Discussion relating to the PRR, up to 1968. Visit the PRR Technical & Historical Society for more information.
  by Brad P
In 1872, the Philadelphia, Wilmington & Baltimore Railroad opened its Darby Improvement, a new alignment from the Gray's Ferry Bridge in West Philadelphia. Among other things, this required a new Gray's Ferry station, which the PW&B built at 49th Street.

The station is marked on this 1886 map, near the intersection of 49th Street and Gray's Ferry Avenue: http://www.archives.upenn.edu/histy/fea ... 24p027.pdf

I've also found it in a 1925 aerial photo (it's there, if you know where to look): http://digital.hagley.org/cdm/ref/colle ... 1uw/id/582

It seems to have disappeared by 1968, because it doesn't appear on this Penn Central timetable: http://pc.smellycat.com/docs/passenger/ ... 7-68p3.jpg

Can anyone help me figure out when it was closed and demolished? It sits on the Northeast Corridor, so its final owner may have been the Philadelphia, Baltimore & Washington; the Pennsy; or even Penn Central.

Grateful for any help. Brad
  by ExCon90
For what it's worth ...
In looking through some old Official Guides I couldn't find anything conclusive except that the last appearance of Grays Ferry in the Phila.-Wilmington schedules was in the Guide of June 1916, which showed all trains skipping Grays Ferry. The January 1910 Guide likewise shows no stops. The February 1901 Guide shows only 2 trains a day (out of a good many) stopped there: a morning local from Wilmington and a late afternoon local from Lamokin stopped only to discharge passengers for Broad & Washington St. [sic, it's actually Washington Ave.], and their counterparts, morning to Lamokin and evening to Wilmington, stopped only to take passengers from Broad & Washington (no times given for the connecting trains). In the January 1918 Guide Grays Ferry has disappeared from the schedule but shows in the station index as "on the line indicated but not shown in time tables." Four more Guides from 1926 to 1941 show GF in the station index as freight only. Not much hard information there, but it does appear that passenger service ceased between 1901 and 1910, whatever may have happened to the station.
  by Brad P
Very helpful -- thanks!

That fits with what someone else told me: that passenger service at most Philly railroad stations ended in 1902-03, thanks to competition from streetcars. And you have extended the known lifespan of the station from the 1930s to at least 1941.

Here's the reason I was asking: on the site of the former station stands an 1838 monument marking the completion of the railroad between Philadelphia and Baltimore. The mystery is when and why the 15-foot white marble obelisk got there. Now we know that it wasn't before 1941. Here's an article laying out what I do know:

http://www.navybook.com/2013/03/12/who- ... -monument/
Last edited by Brad P on Thu Mar 14, 2013 2:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by ExCon90
That seems the most likely explanation of the move -- that an official of the PRR, a traditional railroad if ever there was one, decided to have the monument placed where it could be seen from passenger trains on the new (1872) alignment. I've sometimes wondered whether anything could be done to bring the monument into more prominence, and where the money would come from; if there's a chance of incorporating it into the Schuylkill Banks project, I'd say it's an ideal solution.