• Motive Power on the Pennsylvania Division

  • 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 poppyl
Up until now I've modeled the Western Maryland with emphasis on late steam and early diesel. I'm now thinking about building a new layout looking at the NYC's Pennsylvania (Fallbrook) Division in the mid 1920's to mid 1930's (pre-diesel). I expect to focus on the route between Corning and the Lyons interchange. Since I am "new" to the NYC, my question is what steam power would have operated over this route during that period?

Also, would anyone know where I could locate track maps for Geneva, the Corning yard, and Dundee for this period. So far, beyond a few period pictures my searches have proved fruitless.

  by erie2521
The only one I have a record of was in 1939 and was a 2700 series 4-8-2. (That was the series with the feedwater heater mounted out in front.) By that time NYC mainline freights almost universally used 4-8-2's but whether they used 2800's and 2900's on that line, I haven't a clue. If I were a modeler, I always thought the 2700's were more photogenic anyhow. Ted
  by poppyl
Besides Mohawks, it seems logical that Pacifics and Mikes would be in service on the division. I also saw where 2-6-6-2 Mallets were used to pull coal drags but I do not know if their service area extended north of Corning. Still looking for track maps.
  by Clif
A map of the southern end of the NYC north baker street yard can be seen at George Elwell's fallen flags website,

he has it listed under the Erie,

however I was born in Corning NY and know the map can only be the baker street yard by the size of the roundhouse. (The Sanborn maps confirm this also)




I have printed out these three maps and from my memories these maps can only be the NYC yard not any Erie yards. (The Erie never had a roundhouse at corning, but at Hornell instead.)

Pictures of part of the south side yard, (next to corning glass works, and the original Erie yards and alignment through south side Corning can be seen here


These pics were taken in the early 50's but shows much that can be useful to a modeler.

a link to Sanborn Insurance maps from the mid 1930's is available here.

http://www.jon-n-bevliles.net/RAILROAD/ ... t+1930.pdf

A link to a pic of the original coaling tower at Corning baker st yard is here;

http://home.earthlink.net/~railroad_tow ... tation.JPG

That image is the construction photo by the construction co that built it in 1909.

one real gem is the Panoramic image of the NYC yard at corning taken in 1915;

http://lcweb2.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/h?p ... 1369%29%29

which shows exactly how the yard and engine facility was laid out, also roundhouse, double water towers, and side of powerhouse store house.

I used a partial close up, plus the builders photo

http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/data ... totype.jpg

to start a scratch build of the tower;

http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/data ... esized.jpg

As for motive power, the NYC used 2-8-0's from the turn of the century, which were bumped by both mikados and the 2-6-6-2's in the teens.

the 2-6-6-2's were bumped by the 4-8-2's in the late 20's and early 30's

Passenger ran to Lyons from Corning using mostly pacifics until 1935 (as per my mothers memory)

Corning would have local switchers (mostly 2-8-0's serving the large corning Glass works and the coal dealers and lumber yards (on Sanborn maps), plus coal trains from Pa coal mines to Syracuse, Rochester, Buffalo and points east. Also through freights from the Reading connection at Williamsport Pa to NYC

Hope this helps.

PS I am also modeling the NYC Pa Div, from south of corning to the north, however most of my concern in the corning area itself with the shared south side area they have side by side yards and a double track diamond, I have used the Sanborn maps plus the maps from fallen flags to plan from.
  by Clif
I forgot to add the 2-6-6-2's went at least to Dewitt at Syracuse because I have seen pics of them there.
  by poppyl
Thanks, Clif. You've put me on information overload. :-D

Regarding the Mallets and coal drags, you wouldn't happen to know if pushers were used on the northbound ruling grade from Reading Center to Dundee?
  by Clif
No, since I am much more focused on corning itself, however i know one mallet replaced up to three consolidations.

