Western New Haven (i.e. New York) Main Line Freight Remnants

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.

Re: Western New Haven (i.e. New York) Main Line Freight Remn

Postby TCurtin » Wed May 16, 2012 1:23 pm

Noel Weaver wrote:Finally the electric switcers and electric freights, after McGinnis took over in 1954 one of his goals was to get ride of as much electric as possible and in this regard the last of the electric switchers went around 1957 or 1958. Last places used were one or two NX jobs out of New Rochelle and Stamford Yard. I am not sure that every last side track on the east end of the electrified territory had wire, it seems to me that at least some of them were always switched by either steam or later diesel. Even in the days of all of the electric switchers still being in or available for service there was not nearly enough of these engines to do all switching west of New Haven. One thing about the New Haven Railroad, you could always count on exceptions to the above.
Noel Weaver


I got wildly intrigued by this matter and did some research into 1950's Engine Assignments. I confined the search ONLY to jobs from Stamford west, since that's what this thread is about (An equally interesting list can be constructed for locals in the rest of the electric zone). You have to be careful when studying these Engine Assignments because they are rife with errors and omissions. Anyway here's what I found, and quite consistent with Noel's comment above:

Oct 1950
95 Stamford-Oak Pt-New Canaan local
109 New Roch-Stamford local
204 Stamford yd
206 New Roch yd
210 Stamford yd
215 Stamford yd
218 New Roch-Woodlawn local
222 Stamford yd
0971 New Roch wire train

April 1952
95 Oak Pt- E Bport local
104 E Bport-Oak Pt local
209 Stamford yd
210 Stamford yd
215 Stamford switcher
218 New Roch yd
220 New Roch yd
221 Stamford yd
303 Stamford-Harlem Riv-New Canaan local
0972 New Roch wire train

Sept 1952
111 Pt Chester-New Roch-Stamford local
209 Stamford yd
210 Stamford yd
215 Stamford yd
218 New Roch yd
221 Stamford yd
0972 New Roch wire train

(Where's the New Canaan local frt. in Sept 1952? No mention of any power for it. This must be an example of one of the "errors and omissions" I spoke of previously)

(I have an Engine Assignment from 1955 but can't lay my hands on it right now, so there's a time gap here)

April 1957
86 NX-3 New Roch-Cos Cob
218 NX-2 New Roch-Pelham Manor
220 Stamford yd
221 Stamford relief
0943 NX-6 Stamford-New Canaan
0949 Stamford yard
0972 New Roch wire train

For those who may not know, these are the engine classes listed:
Engine numbers under 111 - EF-1 electric freight motors
200 series engine numbers - EY electric switchers
300 numbers - EP-2 electric passenger motors (not unusual to see a low number one like 303 in freight duty late in its life)
0930-0995 DEY-3 Alco Diesel switchers

Several things jump out at you, e.g.. 1)In 9/52 and earlier the only diesel in use from Stamford west was the New Rochelle wire train. I emphssize, this is ONLY from Stamford west. 2)In April 1957 diesel swlitchers have made a couple of more inroads but there are surprisingly still 4 electrics in local and switching service. As Noel pointed out, I bet that was the end
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Re: Western New Haven (i.e. New York) Main Line Freight Remn

Postby Noel Weaver » Wed May 30, 2012 3:58 am

According to the Engine Assignment book for September 28, 1952 the following locomotives were assigned to Oak Point:
Steam: 2 class T - 0-6-0 T one for Van Nest Shop Swiltcher and the other as a relief to the first one.
Diesel: 0600 class (S-2, ALCO/GE) 1 for Oak Point Yard
0660 class (RS-1, ALCO/GE) 1 for Oak Point Yard
0900 class (S-1, ALCO/GE) 3 for Oak Point Yard and one for the New Rochelle Wire Train
Electric: 200 (EY) 12 assigned and reserve
At this time there were already four EY class electric switchers out of service at Van Nest and more would follow before long.
The next Engine Assignment book that I have is dated September 26, 1954 and by then McGinnis had taken over and the electric switchers were down to only 6 locomotive and of the 6, the only ones in regular use were in New Rochelle and Stamford and this book shows the Van Nest Shop job but I seem to think that the Van Nest job had an 0800 class diesel. This book shows 9 0900 class diesels at Oak Point/Harlem River. This book also shows an 0800 class diesel for the shop job at Van Nest and I think that is what was used there at the time. In this, the first year of the McGinnis disaster there were already 5 300 class Westinghouse motors out of service plus electric switchers went from 22 to 6 and the electric "jeeps" went from 28 to 12.
Van Nest Shop closed down in the summer of 1959 and by that time many other fine electric locomotives were removed from service and never ran again. By this time McGinnis was gone but Alpert was just as bad or in someways worse. Their tatics hastened the end of the New Haven Railroad let their be no doubt about that.
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Re: Western New Haven (i.e. New York) Main Line Freight Remn

Postby larchmontrails » Wed Aug 24, 2016 6:34 pm

The old larchmont freight yard was a spur off the main line just before the station stop in larchmont going eastbound, it was served by cantanary so it could be used by the early electric engines and in later years; by diesel loco's
the track consisted of a main section with a switch to select a siding which then was split again by another switch into two segments There was a NYNH&HRR freight house and freight service for Henigson's lumber company-Chatsworth coal and Colonial sand and stone/New York trap rock

freight service was a few times a week and was abandoned sometime in the late 70's-early 80's with the tracks removed for construction of a condo complex on the site in 2015-2016 when the property was sold

as a young child, the crew used to let us ride in the caboose while they were in and out of the yard, this would not happen in today's railroad world
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Re: Western New Haven (i.e. New York) Main Line Freight Remn

Postby Rockingham Racer » Thu Aug 25, 2016 7:35 am

I believe I remember a local out of White Plains that came down the Harlem to Woodlawn, and reversed to go up the hill on the New Haven division where there was a customer not far from the tower.
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Re: Western New Haven (i.e. New York) Main Line Freight Remn

Postby Ridgefielder » Tue Aug 30, 2016 6:14 pm

Think I remember hearing those customers up on he hill at Woodlawn were technically NYC not NH served. Think the farthest west NH freight got was Mount Vernon East.
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Re: Western New Haven (i.e. New York) Main Line Freight Remn

Postby Noel Weaver » Tue Aug 30, 2016 11:17 pm

The NHRR served Woodlawn Lumber, I remember working NX-2 which worked out of New Rochelle and later Oak Point. Woodlawn Lumber was west of SS-20 off track four.
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