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Eastern Railroad Discussion > A black-and-white type of day? Not really!


Date: 11/21/20 14:10
A black-and-white type of day? Not really!
Author: KimHeusel

Earlier this week, two friends and I headed up the Norfolk Southern’s Marion Branch (officially Marion District, but fondly known in these parts at least as the Marion Branch). The branch runs between Anderson and Goshen, Indiana. It is of New York Central heritage. In the early 1970s, Penn Central decided to upgrade the line with welded rail and partial signaling to run trains between Elkhart and Indianapolis. At Anderson the branch joined up with the former New York Central (PC, Conrail) and what is now the CSX Indianapolis Line Sub.

The line stayed busy through the Conrail period, and after it was put into the NS fold after the Conrail split, the line still was reasonably busy on the section north of Alexandria to Elkhart. NS ran several trains a day each way. The traffic branched off the NS New Castle District at Muncie west onto the Frankfort District, and then headed north toward Elkhart on a new connection at Alexandria that was put in after the Conrail split.

Alas, with the construction of another new connection in Claypool, Indiana, where the Marion Branch cross the former Nickel Plate (Chicago District), much of the traffic that had gone west to Alexandria and then north now continues north at Muncie up the New Castle District to Fort Wayne, then west on the Nickel Plate to Claypool, then north on the branch to Elkhart.

The title of this thread refers to an expectation of seeing mostly Norfolk Southern trains with their black-and-white locomotives. Things didn’t really turn out that way. Yes, we saw some NS trains, a couple of them with the usual black-and-white power, but we also were treated to NS 8100, the Nickel Plate heritage unit leading on train 143, and a couple of CSX trains at Milford Junction.

The Marion Branch intersects and connects with the NS’s former Wabash mainline at Wabash, Indiana. This was where we caught our first train, an eastbound (first picture). I was out of the car without my scanner so I didn’t catch the symbol. There was nothing going on at Claypool so we continued north to Milford Junction, where the branch crosses CSX’s former B&O mainline. A westbound was passing through as we arrived, followed closely by an eastbound (second and third pictures).

More to come



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/21/20 14:14 by KimHeusel.








Date: 11/21/20 14:14
Re: A black-and-white type of day? Not really!
Author: KimHeusel

NS train 143 was lined up to come south through Milford Junction after the eastbound CSX train passed. We didn’t realize 8100 was leading until we saw it (first and second pictures). It was a nice treat for me as my photo library of heritage units is sorely lacking. Finally, for me at least, I caught this CSX local (third shot) heading east after 143 passed. Although it was still fairly early in the afternoon, I had to get back to take care of some things so we split up at that point (we all drove separate cars to maintain our social distance).

It was a great day to be out there.

Kim Heusel








Date: 11/22/20 15:12
Re: A black-and-white type of day? Not really!
Author: jmbreitigan

Thanks, a pleasure to view.
John



Date: 11/23/20 13:14
Re: A black-and-white type of day? Not really!
Author: nm2320

From viewing on Google Maps I see that this former NYC line had PRR style position light signals installed by PC. Since I do not know the dates of the map views has NS replaced them?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/23/20 13:17 by nm2320.



Date: 11/23/20 13:28
Re: A black-and-white type of day? Not really!
Author: 3rdswitch

Nice bunch.
JB



Date: 11/24/20 04:48
Re: A black-and-white type of day? Not really!
Author: KimHeusel

nm2320 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> From viewing on Google Maps I see that this former
> NYC line had PRR style position light signals
> installed by PC. Since I do not know the dates of
> the map views has NS replaced them?

Yes, replacement was done in stages and completed about 3 years ago. Here are a couple of pictures from those days. First shot is 19K at Milford Junction. Second shot is 142 heading north at MP14. Milford Junction is MP12.3. Both shots taken December 16, 2013.

Ki Heusel



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/24/20 04:53 by KimHeusel.






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