You will find images and info on the PA div very sparse, I am always seeking good pics of Corning NYC.
  by poppyl
I share your frustration, although you have some good information on Corning. I'm in the planning stage for a point-to-point 1930's layout in O gauge running from Corning to Geneva. There isn't much along the route between the two end points -- Dundee, Himrod Junction, spur to Penn Yan, and a couple of things in Dresden (pre-Greenridge Station). I may have to embellish a little to improve the operational needs of the route. :-)

Speaking of Consolidations, I now model late steam/early diesel on the Western Maryland focusing on the line west of Hagerstown, MD including the Elkins WVA division. Nothing like a dozen H-9's pulling/pushing a coal drag up through the Black River canyon (2.6% ruling grade) or multiple units of Challengers, Decapods, and Potomacs working west from Cumberland through the Alleghenies.
  by Statkowski
you wouldn't happen to know if pushers were used on the northbound ruling grade from Reading Center to Dundee?
Can't comment on such, but pushers were occasionally required on the downhill run from Cherry Tree northward to Mahaffey on the other end of the Pennsylvania Division. Yes, pushers downhill. All the curves added resistance that needed to be overcome to keep the loaded train moving.
  by Clif
A few more links on topic;

1: The shops and yard at Corning;

http://www.archive.org/stream/americane ... 1/mode/1up

On page 5 in this book there is an article about the Boston and Albany shops at Springfield Mass and other locations.

2: An article about the original 2-6-6-2 which ended up becoming the NE series of 2-6-6-2's used on this division;

http://www.archive.org/stream/americane ... 3/mode/1up

3: Here an article about testing the 2-6-6-2's on the Division between Newberry Jct Pa and Corning NY;

http://www.archive.org/stream/americane ... 1/mode/1up

4: An article about maintaining the 2-6-6-2;

http://www.archive.org/stream/americane ... 5/mode/1up
  by poppyl
Thanks, Clif. I'm in good shape in terms of modeling the Corning end of my point-to-point. I don't have a lot of info on Geneva yet but have pictures of the current operations there and can probably work from those. Same thing for the Himrod Junction. I also have a track plan for the sub from Dresden to PY and pictures of the Dundee and Dresden stations. I think that I can figure out the various sidings in Dundee frm memory and a couple of later aerials (1950's era) that I have come across.

In terms of O gauge motive power, I'm going to focus on Pacifics, Mikes, and Mohawks. May include a Niagara and Hudson just for fun. And a Mallet or two if I can find them.

  by Clif
Don't forget consolidations for the peddler freights, The fallen flags site has a pic of an early 2-8-0 on a freight in Corning.
  by poppyl
Being a WM modeler, I'm pretty partial to Consolidations (H-8's and H-9's) but I think the NYC Consolidations were a little before my NYC layout timeframe. Besides, I'm not sure that my pocketbook can afford more Consolidations.

  by NYCRRson
Howdy, I don’t have any pics of the Penn Division but I do have a few observations if that helps.

I believe that the NYCRR purchased two types of Mallet locos; one for slow hump yard work (late 1910’s and early 1920’s), and the 2-6-6-2’s SPECIFICALLY for the Penn Division (later in the 1920’s). The Penn Division was one of the few places on the NYC with GRADES and COAL TRAFFIC combined together. Yes the B&A had grades, but not much coal came out of Mass. I have read that the 2-6-6-2 did replace up to three contemporary locomotives.

The Stauffer book discusses this in some detail. Can’t lay my hands on my copy right now, but it has all the info on classes, dates, locations deployed, etc.

My Dad did operate on the “Corning Pike” (the 1970’s name for the line from Lyons to Corning) and was stuck in Corning during the BIG flood from tropical storm Agnes in 1974 (maybe 72). They put a dozen plus loaded coal hoppers on the bridge over the Chemung River to hold it down, it did not work. He was sleeping in a motel just across the street from the Glass Museum when they woke him up in the middle of the night and said “the waters coming; get out”. The Motel did not survive, but I think I still have his room key around here somewhere.

Funny story, the local taxicab operator had the common sense to move all cabs up to a high spot above the floodwaters (unlike a New Orleans Mayor that thought school buses under water would be useful). Unfortunately he decided to leave all the keys in a safe place, i.e. the office. Too bad that the office ended up under water, so he had lots of DRY taxicabs, but no KEYS.

Cheers, Kevin.
  by poppyl
In case you NYC fans haven't heard, NS is planning to rebuild some portion of the old NYC Baker Street/North Corning yard. Project is slated to begin this Spring.