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 Post subject: Northampton PA Steam
PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2007 9:06 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 3:28 am
Posts: 270
I have a STEAM directory from 1977 that says in Northampton, PA there were excursions on the LV using either a CP or CN engine. Possibly CN but I cannot find the book anywhere.
In the mid to late '80's my Dad took me to Temple PA (BM&R) to an event they had. 2102 was on one track under steam, 425 was on the other track tender back, the E8's held the main and across Tuckerton RD I could have sworn was this engine under a tarp of some sort.

Any idea what happened to this engine? Any one have any info on it and the trips it took out of Northampton?

I moved out of Whitehall just over a year ago and when I asked Northampton Police about it they looked at me like I had three heads!
Any maps or routes would be helpful as well as info on this engine, if it is the same one or not. Thanks


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 Post subject: Re: Northampton PA Steam
PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2007 9:39 pm 

Joined: Sun Jan 15, 2006 1:50 pm
Posts: 3
Location: NE Pennsylvania
Steve, you are correct in your thinking, the Royal Hudson 2839 was in Northhampton in the 70s as she was being restored to service, she then went to the Southern Railway for High speed mainline steam where she also had a starring role in the Movie Coal Miners Dasughter. she then ran a trip with the 425 on the Blue Mountain for the Grand opening in 1984. she then sat for quite a few years on the BMR at temple and was later moved by a few of the original volunteers to try and restore her for serviceonce again. Work was not being completed at a steady pace and the owners decided to sell her to the Nethercutt Museum in California where she is a static display.

Nethercutt Museum http://www.nethercuttcollection.org/main.html

The Sothern Steam program http://www.rrsites.com/royalhudson/images/Hudson08.jpg


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 Post subject: Re: Northampton PA Steam
PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2007 9:42 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 1:51 pm
Posts: 8354
Location: Baltimore, MD
You're referring to CP Royal Hudson 2839, which for a time after its acquisition was stored at Northampton while nominal restoration was carried out by its purchasers, "Atlantic Central" (Ron Ziel, Mike Eagleson, and some other chap). They, like quite a few other operators of the era and area (George Hart, High Iron, etc.) never quite got their act together as promised. In 1978 or '79, the loco was leased by the Southern to supplement their steam fleet after SR saw what bigger steamers (4449, 610) could do for them. The loco returned north in 1981 and spent a few years at the Wilmington & Western's shops in Marshallton, DE powering but one excursion for them on the then-Octararo between Wilmington and Coatesville, Pa. in Dec. 1982. The 2839 then went to the Blue Mountain & Reading, and was purportedly fired up for its grand opening of the steam program--and that was apparently the last time it was ever fired up, leading to rumors of major damage inflicted by that fire-up. The loco is now in California; I'll let the young 'uns with better recent recall tell us where and how.................


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 Post subject: Re: Northampton PA Steam
PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2007 11:07 pm 

Joined: Mon Jan 17, 2005 9:06 pm
Posts: 2165
Location: Thomaston & White Plains
Sandy, how can you say George Hart and HICO "never got their act together as promised"??? I'd say HICO did plenty between October 1966 and oh, let's say mid-1973....

And GMH's 972, 1238 and 1286 covered a lot of ground in the 1965-1978 era-- M&PA, WM, CNJ, LVRR, L&HR, RDG, etc.

***************

The formatting of the below document is kind of screwed-up; this was put together by Kurt Bell, and hopefully he will see this and "fix it up" to make it more readable. I'm too computer-illiterate to do that!! I just was able to cut-n-paste it from my file. Kurt had it in good shape as a Word Doc.

