LNE Main line question..

Discussion of the L&NR railroad for the period 1868-1961 at its inclusion in the Central of New Jersey. Also includes predecessors South Mountain and Boston Railroad, Pennsylvania, Poughkeepsie and New England Railroad, and others.

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LNE Main line question..

Postby peterde » Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:31 am

(I originally had this in the Erie forums, but I think it belongs here). I found this picture (top) of a ROW that runs near where I live in Goshen NY. A quick check of the tax maps shows that it is a abandoned ROW. The photo lists it as the main line of LNE. I originally thought it was a Erie connection from the Main Line to the Graham Line in Campbell Hall, however the photo's tag shows different. I found a reference that states that the Goshen to Campbell Hall portion of the LNE went unbuilt. Is this true? The second photo shows the Goshen station and it clearly show the tracks splitting off in that direction. Can anyone add any insight or history to this segment? I love it when there is undiscovered railroad history so close to my home.
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Re: LNE Main line question..

Postby pumpers » Fri Jan 28, 2011 1:51 pm

The LNE had plans to go this far north and more, but I think never went farther north than Pine Island, about 10 miles south of Goshen. It connected into a branch of the Erie that crossed the mainline in Goshen and I believe went all the way to Maybrook, another 10-20 miles north, which was a big RR yard with connections for New England. The LNE had rights to run their trains over the Erie tracks to get there I believe.

So the short answer is the main line in your photo is probably the old Erie main line. A freight bypass was built to stay away from all these little towns in that area and their grade crossings etc known and the Graham line, and that is what is left today for MetroNorth commuter trains.

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Re: LNE Main line question..

Postby Marty Feldner » Sat Jan 29, 2011 3:45 am

Short version of a very long and complicated story...

The tracks from Pine Island Junction (about a half mile north of the Pine Island station) north through Florida, Goshen, and up to Campbell Hall were Erie- it's Pine Island branch south of Goshen, and Montgomery branch north. The line from Goshen south was chartered as the Goshen & Deckertown (now Sussex, NJ), but was never completed. The L&NE's owned tracks from New Jersey ended at Pine Island Junction- they used trackage rights from there to CH and Maybrook. The two Erie branches met at Goshen where they crossed the Erie main line (basically at the Goshen station). Locals (including me) referred to the line as L&NE, since they were the only operators on the branches since at least the late thirties until the L&NE folded its tent in 1961. After the Erie's Graham Line was completed (about 1910) it went through Campbell Hall, so they had a much more direct access to Maybrook for freight; the Montgomery Branch was no longer needed for that by the Erie.

That first shot looks to be behind the Orange County Court and Government Center in Goshen. The old Orange County Jail was adjacent to the line, where the western part of the parking lot is now. If you look at where West Main Street Extension parts from West Main Street, there's a length of rail still in the pavement. And the ROW can still be made out at the end of Pond Road (across from Sarah Wells Trail). The newly built Harness Road appears to have been built directly on the ROW.

Most of the ROW can be followed on Bing Maps and Google Earth, with gaps, if you know where to look.
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Re: LNE Main line question..

Postby peterde » Sat Jan 29, 2011 11:38 pm

Thank you for you response. Yes, the first shot is the rear of the parking lot of the Government center, opposite Harness road. Now I know why Harness road is so straight. I would assume that Erie Street and Erie Park are named after the railroad, since the track ROW go right by them. Figures I would pick something very long and complicated...lol
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