New Jersey Transportation Chronology
Please send corrections and additions to Bill McKelvey at email@example.com.
Posted on LHRy website on 21 March 2018
Updated to 2007
This document was assembled by Capt. Bill McKelvey (with much help from others) to assist the consultants/designers/contractors building our Heritage Center at Phillipsburg. The following information will help in the formulation of story lines and exhibits appropriate to our transport history. It will also be a wonderful resource for students and researchers of New Jersey transportation history. In fact, it could be published in print or electronic form as a sales item to make money for the Heritage Center.
Suggestion: To understand the value of this database and the greatness of the transportation developments in the state of New Jersey we suggest that you do searches for the words “first,” “earliest,” “largest,” “longest,” “greatest,” “best,” “fastest,” “last,” “pioneer,” “invented,” “established,” “developed,” “introduced,” etc. We think that you will be pleasantly amazed at what you will find happened in our state
Note: Due to the unavailability of month and / or day of some events / items the listings of them under each year may not be in exact chronological order.
ca. 10,000 BC The estimated date of arrival of Paleo-Indians in the Lehigh Valley area. Their seasonal hunting grounds began to be connected by a series of trails, 12 to 18" wide. One of these, the Minisink Trail, afforded a route for the Minisink Indians to travel from their PA hunting grounds to the Jersey seashore. This trail started at Minisink Island in the Delaware River below Port Jervis, went north of Morristown, west of Springfield, six miles west of Elizabeth, four miles west of Amboy, through Shrewsbury, then to the sea. ♦
1524 Florentine explorer Giovanni da Verrazano was the first European to discover and explore the Atlantic coast, including NY Harbor and New Jersey.
1609 Henry Hudson sailed into the mouth of what became known as the Delaware River and anchored for the night. He then continued on to the New York Bay region where he is credited with discovering the Hudson River. He anchored his Half Moon in Weehawken cove. Shortly after, the Swedes and British claimed settlements in New Jersey along the coast.
1614 Captain Cornelius Hendrickson sailed the Onrush north on the Delaware River to Brooklawn in Gloucester. Captain Jacobsen Mey, for whom Cape May is named, settled Fort Nassau, which today is Gloucester City.
1616 Dutch sea captain, Cornelis Hendricksen, explored and charted the Delaware in his yacht Restless and reported his discovery to Holland merchants. ♦ The Dutch began establishing forts and trading posts on the Delaware River. The early Indian trails and paths began to be used by those arriving from Europe in the Colonial Period and were gradually widened to roads.
1618 The trading station of Bergen was founded by the Dutch colonists.
1623 The Dutch West India Company established a fort for fur-trading purposes near the present town of Gloucester.
ca. 1650 The first wagon road in America was built by Dutch miners and settlers to reach copper mines at Pahaquarry in the Kittatinny Mountains of northwest New Jersey to tidewater, at Kingston, NY. This "Old Mine Road," to tidewater near Kingston, NY, is considered the oldest commercial wheeled-vehicle roadway built in the country.
1660 Bergen (now known as Jersey City) became the first permanent settlement in New Jersey.
1661 Willem Jansen was granted authority to operate a ferry from Manhattan to Communipaw, thus the first regular "legalized" ferry across the Hudson was established.
1664 The first European permanent settlement was established in New Jersey. ◆ The Duke of York deeded the land, which is now our state, to Lord Berkeley and Sir George Carteret and decreed that the region be called "New Jersey" in honor of Carteret's earlier defense of the Crown at the Isle of Jersey.
1666 Captain Robert Treat led a settlement on the Passaic River, known as Newark. The settlers gradually moved inland and followed the Native American trails, although their footpaths barely 12 to 18 inches wide made riding a horse perilous or driving a horse drawn vehicle impossible. They found that the travel and transport of goods was challenging.
1673 The General Assembly of the Province of East Jersey passed their Public Roads Act, the first movement toward formalizing roads.
1675 A ferry across the Delaware was established, but a rope ferry at Burlington had been in service earlier.
1676 The Assembly of the Province of East Jersey ordered a road built from Middletown to Piscataway for their members. ♦ William Penn authorized a survey for a canal across the Jerseys from the Delaware River to New York Bay.
1681 The West Jersey Assembly authorized a survey for their first long highway, between Burlington and Salem.
1682 The East Jersey Assembly Public Roads Act provided for the layout of highways, bridges, landings and ferries; it also named specific men in each county to build the roads.
