• The Freehold Secondary Mystery

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New Jersey
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New Jersey

Moderator: David

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  by GSC
 
When I first got my driver's license (1971) I drove around railfanning, as many of us did. I loved checking out Farmingdale.

The CNJ had a two-track yard and a connector spur to the Pennsy. The curved spur split into two tracks, I think one was a siding into a fenced yard. Pennsy had a passing siding just west of the diamond.

The diamond was still in place. An occasional hopper was pushed into Frequency Engineering's coal trestle. That's where the east end of the PRR line ended then.

The CNJ had a tall three-head 3-3-3 signal at the diamond. It usually was lit and showing absolute stop (3 reds). There was another single-head signal to the south with a "take siding" lamp. Why there was a "take siding" indicator AFTER the diamond, I have no idea.

Around 1988 or so, I was there and "found" a Conrail Geep hiding on the old Pennsy approach to the diamond, in what looked like a tunnel of trees. Gold Lumber had service then on the former PRR and I imagine the Geep was parked there, shut down, until the next run was scheduled. Well hidden!

F'dale was such a fascinating place to poke around back then.

In the Doodlebug pic above, the block signal would have been the distant signal for the diamond at F'dale. There was another one on the other side of the junction near Hurley Pond Road. We walked to see that one around 1973. The mast was there but no signal head. A few years later, the mast was gone, leaving just the concrete base.
  by Blackseal Jim
 
I remember the RS 11 's in Farmingdale. The crew would leave it behind Foster Canning's boiler room where my Grandpop was the boiler operator. There were a good amount of tracks in the area too. I recall two tracks behind Foster Canning and a siding that went into the fenced property of Crosslins Crossing. My Grandpop watched the Pennsy build the siding and it was never used. It was quite a interesting area in the early 70's.
Jim H
  by GSC
 
Once when the family was "out for a ride" on a summer day, Dad found a Pennsy train in Sea Girt. Either an S or SW unit powering the train, there were all of two box cars and a caboose. Dad decided to give his kid (me) a thrill by chasing the train. The chase was slow as we arrived at every grade crossing well ahead of the train. Manasquan, Allenwood, Atlantic Ave., several crossings in Farmingdale, every crossing in Howell, then Freehold and finally Englishtown where we called it a day. The crew was looking for that little boy at every crossing, waving their hands off at me. Camera? Of course not. But I'll always remember that day.

I remember RS11s bringing in flat cars with jetty rocks from Trap Rock in Kingston into Lewis Lumber Co. in Spring Lake. Probably some of the last freight hauled over the F&JA before it closed. Pennsy freights were rare on the NY&LB, so seeing them was a treat. The last freight car I saw on the line was a box car at Monmouth Box in Allenwood.
  by CJPat
 
I enjoy reading these memories. I walk the F&JA bike trail on many occassions and thought it would have been nice to see in person.
  by Blackseal Jim
 
I came back into town last nite around. 11pm and noticed the train was still on the main. I heard from a friend of mine that they split the gauge at Prestone.
Jim H
  by GSC
 
The F&JA was once so busy that double-tracking the line was considered. There were passing sidings at Manasquan, Allenwood, and Allaire.

The alternative to double-tracking the line came as the Philadelphia & Long Branch RR, built from Whitings to Seaside and on to Bay Head. The line west of Whitings was originally operated by the Raritan & Delaware Bay / NJ Southern, and was purchased by Pennsy, and the rest of the line to Bay Head was built.

Too much traffic on the F&JA. Wouldn't you love to see that today?
  by R&DB
 
GSC,
"There were passing sidings at Manasquan, Allenwood, and Allaire."

