.

In the bottom image it’s April 17, 2009. Notice how the B&O line, now part of R.J, Corman, switches onto NS and then switches directly off. Look at all that’s missing.

Today even the ex-PRR signals are gone, having been replaced by modern signals.

Article and Photographs by Robert Farkas

Vintage Scene in Alliance

July 1, 2020

It is July 9, 1972. Penn Central GP 40 No. 3221 is eastbound in Alliance on the Fort Wayne Line.

Much of what you see here is gone although the track layout remains largely the same.

The bridge in the background carries Main Street in Alliance over the maze of former Pennsylvania Railroad tracks.

The rear of No. 3221 is over the diamond of the Fort Wayne Line and what is today the Cleveland Line of Norfolk Southern that goes to Bayard and Yellow Creek on the Ohio River. The PRR called it the Mahoning Secondary Track.

One of the more interesting elements of this scene involves the signals on the bridge, which in Pennsy days was known as Bridge 83.23.

As explained by author Robert J. Yanosey in volume 12 of his Pennsylvania Railroad Facilities series, this was not an interlocked crossing although it almost was.

By law, railroads in Ohio were required to place a target signal on mainline tracks at non-interlocked crossings.

The position of the target controlled the signal circuits so that signal indications could not be displayed unless the target was lined correctly for the route of travel.

When the target was in the vertical position, Fort Wayne Line trains could move with the flow of traffic if they received a signal indication of better than stop.

The signal heads mounted on the bridge are for Tracks 2 and 3 while the signal for Track 1 was on the ground.

Just to the right of the nose of the 3221 is the Alliance block station, from which the signals for the crossing of the Cleveland Line and Fort Wayne Line were operated.

It was a block station only for Cleveland Line trains.

Today all of these signals are gone and the Fort Wayne Line here is a single track. Most traffic uses a double-track connection between the Cleveland Line and Fort Wayne Line.

But back in 1972 that connection was a single track

Photograph by Robert Farkas

PRR Signal Bridge Removed From West Park Trench

October 5, 2019

The Pennsylvania Railroad era position light signals in the trench in Pittsburgh’s West Park were removed last weekend.

The signal bridge on the far east end of the Fort Wayne Line have long been a favorite for photographers.

It was located near the intersection of Brighton Road and West North Avenue.

An online report indicated that as part of the work and interlocking has been expanded and new switches installed inside the trench.

The work also included removal of intermediate signals between CP Leets and CP Penn.

Trains using the Fort Wayne Line are now using cab signals with wayside signals located only at interlockings.

PRR Position Signals Continue to Fall in Pittsburgh

September 28, 2019

Online reports indicate that the former Pennsylvania Railroad position light signals were removed from service at CP Leets on the Fort Wayne Line of Norfolk Southern last weekend with more position light signals slated to fall soon in the Pittsburgh area.

Reports indicated that new signals are to be turned on between CP Penn and CP Bell this weekend.

Pennsy signals between CP Leets and CP Solomon will also be falling soon.

One report is that position light signals are still operating on the Connemaugh Line at CP Leech, CP Alum and CP Toms.

As part of the change in signaling, intermediate position light signals between CP Leets and downtown Pittsburgh will be removed from service and not replaced with new signals.

The route between Conway Yard and Harrisburg will have cab signals and positive train control.

A similar signal system is in effect on the Fort Wayne Line and Cleveland Line to Cleveland west of Conway.