Finding out what particular industries shipped in and out.

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Finding out what particular industries shipped in and out.

Postby t-croz » Thu Jun 09, 2005 8:45 pm

I am doing research on a particular branch of the NYCRR and the industries served. It is fairly straight forward to find basic info on these businesses but really hard(it seems) to find out what was shipped in and out by the railroad. Especially where the company went out of business many years ago.

I see articles in the Model Railroad magazines about specific companies and how often they were switched and what the head-end power was and the train number and sometimes the town/state from which the shipment came. For companies long gone!!

Where do you find this information? Do the authors of these articles contact former employees? Find old railroad records?

I have tried the local library, historical society, internet searches, etc. For some industries, probable in/out materials can be inferred by the industry - and by the NMRA opsig listings. But the kind of info these MR authors find is more specific.

I have not yet tried the local Railroad Historical Societies...would they have old records with this info? It would seem a long shot that info like this would be kept for too many years except by sheer chance.

I have also not tried to locate and contact former employees. The only way I have seen to locate them is by obituaries("worked at XYZ corp")...and then it's too late!

Am I missing something obvious?

Thanks for any advice.


Postby henry6 » Fri Jun 10, 2005 8:46 am

Yes, local railroad historical societies are a great start, there are several NRHS chapters in the Western NY area. There is also an NYCRR historical society I believe...check the internet...but also check your library....there are lots of books about the NYC as well as histories of local NY roads and NY counties (I am assuming here you are looking at NY). I would venture there are over a hundred books about NY state railroads with quite a few about the NYCRR, its subsidiaries, and components. Good luck. If I knew the specific branch, I might be able to be more specific.


Postby henry6 » Fri Jun 10, 2005 8:48 am

Also, I should have mentioned that there are links in to the New York Central, New York State railroads, Conrail, and others which can be more specific.

Postby David Hutchinson » Fri Jul 08, 2005 11:25 am

I do not know if the NYC published a Freight Service Guide, but if they did, try to get one. I have a Reading one from the 1940's and it list all the on line and team track industries and the products that they shipped/received.
David Hutchinson
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