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Allentown branchlines
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   Author  Topic: Allentown branchlines  (Read 42283 times)
CandF
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #640 on: Jan 8th, 2013, 6:48am »
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Ice City burned in the late 1970's.  That is the Ice City at location "A", not the one pictured a few posts ago.

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DAVE-39
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #641 on: Jan 8th, 2013, 10:06am »
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Bill,
A number of posts ago you raised the question if there ever was a crossover between Allen and Liberty Sts. You indicated that a 1911 Sandborn map showed what looked like a crossover in that area. I believe I can explain. In 1890 the West End branch ended at 17th and Liberty. The end was in the form of a runaround track from Tilghman to Liberty Sts. In 1900 the main track was extended across 17th and Liberty to build toward the 12th St. Terminal. In 1904, the runaround track was extended across 17th and Liberty into Trexler Lumber and the runaround track became the ladder track into all the Trexler Lumber sidings on 17th St. Therefore if they left the switch where the runaround track joined the main track in place it would have looked like a crossover. Maybe they kept in place for a few years, but a 1917 LVRR map shows the switch removed and no evidence of a crossover between Allen and Liberty Sts.  
One thing I remember about the intersection @ 17th and Liberty was that there were four sets of tracks running diagonally across the intersection from NW to SE (as Mark explained). While driving an automobile through that intersection, this meant crossing 8 rails (diagonally increasing it to the equivalent of 16) with two sets of automobile wheels, created quite a few "thuds". In addition there were four tracks across 17th St  that entered Trexler Lumber between Liberty and Allen Sts. Seventeenth St. was a good place to check shock absorbers. At 17th and Liberty the two tracks closest to Liberty St. (Schelly and Trexler Lumber sidings) were removed in Sept. 1972.
 
Dave


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Dave-39
MrBill
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #642 on: Jan 23rd, 2013, 10:49am »
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Thanks Dave. That explains it well. I appreciate all the input from you guys, and hope to see someone build a layout someday to bring some of these memories alive in model form.  
I got to go through some pictures last week, and I found my one and only photo study I ever did in Allentown, of AB meats in October of 1996. There are more I need to scan, and I got some of Neuweiler from the same time also, but haven't found them yet. Hope you enjoy these for now.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


« Last Edit: Jan 23rd, 2013, 5:56pm by MrBill » Logged
A-townbranchfan
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Re: Allentown branchlines
  ab.jpg - 81221 Bytes
« Reply #643 on: Jan 23rd, 2013, 11:47am »
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Bill: I was hoping when you said you shot A&B that you would have had some pictures showing where the two former sidings were located.  The southern-most siding curved sharply between two of the A&B buildings, went through a small courtyard-type area (the shrub-covered area in the lower center of your 2nd picture) and disappeared into the eastern building.  In this 10/20/1972 picture by local railfan, Bob Wilt, the morning trick (with conductor, Ed Kropf) is pulling an empty car used to deliver salt to A&B for the curing of meats like bacon and ham.  The opening was so tight that the engine crew had to pull down the sun visors flat against the sides of the cab (as shown here on this Valley SW-1) so they wouldn't be torn off as the engine backed into the plant.  Though A&B and Neuweiler weren't located along any of the Allentown branches, they were often serviced by the crews which operated the branchline drills.  To those not from Allentown, the only thing left of what Bill photographed is the former office building, which now stands next to the new transportation museum along N. Front St, near Hamilton St.

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MrBill
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #644 on: Jan 23rd, 2013, 6:14pm »
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I scanned a few more shots showing the opening where that siding went through. There was another siding just north of it going through the fencing  (maybe a fuel lead?), and i think there were rails in the pavement to the right of the office along the big curved section parallel to hamilton. Can anyone reference a track plan?
I probably would have gotten more shots, but i got clotheslined by a redevelopment guy who was polite, but not keen on me getting too close to the place.


