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Hagerstown, Walkersville Southern, Natl Capital Trolley Museum

Adventurers in the Appalachia


My First trip on the Southwest Chief going to the 2018 NRHS Convention in Cumberland, Maryland


Chapter Fourteen

Hagerstown Roundhouse and RR Park

 Point of Rocks

Walkersville Southern Railroad

 National Capital Trolley Museum


 August 4, 2018

Saturday Part I

by

Robin Bowers


Text and Photos by Author

The author retains all rights. No reproductions are allowed without the author's consent.


Comments are appreciated at...yr.mmxx@gmail.com





 
    We woke up at the Days Inn and partook in their continental breakfast before we took off with the first stop being the Hagerstown Roundhouse Musuem.

Hagerstown Roundhouse Museum

The Hagerstown Roundhouse Museum located at 300 South Burhans Boulevard, Hagerstown, Maryland, has exhibits relating to local railroad history and model railroads.

The Hagerstown Roundhouse Complex was built in 1939. The 25 stall roundhouse and shops were the major facility for maintenance and repairs of locomotives and cars in Western Maryland. The railroads were the largest employers in Washington County for more than 50 years. The Roundhouse facility was demolished on March 13, 1999.

Our Visit We arrived here and it looked like more of a CSX yard than a museum.




A plethora of CSX power.



Hagerstown Tranist 168, the last trolley to run in Washington County is on display.








Western Maryland VO-1000 DS-5  132.



Western Maryland caboose 1859.

 
Western Maryland caboose 1863.




Western Maryland caboose 1863, Reading caboose and B&O caboose.







Chesapeake and Ohio The Derby Club  714.

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An old lathe rusting away.



Pennsylvania Railway Express Agency baggage car 9006.






Santa Fe Baggage Dorm 3482.






Western Maryland work car and Lone Star Cement GE 45 toner switcher.






From here we drove the short distance over to City Park, our next destination.




Hagerstown City Park Train Hub

Located in City Park, the Hagerstown Railroad Museum features hundreds of signs, signals, bells, telephones and tools that were used by railroad workers throughout history. Most of the items in this significant collection came from the Western Maryland Railroad Company. Of special interest are an 1885 Pump Car and an 1875 Velocipede; both vehicles transported workers to rails or rail cars to make repairs.

The crown jewel of the museum is Steam Engine 202. This Locomotive was built in 1912 by the Baldwin Locomotive Works and it carried passengers and baggage between Baltimore and Hagerstown. It was retired in 1953. Totaling 77 feet in length, the engine weighs 415,000 pounds. Steam Engine 202 is the only Western Maryland road-type steam locomotive in existence.

In addition to the locomotive and its coal tender, eight cabooses are also on display.

Our Visit

To our dismay, we found all the gates locked so we would have to another version of the Crewe Railroad Park with nobody here so we all resorted to shooting our pictures through the fence. Not the best solution but one that would work.




Western Maryland 4-6-2 202 on display.



Travelers or Residents?
























Now we find the entrance.

    Bob and his rental car left us here and he headed for Baltimore where he would return the rental car then take the light rail to Penn Station and walk to the Baltimore Streetcar Museum where we would meet him later in the day. From here, we drove back to Dual Highway and gassed up the rental car which would be the only time on this trip. We drove almost to Frederick before we turned south and followed excellent directions to Point of the Rocks which was our next destination of the day. We just missed an eastbound CSX train when we arrived.




Point of the Rocks station

Point of Rocks is a historic passenger rail station on the MARC Brunswick Line between Washington, D.C., and Martinsburg, WV, located at Point of Rocks, Frederick County, Maryland. The station was built by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad in 1873, and designed by E. Francis Baldwin. It is situated at the junction of the B&O Old Main Line (running to Baltimore) and the Metropolitan Branch (running to Washington, D.C.). The Met Branch also opened in 1873 and became the principal route for passenger trains between Baltimore, Washington and points west.

The main station building is a 2 1/2-story, triangular Gothic Revival with a four-story tower and a 1 1/2-story wing at the base. The tower has a pyramidal roof containing a dormer on each side. On top is a square cupola supporting a pyramidal peaked roof.

