New Haven Boston commuter question

Discussion relating to the NH and its subsidiaries (NYW&B, Union Freight Railroad, Connecticut Company, steamship lines, etc.). up until its 1969 inclusion into the Penn Central merger. This forum is also for the discussion of efforts to preserve former New Haven equipment, artifacts and its history. You may also wish to visit www.nhrhta.org for more information.

New Haven Boston commuter question

Postby ferroequinologist » Mon Jun 30, 2014 1:17 pm

I was wondering about NH's commuter operations out of Boston. What locomotives were generally used by commuter trains in and out of Boston prior to the T's takeover? I'm curious about both the steam and diesel era.
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Re: New Haven Boston commuter question

Postby TomNelligan » Mon Jun 30, 2014 3:15 pm

In the period I'm personally familiar with in the 1960s, the New Haven's Boston commuter trains that were assigned standard coaches were almost exclusively powered by the NHs dual service GP9s, with RS3 526 (the last RS3 with an active steam generator) often assigned to Boston as well. Seeing other locomotive types was rare by the mid-60s. RDCs from the NH's big fleet were even more common and covered more runs than standard equipment, including most off-peak and weekend trains. Penn Central kept the ex-NH GP9s and added a few E8s ,as well as (briefly, in the early 70s) a couple ex-NYC RS3s than ran mostly on the Needham branch rush hour trains. RDCs became less common in the PC years. The MBTA purchased an assortment of GP9s, E8s, and RDCs from PC when they assumed equipment ownership.

If you're seriously interested in the subject you should track down a copy of the Boston Street Railway Associations excellent 1985 book Boston's Commuter Rail: The First 150 Years by Thomas J. Humphrey and Norton D. Clark.
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Re: New Haven Boston commuter question

Postby ferroequinologist » Mon Jun 30, 2014 9:11 pm

Thanks! I knew RDCs were used, I didn't realize how much they were used. I'll keep an eye out for that book.
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Re: New Haven Boston commuter question

Postby Noel Weaver » Tue Jul 01, 2014 1:26 am

ferroequinologist wrote:Thanks! I knew RDCs were used, I didn't realize how much they were used. I'll keep an eye out for that book.


The last employee timetable in May, 1968 showed a total of 5 standard trains out of South Station in the PM rush, 3 to Providence, 1 to Stoughton and 1 to Franklin. Everything else was Budd RDC equipment.
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