Old Mineola to West Hempstead line

Discussion of the past and present operations of the Long Island Rail Road.

Moderator: Liquidcamphor

Re: Old Mineola to West Hempstead line

Postby nyandw » Mon Oct 30, 2017 5:48 pm

Robert Emery Notes: WEST HEMPSTEAD BRANCH http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/branchnotes.htm#West%20Hempstead

Built by the New York Bay Extension Railroad Co.: 1893
Merged with the LIRR: 1902

Storage battery cars operated 6/1913 to 5/1926

At Valley Stream, on the north side of the Montauk branch, on the New York Bay Extension (later known as the West Hempstead branch) a single track spur stub ended in a sheet metal building which had large garage-type doors on the east end and which closed across the track. There was a platform along the north side of the track inside the shed. The building held two (2) 4-wheel, storage battery cars. Car #s 2 and 4 were assigned to the NY Bay Extension. Car #s 1 and 3 were assigned to the Bushwick branch between Fresh Pond station and Bushwick station. Car #s 1 and 2 were combine cars while #s 3 and 4 were straight coach. They were equipped for multiple operation. They operated in multiples on two trips during commission hour, otherwise they ran as a single unit, while the other would be recharged during lay-over. They were know locally by the native residents as “the Dinky” and by railroaders as “the Moxie Wagons.”

Electrification:
Country Life Press to Franklin Avenue , Garden City (to allow MU baggage cars access to the Doubleday plant): 1911 or 1912 Valley Stream to Franklin Ave. , Garden City: 10/19/1926

Freight sidings: 1927-28

First year of through MU operations, Valley Stream to Mineola : timetable of 10/1926
Last year of through MU operations, Valley Stream to Mineola : timetable of 9/1935 (service suspended in 1935 due to the Public Service Commission demanding grade crossing eliminations between West Hempstead and Mineola .)

Just one manual block from “HC” to “VA” until “WM” block limit was installed in 1935.

Track connection at Country Life Press to the West Hempstead branch removed: August 19, 1960 per General Notice No. 7-5

Tracks cut back from Country Life Press to the west side of Franklin Avenue crossing (“5 Corners”): August 19, 1960 Remaining racks north of West Hempstead station at Hempstead Ave. still in place in 1967 (D. Keller visual evidence) and most probably all removed by c. 1969.
User avatar
nyandw
 
Posts: 3064
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:41 am

Re: Old Mineola to West Hempstead line

Postby fredmcain » Tue Oct 31, 2017 6:26 am

Steve,

The part that says that "Tracks cut back from Country Life Press to the west side of Franklin Avenue crossing (“5 Corners”): August 19, 1960", doesn't quite jibe with my memory. We didn't move to Garden City until the very late summer of 1962 and I distinctly recall that the tracks were still there all the way from WH to CLP albeit with the junction switch at CLP removed. I believe that the track from CLP to WH was all ripped up sometime during 1963 but I can't say exactly when. My childhood friend that I mentioned in another post told me he saw the salvage train. This had to be after '62 'cause I wasn't in the area before that. Perhaps the LIRR got PERMISSION to remove the tracks in 1960 but didn't get to it right away, I don't know.

Also, I don't know what this means: "Remaining tracks north of West Hempstead station at Hempstead Ave. still in place in 1967 (D. Keller visual evidence) and most probably all removed by c. 1969." As I said in my other post, I rode my bike (more than once I think) to WH to watch trains leave from there. I distinctly recall that a bumper had been installed on the east side of the station (on the south side of Hempstead AVE) but the rails still crossed the street although they too had been paved over. I remember seeing the rails end on the IMMEDIATE north side of the Avenue. Perhaps that's what Keller meant by the "Remaining tracks north of West Hempstead station at Hempstead Ave" still being in place.

Whatever you do PLEASE do not take it that I am trying to nitpick your site 'cause I am not. I think it's a GREAT site!. I was exploring it yesterday. The first time I looked at your WH page I thought I'd seen it before but later I decided I had not. You've got a lot of wonderful pictures, maps and history in there and I hope you keep building on this! I guess I am mostly trying to stitch together the childhood memories I have and sort them out. Some of them I am certain of others I am not so sure about. Although I know I saw the track to CLP there in 62, I can't say if the third rail was still in place or not. I have no idea how we can ever find out. Maybe it doesn't even matter. I would just LOVE to see the line revived someday. That may happen, too, just not in our lifetime! :(

One more piece of extreme trivia that I'd like to share. The Hempstead branch (Garden City Line) grade crossing at Franklin Ave STILL had the diamond-shaped crossing sign and hand-operated gates until 1964 when they were replaced. I spent many long hours hanging out around the Garden "Tower" shanty bee-essing with an operator known to me only as "Andy". He was a helluva nice guy!

Regards,
Fred M. Cain
Fred M. Cain,
New Haven Railroad fan
Not afraid to use my own name
fredmcain
 
Posts: 71
Joined: Wed Dec 08, 2010 7:44 am

Previous

Return to Long Island Rail Road (LIRR)

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests