RAILFAN GUIDES of the U.S.

 

RAILROAD STATIONS, BRIDGES,
TOWERS, TUNNELS, ETC
IN PENNSYLVANIA

Allentown
Altoona
Ardmore
Belzwood
Bryn Athyn
Buena Vista
Camp Hill
Columbia
Cumberland Valley
Curwensville
Delaware Water Gap
Eagles Mere
Edgewood
Ellentown
Erie
Glen Rock
Harrisburg
Jim Thorpe
Langhorne - SEPTA
Lebanon
Manheim
Manns Choice
Marysville
McKeesport
New Castle
New Freedom
Nicholson
Northumberland
Olyphant
Orbisonia
Palmerton
Parkerford
Perdix
Philadelphia
Pittsburgh
Rockville
Rupert
Scranton
Sellersville
Siegfried
Somerton - SEPTA
Thompson
Tobyhanna
Towanda
Woodbourne - SEPTA
York

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There are precious few good references for many of the railroad stations and depots that used to exist.
One of the better resources I have come across to this end is the plethora of old post cards still around depicting many of these structures, some better than others.
A good portion of the pictures on this page are postcards I found on EBay.  Some of them have been cleaned up and/or repaired when I had the energy.
Since many of these stations are no longer around (railfans seem to prefer the term "extant", I'm not one of them! :-), this page is mostly for historical reference.
What's the difference between a station and a depot?  Most people will say "nuttin", it's a matter of preference, although many will use depot for older buildings.
If they were available, and interesting, I included the back side of the postcards.
If you have a picture you would like to contribute, please see the bottom of the page for how to find me, credit is always given to contributing photographers.
 

ALLENTOWN

CNJ Station

 Many thanks to Jim Spears for the use of his picture.

LV Station

      The former Lehigh Valley RR station, long gone... from postcards.

Terminal Depot?

 


ALTOONA

Altoona Railfan Guide


Amtrak Station

       



ex PRR ALTO Tower

       
ALTO tower lasted as a tower until the summer of 2012.  The picture on the right shows the tower with its name plate taken off after it was decommissioned on the same day the PL signals were taken out of service and removed.  More pix in the Altoona guide.



ARDMORE



 

BELZWOOD

  





BRYN ATHYN

Sitting along a hikey-bikey trail, the line to Newtown has been a much discussed line for future development into a new commuter line by SEPTA for something like the last 30 years.  In November of 2016, SEPTA has apparently given in to the rich people and thrown in the hat.  "They" are going to let Newtown tear up what remains of the rails, and turn the line into more hikey-bikey trails.  Years from now, when the Millenials are asking themselves why they are stuck in traffic to get downtown for their jobs, they can reflect back upon this moment in history and be proud!  :-)











BUENA VISTA

 



CAMP HILL

     
Camp Hill is a suburb of Harrisburg, on the western side of the Susquehanna River.  More pictures in the Harrisburg railfan guide.


COLUMBIA

Columbia Railfan Guide


ex R&C Freight Shed


An old warehouse building fixed up pretty nice, formerly of the Reading and Columbia RR.


ex PRR COLA Tower

 



CUMBERLAND VALLEY





CURWENSVILLE





DELAWARE WATER GAP







EAGLES MERE





EDGEWOOD





ELLENTOWN





ERIE







GLEN ROCK

the Western Maryland Rwy

 



HARRISBURG

Harrisburg Railfan Guide


ex PRR Harrisburg Depot

       


ex PRR Maclay Street Depot

I can't tell you anything about this station, cause I cannot find any information on it, anywhere.... Maybe someone out there knows? 
I found the postcard on EBay!

Below is my best guess where this station might have been, if so, most of what is pictured is long gone, and they superimposed the state capitol building in the background, because it is way off to the left and could not have been seen in this view.  I can't tell if what looks like a foundation is the remains of the station (inside the red outline), or "recently" put there to contain whatever it is that they keep there.


ex PRR Harris Tower

     

The HARRIS tower in Harrisburg PA.  It opened (I believe) in June 2010, and is supposed to be open on Saturdays between 10am and 4pm, but don't count on the hours if you are making a trip specifically to see the tower, as I stopped by recently shortly after 3pm, and it was already closed.  It is just north of the Amtrak depot.  Also in the area is the Rockville bridge north of H'burg in Marysville, and Enola yard, on the south side of I81 along US11.


ex PRR Capitol Tower


JIM THORPE

ex CNJ Depot

  Many thanks to Jim Spears for the use of his photo.


LANGHORNE

A SEPTA commuter rail station on the West Trenton line.