There were also passing sidings at Farmingdale, Howell (Howell Rd), Freehold, Tennent, and Jamesburg. With all thoe sidings, double tracking wouldn't have taken that much work. lol

"Raritan & Delaware Bay / NJ Southern"
Pennsylvania and Atlantic Railroad was the original line west of Whitings and was owned by PRR.
  by pumpers
 
R&DB wrote:Pennsylvania and Atlantic Railroad was the original line west of Whitings and was owned by PRR.
The Camden and Pemberton RR figures in there somewhere too. Not sure which was first.
http://rnetzlof.pennsyrr.com/corphist/urrnj.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

And here is an interesting one - The Pemberton and New York (which ran between Pemberton and Whitings, actually), operated by the NJ Southern in 1872!! This must be what GSC was referring to.
https://books.google.com/books?id=N9ZAA ... 22&f=false" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

The PRR must have eventually got control of both the Camden & Pemberton RR and the Pemberton & New York RR, perhaps forming the Pennsylvania & Atlantic.
  by R&DB
 
pumpers,
You are right. There were other entities along that route:
1 - Delaware and Atlantic- from just south of Bordentown to Pemberton area, affiliated with Camden and Amboy
2 - Camden and Pemberton between those towns and affliated with Camden and Atlantic
3 - Pemberton and New York which connected NJ Southern at Whitings, NJ Southern had trackage rights for interchange purposes
4 - PRR gained control of D&A,C&P and P&NY, merged the three using parts of each to form Pennsylvania and Atlantic
5 - P&A later extended to Seaside Heights and Bay Head via South Toms River
6 - Renamed Philadelphia and Long Branch with trackage rights to Long Branch on NY&LB, Connected to Freehold & Jamesburg at Sea
Girt/Manasquan

Best I can do with data currently available to me.
  by pumpers
 
Thanks Harry. Here is some more to confuse it all for the UTRR/PRR part west of Pemberton
The Camden and Burlington RR, a holding company for PRR incorporated in 1915 http://rnetzlof.pennsyrr.com/corphist/c_b.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
It is not so interesting itself, but note what went into it included (among other things) the
Camden and Burlington County Railroad Company which
a. built Camden to Mount Holly, N.J., 1866-1867, 16.2 miles, and
b. owned a line built by the Burlington and Mount Holly Railroad and Transportation Company: Mount Holly to Pemberton, N.J., 1860-1863. 6.5 miles.
So I'm not sure how to reconcile this with the Camden & Pemberton RR I posted about yesterday.

It also mentions that the B & MHRR & TC built from Burlington (south of the Delaware and Atlantic terminus which was later was known as Kinkora), connecting from the Camden and Atlantic, to Mt. Holly in 1848-49. So you could get to Pemberton from the north before you could get there from the south (Camden area).

Here is an interesting article I found about the Delaware and Atlantic - built way ahead of its time (1830's) to access the Pine Barrens (and maybe eventually the Atlantic Ocean, althought it never got that far, and abandoned by 1850. http://www.state.nj.us/transportation/w ... 072005.pdf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; Didn't know about that one. Then reconstituted by ~1872 on the same RoW as the COlumbus and Kinkora, as part of the Camden & Amboy.

Jim S
  by GSC
 
The mighty Pennsylvania RR was probably headquartered in Phildelphia because Philadelphia lawyers were necessary to keep track of all of the corporate intrigue!

The Phila & Long Branch RR was built to Bay Head, turning the location into the "Junction" no one seems to know why it's called that. The section between Point Pleasant and Bay Head was a joint effort between CNJ and PRR to connect the lines. CNJ outgrew the Point Pleasant terminal and the larger facilities were built at Bay Head.

Interesting to note that Pennsy only had trackage rights from Sea Girt and Bay Head to Long Branch. When their initial efforts were turned down to gain rights over the entire NY&LB, PRR threatened - and even surveyed - a parallel route to the Raritan River. It was to run mostly east of the NY&LB, turning west of the route to go around Ocean Grove, who said NO to another railroad.

Double tracking the F&JA because of too much traffic, two side-by-side NY&LB routes - so many great what-ifs.
  by GSC
 
Back to the subject at hand.

Blackseal Jim, our Freehold area correspondent, will now join us for his report.

Jim?
  by NJT4149
 
Train was spotted in Freehold today with CSX 4441 and CSX 2798 and cars for Builders. This was confirmed by a few people on Facebook.
  by Blackseal Jim
 
NJT4149 wrote:Train was spotted in Freehold today with CSX 4441 and CSX 2798 and cars for Builders. This was confirmed by a few people on Facebook.
Very nice ! I don't think the train has had two locomotives in quite a while. BTW , Saturday ,Dec 9th is the annual Santa train sponsored by Conrail and the Freehold Boro PD PBA.
Jim H
  by NJT4149
 
The train was spotted in Freehold yesterday with CSX 2505
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