A&A Historical Article

All about the Arcade & Attica Railroad

Moderator: Benjamin Maggi

A&A Historical Article

Postby jpp452 » Wed Mar 03, 2010 5:57 pm

I haven't seen it mentioned so I will here:

The earliest history of the A&A and its predeccesors that I have seen is Capt. Winfield W. Robinson's "The Tonawanda Valley Lines" in R&LHS Bulletin No. 40, May 1936. The nine-page article is a full survey, from the early charters to the A&A as of 1935. Capt. Robinson got the opportunity to interview a few old timers.

Some of the illustrations are familiar from later publications. Locomotive photos include TV&C #21, BA&A #3, BA&A #5 in Arcade yard, A&A #7 and the Arcade depot. There are also some train and crew photos.

There is an all-time locomotive roster of the Arcade & Attica listing locomotives #1-8. At that time, #1, 5-8 were listed as on hand, #2-4 as scrapped.

I don't know if you are aware, but what became A&A #3 was originally built for and displayed at the Columbian World Exposition in Chicago in 1893 as one-half of the Cooke Locomotive Works exhibit. There it rubbed metaphorical shoulders with such luminaries as NYC&HR #999 and a Webb compound sent by the LNWR in England. A photo of the future #3 as Cooke #125 appears in Railroad Magazine for June 1933 in Walter Lucas's article on locomotive builders of Paterson NJ. After the Exposition, the 4-6-0 was sold to the Lehigh & Hudson River where it worked a normal service life on the high iron. It then came to the A&A via an equipment dealer.

Capt. Robinson takes his story up to the date of the Annual Meeting of Saturday, 16 February 1935. "Two hundred stockholders were present. A special train was run from Attica south in the morning to carry stockholders to Arcade and back again in the evening. There were three coaches full. As the A. & A. owns only two coaches, they had to borrow one from the Erie. Two locomotives were used that day, No. 7 was on the way freight and No. 6 hauled the special."

Capt. Robinson also notes the following re A&A's ownership of the line:
-- During its eighteen years of ownership this corporation ... has replaced the light rail with heavier steel, the old ties with creosoted timbers...
-- The activity at this writing consits of one mixed freight train daily in each direction, hauling one coach. The crew makes the round trip from Arcade and is generally through work by two in the afternoon.
-- For the past several years, competition with unregulated trucks has increased to such an extent that practically all of the local or short haul traffic has left the railroad and only the long haul and heavy traffic remains.
jpp452
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:31 pm

Re: A&A Historical Article

Postby Mountcastle » Thu Mar 04, 2010 8:55 pm

"I don't know if you are aware, but what became A&A #3 was originally built for and displayed at the Columbian World Exposition in Chicago in 1893 as one-half of the Cooke Locomotive Works exhibit. There it rubbed metaphorical shoulders with such luminaries as NYC&HR #999 and a Webb compound sent by the LNWR in England. A photo of the future #3 as Cooke #125 appears in Railroad Magazine for June 1933 in Walter Lucas's article on locomotive builders of Paterson NJ. After the Exposition, the 4-6-0 was sold to the Lehigh & Hudson River where it worked a normal service life on the high iron. It then came to the A&A via an equipment dealer."

Fascinating tidbits of information, there. How did you happen to come across these details?
Mountcastle
 
Posts: 290
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 2:42 pm
Location: Kenmore, New York

Re: A&A Historical Article

Postby jpp452 » Sat Mar 06, 2010 4:27 am

I have gradually been reading through my old rail mags and came across the photo of Cooke #125. The caption explains its role at the Columbian Exposition, and that it went to the L&HR as #17. I traced its later history through a L&HR roster in a R&LHS Bulletin where I discovered its sale to the A&A as its #3.

Since my post, I have reviewed the second edition of Edward Lewis's history and note several of the photos in the book were also part of Capt. Robinson's article. Capt. Robinson did have a couple of photos not in the Lewis history. Lewis lists W. W. Robinson in his acknowledgements.

In comparing photos of Cooke #125 with the locomotive as shown in the Lewis book, it appears there was a change in tenders and possibly a change in boiler -- not to be unexpected after more then 35 years of service. Nevertheless, the Cooke builder's number is consistent.

It's even possible things were changed around via an equipment dealer and only the chassis and some boiler fittings were all that was left of the Cooke original. This is pure speculation, but would not be unusual in the used locomotive market.

The cylinder and driver dimensions in Lewis match the L&HR roster [no dimensions were given in Railroad Magazine]. The only additional dimension I can provide from the Lewis history is that the locomotive weighted 52 tons, as reported in the L&HR roster. I have not been able to find reference to its working pressure, weight on drivers or any reference to its tender capacity or weight in working order. For the era it was built, I would expect working pressure to be around 160-170 psi. The latter figure would give it a factor of adhesion around 4.0, which is the practical maximum for a mixed-duty two cylinder steam locomotive.
jpp452
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:31 pm


Return to Arcade & Attica Railroad

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest