St. Johnsbury and Lamoille County Railroad

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The St. Johnsbury and Lamoille County Railroad (StJ&LC) was constructed in the 1870s as the Vermont Division of the Portland and Ogdensburg Railway to connect the Great Lakes with the seaport of Portland, Maine. The westerly connection with the Great Lakes was never made. The eastern end of the Vermont Division was leased to the Maine Central Railroad in 1912, and the remainder of the line became a subsidiary of the Boston and Maine Railroad. The Boston & Maine operated their segment as the St. Johnsbury and Lake Champlain Railroad after 1925. This segment was reorganized as the St. Johnsbury and Lamoille County Railroad in 1948.[1]

Freight traffic was 30% inbound commodities, 20% outbound dairy products to Boston, 15% outbound forest products, and 25% outbound limestone, talc and asbestos. The remaining 10% was bridge line traffic (westbound paper and eastbound feed) for the Maine Central Railroad Mountain Division. Six 70-ton General Electric Diesel locomotives replaced steam locomotives.[when?] Passenger service ended in 1956. Trucks had taken all of the milk traffic by 1961, but bridge line traffic had increased six-fold following the 1953 dissolution of Maine Central's joint operating agreement with Boston and Maine Railroad. Light rail and covered bridges prevented the line from accepting new heavier "incentive" freight car loadings. The covered bridges were replaced or reinforced so worn out light diesel locomotives could be replaced by larger locomotives; but track conditions deteriorated under the heavier loads.[2]

The State of Vermont purchased the line from Samuel Pinsley in 1973. The line was then operated by Morrison-Knudsen as the Vermont Northern Railroad for a time. In 1978, local shippers took over the operation and it became the Lamoille Valley Railroad. In 1989, the line was leased to a Florida company and was operated by them until major flooding in 1995 and 1997 damaged the line so much that it was not profitable to repair the track. In 2002, the state of Vermont started converting the 96 mile route into a recreational trail and created the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail.

Route[edit]

Milepost 0: St. Johnsbury interchange with Maine Central Railroad and Canadian Pacific Railway.[3]

Milepost 1.4: Fairbanks Scales factory[3]

Milepost 11.5: Danville[3]

Milepost 19.7: Walden[4]

Milepost 27.8: Greensboro Bend[4]

Milepost 34.7: Hardwick junction with Hardwick and Woodbury Railroad. 98-foot covered bridge built 1909 over the Lamoille River burned 1959.[5]

Milepost 39: Preserved 90-foot Fisher covered bridge built in 1908 over the Lamoille River was strengthened in 1968 to be the last covered railroad bridge in service.[6]

Milepost 41: Wolcott 120-foot covered bridge built 1909 over the Lamoille River replaced by steel bridge about 1968.[6]

Milepost 48.9: Morrisville was the most important shipping point on the line.[7]

Milepost 51.6: Hyde Park[7]

Milepost 56.4: Johnson Eastern Magnesia Talc[7]

Milepost 64.6: Cambridge Junction with Central Vermont Railroad. 113-foot covered bridge built 1899 over the Lamoille River replaced by steel bridge about 1968.[5]

Milepost 78.4: Fairfield[8]

Milepost 83: Sheldon[8]

Milepost 84.6: Sheldon Junction with Central Vermont Railroad[8]

Milepost 90.9: Highgate[8]

Milepost 94.7: East Swanton junction with Central Vermont Railroad. Three-span 369-foot covered bridge over the Missisquoi River built in 1898 was on the main line between East Swanton and Swanton. It was preserved by routing StJ&LC trains over the Central Vermont Railroad.[9]

Milepost 96.1: Swanton Swanton Lime Works and interchange with Central Vermont Railroad[8]

Locomotives[edit]