1683 The East Jersey Assembly set up Road Boards for Essex, Bergen and Middlesex counties. The boards were empowered to layout highways, passages, landings and ferries. ♦ Miles Forster, New Jersey's earliest recorded shipbuilder, built his first vessel in Perth Amboy - but surely there were others before him.
1684 East Jersey Proprietors encouraged a road to unite Perth Amboy and Burlington. It was completed along with a ferry connection to New York by Deputy Governor Lawrie and became Known as "Lawrie's Road." Initially the old Dutch route over the Assanpink Trail remained a favorite. However, Lawrie's Road grew in importance in the first half of the eighteenth century and over it the first public accommodations for passengers and freight were established in New Jersey.
1686 John Inian, one of the first settlers on the site of New Brunswick converted the Assanpink or Dutch Trail into a road. Before his work, travelers described it as "nothing but a footpath for men and horses between the trees." Inian also improved and shortened the "Lower Trail" to Burlington and cut a way through to the new settlement of Piscataway.
1687 Redford's horse powered ferry began as a commercial venture to connect South Amboy and Perth Amboy. ♦ (Approximately 1687) New Jersey's first recorded common carrier, Mr. Dellaman, was granted permission by Andrew Hamilton, Deputy Governor of East Jersey, to drive his wagon on Amboy Road for the accommodation of passengers.
1688 William Royden was granted a license to run the first ferry from Philadelphia to what is now known as Camden. William Cooper soon bought out Royden and the line became known as "Cooper's Ferry."
1692 The American post office was established by King William III and put in charge of Andrew Hamilton. Hamilton, the East Jersey Deputy Governor, made the Amboy to Burlington road the route the postal riders followed.
1700 A charter was granted to Samuel Bayard for a ferry from New York to Weehawken.
1705 Essex County lawmakers established twelve new roadways to link Newark with outlying settlements.
1704 A grant was made for a line of stage boats on the Delaware River between Burlington and Philadelphia. ♦ The legislature of the unified colony of New Jersey passed a highway bill that put in place a system for laying out and opening new roads and maintaining existing roads.
1706 Hugh Huddy was granted the sole right of transporting goods over the Perth Amboy to Burlington road. This was the first American transportation monopoly on record, but it was struck down two years later.
1707 A roadway joined Burlington and Cape May.
1717 Another major highway bill was adopted, amending the bill of 1704, chiefly to regulate the opening and maintenance of local roads.
1722 Samuel Coates operated a ferry from Lambertville, NJ across the Delaware River in conjunction with John Wells on the New Hope, PA side.
1726 The population of New Jersey was 32,000.
1729 An advertisement for Redford's Ferry also mentioned the availability of a "Stage Wagon." This was the first definite mention of a Stage Wagon in New Jersey.
1732 Emanuel Coryell arrived at Lambertville, bought the ferry and was granted a patent to operate on Jan. 7th of the next year by King George II. The ferry became known as Coryell's and the towns on either side of the river were also named Coryell's Ferry.
1733 Solomon Smith and James Moore of Burlington advertised their frequent and regular "Stage-Waggons" to and from Amboy. This was the first known advertisement of such a stage line. From it have grown all the schedules, time-tables, and the whole complex system of movement that has become such an indispensable feature of American life. It may fairly be called the first regular overland transportation service offered the public in America. (Seymour Dunbar, A History of Travel in America, Vol. 1, p. 180) (Alex Roggero in “Go Greyhound” says this service began in March, 1732.) “The only long distance road on which commercial coaches and wagons were regularly operated before the Revolutionary War was that between New York and Philadelphia.” (Clarence P. Hornung in Wheels Across America) ♦ A charter was granted by King George II of England to Albert Kennedy, Esquire for a ferry between Manhattan and Pavonia (Jersey City).
ca. 1734 A post office was opened in Trenton, a sign that the postal route had been shifted from the Amboy - Burlington road to the New Brunswick - Trenton road.
1738 A Stage Waggon to accommodate the public was established between Trenton and New Brunswick.
1739 David Martin, a ferry operator from Trenton, obtained the first grant for ferrying ("horses, cows, sheep, mules, etc." between Phillipsburg and Easton) at the forks of the Delaware.
1740 The Ringwood Company was established as a small hamlet of miners, charcoal makers, iron-makers, etc.
1743 Oxford Furnace went into blast on March 9th. It was the third furnace built in the colony of New Jersey. ♦ The Durham boat was developed for use on the Delaware River.
1744 The Trenton - New Brunswick stage, which was growing in popularity, advertised specifically to attract travelers between New York and Philadelphia. With water connections on either end it took four or five days for the trip between the two cities.