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MrBill
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #645 on: Jan 23rd, 2013, 6:47pm »
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I scanned a few more shots (added above) showing the opening where that siding went through. There was another siding just north of it going through the fencing  (maybe a fuel lead?), and i think there were rails in the pavement to the right of the office, along the big curved section parallel to hamilton. Can anyone reference a track plan?
I probably would have gotten more shots, but i got clotheslined by a redevelopment guy who was polite, but not keen on me getting too close to the place.


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gfluck1
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Re: Allentown branchlines
  Insurance_maps_of_Allentown_Pennsylvania_sheet_36_1911.jpg - 178951 Bytes
« Reply #646 on: Jan 23rd, 2013, 7:45pm »
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Attached is the 1911 Sanborn segment showing the A & B Plant.

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LV/Insurance_maps_of_Allentown_Pennsylvania_sheet_36_1911.jpg
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valleyfan628
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Re: Allentown branchlines
  AandB1971.jpg - 56221 Bytes
« Reply #647 on: Jan 23rd, 2013, 8:15pm »
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Attached is a zoomed segment of the 1971 Penn Pilot shot of the plant. You can barely make out the siding that was added to service the north side of the building which created the diamond where the two sidings crossed.

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LV/AandB1971.jpg
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100lbrail
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #648 on: Jun 25th, 2013, 12:15am »
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on Dec 20th, 2012, 7:01pm, A-townbranchfan wrote:       (Click here for original message)
Michael (One87th): Once again, you've added sweet icing to this multi-layered cake!  Where you find these rare pictures I'll never know... but please keep them coming!
Bill: The section you're interested in was always my favorite part of the line.  I can tell you I spent many days hanging out around the section near Ice City. I took tennis lessons as a kid in the mid-1960s about 4 blocks down Allen St. and used to walk up or ride my bike to this part of the branch to see if I could see the West End drill running by around noon after my lessons finished.  I can tell you I remember the switch to the coal company being intact but not much of the siding left... and I can remember when the switch was removed... but I can't give you exact dates, just that both happened during the 1960s.  Regarding your other question, the rails ran right up to the sidewalk along Liberty Street and were partially obstructed by a big old Maple tree right by the end of the siding.  Also, only once in my life did I ever see a car on that siding, but I remember it clearly because it was in the very early 1970s and I couldn't believe that the track was still in use being that I'd never seen one there before.  By the way, it was a brown box car... don't remember the road name.  Sadly, I never had a chance to photograph its delivery or removal, so I have no photos of the engine out on the old trestle!  Hope these memories help your planning.  -- Mark



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100lbrail
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #649 on: Jun 25th, 2013, 12:21am »
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I worked part time at Ice City in 70s for awhile amd the Mueller's the owners liked rail shipments right on their parking lot.The box car you saw I may heve seen too was loaded with swimming pools.
I was astounded too when I came to work that afternoon and saw car in lot,thought at first was a derailed car..
most other shipments were taken at 12th St. siding


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A-townbranchfan
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #650 on: Jun 25th, 2013, 9:51am »
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100lbrail: Speaking of cars we both saw... many, many months ago you informed me that you had a picture of a car which had derailed across 13th St (near Gordon) and said you'd dig it out and post it.  We're still waiting!  I remember being there when they re-railed the car.  Engineer Harold Barwick told me a vandal had released the hand and air brakes on the car and it rolled all the way from where it had been spotted next to the unloading ramp near 12th Street before hitting the derail just east of 13th, skidding to a stop half way across the street.  Luckily nobody was driving by at the time.
I remember you posted a nice shot of a boxcar next to the former Ritter & Smith lumber shed early in this forum.  How about digging out this picture and posting it for all to see?  It would be greatly appreciated and might just get this stagnant thread started up again!  If you do, I'll dig out something I haven't posted before. -- Mark


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valleyfan628
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Re: Allentown branchlines
  Burning_the_weeds_Jordan_Loop_864x584.jpg - 55351 Bytes
« Reply #651 on: Jun 25th, 2013, 11:03am »
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Burning the weeds on the Jordan Loop. Found this posted on FB.

