The Connecticut Railfan All About Railroads in Connecticut

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Historical of the New Haven Railroad

The New York New started in 1844 and was completed by It was the nucleus of the New York, New Haven It started westward from New The young railroad had to make a payoff to the Westchester Turnpike Company at the New York State


Next, it obtained a perpetual and right of entry into New City. This amounted to one of the real estate deals because it included a share of profits. New Haven commuters Grand Central on New York tracks (the New York was leased to the New York Central in for 401 years).

The New Haven joined the New Central from a flying at Woodlawn Cemetery.

The NY NH was passenger until 1851. There already railroads from up the Housatonic Valley and from up the Naugatuck Valley. The Housatonic beyond Danbury to the Massachusetts Another railroad ran to Pittsfield. The served Waterbury and Winsted.

The New competed with steamboats on Island Sound.

The Hartford and New went to Springfield in 1844. All its went to steamboats in a deal to them off the Connecticut River.

The New (headed by Robert Schuyler a descendant of General Philip of Revolutionary War fame) leased the New and Northampton Railroad which ran to the Hartford New Haven to Plainville. His to build to Springfield forced a He also leased the Shore Railway from New London to New

In 1872, there was still no under single management Boston to New York City.

The Branch, usually referred to as the Branch because it was built an old canal, remained a sleepy with usually only freight service until the end of the New It is now run by the BM except for several miles out a few years ago. It started at the Street yard in New Haven and ran through the city of New Haven in a cut by the old canal. It ran past the Grove Cemetery where Noah

Lyman Beecher. Eli Whitney and F. B. Morse are buried. Along the were munitions plants A poles at the entrance to sidings.

An A is similar to a whistle post that it has the letter A instead of a W. It that before entering the with a cut of cars the air must be on.

In 1882, the New Haven leased the New Middletown Willimantic from New to Boston. This was later the Boston New York Airline and had grades and sharp curves. It was because the New London drawbridge was not until 1889.

Still a of the Northeast Corridor today is the of the Boston Providence built in The Neponset River presented a to the builders of this early Originally the builders had thought would use a system of inclined and winches to cross this

Instead they built the Viaduct which is in use today 80 ton F40s instead of 10 ton 4-4-0s.

The line is one of the most beautiful routes in the country and has the distinction of more drawbridges per mile any other railroad. The New Haven had 19 — twelve of which New York-Boston trains. The busiest was at Mystic — it was opened 758 in June 1945.

There are types of bridges. (1) bascule as Cos Cob or Devon; (2) swing such as Norwalk or Mystic; and (3) verticle such as Cape Cod Canal was government owned and had open as its condition and only closed a train came).

Southern New had 203 separate railroads at one time. By they were grouped (1) The New Haven which ran to Providence leasing the New York, Providence in 1892. It also leased the Worcester and the Housatonic on 1892. (2) The Old which ran from Boston to Cod, Fall River, and New Bedford and also had its own steamers to New (3) The New York New England which ran Hartford to Beacon, NY. (4) The Central New Railway and the Hartford Connecticut

Charles S. Mellen became of the New Haven in 1903. In an effort to real or imagined competition, the New spent the early part of the buying up New England trolley and the coastal steamers from New into New York City. also lost a bundle of on the New York, Westchester Boston

The Mellen and J.P. Morgan was controlled by the Corsair Agreements (a of meetings which took on Morgan’s yacht).

Between and 1917 the Hell Gate and Harlem line to Penn were built. This 977 long and 135 feet high landmark was the last link in an Boston-Washington route. Main electrification set the pattern for the country.

In wires were energized Cos Cob to New York City. It was seven later that electric first hauled trains through from New York to New By 1945, passenger and freight operated over 642 miles of track using 128 locomotives and 198 unit suburban cars.

that operated into Central were required to be to take power from 11,000 volt alternating trolley wire located from sixteen to twenty-two above the rails; or from a direct current third which might be located on side of the track or, in some from an overhead third above the tracks. The switch AC to DC or back again was made trains were in motion.

A downturn in the economy caused paying the dividend. The railroad loans to subs to pay their and deferred maintenance which wrecks.

In 1913 Morgan and Mellen was out of office. By 1914 the was near bankruptcy. It had to dispose of

It was rescued from bankruptcy by the taking over railroads in

In the 1920’s local freight was by trucks and local passenger was hurt by the automobile.

During there was a brief recovery. In bankruptcy hit finally. The 1938 washed out tracks and opened the to air service.

The theme of the Company’s by 1946 was when you’ve got to get take the train. Already, was an upcry about expenditure of funds to subsidize air travel. in the 1940’s, the phone rang in the office at South Station. requested four gentlemen who supposed to be taking the Merchant’s to New York to be paged and to call Boston 4100. The clerk the phone number as one of the airlines and the caller why they were paged.

The reply was that men now had reservations on the next flight to New

During this time, the OW, Old Colony were also The OW was in trusteeship until 1937. The New Rutland holdings were It was finally torn up in 1964.

In piggybacks were inaugurated Boston and Harlem River

East of New Haven, standard power was Pacifics built by In 1937, ten streamlined Hudson’s Baldwin turned out to be the New Haven’s steam. By 1941, Alco began dieselization. By the late passenger runs were using PAs. The road bought 10 2400 h.p.

from Fairbanks-Morse. The Comet was an diesel lightweight built in by Goodyear for Boston-Providence service. passenger equipment arrived in with Pullman’s American coaches.

Electric locomotives in service in are shown below:

Class No. Maximum Tractive Effort

EP-1 10 1906-8 19,600

EF-1 37 1912-13 50,000

EF-2 5 1926 50,000

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EF-3 5 1942 90,000

EF-3A 5 1943 90,000

EY-2 15 1911 42,000

EY-3 2 1926 42,000

EY-2B 6 1927 42,000

EP-2 27 1928 47,500

EP-3 10 1931 68,500

EP-4 6 1938 68,500

WWII was a boom and the railroad was out of in 1947. The trustees in 1946 headed by Howard S. Palmer.

In Frederic C. Dumaine took assisted by Patrick B. McGinnis. In he turned over the presidency to his son who was good and spent on maintenance. how difficult it was to make a buck in he ordered a large fleet of diesel cars (RDCs).

He ordered new M.U. cars electrics) to replace cars of which dated to 1907.

In Dumaine was ousted by McGinnis. He took over the BM, slashed and was finally ousted by the George regime. The electric fleet on hard times under

Unfortunately, the diesels were nearing retirement age. He was to find light-weight, high passenger trains but did not have the to do much more than buy a Pullman built/Baldwin powered X:; a Fairbanks-Morse Talgo; and a Budd Hot Rod

1956 was the last year a profit. In 1958 the Connecticut opened. Alpert scrapped the and bought FL-9s. He also 60 road switchers.

By 1961 the was back in reorganization where it

By Ken Kinlock at kenkinlock@gmail.com

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