1745 John Dalley produced his map of the road between Trenton and New Brunswick, one of the first "road maps" drawn in the United States.
1749 Phillipsburg first appeared on a map of the area. The name is thought to have originated with the Indian chief Phillip.
1750 Douwes Ferry Road, from Harrison to Jersey City was completed.
ca. 1750 A more or less regular passenger and freight service began operating on the Delaware River using keel boats called "batteaux."
1754 Benjamin Franklin was appointed Postmaster General for the North. He recruited a corps of young horsemen to serve as Post Riders to maintain year-round mail deliveries between Philadelphia and Boston.
1755 Joseph Borden, Jr. and partners started a stage line which became the first regular service between New York and Philadelphia. Only the Bordentown to Perth Amboy segment was by land. Boats were used at either end of the trip. The first steam engine in America was installed to pump water from ???? a copper mine in what is now North Arlington.????
1756 John Butler established a coach service between Philadelphia and New York. The one hundred mile journey included six ferryboat rides and took three days.
1759 Schuylers Plank Road (became Belleville Turnpike) was completed. ♦ The first local stage (for local rather than through passengers) began to operate between Cooper's Ferry and the Bay near Sandy Hook.
1764 Old York Road opened for vehicles from Coryells Ferry (Lambertville) to Elizabethtown Point. ♦ A stage route from Paulus (or Powles) Hook to Philadelphia was begun. ♦ Sandy Hook Lighthouse was built in the 18th century and has been in service since this year. It is the oldest continuously operating lighthouse in the United States. ♦ Daniel "Admiral" Skinner was the first to navigate a timber raft down the Delaware River to Philadelphia.
1766 The new Newark to Bergen (Jersey City) Plank Road was opened. It provided the connection with other roads to complete the first all-land route between the Hudson and Philadelphia. John Mercerau and John Barnhill introduced their Flying Machine. Their "wagons set on springs" cut the travel time between Paulus Hook, and Philadelphia to two days.
1767 Cornelius Van Voorst established a ferry from Manhattan to Powles Hook in Jersey City. ◆ The first buoys mentioned in the United States were casks laid in the Delaware River.
1769 A new stage route was established over the Old York Road, by way of Lambertville, Somerville, Plainfield, Elizabeth, Newark and Powles Hook.
1771 The provinces of New Jersey and Pennsylvania declared the Delaware River a "common highway." ♦ Abraham Skillman advertised his "year round" coach between NY, Elizabeth & Philadelphia in two days.
1772 The first stage coach was used in New Jersey for public transportation by Joseph Hart's Philadelphia Coach Line. His route was from Powles Hook via Newark, Elizabeth and Trenton. It provided the most comfortable means of travel as well as the most expensive.
1774 A charter for a sail/manpower ferry from Manhattan to Hoboken was granted. It connected with a line of stages run by Andrew Van Buskirk to New Bridge, near Hackensack.
1775 The "Continental Post" established mail service between New York and Philadelphia with exchange of mail bags at Princeton.
1776 On the night of December 25th, having previously ordered all boats to be hidden on the Pennsylvania side of the river, General George Washington deployed a fleet of mostly Durham boats and transported his troops across the Delaware River for their surprise march on Trenton and victory over the Hessians.
1777 Daily stagecoaches began to operate from New York to Philadelphia. ♦ The New Jersey Pony Express began operating between Cape May Point and Coopers Ferry in Camden to communicate information on British ship movements to the Continental Congress at Philadelphia.
1779 General George Washington visited Easton, and passed through Phillipsburg with Martha during an encampment of Colonial troops. The troops paused near what is now Memorial Parkway and Bates Street on a march to Oxford Furnace. It was believed that the British planned to capture the furnace to stop its production of cannon balls and ordinance for the Continental Army. ♦ Martha Washington ferried across the Delaware at Phillipsburg after visiting her husband. ♦ Wagons were requisitioned to carry grain and meat from Belvidere to Morristown for the Revolutionary Army wintering there. ♦
1785 Congress authorized contracts with stage owners for carrying the mail between New Hampshire and Georgia via New Jersey.
1786 The state of New Jersey gave John Fitch the exclusive right to construct, employ, and navigate steamboats for fourteen years.
1787 John Fitch operated his first steamboat trials on the Delaware River. This is acknowledged to be the first steamboat to operate in America. It was replaced by a larger vessel, the Perserverence in the same year using components from the earlier vessel. It ran between Burlington, NJ and Philadelphia in 3 hours, 20 minutes. ♦ New Jersey was the third state admitted into the union.