Number Builder Type Date Works number Notes
11 Baldwin Locomotive Works 2-6-0 1909 33394 ex-Montpelier and Wells River Railroad #11 purchased 1926[10]
21 ALCO Manchester 0-6-0 1909 46339 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #286 purchased 1947 scrapped 1949[10]
22 ALCO Manchester 0-6-0 1909 46338 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #285 then Montpelier and Wells River Railroad 2nd #11 purchased 1944[10]
23 ALCO Manchester 0-6-0 1908 45125 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #272 then Montpelier and Wells River Railroad 2nd #9 purchased 1940 sold 1944[10]
24 ALCO Manchester 0-6-0 1908 45131 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #278 purchased 1930 scrapped 1949[10]
25 ALCO Manchester 0-6-0 1908 45118 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #265 purchased 1929 scrapped 1941[10]
26 ALCO Manchester 2-6-0 1906 38990 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #1419 purchased 1929[10]
1st #27 ALCO Manchester 2-6-0 1910 47629 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #1485 purchased 1929[10]
2nd #27 Baldwin Locomotive Works 0-6-0 1923 56033 ex-McKeesport Connecting Railroad #27 purchased 1949 scrapped 1955[10]
28 ALCO Manchester 2-6-0 1910 48961 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #1491 purchased 1929[10]
30 Baldwin Locomotive Works 0-6-0 1924 38990 ex-McKeesport Connecting Railroad #30 purchased 1949 scrapped 1953[10]
31 Schenectady Locomotive Works 4-6-0 1899 5171 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2040 purchased 1929[10]
32 Schenectady Locomotive Works 4-6-0 1898 4714 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2035 purchased 1930[10]
33 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1901 25052 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2350 purchased 1930 wrecked 1944[10]
34 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1911 49001 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2421 purchased 1930[10]
35 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1911 49007 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2427 purchased 1930 scrapped 1938[10]
36 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1910 47648 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2404 purchased 1932 scrapped 1949[10]
37 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1911 49005 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2425 purchased 1932[10]
38 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1902 25073 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2357 purchased 1934 wrecked 1944[10]
39 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1902 25072 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2356 purchased 1936[10]
40 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1911 49000 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2420 then Montpelier and Wells River Railroad #18 purchased 1939[10]
41 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1907 42843 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2388 purchased 1946 scrapped 1948[11]
42 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1910 47645 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2401 then Montpelier and Wells River Railroad #19 then Barre and Chelsea Railroad #19 purchased 1946[11]
43 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1910 47656 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2412 then Barre and Chelsea Railroad #22 purchased 1947[11]
44 ALCO Schenectady 2-8-0 1911 49003 ex-Boston and Maine Railroad #2423 then Montpelier and Wells River Railroad #20 then Barre and Chelsea Railroad #20 purchased 1947[11]
46 General Electric 70-ton 1948 29297 sold Montpelier and Barre Railroad 1973[12]
47 General Electric 70-ton 1948 29298 sold Montpelier and Barre Railroad 1956[12]
48 General Electric 70-ton 1948 29299 sold Montpelier and Barre Railroad 1973[12]
49 General Electric 70-ton 1948 30022 scrapped 1963[12]
50 General Electric 70-ton 1949 30184 sold Montpelier and Barre Railroad 1957[12]
51 General Electric 70-ton 1951 30844 sold Frankfort and Cincinnati Railroad 1972[12]
52 General Electric 70-ton 1947 29087 ex-Barre and Chelsea Railroad #13 purchased 1955 sold Montpelier and Barre Railroad 1973[12]
53 General Electric 70-ton 1951 31168 ex-Mississippi Export Railroad #48 purchased 1958 sold 1960[12]
54 General Electric 70-ton 1953 31724 ex-Mississippi Export Railroad #50 purchased 1958 sold Montpelier and Barre Railroad 1973[12]
55 General Electric 70-ton 1949 30175 ex-Lakeside and Marblehead Railroad #11 purchased 1963 sold Montpelier and Barre Railroad 1973[12]
56 General Electric 44-ton 1943 17929 ex-Carnegie-Illinois Steel Company #5 purchased 1965 sold 1966[12]
1st #200 General Electric 70-ton 1947 29092 ex-Unadilla Valley Railroad #200 purchased 1960 scrapped 1965[12]
2nd #200 EMD GP9 1956 20973 ex-New York Central Railroad #5960 purchased 1967 sold 1973[12]
201 EMD GP9 1957 23589 ex-New York Central Railroad #6056 purchased 1967 sold 1973[12]
202 American Locomotive Company RS-3 1951 78937 ex-Reading Railroad #523 purchased 1968 sold Montpelier and Barre Railroad 1973[12]
203 American Locomotive Company RS-3 1953 80498 ex-Great Northern Railway #229 purchased 1968 sold Montpelier and Barre Railroad 1973[12]
204 American Locomotive Company RS-3 1950 78292 ex-Lehigh and Hudson River Railroad #4 purchased 1970[12]
205 American Locomotive Company RS-3 1950 78369 ex-Lehigh and Hudson River Railroad #10 purchased 1971 sold Montpelier and Barre Railroad 1973.[12] In 1976 it was sold to the Vermont Railway as #605, and in 1984 it was sold to Batten Kill Railroad as #605.
206 American Locomotive Company RS-3 1952 80163 ex-Delaware and Hudson Railroad #4073 purchased 1972[12]

References[edit]

  • Hartley, Scott (1984). New England ALCOS in Twilight. PTJ Publishing. ISBN 0-937658-10-3. 
  • Johnson, Ron (1986). New Hampshire and Vermont Railroads. Portland Litho. 
  • Lewis, Edward A. (1974). Vermont's Covered Bridge Road. The Baggage Car. 
  • [1]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Lewis (1974) pp.6-39
  2. ^ Lewis (1974) pp.39-51
  3. ^ a b c Lewis (1974) p.113
  4. ^ a b Lewis (1974) p.114
  5. ^ a b Lewis (1974) pp.60&115
  6. ^ a b Lewis (1974) p.60
  7. ^ a b c Lewis (1974) p.115
  8. ^ a b c d e Lewis (1974) p.116
  9. ^ Lewis (1974) pp.60&116
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u Lewis (1974) p.123
  11. ^ a b c d Lewis (1974) p.124
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s Lewis (1974) p.126