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Old Main Line Photo Tour

B&O Old Main Line
Modern day photo tour

Accompanying each photo below are:

Click a photo to see a larger view. Please send your comments and corrections to Steve.


Davis - Brief Historical Background:

Map

Map
Mile: 17.8 to 20.3 Date: Nov 2006
Ease: View:
Area: IC2:
Map:

This map depicts the area from Daniels west to Davis at the left. The Patapsco River weaves through the middle, separating Baltimore and Howard counties. Green marks the 1830 alignment, magenta 1838, and black the current.


Evelations
NEW! Jun 2014

Elevations
Mile: 19.7 Date: Apr 2014
Ease: C View: NW
Area: A IC2:
Map: Ho 6 K 13 Topographic Maps

The Patapsco State Park path west from Daniels that follows the B&O's original south-bank-of-the-river alignment leads you here. Notice how the current tracks are perched at a higher elevation than the original, which during the 1800s had proceeded forward near the gap in the trees at photo center.


Old and New
NEW! Jun 2014

Old and New
Mile: 19.7 Date: Apr 2014
Ease: C View: SE
Area: A IC2:
Map: Ho 6 K 13 Topographic Maps

The reverse (downstream) view includes Dorsey tunnel at distant left, and Eureka Bridge nearer. The pile of new ties are evidence of CSX trackwork in the near future.


Meet
Updated Jun 2014

Meet
Mile: 19.7 Date: Apr 2014
Ease: C View: W
Area: A IC2:
Map: Ho 6 K 13 Topographic Maps

Turning around to look west again... prior to Davis Tunnel (east portal seen in the distance) the OML negotiated a path around the hill. This is roughly the location those tracks would have met with today's.

The green (original) and magenta lines diverge slightly due to a small realignment that I'm guessing took place around 1838, the time of other similar improvements in this area.


Line Run
Updated Jun 2014

Line Run
Mile: 19.8 Date: Apr 2014
Ease: C View: NE
Area: A IC2:
Map: Ho 6 J 13 Topographic Maps

At Line Run, streamside hewn stone relics and mounded earth indicate the original alignment had been here (green). A short distance downstream (magenta), a fine arched bridge survives, evidence of a second alignment, now also disused.


Line Run Bridge

Line Run Bridge
Mile: 19.8 Date: Dec 1999
Ease: C View: N
Area: A IC2: 341
Map: Ho 6 J 13 Topographic Maps

The disused Line Run bridge can be found along the abandoned second alignment just northeast of Davis Tunnel. Adding to the suspicion that this bridge is not the original alignment are the buttresses and excellent dry fit of stonework, signs of the work of an experienced crew. Compare this photo with the nearly identical one in Impossible Challenge II, page 341.


Mound
NEW! Jun 2014

Mound
Mile: 19.8 Date: Apr 2014
Ease: C- View: S
Area: A IC2:
Map: Ho 6 J 13 Topographic Maps

If, from the mound and few remaining bridge stones of the original alignment, you follow Line Run back to the active rails, you'll find another arched bridge. It's newer, as evidenced by the mortared stone blocks, and dates to the same time period as the nearby Davis Tunnel which lurks beyond the right edge of this photo.


Around
NEW! Jun 2014

Around
Mile: 19.8 Date: Apr 2014
Ease: C- View: NW
Area: A IC2:
Map: Ho 6 J 13 Topographic Maps

West of Line Run the 1830 and 1838 alignments merge and proceed around the hill.


Davis Tunnel

Davis Tunnel
Mile: 20.1 Date: Jan 2003
Ease: C View: E
Area: A IC2:
Map: Ho 11 J 1 Topographic Maps

As seen from the other side of the hill, looking back to Davis Tunnel's west portal, the original alignment came around the hill, swung further "inland" from the river (off-photo, left), and then rejoined the current right of way behind the photographer. In-line signals have taken the place of the CPLs here.


Deep Culvert

Deep Culvert
Mile: 20.2 Date: Jan 2003
Ease: C View: E
Area: A IC2:
Map: Ho 11 J 1 Topographic Maps

The shelf above this culvert illustrates how the 1830 alignment sat at a lower elevation. When the B&O built the tunnel route, they kept this culvert and lengthened it toward the river. Davis Tunnel is off in the distance.


Culvert

Culvert
Mile: 20.2 Date: Dec 1999
Ease: C View: NE
Area: A IC2:
Map: Ho 11 J 1 Topographic Maps

Another view of the culvert; this one just missed qualifying for an arched structure. This irregular stones and lack of mortar flag it as original circa 1830 construction.


Rejoin
Photo courtesy Dave Hiteshew
NEW! Jun 2014

Rejoin
Mile: 20.3 Date: Mar 2007
Ease: C View: NW
Area: A IC2:
Map: Ho 11 H 1 Topographic Maps

Ahead the two/three alignments rejoin and stay together until a series of other Old Main Line straightening projects near Woodstock, including one that created McKeldin falls.



Continue along the current alignment from Davis Tunnel

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