1788 Jonathan Dickerson predicted that within one century there should be a canal formed from the Delaware River to the Passaic supplied with water from Lake Hopatcong. ♦
1789 New Jersey was the first state to ratify the Bill of Rights.
1790 During the summer John Fitch put his steamboat in regular service on the Delaware River between Trenton, Bordentown, Bristol and Burlington. This was the first regular steamboat service to be established in America, but it was not commercially successful. ♦ The population of New Jersey reached 184,000.
1791 Revolutionary War Colonel John Stevens obtained a patent for running a steamboat with paddle wheels. ♦ George Washington designated Tuckerton as America's third Port of Entry, following New York and Philadelphia.
1792 Anthracite coal was first moved down the Lehigh and Delaware Rivers. It was moved on rafts which were used only during spring floods. ♦ Blanchard, a Frenchman, made the first balloon flight in the US. He departed Philadelphia, landed in Deptford, NJ and was returned by carriage and ferry to Philadelphia the same day. ♦ The Stony Brook bridge, south of Princeton, was completed. It may be the oldest bridge in our state. ◆ The Society for Establishing Useful Manufactures chose the area at the Great Falls of the Passaic River for the Nation’s first planned industrial center. It became Paterson and was known as “The Cradle of American Industry”. With the availability of water power and, the arrival of canal and rail transportation, Paterson became famous for its production of locomotives (, rotary snow blowers) and later, silk.
1793 Baloonist Jean Paul Blanchard, the first man to fly in America, ascended from Philadelphia and landed in Deptford Township, NJ, also making the first air mail delivery in America (Jan. 9th).
1794 or 95 Nicholas Roosevelt made the first stationary steam engine entirely built in America at Belleville.
1795 Wooden bridges were opened as follows: across the Passaic River at Newark (492'); over the Hackensack River (980') and across the Raritan River at New Brunswick (990'). ♦ Matthias William Baldwin was born in Elizabethtown, NJ. He became a manufacturer of stationary steam engines and early locomotives. He founded M.W. Baldwin in Philadelphia, which became Baldwin Locomotive Works. BLW became the largest producer of steam locomotives and later also manufactured diesel locomotives.
1796 Ross Winans, born in Vernon, NJ, exhibited great inventive genius at an early age, became a nationally significant figure in the development of railroad technology. His accomplishments were primarily for the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad at Baltimore, where he was a pioneer in the building of railway locomotives.
1797 Samuel Morey developed and operated a paddle wheel steamboat between Philadelphia and Bordentown on the Delaware for a short time. Col. John Stevens, Robert Fulton and Chancellor Robert R. Livingston traveled in Morey's steamboat.
1798 Col. John Stevens, Robert R. Livingston and others participated in the construction of a small steamboat, the Polacca, on the Passaic River at Belleville and it made a trip to New York City the next year. ◆ The Associates of the New York & Elizabethport Ferry Company began operating about this time. It is considered the oldest corporate entity of the Central Railroad of New Jersey and was officially incorporated as the Elizabethport & New York Ferry Co. on March 6, 1839.
1801 The Legislature granted a charter to the Morris Turnpike Company, the first in New Jersey. It went from Elizabeth & Morristown to Milford, PA. Nearly all the early turnpikes were funded privately, not by the state. Between this date and 1828, 54 turnpike companies were chartered in New Jersey, but only about 30 were actually built.
1802 The Bergen Turnpike Company was chartered. It was later taken over by the Jersey City, Hoboken & Paterson Street Railway Company to build their line along the route. When Public Service took over the trolley line they operated the turnpike as well. It became a public road in 1915.
1804 Richard Trevithick built and tested the first steam locomotive for an ironworks tramway in Wales, which operated only for a short time. ◆ Oliver Evans of Philadelphia built a remarkable amphibious dredge at Philadelphia. He put wheels under it and it ran under its own power to and then into the Schuylkill River. He operated it down the Schuylkill and up the Delaware for 16 miles. ♦ The "Associates of the Jersey Company" was established and leased the New York - Paulus Hook ferry which was originally worked with sail and rowboats. ♦ The Trenton-New Brunswick Turnpike was chartered. ♦ The publicly-funded Newark Turnpike was built. ♦ The NJ Legislature chartered the New Jersey Navigation Co. to build and construct a slackwater navigation from the Raritan River at or near New Brunswick to tidewater on the Delaware. It failed.
