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Eastern Railroad Discussion > Riding New York Central in the 1960s

Date: 10/03/19 06:27
Riding New York Central in the 1960s
Author: ETFuller

In the 1960s, John Springer's father worked as a tower operator on the New York Central. As "Young Springer," John was befriended by the crews and allowed to ride the trains and experience railroading first-hand.


Edd Fuller, Editor
The Trackside Photographer

Date: 10/03/19 09:44
Re: Riding New York Central in the 1960s
Author: EL-SD45-3632

Very Nice! This should be posted on the Nostalgia & History section.

Date: 10/03/19 18:57
Re: Riding New York Central in the 1960s
Author: wa4umr

Wow, what a great story.  As I read it I couldn't get my mind off the thought of how things have changed.  In the late 50s and early 60s, I chased trains n my bicycle.  On several occasions a local would be sitting on a siding, waiting for a train to pass.  The crew would invite us into the cab while they sat there.  Even as late as the 70s, I took my son to see some trains and the crew invited us into the cab as he took some cars through a wye.  Today, you better not even touch a locomotive if it's sitting on a siding.  


Date: 10/04/19 06:44
Re: Riding New York Central in the 1960s
Author: 99stang

While not having a railroad family background, my buddy and I were befriended in the late 60s by a few of the LIRR crew that worked the Mitchell Field freight spur near our homes in Garden City. I know my buddy can probably remember the first time the engineer waved us up into the cab of the Alco S2 switcher; when idling every metal panel in the unit would rattle so loud you couldn't hear yourself think. We grew that freindship with the other engineers on the line; then tried the " Can we come up" line with the tower operator at Nassau in Mineola.  Couldn't beleive he said yes. Over the next 2-3 years we were constant visitors; after school, get the paper routes done throwing Newsdays onto porches, get on the old Schwinn  & Huffy10-speeds and race across town to the tower.
Fridays were great, taking our seats at the northeast corner of the tower, watching the action on the main and Oyster Bay brances, eating our paperboy profits spent at the Mineola Deli with Ring Dings, Cheese Doodles, Hires Root beer and maybe an oversized sandwich. My 2 train buddys pursued railroad careers, from the engineering perspective out of college. I went the business route, but got stymied by the coal strike of the late 70's and couldn' get a Class 1 road to take a business major trainee. 

Darn, seems like yesterday.... Gotta go find the 1960's- 70's prints/negatives from the basement now.  Never thought that would be in the Nostalgia section :-)


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