Did the D&H pass West Davenport?

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Did the D&H pass West Davenport?

Postby RussNelson » Mon Jan 29, 2007 2:04 pm

Did the D&H Cooperstown branch ever pass West Davenport? According to this map:
http://www.rutlandtrail.org/mapview.cgi ... =3&dot=Yes
the answer is "yes". According to this map:
http://www.rutlandtrail.org/mapview.cgi ... =3&dot=Yes
the answer is "no". Does anybody know the real answer, and if so, how far past West Davenport did it go?

UPDATE: As Charles notes below, this was originally built as the Cooperstown and Charlotte Valley Railroad.
Last edited by RussNelson on Mon Jan 29, 2007 3:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby nydepot » Mon Jan 29, 2007 2:55 pm

My understanding is it never made it past the junction west of West Davenport. Was the part from the West Davenport Junction to Cooperstown Junction U&D or D&H? Must be D&H, because I've never seen it on a U&D map.

Charles
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Postby nydepot » Mon Jan 29, 2007 3:12 pm

What do you know, apparently it did go all the way to Davenport Center like the "new" map.

"In the far north, the Cooperstown & Charlotte Valley ventured up Charlotte Creek as far as Davenport Center."

If anyone knows when this was abandoned, I'd like to know. Also did it allow the CACV to interchange with the U&D at all?

Charles
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Postby Mark_K » Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:00 pm

I don't recall the Best and Ham/Bucenec books mentioning the C&CV branch at Davenport in any great detail. Pretty sure the C&CV line south of the D&H was out by WW1.
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YES, THE C&CV

Postby henry6 » Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:07 pm

Yes, the C&CV did originally go to West Davenport to connect with he U&D via bridge across the D&H at Cooperstown Jct. In addition it connected with D&H at CJ. In the scheme of things, the C&CV was one of the dreams of connecting the west with the U&D. THere was another scheme on the west end of Oneonta to continue the U&D over to Morris, etc. The U&D was not originally NYC property, mind you, and wanted to be another O&W if you will, going from noplace to noplace with noplace in between but was sure to garner the coal and ore coming out of PA and getting to market. Somewhere.
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Postby RussNelson » Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:29 pm

Right; the question is whether it went past West Davenport like the 7.5' USGS Topo map says it did. Looking at the aerial photo (DOQ), it sure looks like it did. And if I squint hard and use my imagination, I can imagine that the route that 23 takes around Davenport Center is a former railroad ROW.

Frustrating this effort is the name of the railroad: Cooperstown (a definite endpoint) and Charlotte Valley (could be anywhere in the Charlotte Valley). Maybe they planned to go as far up the Charlotte Valley as they could? I see no geographic obstacle to a railroad running all the way up.
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YES BUT

Postby henry6 » Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:56 pm

Yes, the C&CV did go to West Davenport and connect with the U&D. But it was not the D&H, it was the C&CV. I do have maps to prove it only I don't have a scanner. Russ, I have a ca. 1915 book of NY road maps printed and copyrighted in Chester, VT. It is now part of Hagstrom, I believe. So the lines on your map are correct.
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YES BUT

Postby henry6 » Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:56 pm

Yes, the C&CV did go to West Davenport and on to Davenport to connect with the U&D. But it was not the D&H, it was the C&CV. I do have maps to prove it only I don't have a scanner. Russ, I have a ca. 1915 book of NY road maps printed and copyrighted in Chester, VT. It is now part of Hagstrom, I believe. So the lines on your map are correct.
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Postby nydepot » Mon Jan 29, 2007 7:09 pm

Russ, see my quote below I found. I also found hte C&CV was ripped out south of CJ in 1923 (well service stopped then).

Charles


nydepot wrote:What do you know, apparently it did go all the way to Davenport Center like the "new" map.

"In the far north, the Cooperstown & Charlotte Valley ventured up Charlotte Creek as far as Davenport Center."

If anyone knows when this was abandoned, I'd like to know. Also did it allow the CACV to interchange with the U&D at all?

