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Delaware & Northern Railroad
"Rails Rust in the Catskills"


8.11 miles to East Branch

29.41 miles to Arkville

According to the Jay Gould map the Shinhopple valley was not inhabited before 1865. During that time there were three roads connecting the valley to the outside communities. One went to Shinhopple, the second to Walton and the third was the Tub Mill Road which lead to Downsville.

During the late 1800's to early 1900's dairy farming was the main occupation of the Shinhopple area. Butter production provided the major income for these families. Butter was put in tubs, purchased at the local John Lockwood mill. The Lockwood Mill produced two sizes of tubs, a thirty pound, which sold for $.25 and the fifty pound which sold for $.35, covers for the tubs were sold for $.04 each. , Butter was also made into pound prints which were also produced by the Lockwood Mill. These tubs were sold by the Holmes Milling Company in Downsville until manufacturing ceased in 1915 when farmers began direct sales to the local creameries instead of packing butter at each local farm. The Holmes Milling Company in Downsville and some of the Walton stores had been the local markets for this butter. After the D & E. line was opened in 1906, farmers were able to ship their milk in cans to local creameries from the Shinhopple Station. These creameries were able to process and ship large quantities of dairy products directly to the New York City markets.

Many farmers did little milking in the winter and spent their time working in the woods. Four foot wood was cut for the acid factory in Shinhopple. The Finch and Ross Company built an acid factory on the opposite side of Trout Brook, about one mile from the railway station. The company was later sold to L.B. Corbett, a nephew of Julius Corbett of the Corbett and Stuart Acid Factory. In February of 1904 the Downsville News reported that "The lumber industry of Shinhopple vicinity is flourishing. There is over a million feet of hemlock and hardwood lumber to get to market the coming spring. Over two hundred tons of bark have been shipped from Shinhopple since last April." Hemlock bark was sold to the Downsville and Walton tanneries. Bigger logs were taken to the local saw mills and some were drawn to the East Branch of the Delaware River. These larger logs were made into rafts and floated down to Philadelphia when the ice went out in the spring. Two local raftsmen living in East Trout Brook were James and Henry Russell. After reaching Philadelphia, the brothers would walk or hitch-hike back to Shinhopple. Ebenezer Niles, Charles Langster and Abe Kristman were all steersman and were also raftsmen from Shinhopple.

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