Ithaca & Athens

Discussion related to the Lehigh Valley Railroad and predecessors for the period 1846-1976. Originally incorporated as the Delaware, Lehigh, Schuylkill and Susquehanna Railroad Company.

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Postby lvrr325 » Fri Nov 02, 2007 4:05 am

Whatever the street is that comes out north of Wegmans on 13/34/96.. just below where it all blends back into a 4-lane road from where it's southbound one-way on one side of the block and northbound one-way on the other side of the block... Clark St? go down about half a mile, there's a driveway on the left that goes into the yard just before the crossing. It's usually pretty deserted - when the local ran out of Ithaca you could at least get pictures of power laying over, but they haven't done that in better than 10 years. And they knocked down the 1967 yard office about 1998, for no apparent reason. Thats what the larger concrete pad is.

The thread on the NY board about the DL&W switchbacks tells more about what, if any, track is left - it appears they finally pulled out the isolated last bits of track.
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Postby scottychaos » Fri Nov 02, 2007 8:11 am

Power lays over in Ithaca all the time..
very common occurance in the last 10 years, as far as I know..
I have caught power in Ithaca several times laying over for the weekend..
usually 3 GE widecabs, sitting there shut off.

The power for the coal runs lays over (weekends) in Ithaca or Sayre.
probably more common to find it in Sayre than in Ithaca, but Ithaca is somewhat common in my experience.

I have never understood why that power couldnt be put to use!
rather than having three modern units sitting shut down all weekend..
but it happens all the time for the Sayre-Ithaca power.
Most weekends you will find power sitting in Sayre.
been the pattern forever..at least since 1999 when NS took over.

Yard circled..access road runs right along the side of it.
off of "Cecil A. Malone Drive"
I have never had a problem driving right in there..

Image

check it out..the "windows live local" aerial view caught three NS units sitting in Ithaca! :wink:

Image

wow..a high-hood SD40-2!..thats unusual.. normally its nothing but boring
dash-9 widecabs.

here are the topo maps from 1900:
http://historical.maptech.com/quad.cfm?quadname=Ithaca&state=NY&series=15

New map..made just now.

Image

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Ithaca

Postby Lehighrrgreg » Fri Nov 02, 2007 1:23 pm

After Milliken is spotted, there is usually only enough time to get the power back to Ithaca. It stays there until the empty coal cars have been released and we taxi from GM to Ithaca to pick up the engines and on up to pull the plant. Much of the reason why these engines are put to use in the mean time has to do with the way NS manages its locomotives in Atlanta. The coal train power is consigned to that specific train and yardmasters and trainmasters often have very little authority to revise the policies set fourth by the micromanage crazed power desk in Atl.
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Postby bwparker1 » Fri Nov 02, 2007 5:42 pm

Scot:

The brown item you have labeled as "GUN" is not the Ithaca Gun Factory Complex. Rather, it was known as Morse Chain.

"When I was in college in the late '50s and early 60's, the former DL&W switchback was used by the Lehigh Valley to serve the plant of Morse Chain Company on South Hill. A pair of EMD switchers would take an occasional empty gon up the hill from downtown Ithaca to be loaded with metal turnings. I don't know how long use of the switchback trackage lasted, but I suspect it continued into the Conrail era." EHBLABEY

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Postby TB Diamond » Fri Nov 02, 2007 8:50 pm

bw:

ConRail abandoned that portion of the Ithaca branch, MP 306.0-Morse Chain, 1.5 miles, in 1982.

Information from ConRail files.
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Postby scottychaos » Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:11 pm

bwparker1 wrote:Scot:

The brown item you have labeled as "GUN" is not the Ithaca Gun Factory Complex. Rather, it was known as Morse Chain.


Brooks


oh! thanks..I thought that was the gun works looking at it on the aerial photos today..ok! I will fix that.

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Postby psdstu » Sat Nov 03, 2007 8:59 am

scottychaos wrote:
New map..made just now.

Image

Scot


Scot,

That map is terrffic! It brings back many memories of growing up in Ithaca in the late 50's and early 60's.

We used to live in the East Hill area, specifically on Woodcrest Terrace. My brothers and I used to ride our mini-bikes and hunt along the old tracks which ran from Mithcell Street to Honess Lane. I remember the tracks used to cross Mithchell Street and end going into a big building used by Cornell. The old East Hill Station was still in place and the tracks used to serve both Koopers Tar Company and University Sand and gravel.

As far as the South Hill area I remember from where we lived on East Hill we used to be able to see a train everyonce and awhile going along the old DL&W tracks alongside Coodington Road to Morse Chain. The railroad crossing on Aurora Street hill was thought to have been a cause in several trucks loosing their brakes while going down the hill and causing some terrible wrecks. The track crossings were removed and the grade was redone for most of the upper length the hill and to my knowledge no more run-away truck problems were an issue.

We played baseball at Cass Park and the old airport their was still used for small aircraft. We would see a train every once in awhile going along the tracks to/from Geneva. I also remember that there used to be a long trestle in Interlaken that as a kid I thought was huge!

When the tracks were all torn up to make the famous Octupus my dad had my brothers and I go with him to get a bunch of railroad ties which we put alongside our driveway as a retaining wall. The ties were all just piled up and you could get as many as you could haul away. When they were completed ripping up all the ties, those that weren't taken, were all put into a big pile and burned for days!

I also remember the tracks that ran behind Spencer road and crossed over Elmira road by Buttermilk State park and would see a train there every once in awhile.

I also remember when Route 13 was constructed and how it changed the way we used to get into Stewert Park. As a young boy we used to be able swim at Stewert Park and was thrilled to see a train go by to the salt plant and/or the power station. It was also a thrill to be able to watch the route 13 construction going up to Cayuga Heights while playing at Stewert Park.

I was lucky to have been able to see the last moments of the LV in Ithaca, and although I don't have any pictures to share..... the memories are vivid in my mind.

I am fascinated with the interest and history of the various railroads that once served Ithaca!

Stu
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Postby CAR_FLOATER » Sat Nov 03, 2007 1:43 pm

Scot -

Great map, now I know more about Ithaca than I ever did before...I have always found the DL&W switchback interesting.....Where/how did you make the map? I like the simulated topographical relief. I'd like to try to do what you did here with other areas of the LV.

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Postby DElder » Sat Nov 03, 2007 7:03 pm

Stu:
I grew up just north of Ithaca during the late 50s through the mid 70s, and also remember most of the things that you talked about around Ithaca....always fun when someone jogs the old memory. Thanks for sharing.

The trestle that you recall at Interlaken is actually most likely the big one across the creek just as the old passenger line entered Trumansburg from the south. I lived within sight of that for several years just before the tracks from Ithaca to T-burg came out. I also recall it as being huge, and we walked over it fairly regularly after the tracks were pulled out. It's still there (saw it during a trip back to NY this past August), but both ends are now inaccessible, and it somehow just doesn't seem as big as I remember it!
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Postby DElder » Sat Nov 03, 2007 7:11 pm

Scot:
THANKS for the excellent map. As an ex-T-Burg guy that spent an awful lot of my "formative years" in and around Ithaca (and now 29 years removed from that area), I've really enjoyed looking at it. Sure brings back lots of great memories of LV-watching around that area!
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Postby tun » Mon Nov 05, 2007 10:53 am

Scot, thanks for that picture and map. I will try to get down there one of these weekends to take pics. Hopefully I will catch something down there.
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