Railroad Ghost Towns

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Railroad Ghost Towns

Post by MR77100 » Wed Nov 30, 2005 11:17 pm

What are some of the biggest railroad ghost towns in the U.S? I am referring to towns that have lost all of their railroad service. Xenia, OH would be my best choice. It once had SEVEN lines trasversing it, and today nothing remains except some ballast and telephone poles.
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Railroad Ghost Towns

Post by trainsinmaine » Thu Dec 01, 2005 10:27 pm

Keene, N.H., with a population of about 35,000, is the largest city in New England without rail service. It was once served by three branches of the Boston & Maine, but the last one was removed in the mid-1980s.

Fredericton, New Brunswick, isn't in the States, but it is the provincial capital and was once the junction of five CP and CN branches. The last one to go was a CN branch that was abandoned in 1998, if memory serves.

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Post by 2nd trick op » Sun Dec 04, 2005 10:56 pm

State College, Penna. lost the last of its rail service (Bellefonte Central) in 1975. Population here would be subject to several forms of interpretation, depending upon whether Penn State students are included, and while there's no rail line within the Borough of State College, the remnants of PRR's Bellefonte branch are still operated to serve industries adjacent to Penna Route 26 (about 5 miles northeast).
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Post by ACLfan » Wed Dec 14, 2005 1:07 pm

Two cities in the southeastern U.S. that lost their rail service, but are rather large in population are:

Naples, FL (ACL and SAL): 251,377 (2000 Census)

Myrtle Beach, SC (ACL): 196,629 (2000 Census)


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Post by jmp883 » Wed Dec 14, 2005 9:40 pm

Sayre PA, Scranton PA, Binghamton NY, and Port Jervis NY all come to mind. While they still see SOME rail service the level of current service is nothing compared to what it once was in these towns. Also many of the towns not only don't have the rail customers they used to have, they also don't have the rail facililties they used to have.

Actually, all the towns on the former EL Southern Tier, east of Binghamton to Suffern anyway, could be classed as railroad ghost towns.

True railroad ghost towns in this area would be the Orange County towns of Middletown, Goshen, and Chester on the old Erie Mainline. Conrail tore up the Old Main in 1980, favoring it over the Graham Cut-off.

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Post by henry6 » Tue Dec 20, 2005 4:21 pm

Without definition of "railroad ghost town" makes the example list almost endless. Susquehanna, PA is still in existance; small, quiet, a few stores and restaurants, but no industry since the Erie Shops closed and the yard abandoned by the EL. It is a ghost of itself. And there are hundreds more like that. Mentined above is Sayre, PA. LV cleared out when Conrail was formed. There is still railroading in the town and GE has a car leaseing and repair facility there. THe town also has a major regional hospital in Guthrie Clinic/Robert Packer entity. Hardly a ghost town. And there are many more towns like that, too. Ghost town like not there anymore? I would nominate Ronovo, PA once on the PRR now on NS. The PRR shops were the only thing in town, like Susquehanna. Ronovo exists as a former town were two roads intersect deep in the valley. Probably more a ghost of itself than Susquehanna despite, I think, a locomotive recycler setting up there. True completely abandoned railroad and ghost towns? We have yet to hear about them, but I am curious, too.


Post by wess » Wed Dec 28, 2005 10:07 pm

My vote would be Atchee, Colorado. The only thing there now is the stone walls of the machine shop. Atchee was the main shops and yard of the Uintah Ry. A 3 foot gauge line that was abandoned in the early thirties. It had been built to haul gilsonite from the Uintah Basin in eastern Utah to a connection with the Rio Grande in Mack, CO.

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Post by kinlock » Thu Dec 29, 2005 4:37 pm

One that I immediately think of is Malone, New York.

Its not a huge town, but it was very important in railroading for many years. The Rutland Railroad (Ogdensburg to Rouses Point) crossed/interchanged with the New York Central Adirondack Division from Utica to Montreal.

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Post by Pocono Flyer » Sun Feb 12, 2006 7:56 pm

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Post by Penn Central » Tue Sep 05, 2006 8:29 am

While not large in population, Sparkill, New York was once a busy terminal with the junction of the Erie Mainline and the Northern Railroad of New Jersey. I have some photos here.

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Post by pennsy » Tue Sep 05, 2006 9:26 am

Hi All,

Quite a few on the west coast. Immediately coming to mind would be the stations at: Ontario, CA, Pomona, CA, Pasadena, CA, Upland, CA. I probably could add many more to the list once I gave it lots of additional thought.

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Post by 262 » Tue Sep 05, 2006 3:52 pm

West Alexandria,Ingomar,and Farmersville,Ohio all on the Cincinatti Northern,NYC,Conrail.

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NJ coastal towns

Post by amtrakhogger » Tue Sep 05, 2006 3:56 pm

Many NJ shore communities have lost rail service over the years.
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Post by Aa3rt » Tue Sep 05, 2006 7:47 pm

henry6 wrote:Without definition of "railroad ghost town" makes the example list almost endless....Ghost town like not there anymore?

I would nominate Ronovo, PA once on the PRR now on NS. The PRR shops were the only thing in town, like Susquehanna. Ronovo exists as a former town were two roads intersect deep in the valley. Probably more a ghost of itself than Susquehanna despite, I think, a locomotive recycler setting up there.
henry6-I have to agree with you, when I first read the title of this thread, Renovo was the first thing that came to my mind. Renovo was laid out and built by the then Philadelphia & Erie Railroad, starting in 1862. In fact the name "Renovo" is Latin, meaning "I repair".

My father took me there in the late 1950's to see the last of Pennsy steam on a fantrip. Even in the early 1970's there was still some work being done by the Penn Central when I used to pass through on my way to/from jr. college in Williamsport.

A visit about 5 years ago was certainly a shocker-just one single track running through what used to be a huge yard & shop complex with the empty hulks of shop buildings on the north side. Someone has made an attempt to start a Railroad Park there and there were some old Conrail cabooses and other rolling stock that had seen better days on one of the few remaining yard tracks.
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Post by JhnZ33 » Wed Sep 06, 2006 3:34 am

My vote for RR ghost town would be the town I was born and raised in - Ashley, Pa.

At one time this town was bustling with the large shops of the CNJ which was the main shop in PA for the CNJ until the 50's. Today you'd be hard pressed to find evidence of the facility or a RR in the area, unless you knew the area.

Even being the significant facility it was to the CNJ, there is very little information available today. Even more rare are pictures of the shops and trackage, especially of the Nanticoke branch which saw countless tons of coal enroute to the Huber breaker (which still stands, but is fading fast).

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