Showing posts from March, 2018

Grasse River Railroad "Coach"

This little coach of the Grasse River R.R.was built on the chassis of a discarded 1906-vintage Thomas Flyer by Roy O. Sykes. It was called “Rolliam” for Roy and William Sykes of the family who owned the railroad which was part of the Emporium Forestry Co. For many years it was on display at Rail City.

Grasse River Railroad No. 43


"Perry's Pride" at Conifer

Caboose No. 71 of the Grasse River Railroad (owned by the Emporium Forestry Company as it    appeared at Conifer, N.Y., deep in the Adirondacks, in 1953. Eventually this odd-looking two-truck home-made "bobber" caboose made its way to Rail City Museum at Sandy Pond, N.Y.  where it was put on display until the museum closed in the 1970s.  The late Norman Kistner is shown in the cupola. It has been modeled in HO. Photo courtesy of Robert Groman.

Another view of the same caboose.

Nearly a Century and a Lot of Patience

By Richard Palmer

Peering through a drenching rain on September 24, 1936, thousands of Syracusans cheered the passing of nearly a century of aggravation as New York Central trains began using an elevated route through the city. Since horse drawn cars of the Auburn and Syracuse Railroad clip-clopped down Washington Street in 1838, an ever increasing cascade of trains has clogged one of the city's main streets, created interminable delays at the 29 grade crossings, tangled with carriages, streetcars and automobiles, provided excitement for generations of small boys and dogs, coated the nearby office buildings under a thick layer of gritty soot and made Syracuse, New York, the butt of many vaudeville jokes as "The city with the trains in the streets." It all began in 1837 when the village trustees met and decided that the new railroad should run on the south side of the Erie Canal. This was important because the decision to run the tracks through Washington Street develope…

Freeville in the Good Old Days

It's hard to visual the out-of-the-way village of Freeville, near Ithaca, once being a major railroad junction. Nevertheless it was such for many years. At this point, the north-south and east-west branches of the Lehigh Valley crossed at a diamond and several times daily the place was a hub-bub of activity as travelers changed trains. There was even a restaurant in the station. But it was all gone by the late 1930s and the station was demolished in 1941.

Pennsylvania Railroad to Sodus Point

The Sodus Bay Branch ran from Stanley, near Geneva, to Sodus Point.  It passed through  Flint, Seneca Castle, Orleans, Phelps Junction, Newark, Sodus Center, and Wallington. A branch split off from the north side of Newark to the village of Marion. Passing sidings were located in Stanley and "New," which was north (timetable west) of Newark.     The main purpose of the line was carrying coal to the large coal dock at Sodus Point. A Niagara Hudson power plant was opened at Oswego in 1940. This plant burned large quantities of coal, which were carried by rail to Sodus Point and then by boat to Oswego. The line also carried general freight. Until the 1930's ice was harvested in Sodus Bay and shipped south.      Agricultural products were a major source of traffic into the middle 1950's. A quarry in Wallington, which opened in the early 1950's, generated hundreds of carloads of stone and gravel for road construction. The Genessee Brewing Company had a large malt h…