The station building itself is not open to the public and is used by CSX as storage and offices for maintenance of way crews. In 2008, new platforms and platform shelters were built for MARC commuters traveling east towards Washington DC, replacing older bus shelter-style structures which were erected in the mid-90's.

During the blizzard of 2010, the south side awning on the main building collapsed under the weight of record snow fall, and was later removed leaving half the building missing cover. In January 2011, work to rebuild the destroyed part of the structure began.

Point of Rocks Railroad Station was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973, and reopened for the Maryland Rail Commuter Service, now called MARC, which established the Brunswick Line.





















The old main line looking toward Harpers Ferry.















From here we drove the short distance to the C&O Canal.



Water in the canal.



Road bridge over canal.













Potomac River in background.

From here we drove to Walkersville and had plenty of time before the 11:00am train departed.



We drove from Point of Rocks in about forty-five minutes to Walkersville, following the excellent directions they gave us. We pulled into the parking lot and started to look around.

Walkersville Southern Railroad History

The Walkersville Southern Railroad runs track and structures originally built by the Frederick and Pennsylvania Line railroad. This railroad ran from Frederick, Md to the Pennsylvania-Maryland State line, or Mason-Dixon line near Kingsdale,PA. Chartered in 1867, the railroad started construction in 1869 and cost $868,687.50 ($2017=17,367,000). It opened October 8, 1872 and was subsequently leased to the Pennsylvania Railroad from January 1, 1875 and in July of that year, PRR formed a new division, the Frederick division to operate the rail line. In the spring of 1896, it was liquidated in a judicial sale to the Pennsylvania Railroad for 10% of its 1896 book value. Pennsylvania reorganized the railroad in December, 1896 as the Frederick and Northern Railroad Company. In March 1897, this new company was itself merged with other Pennsylvania-controlled railways (Littlestown Railroad and the Hanover and York Railroad Company) into the Hanover and York Railroad Company, chartered under the general laws of Pennsylvania and Maryland. In 1914, this railroad and the newly built Central Railroad of Maryland were then merged into the York, Hanover and Frederick Railway Company which remained a wholly owned stock subsidiary of the PRR into the creation of the PennDel company in December 31, 1953 and then the Penn Central merger in 1968 and then bankruptcy in 1970. The Frederick and Pennsylvania Line segment was transferred to the State of Maryland in 1982 for unpaid taxes.

One of the industries that fed the railroad during its earliest time of operations was the Lime Kiln in Walkersville. This was among the industries that fueled the need of the railroad, to ship fertilizer to farmers in and around the Walkersville region. The Frederick Secondary remained in the control of the Pennsylvania Railroad even into the creation of the Penn Central Railroad. The Walkersville Southern operates on part of the Penn Central's Frederick Secondary. Penn Central, then in bankruptcy, sold the line to the state of Maryland in 1972 after Hurricane Agnes washed out the bridge over the Monocacy River. The line remained dormant until 1980 when the Maryland Midland Railway began operations over the route between Walkersville north to Taneytown. South of Walkersville the right-of-way, devoid of freight customers, was overtaken by brush and weeds. Volunteers for the new Walkersville Southern began restoring the line in 1991. The State of Maryland awarded the company operation of the line south of Walkersville in 1993 and tourist trains began running to the Monocacy River in 1995. The bridge was rebuilt, completed in March 1996, and trains began crossing the river, 23 years after Agnes. In 1998, the line was rebuilt to its current terminus at Maryland Route 26 in Frederick. Although crossing Maryland Route 26 was in the original plan to reach potential freight customers in downtown Frederick, the rise in automobile traffic over Route 26 and the departure of potential customers from Frederick led to the eventual abandonment of any further restoration plans into the city. Current local government plans call for the old right-of-way south of Route 26 to be converted into a hiker-biker trail.

In November 2008, Maryland granted rights to operate three miles of right-of-way to the north, linking to the Maryland Midland Railway at North Glade Road. In 2013 the summer steam excursion was routed over a portion of the newly restored track. As of the January 1st, 2014 the north division has been restored.

