Re: [FJGRailroad] Re: Dates or "From the Achives"
- Andy Gino AAron
Great stuff.In 03-04 there was rail still in the streetat the back;line near the leaderhearald also broad st going into the levor mill.I have photos of all these areas I'll have to look for more .Also some of the rail from Fort Johnson Coal was still there.Broadalbin coal & supply on the trestle.
I'll look at some more photos to jog the memory
---- andrewsfusco <fusco@...> wrote:
> Aaron and Gino, absolutely great stuff about the final days
> of the FJ&G.
> I haven't been to Verklier's junk yard since 1995, but my
> guess in that the FJ&G box cars are still there because the
> Verklier brothers were using them for storage. There were
> about a half dozen, some in DO blue and some in PC
> green, (and one white reefer from a different railroad, I
> my memory serves).
> Speaking of the rails which remain at the Broadalbin station,
> there are a couple of crossings on the back roads northeast
> of the Turkey Farm restaurant and golf course where the
> rails are still present.
> Lastly, the current (March 2009) issue of Railpace is a must
> for FJ&G collectors. The back cover has a terrific shot of
> 44 tonner #111 leading an Arcade and Attica freight train,
> That's the engine which was rebuilt in Gloversville and briefly
> worked the FJ&G in test runs during the DO era. Interestingly,
> the A & A has repainted it orange and black, so it now looks
> remarkably like FJ&G #30, minus the yellow trim.---Andy
> --- In FJGRailroad@yahoogroups.com, Aaron Keller <akeller_1979@...> wrote:
> > (1) The last train, I thought, was Tuesday, Nov. 27, 1984, not Monday, Nov. 26th. Mike Yerina, Engineer; Mark Wilbur, Conductor. But was it the last train? It was the last revenue run, at least, and was denoted as such on the DO System dispatcher's log. Dave Nestle told me it was a terribly foggy day and he almost didn't make it. A dangerous drive on those dark foggy roads between Greenwich and Gloversville. Nestle told me that the engine, No. 103, was returned to Gloversville; so if that is true it must have trundled the line at least once more performing clean-up duties. That seems to make sense as the location of boxcars on the line in 1988 did not match the locations of cars left behind in the Gloversville yards during the "last run." I'll bet the locomotive shifted the cars left behind for storage before it was finally taken off the property. Walter Rich seemed to disagree that the engine would have gone to Gloversville; I believe he once
> > told me that there was no heated shop space in Gloversville. This is yet another mystery to which I've received no complete answer. Let's just suffice to say that the last revenue train, the last real money-maker, was Tuesday, Nov. 27, 1984, or Nov. 26th as I'm now hearing. This is the train with two signs on board denoting it as the last run. The final cars to Fonda came down from the company that received covered hoppers at the wye in the Gloversville industrial park. Another mystery is why the "last run" brought five cars from Coleco to Gloversville and apparently left them there. Why weren't those five left at Coleco with the other cars that were stored near Broadalbin Jct.? Or, why were they not brought straight to Fonda? Were they empties?