1805 The Easton Delaware Bridge Co. raised enough money by lottery to build a two span, wood arch bridge between Phillipsburg and Easton. It was designed and built by Timothy Palmer, the developer of the covered bridge, and was the third covered bridge to be constructed in America. It lasted nearly a century.
1806 A 1,008' long, 36' wide covered wood bridge was completed across the Delaware River at Trenton, the first to span the river. It was strengthened in 1839 so that locomotives could use it, and in 1840 through rail service between Jersey City and Philadelphia was inaugurated. ♦ The Easton Delaware Bridge Co. raised enough money by lottery to build a two span, wood arch bridge between Phillipsburg and Easton. It was designed and built by Timothy Palmer, the developer of the covered bridge, and was the third covered bridge to be constructed in America. It lasted nearly a century. ◆ The Morris Turnpike was incorporated (as the Washington Turnpike) and was authorized to be constructed between Union Square, Phillipsburg and Morristown. ♦ The Easton Delaware bridge was opened. ♦ David Martin's ferry across the Delaware ceased operation after Palmer's famous wooden bridge opened. ♦ The first New Jersey Turnpike, also chartered in this year, ran from New Brunswick to Bound Brook, Somerville, Potterstown and Bloomsbury to Phillipsburg. It was later extended through Metuchen to Perth Amboy
1807 The first railway passenger service began in England. ◆ Robert Fulton and Chancellor Livingston launched the "North River Steamboat" (Clermont) and established the first commercially successful steamboat service in America on the Hudson River. ♦ Hoboken landowner, Col. John Stevens built the Phenix, a paddle wheel vessel for the Hoboken to New Brunswick run. Phenix is acknowledged as America's second steamboat and the first built entirely in the US - completed only a few weeks prior to the Clermont. Phenix was also the first steamboat built in New Jersey. ♦ Jesse Hawley of Canandaigua, NY suggested that Easton (Phillipsburg), on the Delaware, would be a good place to begin a canal running eastward to the Passaic River.
1808 The However, the Phenix ran into trouble with the Fulton-Livingston monopoly, and she was brought around to operate on the Delaware River. This May trip was the first ocean voyage by any steamboat. ♦ Stage lines began to use the Trenton and New Brunswick Turnpike in crossing New Jersey, marking a new era in overland transportation. Later, the steamboats Raritan and Phenix provided a through trip between New York and Philadelphia. ♦ James Allaire provided brass fittings for Fulton's early steamboats. He later took over Fulton's boat works (in Jersey City) and moved it several times on the New York side of the Hudson. Allaire is now famous for his bog iron village which carries his name in Monmouth County, NJ. ♦ Albert Gallatin recommended a conventional canal across the "neck" or "waist" of New Jersey in his Report on Roads and Canals submitted to the US Senate.
1809 The steam ferry Camden superseded the Camden - Philadelphia horse ferry. ♦ The steamboat Phenix, built by John Stevens was advertised as running between New York and New Brunswick. The third commercially successful steamboat in America, Raritan, replaced the Phenix in New Brunswick to New York service. ◆ The first practical US railroad track (wooden, for horse cars) was put in service in Philadelphia.
1810 An all turnpike route from Jersey City to Philadelphia, using the Trenton Bridge, was in place. ◆ Anthracite coal was being supplied to Phillipsburg
1811 A franchised ferry route was begun with the steamboat New Juliana between Hoboken and Manhattan by Col. John Stevens.
The service operated continuously until November 22nd, 1967 - 156 years. ♦ Governor of New Jersey, Aaron Ogden, introduced the first beam engine steamboat, called Sea Horse, in New Brunswick - Elizabethtown - New York service.
1812 Self-taught engineer, Col. John Stevens penned his vital pamphlet: Documents Tending to Prove the Superior Advantages of Railway and Steam Carriages over Canal Navigation. It was the first American railroad book ever written. In it he states: “I can see nothing to hinder a steam carriage moving on its ways with a velocity of 100 miles an hour.” Stevens was America's pioneer advocate for steam railroads and is regarded as the father of American railroads. ♦ During the War of 1812 much commercial traffic was diverted from sea routes to roads between coastal cities. ♦ Fulton's ferry Jersey was built at Jersey City. ♦ Paulus Hook/Exchange Place ferry service to Cortland St., NY opened on July 18th.
1813 Oliver Evans proposed building a railroad between Philadelphia and New York, guaranteeing a train speed of 12 mph. ♦ The steamboats New Jersey and the Eagle were operating on the Delaware River. ♦ The New Jersey Legislature ordered carriages on public roads and turnpikes to keep to the right.