     



LEBANON

Philadelphia & Reading RR Depot
GPS Coordinates: 40.343180, -76.424289 (please note: Wikipedia's GPS coordinates are WRONG!)
You can just make out the Banjo signals at the rear of the station property on the left!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lebanon_station_(Reading_Railroad)
http://www.west2k.com/pastations/lebanon.shtml railroad stations of Lebanon Co





 

  From Google Maps in 2017

  picture by Smallbones, from Wikipedia


 


former RR Warehouse

GPS Coordinates: 40.348931, -76.422591






 


former C&L (Cornwall & Lebanon RR) Depot

GPS Coordinates: 40.348931, -76.422591
Notice the two depots are only a block away from each other!














MANHEIM

Manheim Railfan Guide


 ex PRR Depot

     


MANNS CHOICE


A picture found on EBay of the depot that used to be in Mann's Choice, southwest of the interchange of the Pennsy Turnpike and I-99 heading up to Altoona.


MARYSVILLE

Marysville is on the western bank of the Susquehanna River, north of Harrisburg PA.  The information is from a friend who prefers to remain anonymous.  But a BIG Thanks goes to him for detailing the photo and providing the history!

 





McKEESPORT

 



NEW CASTLE

ex B&O Depot


A "stranded" depot.  CSX (ex B&O) tracks are behind on the fill.  Dunno anything about it, but it sure would be a great place for a model railroad club, and/or a live steam club!!!


Depot #2

     
This depot is located almost in the middle of the downtown area.


Depot #3

 
This depot is located in the downtown area, the front of which houses a photo studio.



New Castle is also home to the New Castle Industrial RR, and Kasgro, which specializes in large capacity railroad cars.  Several of the old Westinghouse cars for carrying transformers can be seen in their yard.


NEW FREEDOM

New Freedom Railfan Guide


ex PRR Depot

           


NICHOLSON

ex DL&W Freight House







The following is from: http://www.nicholsonheritage.org/dlw-railroad-station/

History of the Railroad Station:

The Nicholson Station was the first, and largest, station built by the Liggett’s Gap Railroad on its line from Scranton, PA to Great Bend, PA in 1849/1850. Initially, the wood station was used to board transient workers before being used to handle freight and passengers. As many as one hundred workmen slept on the second floor of the station during construction. The north section of the first floor, the freight room, was the big dining hall and the south portion of the first floor was a kitchen, living room, and bedroom for family.

The Liggett’s Gap Railroad was a predecessor to the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western Railroad (DL&W), which was the one of the earliest railroads in the region. Railroads were crucial in the late 19th Century and early 20th Century, the Industrial Age of the United States, to changing how goods, people, and services moved, especially by, literally, opening small rural communities like Nicholson to the “rest of the world.” Railroads like the DL&W moved coal, iron and steel out of Scranton through towns including Nicholson to where it was needed outside the region. They fueled our nation’s economy.

Additionally, all along the DL&W from Scranton to Binghamton, stations to receive milk were built at places most convenient to area dairy farmers. The largest milk station was at Nicholson, just north of the Nicholson station. Milk was then shipped on the lines to Scranton and Binghamton.

Nicholson was the most important stop between Scranton and Binghamton as it sent and received more passengers and freight and brought more profit to the DL&W than any other station along the line, and for some years it was more than all the other stations combined.  Reverend Garford Williams reported in the January 15, 1954 edition of the Nicholson Examiner that “in 1854, the Nicholson station received 3,459 passengers who paid $1,741.32 in fares from all DL&W railroad points to Nicholson. The same year, Nicholson sent out 2,562 passengers on the Lackawanna Railroad, who paid $1,778.79 in fares to all railroad points.” It’s interesting to note that the 1880 U.S. Census records that there were 586 residents in Nicholson.

In 1855, the local Post Office moved from the edge of the settlement to the station, at which time the name was changed from Baconville (sometimes also referred to as Bacontown), after the town’s second Postmaster (Nathan Bacon), to Nicholson, named after John Nicholson, the former comptroller general of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania from 1782 to 1794 who greatly influenced our early Nation. For some time, the station agent, Albert King, was also the postmaster. For fifty years, the Nicholson station employed a passenger agent, a freight agent, telegrapher, and several assistants.

Between the years 1870 and 1883, all trains had to be switched at the Nicholson station; requiring a switch man to be on duty at all times day and night. About this time there were five stage coach routes out of Nicholson that made connections with the DL&W. Also, with Nicholson being the low spot on the rail line, all trains out of Nicholson needed a push up and out of the town. The “Nicholson Pusher” was a helper engine, with two engines added later, used to push or pull long freight trains either way out of Nicholson. Because of this, there was a turntable in Nicholson, with three siding tracks and one switch track, all that were connected to the main line.