> > (2) The last boxcars left behind for storage were hauled out over a several week period in the fall of 1988. Preparations began Sept. 12, 1988, with car 153936 at the "NiMo siding" (Hill Street) in Gloversville getting the first inspection. The final cars examined were looked over on Oct. 18, 1988, and these were the cars in the West Yard which ultimately were not deemed roadworthy. They were eventually cut up for scrap in the West Yard sometime around 1989 or 1990. So, the Trackmobile operation occurred between Sept. 12, 1988, and October 18, 1988, based on the inspection forms by Rome Locomotive Works that are now sitting before me. I have other reports that include the delivery dates to Fonda and the waybilling dates on Conrail but they are not with me here in Missouri. The delivery dates to Fonda may contain slightly later dates, later on in October that is. Hope these give you a ballpark, Joe. The first time the Trackmobile turned a wheel on
> > the FJ&G was when it took a string of cars from Patch Road down to Dennie's Crossing, if I'm not mistaken, three at a time, until Broadalbin Junction was clear. From Dennie's the cars were taken to the Gloversville yard. That was interesting as the flanges in Gloversville had not been cut and the Trackmobile tried to ride up onto the pavement at W. 11th Ave. The crew realized it'd probably be wise to cut the flanges before bucking through any more crossings. So, a boxcar was pushed backwards to the Gloversville yard to cut the flanges. Then, three at a time, the cars went from Dennie's to Gloversville. From Gloversville the cars went straight to Fonda. You guessed it, three at a time. The trackmobile could only pull three cars at a time due to the size of
> > its air reservoir. Not enough power to brake a larger train. So,
> > three at a time the cars went south. That was an additional annoyance to the crew since they tried to get NYS&W C-420 #2010 to do the work. Now THAT would have been some big time railroading! A highnose C420 on the FJ&G. If not the 2010, the second option was to lease Battenkill #4116. Neither locomotive was allowed on the FJ&G because Rome Locomotive Works could not obtain operational insurance; only salvage insurance. They even called Lloyds in London. I'm not an expert in right of way maintenance, but from my point of view, it was a good thing these large engines did not visit the line. The siding at Hill Street was so bad that the ties snapped in half when the cars were pulled out. Not sure the engine would have made it onto the siding. Also, the lengthy box culvert that runs under the Gloversville yard started to settle in and in some places it even even caved in. Thankfully the cave-ins were next to the tracks and not underneath them.
> > Plow #202 was an interesting move. The plow wouldn't hold air so it came down from Coleco and then sat overnight at Dennie's; that was the first move. This part of the move was easy as the grade was level. The plow sat at Dennie's for several days. The crew wanted three good boxcars to assist with braking as the plow continued south, downgrade, to Gloversville. So, they shoved three of the best cars up to Dennie's, hooked on, and took off, with a guy riding on top of the plow to operate the hand brake if necessary. This created an interesting little mixed train with the trackmobile, three cars, and a backwards snow plow paralleling Route 349. The coupling came loose and the plow detached. It was a bit scary for a nine year old (me) to watch as this poor guy tried to get the thing stopped before it picked up speed and rammed into the back of the three boxcars and trackmobile. I'm sure it was not a fun situation, surfing on a heavy snowplow on
> > that track. The plow sat in Fonda for years before Conrail finally moved under AAR interchange rule 90, moving to be dismantled. The plow went to Utica. When I was working as a reporter in Utica, 2001-2004, some idiot kids set fire to it in the NYS&W yard. Too bad. Wish I had gotten the horn off the thing before someone else stole it (it was gone by 1998). Don't ask me why they didn't cut the whole plow up in Gloversville. Rome Locomotive claimed it was going to be rebuilt at one point but obviously it never was. Why would the NYS&W have wanted a double-track plow, anyway?
> > (3) A&K began tearing up the railroad in the spring or summer of 1990. I didn't take precise notes on this operation. I do have a few photos; I don't believe they are dated. NYS&W crews removed the final rails in the Gloversville yard a short time time after A&K's operation was done. For some reason the A&K contract did not cover yards. I have photos of A&K at work and of the NYS&W crews tearing up the final tracks in Gloversville. The leaves were orange at the the NYS&W crew showed up; so that must have been late September or early October of 1990 when the final rails came out. The weather was warm that day and the skies were sunny. A shiny new NYS&W tractor trailer, replete with the Suzy-Q logo, took the final FJ&G rails to either Binghamton, Utica, or Syracuse. Years later Walter Rich's secretary told me that some of the FJ&G rail got re-used. I have a gut feeling it was used in Syracuse when new sidings were installed for OnTrack. That was
> > pretty light rail. The rail that remains in front of the Broadalbin station was the result of a little BS-ing on behalf of locals. Someone in Broadalbin, I forget who, convinced the salvage crews that the rail in front of the station was part of a branchline (the Broadalbin "branch," and the contract covered only mainline). So, the salvage crews were nice and left that little stretch of track on the ground to benefit the owners of the station. I recall that being the lightest rail on the line.
> > One interesting question would be to see if any accounting was made to the State for all those expensive lights and gates installed in the mid 1970s. I never found out how they were removed, or when. They may have come down when the tracks came out. Where did they go? Several rubber grade crossings remained into the mid-1990, but most were gone by the time I graduated high school in 1998. I want to say a few of the rubber crossings may have been saved and re-used.
> > -Aaron