Conrail's Chicago Line

Conrail's Chicago line stretched from Selkirk, NY to Chicago, IL and was an extremely important double track main in which the majority of its traffic from the western roads reached the New England states and the East Coast.  Included on this route were important terminal cities like Toledo and Cleveland, OH and Conrail's major classification yard in Elkhart, IN.  This busy route saw anywhere from 50-60 trains a day including a lot of foreign power from western connections with Union Pacific and Burlington Northern Santa Fe and their predecessors.

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ATSF 5402 on SFEL at South Bend, IN 6-1993

An eastbound Conrail freight(most likely SFEL, which came off the Santa Fe at Streator, IL) with Santa Fe 5402 and a pair of GE's, including one in the rare Kodachrome scheme, passes Bend Tower in June 1993. Doug Davidson photo with permission

BN 5114 Porter, IN 11-08-1997

BN 5114, ATSF 2917 - a GP35(!), and CR 3366 powers SFEL-8 off the Porter Branch and onto the Chicago line at Porter, IN on November 8, 1997.

BN 5514 Butler, IN 01-21-1997

BN 5514 and fellow BN GE's leads empty coal train UDM-6wc east of Butler, IN on January 21, 1997.

BNSF 9736 Porter, IN 05-09-1999

BNSF 9736 and 9625 power loaded coal train UTM-7E at Porter, IN on May 9, 1999. This train is destined for the Detroit Edison power plant at Monroe, MI. Chris Howe photo

CN 5326 on the Chicago Line

CN 5326 is seen leading a train on the Chicago Line in upstate New York

CN 5336 Minoa, NY

CN 5336 is seen leading Conrail C30-7A 6575 and a pair of other blue units past the west end of DeWitt Yard at Minoa, NY

CN 5583 Rochester, NY 7/1977

CN lease power works an Eastbound by Goodman Street yard. Those wide cabs were a novelty at the time.

CN 5588 Rochester, NY 8/1977

A leased CN GP38 leads an ex PC SD-45 on a Westbound on the West side of Rochester, NY in August, 1977.

CNW 929 Rochester, NY 7/1977

A leased CNW SD-40 is the trailing unit on this power that is backing into the yard for a pickup. Early CR had leased power from several sources, including CNW, CN, BAR, & Precision National.

Conrail 6189 on UWE coal train

Westbound UWE Wisconsin Electric coal train (WEPX reporting marks) with 6189 on the point at the 332 signals, just west of Archbold, OH back in 1996

CR 0808 west SETO Syracuse 09021994

SETO rolls 136 cars past the station at Syracuse, which at the time was the 1957 ex NYC station at Dewitt. Lease fleet unit 0808 leads on Sep 2 1994. Trailing unit was CR 6704.

CR 1658 on WDBR-2 at Bryan, OH in 1999

Conrail local WDBR-2 with the 1658 and 1654 is westbound just west of Bryan, OH back in March 1999. The County Road 8 bridge that I took several shots off of is in the background.

CR 1730 Cleveland, OH 04-8-1978

A small F7 and a large SD45-2 depart Collinwood for Motor. It wasn't very common to see big power like that ex EL SD on the pullers.

CR 1743 Rochester, NY 7/1977

An Eastbound heads down track 3 at Goodman Street with a pair of F7A units trailing.

CR 1829 East Rochester, NY 2/18/1978

An F7A was a nice catch on this Eastbound freight.

CR 1869 Cleveland, OH 05-10-1977

A Conrail caboose hop has just departed the Riverbed for Collinwood and is seen here passing through Bridge 1 in downtown Cleveland. 1869, still in Penn Central paint, leads this F7A/F7B/GP9B/F7A/caboose set east. Conrail is only a year old at this date, and the railroad still looks a mess in some places.

CR 18693 Rochester, NY 4/12/1977

An SW1500 has 2 cabooses, an ex LV & ex EL, in the cut of cars it is switching.

CR 1914 at Depew, NY

Conrail B23-7 1914 is leading a westbound freight out of the Buffalo Terminal while passengers start to gather on the platform of the Depew Amtrak station

CR 1933 on TES-501 with OCS-502 in distance

CR 1933 pulling the test train TES-501 at CP 412 in Goshen, IN is westbound as the eastbound OCS-502 with an Operation Lifesaver special prepares to make the turn and head down the Marion Branch on June 24, 1998. Note that they are using NS' track test cars a year before the merger. Dan McDonough photo with permission

CR 1942 at Minoa, NY

Conrail B23-7 1942 is seen working DeWitt Yard at Minoa, NY

CR 1943 west CP 293 local 08201996

A Dewitt local job returns from the NYSW, approaching CP 293 to get back on the Chicago Line for its trip through town to the yard.

