Conrail in and Around Philadelphia - Page 3

Philadelphia was more than the location of Conrail's corporate headquarters. It also featured lots of blue action.

Conrail's lines in the Philadelphia area were a combination of ex-Penn Central and ex-Reading lines, and varied from big time railroading along the Northeast Corridor to lightly tracked branches like the Venice Industrial.

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The crews of the freights that ran on the Trenton cutoff were always gracious to very excited high school railfans! We were very thankful teenagers who got a chance to walk by the ex-PRR right of way everyday going to school!

This day in June, my high school buddy took this view from the cab of 4861. On other days I got my turn to visit in the cab of both GG-1s and E-44s. The view from the window of the beautifully Raymond Loewy-designed GG-1, however, was one of the greatest in railroading.

102

CR 4877 leads a pair of GG-1's pulling a mixed freight on the ex-PRR highline at 30th Street Station in August, 1976.

Kodak Instamatic photo.

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CR 4877 leads a pair of GG-1's pulling a mixed freight on the ex-PRR highline at 30th Street Station in August, 1976. Kodak Instamatic photo.
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Conrail GG-1 #4886 leads a westbound through the station at Frankford Junction, Philadelphia, Pa.

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Doubleheaded PC GG-1's were a common sight pulling through Willow Grove on the Trenton cutoff in the early months of Conrail. A borrowed Kodak instamatic captured PC 4889 roaring by with a TV in August, 1976.
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The still new Conrail ran doubleheaded GG-1's often on the Trenton cutoff. This fast TV train was powered by still-PC liveried GG-1 4889, and an unidentified G, as they roared through Willow Grove, PA toward Morrisville in August, 1976. Thanks to my friend's borrowed Kodak instamatic, I was able to capture one of the quickly disappearing GG-1's sporting PC paint.
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PC GG-1 4894 at 30th Street Station in Philadelphia in August, 1976.
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In August, 1976, 30th Street Station in Philadelphia, PA was filled with Amtrak GG-1's and the expected G replacement, the E60. The new E60's didn't turn out as well as expected, as they were unable to be approved for the high speed passenger service the GG-1's provided with ease. PC GG-1 4894 waits for assignment between a few E60's.
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PC GG-1 4894 navigates the 30th Street Station yard past a line of Amtrak GG-1's in August, 1976. By March, 1977 4894 had the PC removed and the small "CR" added along with all other Conrail G's.
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CR GG-1 4936 on the high line near Arsenal tower in Philadelphia on May 15, 1977.
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CR GG-1 4937 backs 1929-1930 vintage RDG MU's 896, 877, 850, 845, 891, 855, 895, and 857 into Philadelphia's 30th Street Station during the 1977 Septa TWU strike.
112

An unidentified E40 behind two GG-1's on the Trenton cutoff at Willow Grove, PA in November, 1976.  

Sadly, the G's were taking the E40 to join other reclassed EP-5's at Harrisburg's deadline.

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Such a rare sight to see an ex-PC E40 in action in November, 1976. Sadly, this unidentified electric was not operating, but being pulled by two GG-1's on the Trenton cutoff at Willow Grove, PA on it's way to join other reclassed EP-5's at Harrisburg's deadline.
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Conrail B36-7 5047 is seen leading OICA onto the Delair Bridge in Philadelphia, PA in Sept 1996. The train is just moments away from its terminus at Pavonia Yard in Camden, NJ.
115

A Conrail electronic air braking system (EABS) test train rolls northbound through Wanamaker Yard. The consist is CR 5521, 5522, 5525, analyzer car 18, 0x80 for 2,480 tons.  EABS applies the brakes to every car of a train simultaneously via an electronic brake signal, allowing a train to stop smoothly in 30-70% less distance than traditional brake-equipped trains.  Info compiled from The Conrail Cyclopedia.  Click here for more info on Conrail's use of EABS.

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Conrail SD60M 5550 is seen waiting on a K201 at Locust St in Philadelphia while a Z409 heads south on 4/27/1996
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Conrail SD60I 5603 is seen leading a rare daylight PIED south on the Northeast Corridor on 3/4/1996
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Photo taken with permission. In this conductor's view from the High Line we see a portion of Amtrak's Penn Coach Yard in Philadelphia. Today's EDPI consists of CR 5606, 6029, 6771 (offline), 6179 (offline), and 9 loads by 34 empties for a 1,982 tons.
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RDG 622 (CR 5806) is sandwiched between two sister GP-7's as they work Abrams yard in February, 1977.
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RDG 622 takes a rest from yard duty under the signal bridge at Abrams in February, 1977.
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CR GP7 5813, ex-RDG 623, is coupled to RDG N4A cabin 94013 (CR 18830) as they work Abrams yard.