1814 The first railway survey in America was conducted by Col. John Stevens between Trenton and Raritan Bay. ♦ To satisfy the Fulton-Livingston monopoly, Col. Stevens replaced his steamboat on the Hoboken ferry with a horse powered ferry. The horseboat had been invented by Moses Rodgers and was first used on the East River. His second vessel was used on the Hoboken run. ♦ The first steamboat excursion ran to Sandy Hook on May 25th using the Fulton. The war with Great Britain prevented her use in coastal waters. (Morrison) ◆ George Stephenson operated the first practical steam engine, called Blusher, on the Cillingwood Railway in England.
1815 A railroad between the Delaware and the Raritan, later known as the Camden & Amboy, was chartered. This was the first intercity railroad chartered in the New World. ♦ The Travel Diaries of William Richardson document two trips from Boston to New Orleans by land in this year and his crossings of NJ by stage.
1818 Hoboken to Barclay St., NY ferry service opened on 9.1.
1819 The Savannah was the first vessel to cross the Atlantic partly under her own steam. Her machinery was built in Elizabeth and her drive shaft came from the Speedwell Iron Works in Morristown. ♦ Regular steamboat service between Cape May and Philadelphia commenced. ♦ Louis Charles Guille leaped from a balloon over Jersey City and safely landed with a parachute, the first jump in this country.
1821 The United States provided the first steamboat service between Newark and New York.
1822 George P. Macculloch, while fishing at Lake Hopatcong, got the idea of using the lake as a water supply for a canal across northern New Jersey from New York Bay to Phillipsburg. He vigorously promoted the idea of the canal and was the first to suggest the use of inclined planes for it. ♦ An act was passed to investigate the feasibility of the Morris Canal.
1823 Ephraim Beach surveyed the route of the Morris Canal. ♦ Ark loads of coal were regularly being dispatched to Philadelphia via the Lehigh and Delaware rivers. ♦ The Delaware & Passaic Canal Commission was appointed by the Legislature of the State of NJ for the purpose of exploring a route of a canal to unite the Delaware, near Easton, with the Passaic, near Newark, produced a report and map of the route which was to become the Morris Canal.
1824 The United States Supreme Court under Chief Justice John Marshall struck down the Fulton-Livingston steamboat monopoly (Gibbons vs. Ogden) thus opening steamboat services to competition except in the case of railroad owned ferry services. The preemption of the interstate commerce clause of the constitution was affirmed as one of the Federal powers. ♦ Col. John Stevens of Hoboken obtained a patent for his method of constructing a railroad. ♦ The Morris Canal & Banking Company was incorporated.
1825 Col. John Stevens made the first known American application of steam locomotion to railway track on a circular track at Hoboken with his "steam wagon." It is considered the first steam locomotive in America. ♦ Construction of the Morris Canal was begun. ◆ New Jersey’s first utility, Paterson Gas Light Co. Was chartered, but operations did not begin until 1847. ◆ The first public railway using a steam locomotive, the Stockton and Darlington in England, opened for regular service.
1826 The Granite Railway, serving a quarry at Quincy, MA began operation with horse power.
1828 Hazards Register of PA reported that 1,000 rafts containing 50,000,000 feet of lumber descended the Delaware River during the rafting season.
1829 Reduced traveling rates (of $2) between NYC and Easton/Phillipsburg were advertised by the NY & Easton Line of Mail Coaches in combination with the "New and Elegant" steamboat Bellona between Elizabethtown and NYC. The coach left Easton at 4am and the boat arrived at NYC at 6pm. ◆ The Stourbridge Lion, the first locomotive built in England, arrived in New York. It was tested on the Delaware & Hudson Canal Co. Gravity railroad, but was too heavy for the track and was later used as a stationary boiler at Carbondale.
1830 Robert L. Stevens designed the forerunner of modern "T" rail. ♦ Charters for the Delaware & Raritan Canal and the Camden & Amboy Railroad were granted. Ground was broken and construction was started on both. ♦ The Trenton-Belvidere Stage Line began operating on an 11 hour schedule thrice weekly between the two points at a fare of $2.75. ♦ The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad was the first in the US to establish passenger service. ◆ On Sept. 9th, Charles F. Durant became the first native-born American to fly. He flew a hydrogen-filled balloon from Manhattan to South Amboy.