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LV/Burning_the_weeds_Jordan_Loop_864x584.jpg
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Charlie Ricker
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #652 on: Jun 27th, 2013, 9:15am »
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That's a neat photo......weed control was certainly a "different animal" some 40 years ago!  
 
Charlie


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Re: Allentown branchlines
  Scan_3_896x650.jpg - 100125 Bytes
« Reply #653 on: Mar 7th, 2014, 5:40pm »
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Just when I'd given up hope of ever finding additional images to post here, something really special has come my way.  Thanks to a friend of a friend sharing some slides he purchased from the collection of the late Kermit Geary, Sr., I have another rare view into the past for all those who've followed this thread.  Taken from the Linden Street Bridge, looking south toward the Hamilton Street bridge in Allentown sometime in the mid-1950s, the photographer captured a detouring DL&W passenger train heading railroad west on the former Jordan Loop of the Lehigh Valley Railroad... past the Allentown passenger station.  The detour was the result of severe flooding along the DL&W's track due to a hurricane which struck the east coast at that time.  By the way, the empty eastbound track shown to the right of the train is the track which still remains in place today and is used by R.J.Corman to reach their small freight yard just north (to the rear) of where this picture was taken.  Enjoy... and being that it's been many months since anything's been posted to this thread, has anybody else found something of interest to add here? -- Mark

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« Last Edit: Mar 7th, 2014, 5:45pm by A-townbranchfan » Logged
Henry
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #654 on: Mar 7th, 2014, 8:56pm »
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Looks like a Hurricane Diane detour in '55.
 
Henry


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valleyfan628
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Re: Allentown branchlines
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« Reply #655 on: Mar 20th, 2014, 11:32am »
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Track crossing 17th ad Liberty captured in a photo by Dave Nichols, circa 1977.


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« Last Edit: Mar 20th, 2014, 11:34am by valleyfan628 » Logged
A-townbranchfan
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #656 on: Mar 20th, 2014, 1:37pm »
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Thanks for the additions, Gif, although I had already posted the Houser slide way back on page 7.  Your version does show slightly more of the train, however.  Nice shot of the "old" Allentown Fairgrounds Hotel (looking west) with the WEB in the foreground.  Since only one track is visible, it would have been the siding to the former Hess's warehouse... soon to become Robbins Door & Sash Co. at the time the picture was taken.  The WEB's 'main' would have been just out of the frame of the picture, to the lower right.  (The second photo was taken looking 180 degrees in the opposite direction from the picture above it.  In the Houser shot, the Hess's siding is the track in the foreground and the train is parked on the 'main' while conductor, Ed Knopf walks over to the Hess Brother's warehouse.)  By the way, folks... pictures which include WEB track are welcome on this forum... they don't have to include a train or rolling stock.  After all, beggars can't be choosers and being that all of this is gone today... we're all beggars. -- Mark

« Last Edit: Mar 20th, 2014, 1:54pm by A-townbranchfan » Logged
valleyfan628
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Re: Allentown branchlines
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« Reply #657 on: Mar 24th, 2014, 10:40pm »
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More tracks. This time from 17th and Tilghman on the day of the Ice City fire in the late 70's

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CandF
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #658 on: Mar 25th, 2014, 7:45am »
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My dad took me to see that fire.  What is interesting to me is that the Mack CF telesquirt on 17th Street (the aerial in the left of the photo) appears to be from Wescoesville FD (now Lower Macungie FD).  The aerial to the rear of the building (in the right of the photo) appears to be Allentown Aerial 2, a Peter Pirsch open cab.  Surprised to see Macungie's squirt at the fire.

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A-townbranchfan
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Re: Allentown branchlines
 
« Reply #659 on: Mar 25th, 2014, 11:14am »
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Great addition, Gif... interesting angle... looking south.  Thanks for the posting!  By the way, the fire happened in September, 1979. -- Mark

« Last Edit: Mar 25th, 2014, 11:19am by A-townbranchfan » Logged
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