Hazleton Branch Photo Location, Please?

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Hazleton Branch Photo Location, Please?

Postby frankgaron2 » Fri Apr 18, 2014 6:54 pm

Hi All:

Just won this slide on eBay - it's dated January 1979 and train symbol is AH-1. Slide is labeled as Weatherly PA:

http://www.frankgaron.com/Railroad/IMG_0067b.jpg
Can somebody tell me where this exact location is, and what line is that abandoned roadbed in the background?

Many Thanks,

Frank
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Re: Hazleton Branch Photo Location, Please?

Postby JimBoylan » Tue Apr 22, 2014 10:34 am

It's not downtown Weatherly, Pa., but the big competition in that part of the world was the Jersey Central's Central Railroad Company of Pennsylvania.
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Re: Hazleton Branch Photo Location, Please?

Postby amtrakhogger » Tue Apr 22, 2014 7:12 pm

frankgaron2 wrote:Hi All:

Just won this slide on eBay - it's dated January 1979 and train symbol is AH-1. Slide is labeled as Weatherly PA:

http://www.frankgaron.com/Railroad/IMG_0067b.jpg
Can somebody tell me where this exact location is, and what line is that abandoned roadbed in the background?

Many Thanks,

Frank


Was that job known as the "Hazleton Man?"
"I will stop at St. Avold."
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Re: Hazleton Branch Photo Location, Please?

Postby pumpers » Thu Jun 19, 2014 8:59 am

The CNJ and the LV were parallel mostly in the Lehigh River Gorge, but they both had at least 2 tracks, and the upper abandoned ROW doesn't look wide enough. PLus there might not be enough room for the river in the valley in the foreground. So I started looking elsewhere near Weatherly on topo maps, and then Googling some history, and found some fascinating links.

So here is a a guess, along with the history. On the north side of Weatherly, where the tracks run east-west, more or less, there used to be in the mid 1800's another RoW just north of the current line. On modern topos it shows up as some kind of forest road, it is not on modern road maps. See this map link: http://mapper.acme.com/?ll=40.94671,-75 ... herly%20PA Perhaps the train in the photo is at point A in the attached link, and the photographer is at B. The topography fits more or less. You can make out the abandoned ROW better if you follow it to the east on the topo map - there are some straight segments and you can see where some grading was done for cuts and fills a few spots. I think the 2 lines joined somewhere around C.

Now the history I found: originally, at point D, the Beaver Meadow RR turned west from the current ROW (that part is abandoned). The Beaver Meadow was the first RR through Weatherly and to Penn Haven Jct. area (before there was an LV and a Junction), and then continued south past Jim THorpe. The LV eventually bought the BM and the route through Weatherly to Penn Haven Jct is the BM route (although perhaps realigned along Black Ck). Anyway, the line going north from point D along Hazle Ck. more or less was the Hazleton RR bring coal down from the Hazleton area, and then using the B.M. RR from D to get to the Lehigh River and canals. (I think the line all the way to the middle of Weatherly was once Hazleton RR, when B.M. still used planes, before their route via D) I quote a history link I found, see the middle of the page: http://www.thehopkinthomasproject.com/T ... erSeg8.htm
The Beaver Meadow was unable to operate after being flooded out in 1841 from January to August, and again in 1850, when five Quakake Creek and the Lehigh Turnhole bridges went out. As a result the Hazleton Company constructed a six-mile line on top of the mountain to Penn Haven, completely eliminating by 1852 the use of the B. M. line. This route is visible in 1956 to the right above Weatherly as a shelf on the mountain side high above the old Hazleton right of way, which is used by the L. V. out of Weatherly. At Penn Haven, a self-acting plane, 430 feet high and 1200 feet long, lowered coal to the canal wharves. In 1859, a second plane linked the flood-proof Hazleton line again with the B. M. at Penn Haven. This coal port, with 300 inhabitants, a hotel, school, and store in 1860, reflects the activity of the Hazleton Company.

Another good link: http://himedo.net/TheHopkinThomasProjec ... istory.htm
Gingerb.com has some pictures of the plane (see middle of page under Penn Haven planes): http://gingerb.com/cnj_white_haven_to_mauch_chunk.htm
That site says the planes (the thus the ROW in question I assume) was abandoned in 1862, but I didn't know that photography was so widespread already by then. So if I am right something was keeping the ROW clear for 100 years roughly til the frankgaron's picture was taken - a fire road, a spur to who knows what...

Odds are I am wrong about the location, but the web links and history are fascinating. If any locals could see if those rocky cliffs between the 2 RoW's are there, that might be powerful evidence. It is all overgrown now on the aerial photos I looked at. JS

EDIT: an 1888 map showing the line in question - not sure was in actually service then... http://collection1.libraries.psu.edu/cd ... 2662/rec/2 On the middle of the left side. You can click and drag your way around the map, and then zoom in. It looks like the junction of this line and the line coming to Hazelton was a further northwest than the spot C I put on the map above.
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