In May 1878, the first telephone service in the area was installed when service was opened between the Nicholson and Scranton Stations, about 21 miles south. The station was THE center of the community.

After the DL&W built the Cut-Off that was opened in 1915, the original wood station only handled freight while passenger service was provided by the newly built concrete station on the hill next to the also newly constructed largest reinforced concrete bridge in the world, the Tunkhannock Viaduct, known as the Nicholson Bridge to local residents. The old main line was eventually sold to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to become State Route 11. In 1941, Route 11 was widened, and the ticket bay window and part of the roof on the Route 11 side were removed.

The wood station continued to handle freight after the DL&W merger with the Erie Railroad (becoming the Erie Lackawanna Railroad) in 1960. From the October 16, 1970, Nicholson Examiner article about the Nicholson station agent, it’s stated that the station “is the last station between Scranton (PA) and Binghamton (NY) to remain open.” This further illustrates the importance of the Nicholson station not just to the community, but to the region as well.

Due to financial hardship, the Erie Lackawanna Railroad closed the station in 1971. The building was then sold in 1983 to a local business and in private use until bought by the Nicholson Heritage Association in June 2012.

 

NORTHUMBERLAND

ex PRR Depot

             
This station is now a restaurant, having been purchased from Conrail in 1981.  They built one addition to the front of the station, and another to the right, placing two ex Pennsy passenger cars on the outside of the addition.  The food is good and reasonable, and if you are in the area, you should make a point of stopping in for lunch or dinner.  Northumberland is about 50 miles north of Harrisburg and I81.

 


OLYPHANT





ORBISONIA

East Broad Top Railfan Guide

This depot has served the EBT - East Broad Top, for many, many years, and we hope for many to come..... The foggy picture almost looks like it could be in 1940.

   
 


PALMERTON

ex CNJ Depot

  Many thanks to Jim Spears for the use of his photo.



PARKERFORD





PERDIX

ex NC/PRR "BANKS" Tower



Perdix, although I have driven through there many, many times, wasn't a familiar name until a friend sent out these pictures and I looked it up.  Banks tower was the first tower west of the Rockville Bridge (in blue) and Marysville.  My friend states: "NC," of course, stood for Northern Central, as that's where the NC's Baltimore-Sunbury main line crossed the PRR's Middle Division.  It was constructed in 1912, and demolished in the late 1980s. (Originally the diamond had been at "HA" Hailey's Station, a half mile to the east.)  The pictures are from February 1978.







PHILADELPHIA

Philadelphia Railfan Guide


30th Street -- Amtrak/SEPTA/NJT


69th Street -- SEPTA


Oak Lane





ZOO Tower


For suburban Philadelphia commuter stations, also see:
Langhorne - SEPTA
Somerton - SEPTA
Woodbourne - SEPTA




PITTSBURGH

former Pittsburg & Lake Erie Depot

 



2nd Ave Bridge - 1905
Found here: http://historicpittsburgh.org/collection/pittsburgh-railways-company-records



And here are some close-ups of the picture:


 



 


ROCKVILLE

Railfan Guide to the Rockville Bridge


Postcards found on EBay, many more pictures on the railfan guide page....

   



RUPERT





SCRANTON

Scranton Railfan Guide


ex DL&W Depot

     
This former DL&W depot is now one of Scranton's premier hotel, the Radisson.


Tower 60

   


Mattes Ave Tower

       


ex CNJ Depot

   


ex D&H Freight Shed

 


Misc Tower

   


ex Erie RR Depot

           


SELLERSVILLE





SIEGFRIED

ex CNJ Depot

   Many thanks to Jim Spears for the use of his photo.


SOMERTON

A SEPTA commuter rail station on the West Trenton line.

 

 


THOMPSON





TOBYHANNA

       
A big thank you goes to fellow worker Pat Spera for taking the time to snap these off, as he was running late for a wedding!



TOWANDA

 



WOODBOURNE

A SEPTA commuter rail station on the West Trenton line.

       


YORK

York Railfan Guide


ex Maryland & Pennsylvania Rwy

 


ex Pennsylvania RR Tower

   


ex Pennsylvania RR Depot

   


ex Western Maryland Freight Shed

     



Disclaimers:

Pictures and additional information is always needed if anyone feels inclined to take 'em, send 'em, and share 'em, or if you have something to add or correct.... credit is always given! BE NICE!!!

Contact info is here


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