Operations

Today, the railroad runs two to three round trips daily on Saturdays and Sundays in May, June, September, and October; and on Saturdays only in July and August. They also host some special events, including some on weekends and during the off-season. In some cases individuals with their own equipment can use the right of way with prior permission or during selected special events.

The railroad typically operates unique industrial diesel locomotives, all rarely seen in today's modern railroading. In 2012, the railroad operated steam excursions for the first time using the Gramling Locomotive Works "Flagg Coal 75" an 0-4-0T tank engine. The 75's operation marked the first time a steam locomotive had operated on this railway since the Pennsylvania Railroad last ran steam over 60 years ago. In 2013, steam returned in the form of Lehigh Valley Coal 126, also owned by the Gramling family.

Our visit

The first thing we did was take photographs of the Walkersville station.

523


542



 
The brick building across the street from the station was originally a feed mill and ice house and is now a museum.



Passenger car on display.



Nickel Plate Road caboose 446.



Our train for today's ride.



    #101, a Model 40 EMD-built, 44-ton, center cab industrial switcher, previously owned by the Hagerstown Railroad Museum in Hagerstown, MD. The 101 was built in 1942, one of only 11 built, and has two 150-hp 6-71 diesel engines, one at each end, both driving a generator in the middle of the car, under the cab. The locomotive was used by the U.S.Army, then sold to a construction company, and then to a couple of power companies in Pennsylvania before arriving in Hagerstown. It was transferred to WS railroad by truck in 2001 on loan from Hagerstown, then purchased by WS in 2007.









Pennsylvania Railroad center-cab switcher 9331.



Former Long Island Railroad dining car "Southampton" rebuilt from a coach.






Walkersville and Southern table car 12.







The Walkersville and Southern dinner train trainset which travels the full length of the railroad.









Walkersville and Southern coach 7091 built for the Long Island Railroad.




Walkersville and Southern 44 toner 51, ex Tennessee and Smoky Mountain Railroad 440, exx GN 5201 nee GN 12911.









The first was this old Plymouth 1942 gas locomotive in front of museum.

A look inside the museum.















Walkersville Southern Museum.

Leaving the museum I walked across the street to meet up with Chris and Elizabeth for our train ride.




Our fellow travelers riding with us in the first open car, which is a 1934 ex-Baltimore & Ohio Railroad flatcar.






















An old spur line?







Monocacy River.



Lots of corn along the way.




A new park and ride lot going in. I wouldn't think local farmers have a need for a park and ride to commute to work.



Chris keeping an eye out for new things.



    Harmony Grove was once a thriving community, the railroad served a grain elevator, and there were two sidings (remains of which can be seen on the right side of the track), which also served the railroad station. There were once a general store, chicken farm with several chicken coops and a post office.

580

One of the sidings at Harmony Grove.






This is our southern turn back point as there is no possible way to go any further south on this railroad, so now we will enjoy the return trip back to Walkersville.





581

The Lime Kiln at Fountain Rock Park

    Limestone quarrying was an important industry in Frederick County 100 .years ago because of the rich limestone fault that runs under the entire county. The railroad bordering the east side of the property, was completed in 1872. The railroad brought coal to the site to heat the limestone and to heat the water in various steam boilers used to run the jackhammers, grinders and crushers. The noise of the limestone grinder was extremely loud and could be heard for a great distance. In addition, the railroad carried out bagged lime power to nearby markets. The powdered lime was used by farmers as fertilizer for their fields, among other things. During WW II, since man-power was in short supply, some German and Italian prisoners-of-war worked at the quarry and a bus brought the prisoners to Fountain Rock every day. In early Spring 1994, a project was completed to stabilize the lime kiln to preserve it for the future. The east wall (facing the railroad) and the south wall have been rebuilt to their appearance as they were during operation of the kiln.

576





We returned to Walkersville, ending another excellent rail adventure. We thanked the conductor and crew for great ride and then headed to the car and drove to the National Capital Trolley Museum in northern Washington, DC.

National Capital Trolley Museum


618

When we arrived we saw Toronto Transit Commission 4602 sitting outside to greet us.

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Toronto Transit Commission 4602 Canadian Car and Foundry, Limited & St. Louis Car Company, built in 1951 Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

 We checked in at the reception desk, introduced ourselves and soon we were walking the display halls of this museum.

