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Short Lines
Updated December 2002
This is not an area thickly populated with smaller railroads, but there are a few short lines here. One might note, from their websites, that there seems to be an inverse correlation between the size of the railroad and the elaboration of the website.

The Maryland Midland Railroad

The Maryland Midland is a shortline formed out of a section of the old Western Maryland mainline, running from Emory up to Blue Ridge Summit, just over the state line in PA, and a section of the old Pennsylvania Frederick branch, running from Taneytown to Walkersville, where it meets the Walkersville Southern. Its headquarters are in Union Bridge, across the road from the old station.

One can follow the Maryland Midland most of its length by car. It is extremely easy to chase a train and get lots of great pictures. There are also two stations to be mentioned. In in Union Bridge, there is a little brick and stone gem which houses the Western Maryland Historical Society's museum. At the west end, in Blue Ridge Summit, there is another station, near the Episcopal church, now the public library. It is immediately recognizable as a train station, but be warned that the side of the building away from the road have all been expanded, some more obviously than others.

There used to be excursion service on this line, separate from the railroad itself. It has been discontinued for years.

The Walkersville Southern Railroad

This line operates the remainder of the ex-Pennsy line south from Walkersville to Frederick. As far as I know, it is strictly an excursion service.

The Canton Railroad

This is a switching road located on the east side of Baltimore, around where the interstate tunnels come up as they head East. I haven't attempted to do any railfanning on this one because it sits in the middle of one of the city's most heavily industrialzed areas. Unlike the others mentioned, this one is not a sold-off portion of a Class-I, but was formed as a switching railroad from the start. I believe that its original parent was the corporate descendant of Peter Cooper's land company-- he had a lot of investment in this area, which is why he had such an interest in seeing that the B&O succeeded.

You can get a quick glimpse of the railroad main offices from the Harbor Tunnel Thruway heading North, if you are riding a bus. When you come out of the tunnel, there is a section of elevated roadway. If the bus is in the rightmost lane and you sit on the right, you will see a building with a large red and white cross on it that says "Canton Railroad". I don't think you can see this in a car, at least not if you are driving.

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