• CNJ Concrete Phone Booths

  • Discussion of the CNJ (aka the Jersey Central) and predecessors Elizabethtown and Somerville, and Somerville and Easton, for the period 1831 to its inclusion in ConRail in 1976. The historical society site is here: http://www.jcrhs.org/
Discussion of the CNJ (aka the Jersey Central) and predecessors Elizabethtown and Somerville, and Somerville and Easton, for the period 1831 to its inclusion in ConRail in 1976. The historical society site is here: http://www.jcrhs.org/

Moderator: CAR_FLOATER

  by ironhorsehistory

I am looking for some information/photographs of the precast concrete phone sheds used by the CNJ and other roads around New Jersey. I have found two of these booths still existing, and have photos of several more, but all are lacking the vent at the top of the roof. Does anyone have a photo of the booth with the vent intact? Even a drawing of one would be helpful.

Iron Horse
  by GSC
I know of two (Main St. Farmingdale and Halls Mills Rd. Howell) so I'll take a look at them to see if they have vents.
  by SledDawg
I think there's one in the woods along the ROW by the river near the Ironton rail trail near Coplay (or is that LV?)
Speaking of which, don't forget the beautifully restored booth on the Ironton Rail Trail.

Did you look in the old RMC articles posted on the CNJ yahoo groups? There might be a photo in there...

I'm pretty sure there was one in one of the pictures of the CNJ High Bridge Branch excursion that were posted to the awesome godfatherrails.com site, but they don't seem to be there anymore... some are on railpictures.net. There's a wood booth in this one:
http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.p ... 440&nseq=1
  by GSC
Darn it, I went by those two booths this morning, and didn't think to look for vents. Tomorrow?
  by NJWG
There exists one of these concrete phone booths in Lakehurst. Unfortunately it is in poor shape and is also missing the vent.
There is also a 3 track signal bridge if your interested. These relics are just under the Route 70 overpass, off Railroad ave.
  by CNJ4104
If you have access to the book Trail of the Blue Comet ( pages 398 and 403)there are two very good pictures of the what look like hexogonal concrete phone booths. These look different from the ones posted on the Blue Comet site. These seem to have no window, only a door, and are six sided. The roof is six sided not round. The vents look like the walls being six sided with a six sided roof. They look about a foot in diameter and about 9 to 12 inches high. The book notes that they were built in 1929 when the telephone system replaced the telegraph system.

I don't have a scanner, maybe others in the group do and would be able to scan one of these pages in and post with proper credits of course.
  by GSC
The concrete booth at the Halls Mills Road x-ing in Howell does not have the roof vent. I finally took notice. And if it makes any difference, the line is an ex-Pennsy line, not CNJ, but the booth looks like the CNJ booths.
  by Pinewald Station
glennk419 wrote:The Lakehurst booth can be seen in these Blue Comet shots in better days:


The booth in the pic looks like it is near Union Ave. The booth that is there today is on the NE side of the RT 70 overpass....must have moved it at some point? The thing must weigh a ton but is there any interest in preserving one of these?
  by NJWG
The booth in the pictures no longer exists, and it is very close to union avenue. The booth (still there) or what remains of it is directly under the signal bridge which can be seen in these photos right past the highway bridge. Tis is a smaller booth with no windows and a six sided roof.
there should be one at lake junction, and another one at ferromonte junction. iirc, there's another one at hopatcong junction. the last two were laying on their sides, last time i saw them, while lake junction was still upright. i'm not really clear about it, but there might have been one at wharton junction as well. it's been a while, but long after conrail pulled out, and they were still there.
  by David
Here is one about a mile south of Union Avenue Lakehurst. It is located where the pass-by joins the main.
FWIW, you might try digging around the booth, if you find one, as the roof vent most like fell, or was knocked off, and is probably still close by.
  by RailsEast
Found one! Still standing (leaning) in half-way decent condition, on the CR Southern Secondary at the Cross St., Lakewood, NJ, grade crossing.......

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=2327202
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=2327201

This one in Lakehurst,NJ, underneath the NJ Rt.70 overpass is like many others, with no roof vent..........

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=1773764

Hope this helps........
  by GSC
A concrete birdhouse-type vent cap like the one at Cross St would likely be a target for bored people with shotguns over many years.