National Capital Trolley Museum

The National Capital Trolley Museum (NCTM) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that operates historic trolleys for the public on a regular schedule. It is located at 1313 Bonifant Road, Colesville, Maryland.

History

NCTM was incorporated on January 4, 1961, as the National Capital Historical Museum of Transportation, Inc. Progress was slow at first, but the Museum eventually combined efforts and streetcar collections with a group from Baltimore.

The organization found its first home in Robert E. Lee Park at Lake Roland in Baltimore, Maryland.

After efforts were thwarted by adjacent property owners, the group divided the collections in 1966. National Capital Trolley Museum moved to its present site in Colesville, Maryland, while the Baltimore Streetcar Museum was formed to focus on Baltimore transit.

The site was provided by Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, and DC Transit leased trolleys for a nominal cost. The organization raised $20,000 to build a car barn. Groundbreaking of the Colesville site began on November 20, 1965.

NCTM's original intention was to operate streetcars owned by DC Transit president O. Roy Chalk, but it was not until 1970 that Chalk donated several historic Washington streetcars. In the interim, the museum acquired a small fleet of European trams and a car from Johnstown, Pennsylvania.

NCTM ran its first streetcar in October 1969, and since then the museum has operated consistently over its one-mile line.

In the winter of 2008-2009, the Museum moved into three new buildings: a visitors' center, a display building for the streetcars, and a streetcar storage-and-maintenance building. Construction of the Intercounty Connector, (ICC) which crosses the Museum's former location, required the Museum to shift locations in the Park. The Museum reopened on Saturday, January 16, 2010.

Education efforts

The Museum offers a variety of education programs and activities throughout the year. Each spring and fall, the Museum hosts school field trips by advance reservation. On some Saturday afternoons, visitors can also enjoy a story and craft time. Special summer programs are offered on Thursday and Friday from June 15 to August 15. Age-appropriate activities include: story time and craft, story and hands-on experience with trolley artifacts, and a role-playing exercise for older children.

Membership and funding A

As of 2008, 125 members and friends support the Museum with dues, donations and volunteer service. The Museum receives most of its money from admission fees and revenues from its gift shop. Other funding for a variety of projects is provided by the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, the Montgomery County Heritage Tourism Alliance, the Montgomery County Historic Preservation Commission, and the Maryland Historical Trust. The State of Maryland, Montgomery County, and private donors provided capital funding support for the current relocation.

Our visit 

    We started to look around these excellent trolley displays. Among them were stories and photos of the streetcars in the history of Washington D.C. The heyday of the street cars on the city's streets occurred at the same time as old Hollywood was in its heyday. This was the time Hollywood was building its movie palaces. As a fan of these old glamor movie palaces, I greatly enjoyed this exhibit.

































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The next ride was going to be leaving in a few minutes so we decided to ride it and see the Trolley Hall when we got back. We boarded the Blackpool Transport Services Boat Car 606 English Electric, built in 1934 Blackpool, England.







We left the inside of the car barn and headed out through the trolley yard. What a great day to  sit back and enjoy a ride on the Blackpool Transport Services Boat Car 606.







An open air streetcar is a rare find.












At the bottom of the hill there is a reversing loop to get the car pointed the right way back to the museum. We went to the left.






















We returned to the inside of the Trolley Car Barn and would now see the museum's collection of trolley cars.





A hitch hiker on board.









DC Transit 1101 St. Louis Car Company, built in 1937 Washington, D.C.


614

    View of the Capital Traction Company 522 American Car Company, built in 1898 Washington, D.C. We all would like to thank the National Capital Trolley Museum for having us visit their museum today. It is a very unique trolley museum. We next made our way to Interstate 95 north to our next stop in Baltimore.


But wait there's more, the day is not over yet. Spend an afternoon in Baltimore with Part II. 

Thanks for reading.

Next Part II chapter 15: Spending an afternoon in Baltimore >>

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Text and Photos by Author


The author retains all rights. No reproductions are allowed without the author's consent.

Comments appreciated at .... yr.mmxx@gmail.com