Ghost Interurbans and Trolley lines.

General discussion about fallen trolley and interurban lines in North America, past and present.

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Ghost Interurbans and Trolley lines.

Postby CarterB » Tue Mar 16, 2004 5:55 pm

Remnants and artifacts of long gone electric interurban, suburban and city lines.

Post your favorites here.
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Ghost interurban

Postby crij » Thu Apr 01, 2004 8:37 pm

Along Rt 32 from Willimantic, Ct to Norwich, you can still see the RoW for the line, from Franklin into Willimantic. The Rt 32 bridge over the New England Central RR in the north end of Franklin, Ct was the old trolley bridge location. I am not sure how much remains of the line south of the Rt 32 bridge, by I think I have seen some of it on the north side of the road into Bozrah.

In Connecticut, from what I have been told, there has always been a rule that no interurban/trolley could cross a railroad at grade. Was this rule the same for most states, or was Ct a rairity??

Rich Cizik
Connecticut Eastern RR Museum
Willimantic, Ct
www.cteastrrmuseum.org
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Postby avonrailfan62 » Mon Apr 12, 2004 2:03 am

The Erie Railroad's Rochester Branch from Rochester, New York south to Mount Morris, New York. There are still remnants along the line which include the awesome five (5) arch stone trestle just south of the Village of Avon. The line from Rochester to Avon is still actively owned by the Livonia, Avon, and Lakeville Railroad. The line became non-electric in the late 30's with the Avon to Mt. Morris section being abandoned by the Erie in 1941, and almost immediately scrapped.
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Re: Ghost interurban

Postby SPUI » Wed Apr 14, 2004 11:54 pm

crij wrote:In Connecticut, from what I have been told, there has always been a rule that no interurban/trolley could cross a railroad at grade. Was this rule the same for most states, or was Ct a rairity??

I know there were at-grade crossings on New Jersey, sometimes resulting in frog wars (for instance the Morris County Traction Co crossing either the CNJ High Bridge Branch or the Chester RR along Route 46). Not sure about other states.
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Re: Ghost interurban

Postby MikeF » Sun Apr 18, 2004 4:07 pm

crij wrote:In Connecticut, from what I have been told, there has always been a rule that no interurban/trolley could cross a railroad at grade. Was this rule the same for most states, or was Ct a rairity??


In the Chicago area, grade crossings of steam railroads by interurbans were quite common, although (understandably) often fought by the steam roads. The Chicago & North Western's opposition to a grade crossing by the North Shore Line in North Chicago, Ill., ultimately led to the picturesque stone underpass at North Chicago Junction. However, the North Shore had three grade crossings with the C&NW elsewhere in Illinois and Wisconsin, and the South Shore Line crosses a few railroads at grade in Indiana. The Chicago Aurora & Elgin intersected its share of steam roads as well.
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Postby CarterB » Tue Apr 27, 2004 3:33 pm

IIRC, the Illinois Traction (Terminal) had to build overpasses at several places because they were not allowed to cross at grade.
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Postby Leo Sullivan » Fri May 14, 2004 9:21 pm

Rich,
I think trolleys not crossing railroads at grade was more of an ideal than an outright rule. When they went through to So. Coventry, the trolleys crossed the New England, right there in downtown Willimantic. Later, the line was cut back to the crossing, though. The railroads didn't like being crossed but, sometimes it was allowed. There were several other grade crossings on the Norwich Div. Out in the country, where there was room, they more often did build a bridge. there was a nice concrete one, over the CV on the way to Willimantic. As far as I can see, that's how it was everywhere.
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Postby Leo Sullivan » Fri May 14, 2004 9:22 pm

Rich,
I think trolleys not crossing railroads at grade was more of an ideal than an outright rule. When they went through to So. Coventry, the trolleys crossed the New England, right there in downtown Willimantic. Later, the line was cut back to the crossing, though. The railroads didn't like being crossed but, sometimes it was allowed. There were several other grade crossings on the Norwich Div. Out in the country, where there was room, they more often did build a bridge. there was a nice concrete one, over the CV on the way to Willimantic. As far as I can see, that's how it was everywhere.
LS
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Postby walt » Mon May 17, 2004 9:08 am

Remember-- most interurbans were built as cheaply as they could be built. ( There were some notable exceptions) Thus, if it was at all possible, they would cross a mainline railroad at grade. This was not a particularly good practice, but then, unfortunately, most interurbans were not the safest railway systems possible by any means.
Please Move to the Rear and Speed Your Ride
( Philadelphia Transportation Company)
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Postby dkgrubb » Thu Aug 05, 2004 4:55 pm

My favorite old streetcar line was the Fairmont and Clarksburg Traction Co./West Penn Line/Monongahela Traction/City Lines of West Virginia that originally ran in the North Central West Virginia communities of Clarksburg and Fairmont and their surrounding suburbs, such as Rivesville and Mannington and Baxter and Barrackville, etc. This was a neat old line, operated by the power company, that has a lot of visible remnants. Many of the old bridges are still standing, a lot of the ROW is visible, and some of it is used for automotive traffic, and some of the rails are still in place in the streets of Fairmont.
Keith
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Postby Tadman » Wed Sep 29, 2004 1:38 pm

The cincinnati subway was built under the city, only to have the tightwads pull the plug when it came to rolling stock building time.

http://www.cincinnati-transit.net/subway.html

very informative site.
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Postby madcrow » Tue Aug 09, 2005 12:31 pm

Well, I'm not 100% sure if this counts, but here in Boston, the "E" branch of the Green Line subway/trolley system used to be quite a bit longer than it is now... In some places the tracks have been taken up, but in other's their still there... Even the station at the terminus is in use as a bus station for the bus that replaced that end part of the route...

Also, several old power substations for the DC power for trolleys still exist in neighborhoods that haven't had trolleys in 60 years... I know that there's one in my neighborhood of Roslindale.... Can't be renovated for real use cuz the ground is so contaminated that people think it would be too expensive... Will try to get pix...
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Postby mb41 » Tue Aug 09, 2005 2:46 pm

I am from Rosy, the E line is gone forever now, sad but true. That Rosy power house is cool. Ever go to Spring Street loop, old end of the trolley/trackless trolley, still line poles, track and BERY man hole cover.

Many old things still exist from the Eastern Mass and Middlesex & Boston railways also.
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Postby madcrow » Wed Aug 10, 2005 7:48 am

Where can I find the Spring Street loop? Is it near the Shaw's or something?
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Postby mb41 » Wed Aug 10, 2005 1:05 pm

Spring Street Loop is by the traffic light at VFW Parkway tucked in behind the cafe.

Another cool spot is the Watertown Carhouse, track and poles still there from A line days.

Trader Joes on Washington Street Newton is old Middlesex & Boston carhouse.

Lexington Public Works building on Bedford street is old Middlesex & Boston car house, power station to the right in the back.

Walk on Cambridge Street coming from Lechmere, four old BERY man hole covers, also walk Longwood between Huntington and Brookline avenues and see all the BERY man hole covers.

Trackless line pole corner of Belgrade & Centre streets, West Roxbury..another corner of Spring and Centre streets.
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