****************


HIGH IRON COMPANY EXCURSION TRIPS
1966-1973

Day/Date Motive Power Destination Type of Trip Notes

October 19, 1966 CPR 127 Jersey City, NJ – Jim Thorpe, Pa. RT CNJ 1st HICO trip
October 25, 1966 CPR 127 Jersey City, NJ – Jim Thorpe, Pa. RT CNJ
May 14, 1967 CPR 1286 Bethlehem, Pa. – Warwick, NY RT L&HR
June 25, 1967 CPR 1286 Elizabethport, NJ – Bridgeton, NJ RT CNJ
August 20, 1967 CPR 1238, 1286 Easton, Pa. – Ashley, Pa. RT CNJ
Sept. 16, 1967 ?1238-1286 Elizabeth, NJ – Green Pond Jct., NJ RT CNJ
October 15, 1967 ?1286 only (?) Elizabeth, NJ – Jim Thorpe, Pa. RT CNJ
February 18, 1968 CPR 127, SRC 90 Newark, NJ – Ashley, Pa. RT CNJ
February 25, 1968 CPR 127, SRC 90 Newark, NJ – Ashley, Pa. RT CNJ
May 3, 1968 CPR 127 Camden, NJ – Cape May, NJ RT PRSL
Sept. 8, 1968 NKP 759 Conneaut, Ohio – Buffalo, NY RT N&W (NKP)
Sept. 21, 1968 NKP 759 Elizabeth, NJ – Jim Thorpe, Pa. RT CNJ
October 12-13, 1968 NKP 759 New York City, NY – Niagara Falls, NY RT PC (NYC)
November 2, 1968 NKP 759 Roanoke, Va. – Virso, Va. RT N&W
November 3, 1968 NKP 759 Roanoke, Va. – Shenandoah, Va. RT N&W
May 3-18, 1969 NKP 759 New York City – Salt Lake City, Utah RT “Golden Spike Centennial Limited” to commemorate anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad.
759 only on Harmon, NY-KC, Mo. And KC-Baltimore.
Sept. 20, 1968 NKP 759 Elizabeth, NJ – Jim Thorpe, Pa. RT CNJ
October 11, 1969 NKP 759 Hoboken, NJ – Scranton, Pa. RT EL (DL&W)
May 30-31, 1970 NKP 759 Hoboken, NJ – Binghamton, NY RT EL
July 15, 1970 NKP 759 Elizabeth, NJ – Jim Thorpe, Pa. RT CNJ
Sept. 12, 1970 NKP 759 Harrisburg, Pa. – Horseshoe Curve RT PC (PRR)
Sept. 13, 1970 NKP 759 Harrisburg, Pa. – Horseshoe Curve RT PC (PRR)
Sept. 21, 1970 NKP 759 Hagerstown, MD – Cumberland, MD F WM
Used in Western Maryland freight service
Oct. 17-18, 1970 NKP 759 Baltimore, MD – Connellsville, Pa. RT WM

Day/Date Motive Power Destination Type of Trip Notes

January ?, 1971 NKP 759 Baltimore, MD – Hagerstown, MD RT WM
Not a public trip; “Teacher’s Specials” for Baltimore area school teachers
February ?, 1971 NKP 759 Hagerstown, MD – Roanoke, Va RT N&W
Cylinder head failure on 759 at Sheperdstown, WVa; train continued behind N&W SD-45.
April ?, 1971 NKP 759 Hagerstown, MD – Roanoke, Va. F N&W
Freight deadhead move.
April 30, 1971 NKP 759 Roanoke, Va. – Norfolk, Va. RT N&W
Last N&W passenger train run of the “Pocahontas”.
Early May 1, 1971 NKP 759 ?NFK – Hagerstown, MD OW N&W
One-way deadhead move via Roanoke—2 days
Early August 6 1971 NKP 759 ? OW WM
Friday pusher moves and light engine moves on WM freight trains.
August 7-8, 1971 NKP 759 ? – Hoboken , NJ? OW WM/RDG/CNJ; two-day deadhead move with all 7 HICO cars back to NJ to prepare for next weekend.
August 14-15, 1971 NKP 759 Hoboken, NJ – Binghamton, NY RT EL
Last “classic” HICO excursion.
Late August, 1971 16th NKP 759 Hoboken, NJ - Binghamton, NY OW, Freight EL
NKP 759 Binghamton, NY – Whitehall, NY OW, Freight D&H
NKP 759 Whitehall , NY – Rutland, VT OW, Freight D&H
NKP 759 Rutland, VT – Riverside, VT OW, Freight? GMt.
1972, various dates RDG 2102 Various trips CNJ, CNJ- RDG-B&O; jointly-sponsored with Steam Tours and New York Division of the RRE.
Memorial Day Wkd 1973 RDG 2102 (“D&H 302”) Hoboken, NJ – Binghamton, NY RT EL
Jointly sponsored with Steam Tours, Inc.
July ?, 1973 NKP 759 Hoboken, NJ – Scranton, Pa. RT EL
Used to promote the American Freedom Train.

