Railroads of Madison County|
Big 4 Michigan Division
Grand Rapids, Wabash & Cincinnati
Cincinnati, Wabash & Michigan
(The Big Four)
New York Central
NS Marion Branch
The Grand Rapids, Wabash & Cincinnati was begun in 1869. It entered from Marion on the
North and ran southward through Summitville, Alexandria and Linwood. Pan Handle trackage
was used to enter Anderson until a bridge could be built over the White River. The road
was completed into Anderson in 1876. In 1880, title passed to the Cincinnati, Wabash
& Michigan allowing the railroad to reach Benton Harbor, MI in 1882.
The line was continued South through Alliance, Emporia, Markleville until it reached
Rushville in 1891. At that time, the road's operation was combined with that of the
Vernon, Greensburg and Rushville under control of the Big Four (CCC&StL Railway) allowing
the railroad to reach North Vernon and by the use of trackage rights over the B&O South-western, the road gained entry to Louisville, KY. This created a north-south rail line from Benton Harbor, MI on the north to Louisville, KY on the south with Anderson at its mid-point.
In 1915, the CCC&StL became owner of the line and it was to become a part of the New York
Central System in 1930 with the line north from Anderson to Benton Harbor being known as
the Michigan Division and the line south out of Anderson becoming the North Vernon
Secondary. Ownership passed to the Penn Central in 1968 and then to Conrail in 1976.
The Conrail Emporia Secondary extends from the East end of the South Anderson Yards southward to just below US36 at Emporia Indiana serving the Emporia Grain Co. (AG1 Farm Bureau Co-op).
The southern portion of the North Vernon Secondary below Carthage was abandoned by the Penn Central in 1973 leaving slightly over 20 miles below Emporia to be serviced by the Hoosier Connection in the early 80s, then the Indiana Midland and finally, the Carthage, Knightstown and Shirley. It was when the CK&S abandoned freight service that the line was abandoned to a point about a mile below Emporia about 1988 or 89.
The Emporia Grain Co. acquired their #611, an Alco S2 switcher in addition to the 30 Ton Plymouth that was on the property. The Plymouth is no longer in use and has been stored
dead at 'End of Track' (see 'Death of a Critter'). Emporia Grain makes use of the trackage down to 'End of Track' using the Alco to load the empty grain cars for shipment.
Emporia Grain's Alco S2 switcher was originally the Lehigh & New England 611. It was the first of 6 Alco S2 switchers acquired by the LNE. (The LNE was a small, eastern Pennsylvania, coal-hauling railroad that was abandoned in 1961) This Alco S2 may well be the only diesel on the LNE roster that remains in existence.
In February 2008, the S2 broke. It was listed as being too expensive to fix. The elevator leased a Larry's Truck GP15. That locomotive was found to be very slippery on the rails.
They checked with another supplier for repair and found that the loco could be repaired for far less than the original estimate. Parts are on order for the repair and they are considering building a shelter for the S2. (March 14, 2008)
Lehigh and New England 611
In earlier days No. 611 posed for a picture at Pen Argyl in the late 50s.
Martin Zak, Diamond Collection photo from the "LEHIGH AND NEW ENGLAND" by Ed Crist with John Krause.
Anderson Belt Railroad
Started in 1892, it was built by local capitalists and manufacturers in order to provide
better shipping facilities by connecting each of the Anderson main lines to each other
and various manufacturers and warehouses. By 1910 this was to make Anderson one of the
best shipping points in Indiana.
The line was merged into the Pan Handle (PCC&StL) in 1916 and passed to the PRR in 1921, the Penn Central in 1968 and Conrail in 1976.
NYC Mikado under load. H10a photo by Ray E. Toby / Collection of Ray S. Curl.
DOW Tower in the early 1920s - Post Card Photo located by Irene Litten - from the Marvin Crim Collection
CR Ballast Express Southbound on the DOW at Cross Street - May 1997 - Roger Hensley Photo
NS at Sefton's Southbound on the DOW at 1st and John - Nov 1999 - Roger Hensley Photo
Emporia Grain 611 at the Emporia Grain Co. (AG1 Farm Bureau Co-op) - January 1998 - Roger Hensley Photo
Lehigh and New England 611 at Pen Argyl in the late 50s - Martin Zak, Diamond Collection Photo
CR 4103 leaves the 'Big Four' number 1 main at 31st Street and starts northward toward the Dow - Roger Hensley Photo
LMX 8522 (a leased unit) pulls northward at Pearl Street toward the Dow - Roger Hensley Photo
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This "Railroads of Madision County" page is written, maintained and hosted by:
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Copyright 1997-2008 by Roger P. Hensley. Taken from the original work by Roger P. Hensley