Cabooses were often coupled to the yard engines in early 1977.  Just behind the GP7 rests former RDG N4 cabin 92914 with a fresh CR stencil as 18730.

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PC GP30 2241 and CR-stenciled GP7 5814 (ex-RDG 624) pause with a load of hoppers on the Trenton cutoff at Willow Grove, PA in March, 1977.
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PC GP30 2241 and CR-stenciled GP7 5814 (ex-RDG 624) pause with a load of hoppers on the Trenton cutoff at Willow Grove, PA in March, 1977.
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Late in the day in November, 1976, RDG GP-7 625 rests from yard work with GP30 3618 (CR 2186) at the Abrams engine terminal.

The GP-7 would receive it's 5817 CR number in mid-February, 1977.

Kodak Instamatic photo.

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RDG GP-7 625 (CR 5817), GP-10 7567, SW1500 2766 (CR 9616), and sister GP-7 636 (CR 5838) pass by the Abrams yard office as they work track 1 in February, 1977.
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RDG GP7 625 (CR 5817), GP10 7567, SW1500 2766 (CR 9616), and GP7 636 (CR 5838) work together at Abrams yard in February, 1977.
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RDG GP-7 625 (CR 5817) works Abrams yard in her last days in Reading paint.
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Many railfans were on hand at Abrams while RDG GP7 625, GP10 7567, RDG SW1500 2766, and RDG GP7 636 worked the yard on February 12, 1977.
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Many railfans were on hand at Abrams while RDG GP7 625, GP10 7567, RDG SW1500 2766, and RDG GP7 636 worked the yard on February 12, 1977.
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Freshly stenciled CR GP-7 5817 works Abrams yard in February, 1977.

One week ago, the old GP-7 showed full Reading colors.

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CR GP-7 5817 (ex-RDG 625) moves a string of hoppers including PRR 868672 at Abrams yard in August, 1978.
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CR GP-7 5828 (ex-RDG 626) works Abrams yard on a cold January day in 1978.
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At the Abrams engine terminal in January, 1977, the yard crews for PC GP30 2247 and GP-7's 626 and 635 are gathered by unit 626.

RDG 626 would be stenciled CR 5828 by February 19th, while 635 held out the winter in pure RDG colors.

Kodak Instamatic photo.

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RDG GP-7 626 works the yard in January, 1977.  The GP-7 would be renumbered CR 5828 by February 19, 1977.

Kodak Instamatic photo.

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A pair of RDG GP7's, 635 (5837) and 626 (CR 5828), leave the Abrams engine terminal area in January, 1977 with 626 providing the smoke.
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CR GP-7 5829 (ex-RDG 627) and GP-30 2199 work Abrams yard in August, 1978.
137
Still in RDG paint, but not for long, GP-7 633 (CR 5835) idles at Abrams between yard assignments.
138
CR GP30 2219 leads a mixed freight past RDG GP7 633 (CR 5835) at Abrams in February, 1977.
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In RDG 633 paint one week earlier, CR GP7 5835 is sandwiched between sister GP7 5828 (ex-RDG 626) and SW1500 2762 as they work Abrams yard.

SW1500 2762 is due for renumbering to 9612 very soon.

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With CR GP-7 5838 (ex-RDG 636) in the background, CR GP-7 5835 (ex-RDG 633) works Abrams yard in March, 1978.
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CR GP-7 5835 (ex-RDG 633) works Abrams yard in March, 1978.
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CR GP-7 5835 (ex-RDG 633) works Abrams yard in March, 1978.
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RDG GP7 635 (CR 5837) and 626 (CR 5828) team up with PC GP30 2247 to work Abrams yard in January, 1977.

Kodak Instamatic photo.

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RDG GP7 635 (CR 5837) and 626 (CR 5828) team up to work Abrams yard in January, 1977.

Kodak Instamatic photo.

145
On a cold February, 1977 day, the engine terminal at Abrams yard is full of green and yellow RDG GP-7's and SW-1500's.
146
Still in RDG paint, GP-7 635 (CR 5837) idles near the Abrams yard office in February, 1977.
147
Late in the afternoon, RDG GP-7 635 (CR 5837) works Abrams yard in February, 1977.
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RDG GP7 636 (CR 5838) works Abrams with fellow RDG yard mates SW1500 2766 and GP7 625, as well as CR GP10 7567. 

Watching the yard work at trackside and parking near the Abrams signal bridge were safe and typical happenings in the early days of Conrail. 

The sights, sounds and smells of typical RDG yard work may have stirred the heart of the smallest railfan at Abrams that day to someday become a railroader or even a member of CRHS!

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RDG GP7 636 (CR 5838) shows years of wear and hard use on it's sides while working in Abrams yard.
150
GP7 636 (CR 5838) and SW1500 2766, in their last days of Reading paint, are part of a 4-unit switching crew working Abrams yard.

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