1831 An act was passed permitting the Delaware & Raritan Canal Company and the Camden & Amboy Railroad Company to consolidate their stock and use their joint funds for the completion of both railroad and canal. The New Jersey Legislature gave the "joint companies" certain protection against competition in the carrying of passengers and freight across New Jersey between New York and Philadelphia. ♦ The Camden & Amboy Railroad, the first in New Jersey, began operation between Bordentown and Hightstown with horse power. ♦ The locomotive John Bull, manufactured in England and assembled at Bordentown, hauled the first passengers with a steam locomotive on a regular railroad (the Camden & Amboy) in New Jersey. Madame Murat, niece of Napoleon, was the first woman to ride a steam railroad in the United States. ♦ The Paterson & Hudson River Railroad was incorporated and began construction. ◆ The first (British made) iron "T" rails were installed on the Camden & Amboy Railroad. The rail was mostly fastened to square stone sleepers, but some was laid with rails spiked directly to wooden cross ties - believed to be the first such use in the world. ♦ The Morris Canal was opened between Phillipsburg and Newark. Its inclined planes which overcame great elevation changes were an engineering marvel. In fact the Morris Canal overcame a greater change of elevation than any other transportation canal ever built. Its brownstone Little Falls aqueduct was at the time the highest (@ 52') stone arch in the United States. ♦ The first Morris Canal boats which were loaded with Lehigh coal at Mauch Chunk arrived in NJ. ♦ The first railroad car in New Jersey was built for the Camden & Amboy Railroad by M.P. and M.E. Green of Hoboken. ♦ One of Colonel James Reeside's "elegant" coaches, carrying seven passengers, baggage, and mail made a record run, with steamboat connections, from Powles Hook to Philadelphia in eight hours and forty-two minutes.
1832 The Paterson and Hudson River Railroad Company began operation. ♦ In May an eastbound canalboat had just crested the top of the Boonton plane when the chain snapped. The plane car with the boat on it made a rapid descent of the plane striking the water with such force as to throw an immense wave over the towpath, taking the boat with it an depositing it on rocks below, between some trees. The Captain’s wife and two children, who were in the cabin, were uninjured. ◆ The New Jersey Railroad and Transportation Co., the third railroad in our state was chartered. ◆ The non-swiveling locomotive pilot and "cowcatcher" was invented by Camden & Amboy Railroad mechanic Isaac Dripps and first installed on the locomotive John Bull. ♦ A cable ferry was established across the Delaware River between the Morris and Lehigh canals. This allowed Morris Canal boats to load coal at Mauch Chunk and permitted Lehigh Canal boats to deliver coal to Morris Canal points. ◆ A cable ferry was established across the Delaware between the Morris and Lehigh canals. ♦ A Morris Canal boat was swept over the Phillipsburg Falls. ♦ Lehigh Canal boats were permitted to deliver coal to Morris Canal points. ♦ The LC&N Co. advertised for "proposals for boating coal from Mauch Chunk to Newark." ♦ The first Lehigh anthracite coal transited the Morris Canal. ♦ The Morris Canal began to look for a suitable place to deposit coal at South Easton, Phillipsburg or elsewhere instead of using the Lehigh Canal facilities at South Easton. ♦ The first full boating season on the Morris Canal was completed.
1833 An accident and derailment on the Camden & Amboy Railroad produced the first passenger injuries/fatality in the United States. Passenger and former President John Quincy Adams was injured. ♦ The first New Jersey "junction" was built to connect the New Jersey Railroad & Transportation Co. with the Paterson & Hudson River Railroad at a Jersey City location which became known as "Marion." (Per Tom McConkey). ♦ It was proposed to extend the Elizabeth & Somerville RR to Belvidere, NJ, and from there to the Water Gap. It could then link up with the proposed Susquehanna & Delaware RR which would provide a connection through coal country at Carbondale.
1834 The Camden & Amboy Railroad's John Bull was the first locomotive to be equipped with a bell. ♦ The Delaware & Raritan Canal was fully opened. Boats were borrowed from the Chesapeake & Delaware Canal for the opening ceremonies. ♦ The New Jersey Railroad & Transportation Company began operations between Newark and Jersey City. ♦ Rogers, Ketchum & Grosvenor Co., a machine works, was organized in Paterson. ♦ The first regularly scheduled steamboat service to Red Bank, NJ was begun by James Allaire's Frank. ◆ The first Camden & Amboy train arrived at Camden at 2pm on December 31st. ◆ The Morris Canal & Banking Co. ordered 32 new boats for delivery on or before May 1st. Twelve of them were built in Easton, PA and others were built in Lehigh Gap, Weissport and Mauch Chunk, PA.