Don’t forget the deadhead move BF-Rutland-Whitehall-Bingo-Hoboken before the Scranton trip.

Sources: Pincus, Howard, ed., High Iron Company 1971 (New York: Quadrant Press, 1971); Howard Pincus.
Compiled by Kurt R. Bell, July 1, 2002.

_________________
"I'm a railroad man, not a prophet."


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 Post subject: Royal Hudson Company
PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2007 11:16 pm 

Joined: Mon Jan 17, 2005 9:06 pm
Posts: 2165
Location: Thomaston & White Plains
Royal Hudson Company actually owned CPR 2839; they purchased it in 1970 in Canada. RHCO principals were Mike Eagleson, Ron Ziel, Victor Hand, Peter Vanderveld (an EL trainmaster) and Howard Serig (later instigator of the FOGG-1 project that put PRR 4935 back in proper attire). Some of these shareholders later sold out, and I think Eagleson and Ziel were the final two RHCO owners.

In 1972, RHCO leased 2839 to Atlantic Central Steam Co. which was based in the Allentown-Bethlehem area, and was largely composed of people who had been associated with Francis Ede, owner and operator of ex-BC&G 2-8-0 #4-- Quakertown & Eastern.

AC brought 2839 to the derelict Northampton & Bath shops at Northampton, PA to work on the loco out in the open. It was first test steamed about 1976 or 1977, as I recall. I'm sure some AC people are around here and can take the narrative from that point!

Howard P.

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 Post subject: High Iron
PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2007 11:43 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 1:51 pm
Posts: 8354
Location: Baltimore, MD
I base my otherwise-snide comment regarding High Iron on two distinguishing characteristics:

1) they aren't around today, or didn't survive that long, relatively speaking (in the same category for the same reasonings: Everett RR, Morris County Central, Greenbrier, Cooperstown & Charlotte Valley, and perhaps half the operations listed in my 1971 SPSD)......

2) they were seemingly "nomadic" enough that trying to find them was like trying to hit a moving target. Seriously, it was like a privately-run version of the Southern or UP steam programs.

Don't take it personally. <:-)


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 Post subject: Re: High Iron
PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2007 11:56 pm 

Joined: Mon Jan 17, 2005 9:06 pm
Posts: 2165
Location: Thomaston & White Plains
I don't take it personally; I'm not Ross!! And I sure wasn't on most of those trips!

HICO had a 4000-person mailing list in the 1970-71 season; they were by nature "itinerant", being a mainline operation on comon-carrier railroads. Considering what was done, and the people the HICO trips reached (in every sense of that word), I'd say they were successful.

The owner decided to go on to bigger things, and the railroad environment changed, becoming increasingly hostile to that sort of operation. But it was a hell of a run while it lasted!!

Did the High Iron Co. trips of the late 60s-early 70s influence any of the readers/participants in this forum?

Howard P.
Nomad, NJ

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 Post subject: Re: High Iron
PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2007 9:13 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:19 pm
Posts: 1604
Location: Pottstown,Pa.
Howard, You're falling into the trap of responding to the NNN ( nattering nabobs of negativism) syndrome!! It's easy to do and takes years of practice and exercise to develope the necessary scar tissue to instinctively ignore them.
The High Iron Co. operated from as many different metropolitan NY/Penna. locations as possible to vary the itineraries and to cover as many lines as possible. We maintained a full time biz. office in the beautifully restored CRRofNJ depot in Lebanon,NJ and as Howard mentions developed an extensive mailing list over the 7 yrs. (1966-'73) of our excursion operations. Over that time period we operated approx.40 mainline excursions over 11 different railroads,carried approx. 36,000 revenue pssgrs. and used a total of 9 different steam locomotives to do the task. Thanks to a great crew of volunteers we were able to accomplish this without a single reportable injury and almost all the trips ran on the advertised!!
By plan, in 1973 we transformed from running public mainline steam excursions into the American Freedom Train Foundation,Inc. and devoted our energies to putting the AFT on the road. Following the AFT we were hired by the B&O RR to design,build,operate&maintain the B&O's 150th. birthday special steam train program.
So I guess if that's being a failure--then we're a failure--what can I say!!
The extensive HICO mailing list was used again for the 1996-'98 Hoboken-Pt.Jervis program with 614 and of course it was expanded and updated. It was passed on to the URHS and I trust they've continued to keep it updated.
Now we're hard at work trying to give birth to the sequel to the AFT the Yellow Ribbon Express (...www.yellowribbonexpress.com) and I'm pleased to report that we're making good progress although we're still a good ways away from cutting metal!! Please visit our website from time to time for progress reports!!
Thanks and remember--ignore the NNN's of this world!! Spend your energies on the positives of life!!
Ross Rowland


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 Post subject: Re: High Iron
PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2007 10:40 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2431
Howard P. wrote:
Did the High Iron Co. trips of the late 60s-early 70s influence any of the readers/participants in this forum?


