Photos: Railroad remains and equipment at Wilkes Barre, PA

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Photos: Railroad remains and equipment at Wilkes Barre, PA

Postby LandDownUnder » Tue Aug 01, 2006 8:57 pm

Hello all

Yesterday, out of all towns and cities I end up in America, I end up in Wilkes Barre. Not really a tourist destination :P

That aside, I stumbled upon some interesting old railroad artifacts and did abit of railroad archeology before proceeding onto Scranton, PA (Where Steamtown is).


Old Railroad Station - Now Banana Joes bar

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Brewery bottling plant

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Abandoned Switcher

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More photos can be found at: http://gallerymaikha.photoblog.me.uk/c1039281.html


Any story behind this location? I'm guessing in its heyday, Wilkes Barre would have been a bustling railroad location?

Thanks!
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Postby TB Diamond » Tue Aug 01, 2006 9:19 pm

The station depicted was the Central of New Jersey passenger depot. In April, 1983 the ARHS had its annual meeting at this facility. Yes, Wilkes-Barre was, at one time, a bustling rail center. The last passenger train to serve the city was pulled off in February, 1961 (Lehigh Valley RR trains 7 & 8). Wilkes-Barre suffered a severe setback in January, 1959 when the Knox Mine disaster flooded the local anthracite fields. This effectively ended the production of anthracite coal which provided much of Wilkes-Barre's economical well-being.
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Re: Photos: Railroad remains and equipment at Wilkes Barre,

Postby JhnZ33 » Thu Aug 03, 2006 6:05 pm

LandDownUnder wrote:Any story behind this location? I'm guessing in its heyday, Wilkes Barre would have been a bustling railroad location?

Thanks!


Bustling it was. In it's heyday, Wilkes-Barre was served by many Class 1 railroads: Lehigh Valley, Jersey Central, Pennsylvania, Delaware & Hudson and the Wilkes-Barre & Eastern (New York, Susquehanna & Western Railroad and ERIE Railroad).

Wilkes-Barre was also served by 3 electric lines: The Lackawanna & Wyoming Valley RR (Laurel Line), Wilkes-Barre Traction Co. and the Wilkes-Barre & Hazelton Railway.

There was quite a bit of track through Wilkes-Barre. Tracks that, at one time were nestled in between the Brewery and the CNJ station (which is today paved over and the road is called Wilkes-Barre Boulevard), were Jersey Central. Tracks that once filled the area behind the station to pennsylvania avenue were Lehigh Valley, PRR, D&H, Laurel Line, and Wilkes-Barre Traction. Wilkes-Barre & Hazelton arrived in Wilkes-Barre via a lengthy overhead trestle, which crossed all the tracks below. (WB&E tracks never actually entered the city per se, they ran on the edge of the river to the other side in Kingston near the Wilkes-Barre connecting RR).


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Postby krazytrain » Thu Aug 03, 2006 11:58 pm

Today in the Times Leader newspaper Thursday there was an article that somebody plans to buy and restore the Vulcan locomotive switcher. Should be pretty cool , the guy was some local retired polatician . He said he hopes to have it running and do local trips
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Postby MDDE_Fan » Fri Aug 04, 2006 1:28 pm

Yeah, Its a very rare loco, I think its the only one left, I remember reading that somewhere.
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Postby PRRGuy » Sun Aug 06, 2006 10:47 pm

Anyone know any of the passenger cars history? The stainless steel observation looks like it could be Ex-PRR or Ex-CB&Q
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Postby aline1969 » Tue Aug 29, 2006 3:57 pm

was all those RR coaches destroyed? whats with the automobile on the roof? lol.
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Postby metman499 » Wed Aug 30, 2006 2:59 pm

Not all of the cars have been scrapped as of Sunday. I can't give you an exact count of what is still there as I was not paying close attention. The car on the roof was part of the gimmic of the nightclub that used to exist there. Oddly enough, the same outfit owns the CNJ station in Allentown.
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vulcan switcher

Postby b&m617 » Sun Sep 03, 2006 10:24 am

If the switcher is on the same property where the rest of the equipment is, it sits within spittin' distance from where it was built. The site of the Vulcan iron works is only blocks away..sure would be good to get it running and use it in the town where it was built!! :P

BTW most of the buildings of the Vulcan iron works are still intact..could get u there but I'm not sure of the names of the streets... :-D


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Postby sjkijak » Wed Sep 06, 2006 9:00 am

Where is the switcher located? Is it near the cars. I'm going to be in the area and would like to take a look at it.
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Postby JhnZ33 » Wed Sep 06, 2006 5:33 pm

sjkijak wrote:Where is the switcher located? Is it near the cars. I'm going to be in the area and would like to take a look at it.
Steve


If it is still there, it is/was located amongst the other RR equipment and cars within the rectangle of land behind the CNJ station between Pennsylvania Avenue and Wilkes-Barre Boulevard, and between Market and Northhampton streets.

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Vulcan website

Postby Aa3rt » Wed Sep 06, 2006 6:04 pm

For some photos of the remaining Vulcan Loco Works buildings, as well as some Vulcan diesels, check out:

http://www.northeast.railfan.net/diesel98.html

Note that the locomotive in question is pictured in the 7th row down on the right. It is listed as a 45 ton unit, ex-Borg Warner, c/n 4385, built in 1941 for the U. S. Army.
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Postby metman499 » Wed Sep 06, 2006 6:33 pm

As for it being the only one of its kind this is true. It was the only loco built to those exact plans. While working at the Railroad Museum of PA I had the opportunity to go through their entire collection of plans, including this one. There is also some misinformation on Mike Rushton's website, as he the wrong construction number. Northeast Railfan looks good though.
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Postby dansapo » Sun Oct 01, 2006 7:43 am

The locomotive was in a Model Railroader in the early 80's. A 2 or 3 page article with scale drawings. Always good to see a Vulcan still around. :-D
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Postby lensovet » Mon Jan 14, 2008 11:02 pm

so i checked out this place today.

the bar is closed. looks like the lucerne county redevelopment authority now owns it, since there's a no trespassing sign right outside the bar. it is rather interesting how they took the abandoned railcars and turned them into disco rooms, quite innovative and probably left the cars in much better shape than if they had just been sitting there on the parking lot.

also, the amtrak coach (sitting by itself) has a door that opens easily and is probably being used as a temporary house by someone now.

i will post photos of all this sometime this week.
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