CR 1944 west WASY local Dewitt 1018995

A local departs Dewitt Yard, heading for the Chicago Line, which it will gain at CP 285. Seen from the former Amtrak/NYC station.

CR 1948 at Minoa, NY

Conrail B23-7 1948 is seen at the east end of DeWitt Yard at Minoa, NY

CR 1960 west WAFU12 Dewitt 10231995

A single B23-7 has today's WAFU 12 in hand as it leaves Dewitt.

CR 19603 Rochester, NY 4/12/1977

An ex EL painted out caboose. It does not fit in the N3A number sequence, but looks like one.

CR 1991 B23-7 Collinwood 06-83

A nice mix of eighties style Conrail with B23-7 1991 leading eastbound past the fuel and sand towers at Collinwood, Ohio in June of '83. Has the looks of an ELBU with all those CN cars up front.

CR 2025 Rochester, NY 1/29/1978

Most likely this is a local of some sort. It was not common to see an RS-32 running the main at speed.

CR 2035 Rochester, NY 3/18/1979

2035 is parked on the North side of the Rochester Diesel Shops.

CR 2035 Rochester, NY 5/16/1979

A 3 builder lashup at the Rochester Service area.

CR 2040 Rochester, NY 3/25/1979

It's hard to pick the more interesting subject. The old PC fuel truck is just as nice as the RS-32s under the sand tower.

CR 2040 Rochester, NY 7/1977

An RS-32 and a pair of GP-9B units arrive at Goodman Street Yard with one of the "big" locals. This was probably the train from Kodak. The Kodak train and the salt train were the 2 biggest locals out of Rochester.

CR 2175 Rochester, NY 7/1/1977

Power at the Rochester shops this day included a GP-30. It was unusual for this model to be used for local power around the area.

CR 2237 Rochester, NY 7/1977

A clean PC painted GP-30 leads a Westbound at Goodman Street.

CR 2254 Rochester, NY 4/17/1977

An Eastbound with a GP-35 and 3 U25-Bs at Goodman Street Yard.

CR 2331 Rochester, NY 5/21/1977

A Westbound piggyback train just West of Goodman Street Yard.

CR 2390 Collinwood, OH 02-10-83

A westbound with a pair of GP35's and a GP38-2 pass through the QD tower area of Collinwood, Ohio on a nice February 1983 day.

CR 2520 Rochester, NY 4-17-1977

A Westbound at Goodman Street Yard with 3 PC units.

CR 2544 Rochester, NY 8-1-1977

Typical GE lashup on the Chicago Line in Upstate NY.

CR 2545 Rochester, NY 3-22-1978

A U25-B, SD-35, & ex LV U23-B on an Eastbound.

CR 2562 Rochester, NY 6-3-1978

2 blue GEs lead 2 black EMDs on a Westbound freight. The 2nd & 3rd cars are freight cars on flat cars.

CR 2565 on Mail-8M at Edgerton, OH

CR 2565 leads Mail-8M past some parked camp cars at Edgerton, OH on October 28, 1998. Chris Howe photo

CR 2573 Rochester, NY 12/2/1979

Winter weather arrived early in December of 1979. There is plenty of snow and ice on this set of power working at the East end of Goodman Street Yard.

CR 2575 on BUHE-9X at Porter, IN in 5/99

BUHE-9X with the 2575 and 3310 for power at Porter, IN on May 9, 1999

CR 2589 Rochester, NY 7/1977

Using the flash attachment on my old Graphlex would get results like this. It threw a lot of light with one bulb. The results were not top quality, but better than no picture at all of this ex EL U-25-B leading a Westbound.

CR 2589 Rochester, NY Summer 1977

An ex EL U25-B prepares to depart the yard at Rochester.

CR 2592 Rochester, NY 3/18/1979

A U25B gets some shop time at the Rochester engine house.

CR 2632 Rochester, NY 6/22/1978

2632 has an empty hopper train rolling by Goodman Street Yard.

CR 2632 Rochester, NY 6/22/1978

A trio of older power hustle an empty hopper train West on the Water Level Route.

CR 2634 Lancaster, NY 4/16/1978

4 little GE's lead an Eastbound at sunset.

CR 2638 Rochester, NY Summer 1977

A pair of PC lettered U25-Bs work Goodman St.

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