I guess it depends on whether or not you count the AFT and Chessie Steam Special operations as descendents of High Iron or not. I was too young to ride any of the HI stuff, but I was definitely influenced by (and involved with and educated by) the AFT and CSS operations.


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 Post subject: Re: High Iron
PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2007 9:25 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 29, 2004 1:04 pm
Posts: 625
Did HICO trips influence anyone on this board? They sure did me. Not only did 759 comming through Hagerstown, MD with the Golden Spike train give me my first look at really big steam but when when it came back to the Hagerstown area and stayed for a while I got a really good look at big steam. To this day I remember 759 looming out of the Potomac River fog westbound with AJ-1 hanging on her tail like it is happeng as I type this sentence. It was one of my first visions of the past I had missed.

I also saw some of George Hart's trips earlier in the sixties running on the WM with engines like 1238, 1286, and 972. They were really good trips and considering the only mainline steam I had seen before was the General, relatively big engines. I still have visions of these trips running around in my head from time to time.

These operations proved to me that running steam was going to be possible in the future if enough people were willing to do the work and learn the skills. I was more than willing to do both and all the steam running in my area made me determined to find a place to start working and learning. I am still learning and hope to get back to actually working one of these day.

John Bohon


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 Post subject: Re: High Iron
PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2007 8:57 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 6:41 am
Posts: 166
Location: Stockton, New Jersey
I had the good fortune to be on the first High Iron trip in 1966 as a teenager and later rode a number of trips during this time period. I have some great memories that will be with me for the rest of my life because of the High Iron Company! The greatest trip in my opinion was the September 12,1970 trip around Horseshoe Curve. If the High Iron Company did not have its act together, 759 would not have made it around the curve. I was later fortunate enough to be a volunteer crewman for several trips on both the 2102 and the 759. I have a number of very good friends from those years with High Iron. Our goal had been to spark an interest in steam railroading at its finest. There is nothing like high speed steam and I am pleased that I was able to be a part of that. That interest has been passed on to another generation as some of you know.


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 Post subject: Re: High Iron
PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2007 10:37 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 1:51 pm
Posts: 8354
Location: Baltimore, MD
Quote:
There is nothing like high speed steam and I am pleased that I was able to be a part of that. That interest has been passed on to another generation as some of you know.


Fine. Gonna give us all tickets to Germany, Poland, France, and Britain? <:-(

(My fastest domestic steam speed was slightly over 60 mph behind 614 returning to Pittsburgh in July 1981, and all my NS steam was kept to 40. My fastest steam speed ever was approximately 91 mph behind LNER A4 60009 in 1991..........)


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 Post subject: Re: High Iron Trips - Big Influence
PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2007 11:24 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 11:54 pm
Posts: 1734
As a tot, I was taken by the hand on what was (the remnants) of the CNJ Penobscot Yards. My grandmother, without benefit of advanced education or formal interpretitive training told me compelling stories about the hundreds of coal cars that were weighed, classified and repaired there in the yards heyday and the many men that worked there until the work went "down the mountain" to nearby Ashley, Pa and then in the '50's to Allentown. Somehow the remnants of the scale house and other structures seemed like ancient ruins. I learned about the "Jersey Central" plains, passenger trains and how my grandfather worked on the "Central" and how his brother died there (a brakeman, he fell off a car toward the end of a shift).

The High Iron trips, and a trip on rival Lehigh Valley by the Quaketown & Eastern on my seventh birthday brought those stories to life. It made them real.

The rescue of a double-header at Laurel Run stuck thanks to some clowns who greased the tracks, dramatized the sucession of steam power by diesels.

M grandmother's stories and the HICO trips, were my gateway experiences.


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