L&H Memories: 24 Hours @ Andover (Part 3)

Discussion of the L&HR and its predecessor the Warwick Valley Railroad for the period 1860-1976 at its inclusion with ConRail

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L&H Memories: 24 Hours @ Andover (Part 3)

Postby jmchitvt » Sun May 08, 2011 6:53 pm

Just recently, after spring lambing (Nine!!), we headed to southeast Tennessee to visit family.

As we came west of Harriman on 84 the active and not-so-active rights-of-way were noted as well as that Rte 208 to Maybrook. But, no desire to make a turn-off. I'll just remember it as it was.

Approaching Exit 2 we see High Point and I tune in WNNJ 103.7 FM. Didn't keep it on for long. Remember when friends from Seton Hall and me volunteered weekends way back when the weekday staff was off. Some different music then.

Anyway keeping in mind the familiar "you can't go home again" - just maybe we can.

I'd be calmed crusing through "Allamuch" and Tranquility then turn onto 206. The day man was only to happy to leave.

Usually OA-1 was gone, #34 might be on the connector and a late-running AO-4 might still be coming. You'd have that eastbound DL&W milk train with the boring BLACK GP-7 with a trail of museum pieces. But, Mr Barbara was friendly with his big wave. As I recall it his son was about to be manager of Steamtown in VT.

After a big lull the two "per diem" jobs headed your way. Long before car hire by the hour, and that "incentive" tariff, it was of utmost importance to get all those empties off the property. Get #33 to Port Morris yard limit board and OA-3 by L&H Junction (west end of the Delaware River bridge) before midnight and "whamo" the connecting line pays that day's per diem.

On a sultry Summer evening the southbound 206 traffic especially hated #33. Flashers go on as they stop for the hand throw at the east end connector, s l o w l y pull forward to do the hand throw the other end and all those empties hammer to a stop. Traffic keeps backing up with all those Jersey "weekenders" heading back to the city. #33 is in no hurry if it's well before eleven (and they won't get #30 to come back with for a few hours). I think they really didn't mind that what looked like a mile-long back up on 206.

They were working, not on holiday.

When OA-3 came by you had to be especially careful. Get back quickly after the head-end hand up. Those empties from the NH could be BAD NEWS. You'd have steel strapping dragging along with a flat car, then there was THAT reefer with a swinging door!!!!

Actually, you wouldn't EVEN have an order if there wasn't that Employee Time Table Special Instruction #6: "Double tracks are in service between Mansfield Street and "G" Tower. The normal position of switch at Mansfield Steet is for eastward track."

So you'd have one or two stations issuing over a thousand Form 19's every year for YEARS that read: "Extra (#) West has right over eastward trains on Eastward Track Mansfield Steet to G Tower".

Time to clear the desk for the third trick man. He'll have the "hot" #35 coming soon, then after the merger, the "Yankee Jet One" bringing new business, and recognition of smart railroading with a feature article in a national magazine, "POPULAR SCIENCE"!!
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Re: L&H Memories: 24 Hours @ Andover (Part 3)

Postby Dump The Air » Mon May 09, 2011 8:10 am

keep em coming! this is tremendous stuff.
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Re: L&H Memories: 24 Hours @ Andover (Part 3)

Postby jmchitvt » Mon May 09, 2011 11:45 am

Thank you.

This three part "Andover" series has generated more appreciation than my usual previous stuff had.

I don't know if it is still listed since the site was revamped, and older posts were lost, but only my "Why the L&H Died?" got more replies.

Just this morning during chores up here on the foothills of the Central Green Mountains, I thought of my next possible article subject. When I was growing up way, way long ago, there was this place in Buttzville named "Island Park", run by friends of the family. And, the L&H ran right in back of it!! Oh, those "steamboat whistles" on the 10-Class 4-8-2's!!

Going to be away for a while - the NH Sheep & Wool Festival is coming up soon - our first sheep show this year.

So it might be two or three weeks before I get back to posting. Really enjoy sharing the memories while there's still time...
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Re: L&H Memories: 24 Hours @ Andover (Part 3)

Postby jrevans » Mon May 09, 2011 11:06 pm

jmchitvt wrote:Thank you.

This three part "Andover" series has generated more appreciation than my usual previous stuff had.

I don't know if it is still listed since the site was revamped, and older posts were lost, but only my "Why the L&H Died?" got more replies.

Just this morning during chores up here on the foothills of the Central Green Mountains, I thought of my next possible article subject. When I was growing up way, way long ago, there was this place in Buttzville named "Island Park", run by friends of the family. And, the L&H ran right in back of it!! Oh, those "steamboat whistles" on the 10-Class 4-8-2's!!

Going to be away for a while - the NH Sheep & Wool Festival is coming up soon - our first sheep show this year.

So it might be two or three weeks before I get back to posting. Really enjoy sharing the memories while there's still time...


I too really appreciate your postings! It's great to hear information on how it used to be.

I'm not specifically a L&H fan and never saw your previous postings until they merged some of the other groups together into the "Anthracite Railroads" group, but I'm very glad that I've been able to read your work.

Thanks again for posting, and I look forward to your next segment.
JimE
Jim's train Web Pages - (Actually, this site doesn't exist any more....)
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Re: L&H Memories: 24 Hours @ Andover (Part 3)

Postby NYS&W142Fan » Tue May 10, 2011 9:53 pm

I am really enjoying your "memories". I've also spent time at Island Park at Picnics and social gatherings. I remember one time a L&HR going over the Pequest as a EL was just entering the bridge over the L&HR. Sure wish I had a camera back then.
You sure are bringing back memories for me!

Thanks!
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Re: L&H Memories: 24 Hours @ Andover (Part 3)

Postby Paul Miller » Fri May 13, 2011 6:51 am

Unfortunately, Island Park went belly-up last year. Had many fond memories of my band playing there since 2005. The pool was just filled in at that time, but they did have bands playing outside in the back grove. If you walked near the old horseshoe pits in the back, you could clearly see the LHR's bridge over the Pequest, with the DLW bridge overhead. There's still a cement bridge that crosses the Pequest from Island Park's parking lot to the grove. At times when the Pequest floods it completely engulf's the bridge, but I've seen cars still run over it. Fisherman still fish off the bridge. There's a picture of Babe Ruth inside the bar standing in the Pequest with some trout, apparently he fished from that region, which makes you wonder if he got to Buttzville via train.The food was great and the staff there were always friendly. On my way up to a gig there in the winter, I first noticed the ROW along Route 46 near the Pequest Hatchery. There's so many relics left throughout Buttzville, including a signal tower for Petty's siding right behind Island Park. Pequest Furnace remains are back there as well. Hearing the stories from JMChitvt and other veterans brings to life a part of the railroad I never got to see or experience and can oly imagine. It must've been some ride going through all the farmlands and rivers of NJ and NY and seeing all the sights to see. Thanks again JMChitvt, and please keep them coming for all towns and experiences.
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