• Rochester & Southern Railroad (RSR) Discussion

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New York State.
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New York State.

Moderator: Otto Vondrak

  by BR&P
Matt Langworthy wrote: Was GWI uninterested in the business north of M&F? Was the track too badly deteriorated?
WHAT business north of M&F? The only thing in even "sort-of" modern times was Greece Lumber, and they shut down somewhere in the early 1970's. I don't have dates off the top of my head but think it may have been Chessie System which tore out the tracks north of there, before R&S was even formed. No point in having a railroad to nothing.
  by charlie6017
Wonderful photos........took a look at some, but will diving into these headfirst after the football games! :P

  by RailKevin
Chris, was there a different alignment of the tracks at Kodak/Ridge Road than exists now? From your photos, it seems there were 2 B&O tracks across Ridge Road (with the Kodak switch north of Ridge). Today, the switch into Kodak is south of Ridge. I tried to confirm with old aerial photos but they were not clear enough to see the tracks.
  by CPSmith
Yes, you are on the money. In the B&O days, there were two B&O tracks with the Kodak lead switch on the north side.

When the B&O came down from Brooks with long (100+ car) unit coal trains (usually on the weekends), the crew would cut off and tie down the back end south of Ridgeway Ave. clear of the crossing circuit and pull the front end down to the Ridge. Depending on the power, the crew, the available space inside Kodak, etc., cuts of 10 to 30 (or so) cars each would be pulled down the main across Ridge Rd. and then shoved into Kodak on the Kodak lead. Unfortunately, that meant the crew had to flag Ridge Rd. for the shove move since the power was on the other (wrong) end. Five man crew notwithstanding, that's not an easy chore when done with no radios and no crossing gates. After flagging, the first brakeman would hop on the lead car and the second about half way into the cut. Both would climb to the tops of the hoppers and stand on their respective coal heaps to relay hand signals back to the conductor on the ground, who would in turn relay them back to the engineer and fireman. Once the cars were in the right spots inside Kodak, the crew went back out and repeated the process until everything was put away. Of course, room was limited inside Kodak, so quite often in the middle of all these moves, Kodak go-aways were taken out and placed on the runaround between Ridge and McCall, which created more room inside, but also added to the number of times the crew had to negotiate crossing the Ridge.

In today's R&S environment, the engineer pulls across the Ridge, blocks the crossing until the conductor flips the switch (the new switch now located south of Ridge Rd.) and then backs into Kodak. Piece of cake. And radios mean no one has to ride the tops of cars anymore.
  by BR&P
At least some of the time, the B&O crew would shove the coal way out west on the Kodak main. When they cut off, the Kodak crew would pull the cars east under the B&O and NYC, and store them in a small yard of 4 or 5 tracks just east of the NYC, on the south side of the Kodak main.

I can't recall the exact sequence, but it may be that the first cut was handled as described, the second cut was left on the Kodak main west of the B&O, and the 3rd cut was pieced into the yard just inside the gate, onto 2 or 3 tracks.

But as CPS said, riding the tops of the cars to pass signals, as well as climbing on the cars as they rolled briskly by, were normal routine parts of the job back then. Today's safety supervisors would have a coronary on the spot if someone did that today. Image
  by RailKevin
I found a map of the 1936 alignment of the Ridge Road crossing at the Monroe County LIbrary images collection. Search for Volume 4 Plate 30 in case the link doesn't work.


It's interesting to see Greece Lumber across from Kodak. Did they move up to Latta Road later on? Maybe it's a different business.
  by BR&P
Kevin, that's a very interesting find - cool! Image

I knew of the actual track layout there as shown, but did not know it used to be Greece Lumber. By about 1961 the property was used by L.B. Finewood Construction Company, and was where they parked their dump trucks, cranes, dozers etc. When Greece Lumber moved to the Latta Road location (B&O customer designation BL-81) I don't know. Perhaps the general cache of maps you found that in also covered the Latta Road site and would tell who owned it.

That track was physically still there crossing Ridge Road and into the property in the 1960's although the switch was gone and I never saw any cars in there. I would not be surprised if the rails are still there on the property, buried under the dirt.

EDIT: As C.P. Smith says, "GTS - Google That Shi...." I mean Stuff! I did, and found the following:

"L.B. FINEWOOD, INC. is an entity registered at MONROE county with company number 99056. L.B. FINEWOOD, INC. located at the address 788 Ridge Road West Rochester, New York, 14615. Company is incorporated on December 18, 1956. Current status of the company is active."
  by Otto Vondrak
CPSmith wrote:Lots of new stuff. Have fun.

http://rrpicturearchives.net/archivethu ... ?id=109130" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Oh my goodness. You are my hero.

  by BR&P
Otto Vondrak wrote: Oh my goodness. You are my hero.-otto-
Some very nice pics there, altho I believe the wording of the caption of the first photo is a bit misleading. C-2629 IS at the rear of a string of docks-bound coal. But the NYC is behind the photographer, and the switch stand is for the siding on the SAME side as the photographer, since you can already see the siding on the opposite side by looking at the lower left corner of the photo. So the stand for THAT track would be out of sight to the left of the photo.

Maybe that's what the caption was in fact trying to say, but without my first cup of coffee I couldn't get there from what was written. Hopefully this will clarify the explanation.
  by sd80mac
You can see other rails under the hopper car for that switch stand in photo.
  by BR&P
B&O's 1954 Form 6 showed 35 named customers on the Belt Line alone, not counting team track customers. Image
  by RailKevin
Would the stretch of track from the wye at Cairn Street to the Lincoln Park shops be considered a part of the "Belt Line"?
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