Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

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Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

Postby Otto Vondrak » Tue Sep 23, 2008 2:44 pm

I was looking at an satellite view of Mohawk Yard and noticed what I think is a railroad right of way coming off at the south end of the yard and running due south to the NYC mainline. At first I thought it was the B&M, but that line is plainly visible just to the west. Was this an old freight interchange?

-otto-
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Re: Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

Postby march hare » Tue Sep 23, 2008 4:08 pm

Pretty sure that you're referring to the line that went over to NYC's Sand Bank yard.

In the immediate aftermath of Hurrican Agnes in 1972, I have some pix of a PC freight delivering interchange to the D&H at Mohawk, using this connector to do so. I later learned that this was part of a PC effort to avoid repairing the Buttonwood connection in Wilkes-Barre, which had been washed out during the Agnes flood. PC would just deliver traffic to D&H at Mohawk, thus short-hauling the D&H.

Cool train, btw. Three F units (one in NYC paint) and an RS11. Dummy that I was at the time, I shot roster pix of the engines, but did not shoot an overall shot that showed the train at a recognizably "Mohawk" location. This, despite the fact that the train was parked next to MX tower.
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Re: Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

Postby Otto Vondrak » Tue Sep 23, 2008 7:53 pm

Thanks!
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Re: Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

Postby Kuyahoora Valley » Sat Sep 27, 2008 9:22 am

The rails were still in place in 1983 when I started college in Schenectady...they pulled them up in 83-84 timeframe.
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Re: Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

Postby sectioneight » Sat Sep 27, 2008 11:23 am

In the mid-1970s I worked a local (TS1, a traveling switcher) out of Selkirk that 1) delivered cars to West Albany, 2) took outbounds from West Albany, and 3) picked up D&H interchange cars from this connector at Sandbank yard, taking everything to Selkirk. Most often we had a pair of GP38s for this job. We were pretty much assured of 12 hours (or more if we didn't make it in) every day, 6 days a week. The rest of the crew would usually take Saturdays off -- but I was young and hungry and needed the overtime.

TS1 did the West Albany run, while TS2 took care of South Schenectady, and TS5 handled the Guilderland depot.

In later years the D&H interchange was moved to Kenwood, eventually becoming a CP/D&H train coming into Selkirk over the Albany Branch.

Some time prior to this arrangement, in the NYC/PC era, I believe a train out of Dewitt (DA24) would come down the main from Hoffmans (before that track was removed from service) and take these D&H interchange cars out, eventually getting them to Selkirk by backing over the Carmen Branch over to the West Shore at South Schenectady. This train often used a ragtag collection of F7s, GP20s, RS3s and such.
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Re: Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

Postby Otto Vondrak » Sat Sep 27, 2008 5:53 pm

Great info, thanks for sharing!
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Re: Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

Postby Engineer Spike » Mon Sep 29, 2008 12:59 pm

At one time, the interchange was moved to South Schenectady. The D&H had a branch here. It cut off of the main along side of GE. It goes up a steep hill. I have been told that this was possibly part of the original alignment of the Schenectady Branch. It crossed the West Shore, then went through the area now occupied by the I88-90 interchange/ toll plaza. It used some of the present route west of there, but on a somewhat different grade. About half way to Delanson, it goes east of the present line, and it connected to the Albany Main somewhere timetable north of Delanson. I hope to walk it someday.
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Re: Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

Postby csxhudson » Wed Oct 08, 2008 9:01 pm

There is a remaining section of track (at least there was a few years ago) just west of where the West Campbell Rd grade crossing was in Schenectady. The rail remained all the way down to the D&H main, but obviously ended there. The section of track east of West Campbell Rd was removed when 890 was built I believe. There is a fairly large ravine where dirt was excavated for the exit/entrance ramps used for exit 4C in downtown Sch'dy. Satellite images of South Schenectady still clearly show where the line ran from. Another small segment of the original line is located near North Thompson St. CSX actually uses this strech to store cars for South Schenectady yard.

Sure would have liked to see the diamond at South Schenectady!!

-Mike

Engineer Spike wrote:At one time, the interchange was moved to South Schenectady. The D&H had a branch here. It cut off of the main along side of GE. It goes up a steep hill. I have been told that this was possibly part of the original alignment of the Schenectady Branch. It crossed the West Shore, then went through the area now occupied by the I88-90 interchange/ toll plaza. It used some of the present route west of there, but on a somewhat different grade. About half way to Delanson, it goes east of the present line, and it connected to the Albany Main somewhere timetable north of Delanson. I hope to walk it someday.
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Re: Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

Postby ChiefTroll » Sun Nov 30, 2008 6:41 am

The connecting track between Mohawk Yard and Sand Bank was the alignment of the original Saratoga and Schenectady Railroad, that dated back to the 1830's. The S&S crossed the Mohawk River on the same bridge as the Utica and Schenectady, later part of the New York Central. The connection to the NYC west of the river was Tower 9 on the NYC.

The D&H track from Schenectady to the West Shore at South Schenectady was called Connor's Spur. It was the original main line of the Schenectady and Duanesburgh Railroad. The New York, West Shore and Buffalo RR crossed it at grade at South Schenectady. The present D&H Schenectady Main was built around 1934, and the crossing diamonds at South Schenectady were removed several years later.

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Re: Connection from D&H Mohawk to NYC?

Postby greenwichlirr » Mon Dec 15, 2008 5:58 pm

The crossing relay cabinet is still at the crossing at Mohawk, but I'm pretty sure the crossing signal foundations are gone and yanked out.
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