Charles
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Postby deezlfan » Mon Jan 29, 2007 7:37 pm

I think a look at the history of the U&D may give a hint. If I remember correctly, The original plan for the U&D was to build out of Stamford toward Oneonta through Harpersville and Davenport. The people of Harpersville even raised a considerable amount of money for the RR. However at some point the route of the RR changed to a route that followed a less elevated grade through Hobart, South Kortright, Bloomville, Doonans Corners and East Merideth, finally rejoining the original route at Davenport center.

That being said, I wonder if the C&CV planned to build out to meet the U&D based on the original Harpersville route, and then the U&D realized they could cut the C&CV out by continuing on to Oneonta from Davenport Center without interchange. Could this explain the two routes so close together?

I also seem to remember that the C&CV abandoned the ROW south of the D&H after losing a bridge or embankment over Charlotte Creek after a freak flood. I think it was long before the D&H took over the C&CV. Can anyone tell me if am off track?
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C&CV

Postby eehiv » Mon Jan 29, 2007 8:01 pm

The C&CV history is outlined in the Best book. I don't have it in front of me, but my recollection is Thomas Cornell was building this line east from Oneonta towards Catskill. Construction stopped a few days after he died which I believe was in 1890. At that time, the rails had reached Davenport Center, but the grading continued much further east, away from the U&D grade.

According to an article in the winter 2004 edition of the ESRM's Telegraphed Dispatch, when the U&D reached West Davenport in the late 1890s, a rail connection was made to the D&H through the C&CV. The U&D built a station at the crossing of the two lines. This station was jointly operated by the U&D and C&CV, and the former C&CV station, located one mile east of the diamond, was closed.

Once the U&D was completed to Oneonta in 1900, there was little traffic for the C&CV south of Cooperstown Junction.

The D&H took over the C&CV in 1903 and ceased service south of Cooperstown Junction on August 10, 1905. The tracks around West Davenport were only used to store bad order cars. The rails were taken up in the 1920s.

An interesting footnote is that a U&D or C&CV employee hung himself in the U&D West Davenport station in 1902. Shortly after that, residents believed it to be haunted, and local residents refused to use it for local service. The station mysteriously burned down later in the year. The old C&CV station was moved one mile west to take its place.

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YES, THERE WERE

Postby henry6 » Tue Jan 30, 2007 9:00 am

Yes, there were many schemes at many times to bring coal and ore from PA to Canada or NYC. One of the above routes was to have continued on to Morris and Earlville where there was a line going on to Syracuse (later became a WS-NYC branch through Cazanovia, Erieville, Georgetown). Other schemes directed themselves north through Utica (or nearby) to go to Montreal. The proposed roads came up through the Northern Tier of PA or from WIlkes Barre into NY state.
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Re: C&CV

Postby RussNelson » Tue Jan 30, 2007 3:44 pm

eehiv wrote:The C&CV history is outlined in the Best book. I don't have it in front of me, but my recollection is Thomas Cornell was building this line east from Oneonta towards Catskill. Construction stopped a few days after he died which I believe was in 1890. At that time, the rails had reached Davenport Center, but the grading continued much further east, away from the U&D grade.


Oh-ho! This sounds like a candidate for the Unfinished Railroads of New York State page! Any idea where the grading went?
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Grading West of Davenport Center

Postby eehiv » Tue Jan 30, 2007 5:43 pm

Russ,

I recall that it was going to connect to the Canajorie & Catskill grade in Cooksburg, and from there on in to Catskill. This weekend I'll look at the Best book and post more details.

EH
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REVISION OF

Postby henry6 » Wed Jan 31, 2007 9:33 am

Revision of what I said before. The C&CV did build it; it was once a trolley line; it did cross the D&H at the junction on a bridge and proceeed to connect with the U&D just a hair west of West Davenport. But the D&H did later take over the C&CV and apparently effected an interchange. Whether either proceeded east to Davenport Center I can't say. Best bet is to check out Shaughenessy's D&H book or Best's U&D book for details.
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