• Hudson Division, 1912

  • Discussion relating to the NYC and subsidiaries, up to 1968. Visit the NYCS Historical Society for more information.
Discussion relating to the NYC and subsidiaries, up to 1968. Visit the NYCS Historical Society for more information.

Moderator: Otto Vondrak

  by Otto Vondrak
Picked up this interesting nearly-100-year-old timetable for the Hudson Division... Also shows service to 30th Street on the west side.


  by timz
Wonder if the West Side passenger trains used the same locomotives as the freights-- they probably had to use a dummy engine, and they only had one kind of those?

All the West Side passenger trains just shuttled up to Spuyten Duyvil-- no thru trains? Wonder if they could sit on a main track at the Sputen Duyvil station during the layover. No need to wye a dummy engine?
  by ExCon90
I saw a reprint of a schedule (naturally I can't remember where, but it may have been in an old issue of the New York Central Headlight publication of the NYCS Historical Society) from back in the 19th Century showing through service from Grand Central Depot to 30th St. via Spuyten Duyvil. The service was not too frequent (but then that part of Manhattan wasn't as densely populated), and before the IRT it may have been a pretty convenient way to go. Possibly what's in Otto's timetable is a cutback of that earlier service.
  by Tommy Meehan
I read a news item about those GCT-30th Street Station trains in an old Railroad Gazette at the New York Public Library. It was the announcement of the service. Central called them "Circuit trains."

Gazette, which was located in Manhattan, speculated that with the growing street traffic it might be faster to go from the East Side near 42nd Street to the West Side near 30th by way of Spuyten Duyvil than by horsecar direct. I think the idea was the city had pushed Central to do it.

Back in the day the old 30th Street station was the terminal for the Hudson River Railroad. After the 1869 merger (with the original New York Central) the Hudson River trains were moved to the new Grand Central Depot when it opened in October 1871.

Commuters in Yonkers in particular complained they could get 'downtown' quicker via the West Side line to 30th Street and a 9th Avenue horsecar than via the new route to Grand Central and the horsecars of the 4th Avenue line. If you have access to a New York Times data base you can find some of the letters they wrote.

Some Yonkers-West Side through service was maintained but only until about 1890 I think. I thought it might've been later but the Yonkers newspapers carried the local schedules and one I looked at (on microfilm) from 1891 showed no through trains, only connections at Spuyten Duyvil. The connections between Hudson Division locals and West Side 'Dolly Vardens' were maintained at Spuyten Duyvil until the end of West Side passenger service (which I think we established in another thread was at least until 1930 or so).

Would make my life a lot simpler if they still had it today! :)
  by Dieter
MOTT HAVEN isn't listed, unless I've got the wrong name. What was the station called immediately on the Bronx side of the bridge?

  by ExCon90
The first station in the Bronx, as you come from Grand Central, was Mott Haven; however, the 30th St. trains shown in the 1912 timetable only went as far as Spuyten Duyvil. Passengers going in either direction from there had to change trains.
  by Tommy Meehan
I don't have a local timetable that goes back quite as far as 1912 but an ETT from 1901 calls the first station in the Bronx on the Harlem Line "138th Street," 4.95 miles from Grand Central Station. (That's right, that's what Central called it in the 1901 ETT, Grand Central Station.)

An ETT from 1962 calls the first station in the Bronx, "The Bronx (138th Street)."

On the West Side Line technically the first station in the Bronx for a westbound Hudson Division train would've been Riverdale. The 30th Street trains that used the wye at DV (DV was the tower at the junction of the Hudson Division and the West Side Line) to get to Spuyten Duyvil were actually changing direction, weren't they? They were westbound by timetable to DV, then became eastbound to reach Spuyten Duyvil station.