3rdrail wrote:I hadn't realized how large a system that the Penn Central was until looking at a system map today. I was surprised to see a line up through New York state to Montreal. Was that a passenger carrying line ? Were they on their own tracks or did they have a right of access ? Where did the line originate ?
The two largest railroads in the country merged together, creating a huge system even after all kinds of abandonments.
The PC-Conrail-CSX route to Montreal is a combination of various pieces of the Rome, Watertown & Ogdensburg - a line from Syracuse to Pulaski, a short section of the "Hojack line" to Richland, and the original RW&O main from there through Watertown to Massena. I don't have a map handy but at least part of the route beyond here used trackage rights on Canadian National to reach Montreal. By Penn Central's time, the line was freight only, I believe the "Beeliner" on this route came off in 1965.
New York Central, Penn Central and Conrail had trackage rights over the
Canadian National between Massena and Huntingdon. This came to be
after the Rutland was abandoned between Norwood and Malone where
the New York Central had trackage rights dating back to when they
abandoned the Adirondack Division trackage south out of Malone.
Canadian National eventually downgraded the Massena Branch and after
that, they sold the trackage between Massena and Huntingdon to Conrail
but retained trackage rights for their through freight trains.
The last I knew there was still quite a bit of local freight business between
Massena and Beauharnois with locals working out of Massena taking care
of this work.
The line is out of service between the north end of Beauharnois and
Adirondack Junction. The through freight trains switch over to the
Canadian National at Cecile Junction (Valleyfield).