• Railroad Ghost Towns

  • This forum is for discussion of "Fallen Flag" roads not otherwise provided with a specific forum. Fallen Flags are roads that no longer operate, went bankrupt, or were acquired or merged out of existence.
This forum is for discussion of "Fallen Flag" roads not otherwise provided with a specific forum. Fallen Flags are roads that no longer operate, went bankrupt, or were acquired or merged out of existence.

Moderator: Nicolai3985

  by henry6
Never did get clear as to what was a "rairoad ghost town". If you are talking Sayre, PA and Binghamton, NY, then Susquehanna and Carbondale, PA have to be there, too. But in all four cases the towns around them still exist plus all four have quite a bit of railroad activities, Susquehanna having no yard or industry and only one round trip or less daily and Carbondale which is handled by a short line up from Scranton; but they all lack the large or multi railroad facilities of the mid 20th Century.. Or if you want to talk about a town like Ronovo, PA which in itself is so contracted since the PRR shops were closed that you could almost call it a ghost town; similar to Susquehanna, but much smaller. Or a real ghost town like Laquin, PA for one example, where the once thriving logging industry supported the Susquehanna and NY Railroad and today the cinder path is all that remains of that era. I bet there are thousands of stories similar to all the above. Just need a definition to decide what the initial post was seeking.

  by UPRR engineer
The east coast is too populated to call anything a ghost town.
Thats more like it.
  by henry6
Don't be too sure, UP. I've been in enough places in the mid-Atlantic and New England states to get pictures just like yours! And all railroad facilities and towns, too!! Just wish I had a camera with me.

  by UPRR engineer

  by TB Diamond
No maybe about it. Have been to both Barclay, PA and Gebo, WY. Very few differences other than geographic.
  by ExEMDLOCOTester
new england flyer wrote:When I read the title - my first thoughts came to the town of Thurmond WV along the banks for the New River - see the NPS link - once a busy coal and steel center - when the C&O went to the dark side (diesel) the town was no longer necessary - it's now abandoned and operated by the park service as a tourist attraction.

Diesels may be Dinosaurs but they don't roll on the dark side.... :wink:
  by LJ
If you come to Indiana we have a few ghost towns, and a few partial ghost towns. North Judson, In. had the C & O, ERIE, P.R.R., and the N.Y.C. However the old C & O is now owned by the city of North Judson, In. It is operated by the Chesapeke and Indiana R.R. And the Hoosier Valley Railroad Museum owns the old ERIE yards there. La Crosse, In. had the C & O, PM, PRR, MONON, C & E I / C A & S. the Chesapeke and Indiana operates the C & O and the PM. Akron, In. had the Winona R.R. and the ERIE. Wilders, In. had the MONON, ERIE, C & E I / C A & S. San Pierre, In. had the MONON and N.Y.C. Peru, IN. had the WABASH VALLEY TRACTION, WINONA RAILROAD AND TRACTION CO., WABASH R.R., C & O, AND THE N.K.P. Now just the old Wabash mainline is still in service and used by the Norfolk/Southern for its Detroit - St. Louis- Kansas City artery. Zadoc, In. had the C & E I / C A & S and the C & W V. Veedersburg, In. had the C & E I / C A & S, P & E, and the N.K.P. Percy Jtc, In. was where the C & E I / C A & S had a coal dock, water tower, depot, this is where the mainline came up from Attica, In. and it split off toward Momence, In. and a line branched off toward La Crosse, In. I'll have more for you in the future.

  by KillerB
UPRR engineer wrote:The east coast is too populated to call anything a ghost town.
Ever hear of Centralia, PA?


  by ekrampitzjr
[Deleted duplicate post. Got error message when I hit "Submit", so I assumed it did not go through.]
Last edited by ekrampitzjr on Sun Apr 29, 2007 5:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

  by ekrampitzjr
[Second verse, same as the first!]
Last edited by ekrampitzjr on Sun Apr 29, 2007 5:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

  by ekrampitzjr
This is a modification of comments I posted under the "Gray Lumber" thread in the DelMarVa forums.

Norfolk Southern (NS) operates most of the old Norfolk, Franklin & Danville (NF&D) line, formerly the Atlantic & Danville (A&D), from West Norfolk (today part of Portsmouth) to Lawrenceville. The tracks used to run to Danville but have been abandoned west of Lawrenceville.

A true ghost "town" of sorts exists on the old NF&D. That town is Arringdale in Southampton county. A narrow-gauge spur served a lumber mill, which had houses for workers nearby. (The nearby portion of the main line had three rails for standard and 3' gauges. The old A&D had a 3' gauge branch that ran from the main tracks near Emporia to Charemont on the James River.)

In the mid-1960s, when the mill closed, the houses were demolished and the town ceased to exist. Some foundations and a couple of crumbling commercial buildings remain but are badly overgrown. The narrow-gauge spur and the third rail on the main tracks are long gone, of course.

Taking a vehicle on the paths around the vicinity of Arringdale is risky unless you have a 4x4. My car bottomed out a short distance up one of them when I explored the area last year, so I quickly backed out and left. Because the area is remote and swampy, I did not feel comfortable walking around by myself even in the winter.

One of the two roads to Arringdale paralleled the NF&D tracks and has became overgrown and lost. The other is on private property and normally chained. It has been in use as an access road for farmers.

When Norfolk Southern had a derailment and diesel fuel spill on the line several years ago, it had to improve this remaining road to be able to get its recovery equipment to the derailment-spill site near Arringdale. The activity didn't exactly endear NS to the owner who keeps the road chained. According to witnesses, two locomotives had derailed with several cars and ended up in the woods. The railbed had been undermined by heavy rains and flooding in the vicinity just a few days before, but because the storm was localized, NS had no knowledge of it. (NS has had at least one other derailment on the old NF&D recently, near Capron a few miles to the east.) As this suggests, NS's use of the old NF&D is often sporadic, and it seems possible that most of this track will eventually be abandoned much as was the old Virginian line in eastern Virginia.

I have lived in the area for several years and asked many locals about the story behind Arringdale when I first heard of the place. Hope this helps.

  by calorosome
There are a quite a few ghost towns along the S&NY. Laquin PA, a former lumbering town in the early 20th century, is barren today.

  by colorado
Salamanca NY...Still some tracks there but littel activity, especially compared to all the yards and traffic in the Erie and B&O days.

Groveland NY....Nothing but a forest where there had been a yard and enginve facilites.

Hornell NY....Major Erie yards and Engine Facilities pretty much history, a few trains through there but nothing like what once was.

Manchester NY.....Significant LV yards gone, no trains, only a few shells of structures remained last I saw the place

OUT West....Coomo Colorado, yards and Engine facility of the old South park line, no trains in 70 years, roundhouse and depot hotel do remain.
  by zz4
Some places like the Northeast the states are all plotted out with towns. I can't speak for every state but for example Connecticut has 169 towns. No empty places for another.

-- but in past there were all kinds of 'place names' that no longer exist or there's nothing there anymore --

Check an old Railroad Timetable. All the stops still exist as anything?

Making a little legitimate some of these places had their own post office and put out mail postmarked from the place. So one might find an old letter postmarked Long Hill,Conn. but where is/was Long Hill ??

  by TB Diamond

Manchester still sees a train on occasion as the ONCT utilizes the former Lehigh Valley MT Victor-Shortsville.

Last I heard, the roundhouse may well be demolished soon.