• Arcade Enginehouse & Cattaragus Creek Bridge

  • All about the Arcade & Attica Railroad
All about the Arcade & Attica Railroad

Moderator: Benjamin Maggi

  by hotairmenair
Does anybody know what year the A&A wooden enginehouse at Arcade was built, and when the present "new" Cattaragus Creek bridge was installed, replacing the old one?

  by BSOR Patarak
As far as I have been able to tell, the enginehouse was built in 1917. There are mentions of the construction of a new enginehouse in the corporate minutes from that year. There is also mention of adding ventilation to the new structure.

The earlier operation, Buffalo, Attica and Arcade had a structure in the same general location. There is a photograph of the Arcade Baseball Team at the Arcade historical society taken next to the older shop building. From what can be seen there looks to be additions made out the back of the building...clearly a different building than what stands today. I don't have the firm date from the picture, but it was prior to 1917.

Due to the fact that I have no firm dates or pictures on this, it is a guess. So if anyone is able to shed more light on the subject, I'd appreciate it!

As for the bridge at Arcade, it was replaced during the summer of 1980. It was part of a project funded by NYS that also included rehab and laying of heavier rail going north out of Arcade. Additional flooding in June of 1986 caused damage to the wing walls, of which parts were utilized from the old bridge. Repairs were made in the fall of that year. The replacement of the bridge eliminated the center wooded piles and an obstruction in the creek.

Pat Connors
A&A RR Research

  by BSOR Patarak
I found an interesting tidbit about the original bridge at Arcade from the Wyoming County Hearld newspaper:
"The Buffalo, Attica and Arcade are having piles driven into the bed of the Cattaraugus Creek. They will build a stone abutment on the piling and make a two span bridge of it. A petition is being circulated asking the town board to restrain them from building it. They claim it will dam the creek in times of high water." August 14, 1903

"The BA&A are building an abutment in the center of the Cattaraugus Creek. It will be about 6 feet wide at the bottom and will taper up to three or four feet, and will be sharply pointed. They will put a new iron bridge on when the abutment is in. There have been claims made that this would tend to dam up the creek and cause a flood. We do not believe that it will do this the way they are going to build it." August 28, 1903
It is funny that this was a concern when it was built. The Village had a very similar bridge just up the creek, on Church Street, with a center support, much the same way. In hind sight, that bridge stood that way, with supports in the creek for nearly 80 years!

Pat Connors
A&A Research[/quote]

  by BSOR Patarak
Looking more into the enginehouse and sand house construction dates I discovered something more firm.

The shop more likely was built in 1918. The original right of way through the village of Arcade was built through by the narrow gauge Tonawanda Valley and Cuba. It was on a path more directly through the center of the present shop. The Buffalo, Attica and Arcade followed the narrow gauge right of way, though they may have straightened things out a bit south of Arcade.

When the B&S came in to Arcade, they located their main line just west of the BA&A. Though they did purchase much of the narrow gauge right of way south of Arcade, they further straightened out the line, especially through Sandusky. Once they built through town and purchased the BA&A, the lower, eastern right of way across the present shop property was not needed other than for storage. The BA&A had a single track enginehouse on or near the same location as the present. The 1902 county atlas shows a structure with two smaller ones in front of it. I'm not sure of the exact positions, but it could have been track section houses or even the present sand house.

When the Arcade & Attica was formed and purchased the BA&A right of way, it included the piece remaining toward Sandusky. This was traded back to the Haskell Farm (that owned most of the land south of the present shop over which the original right of way passed, and the current location of Haskell Avenue). The minute books talk of trading the remaining right of way back to Haskell for a larger parcel to locate the new engine house. This property wasn't transferred until sometime in 1918.

Also an interesting note from the ICC Valuation Report on the A&A in 1926 states that nearly $6500 was spent on construction shop and engine facilities. It isn't specific about what structures this would include. There was the sand house or water facilities, shop and a small section house at Arcade.

Pat Connors
A&A Research
  by BSOR Patarak
I found one other interesting item, an original drawing of the wooden roll up doors mounted in the front of the building.

It is marked "Details of Kinnear Wood Rolling Doors for Arcade and Attica Railroad. Co, Ordered by W.H. Brodie Co, New York, NY, Order Date 11-12-1918, Order #46380".

With this date, it pushes the construction more into early 1919.

In April 1918, the board motioned to secure an estimate for construction of an enginehouse not to exceed $3500, and a coaling plant not to exceed $1500.


  by thebigham
Thanks, Pat, for all the info.

I'm glad you finally nailed down a date for the enginehouse.

Now, how about the Beaver Meadow Bridge? LOL. Just teasing...

  by BSOR Patarak
LOL Chris! A time machine would come in handy too!

But, speaking of that bridge...I did find a photograph of it dated 1915. It looks exactly like it does today, center leg and all. Another piece that dates back to the pre-A&A days.