1835 On May 19th, the first locomotive built by Paul & Beggs at Paterson was destroyed by fire before being used. ♦ On May 24th, William Henry achieved America's first successful "hot blast" at Oxford Furnace. ♦ The first known New Jersey railroad holiday excursion was to the Paterson Falls via the Paterson and Hudson River Railroad on the Fourth of July. ♦ Rogers, Ketchum & Grosvenor, a new Paterson firm led by Thomas Rogers was hired to assemble an English locomotive which had been delivered from New York in 12 crates of parts via the Morris Canal. ♦ The Morris & Essex Railroad was incorporated. ◆ The Morris Canal toll collectors office was moved to Plane 11 west, Port Delaware from the Easton side of the river.
1836 The Belvidere Delaware Rail Road Co. (Bel-Del) was incorporated on Mar. 2nd to build a line up the east bank of the Delaware River from Trenton through Phillipsburg to Belvidere, a distance of 64 miles. ♦ America's first head-on railroad collision occurred near Camden on the Camden & Amboy Railroad. There were no casualties. ♦ The extension of the Morris Canal to the Hudson River was completed. ♦ The Camden and Philadelphia Steam Boat Ferry Co. was incorporated in New Jersey on March 5th with Joseph Kaighn as president. ♦ Newark was named an official port of entry. ♦ An 8-wheeled passenger car was built for the Camden & Amboy Railroad. It is preserved in the Smithsonian institution and is the oldest such car in existence. ♦ The Hoboken to Christopher Street, NY ferry opened. ◆ The Belvidere Water Co. built the Belvidere Canal on the east side of the Delaware River at Rifton, just below Belvidere. It was about one mile in length and supposedly had a dual purpose: to supply water power to Rifton Mill and to give boats a safer way around the Foul Rift. It's usefulness died with the construction of the Bel Del railroad up to Belvidere in 1855, which was built over much of the canal.
1837 On July 12th, Thomas Rogers filed the first locomotive patent in the US Patent Office. ♦ The first steam locomotive built by the Rogers, Ketchum & Grosvenor Locomotive Works of Paterson was intended for the New Jersey Railroad. It was test operated between Paterson, Jersey City, and New Brunswick on Oct. 6th, but was acquired instead by the Mad River & Lake Erie Railroad in Ohio and named the Sandusky. It is thought to have had the first steam whistle in America. Over the years Paterson was home to six steam locomotive manufacturers which built approximately 23% of all 19th century American steam locomotives. Before the industry left Paterson in 1923, over 12,000 locomotives had been built. ♦ The Philadelphia and Trenton Railroad began operating from Morrisville, PA, through the Delaware River covered bridge to downtown Trenton in May. The owners of the 1806 wooden bridge would not permit locomotives to pass, so the cars had to be hauled by horses across the bridge to Trenton. ♦ Thomas Rogers filed a patent for "counterbalancing" wheels, a significant locomotive design innovation. ♦ Matawan Stage Line was founded. The operation was purchased by Van Brunt & Son, Inc. in 1889. The firm continued in business (MC-1486) until recently and they still maintain the old Matawan Stage Line horse-drawn coach and dray wagon which are used in parades. ◆ The Morristown and Easton Railroad was chartered to run a line from Morristown via Mendham, Chester, Schooley's Mountain and Asbury to the Delaware River opposite Easton.
1838 Samuel Morse and Alfred Vail made a public test of the telegraph at Morristown. It became a most important communication tool for the operation of railroads and canals. ♦ The New Jersey Railroad and Transportation Co. completed their open-cut excavation through Bergen Hill to provide rail access to the waters edge at Jersey City. ♦ The first US patent for a railway brake was issued to E. Morris of Bloomfield, NJ. ◆ Congress passed a bill making every railroad a postal route.
1839 A small tugboat, Robert F. Stockton (renamed the New Jersey), was built in England for the Delaware & Raritan Canal Company. It was the first iron hull vessel to cross the Atlantic and the first commercially successful propeller driven vessel in America. ♦ The Elizabethport & New York Ferry Co. was officially incorporated on March 6, 1839. It is considered the oldest corporate entity of the Central Railroad of New Jersey ♦ The first continuous rail route between Philadelphia and Jersey City was completed by the Camden & Amboy RR and the New Jersey RR. Thirteen miles of the route, a Camden & Amboy branch) between Trenton and Kingston were laid along the east bank of the Delaware & Raritan Canal.
1840 Lehigh Canal Chief Engineer, Edwin A. Douglas was appointed chief engineer of the Morris Canal to supervise it's enlargement. He was assisted by Robert Sayre, son of a Lehigh Coal & Navigation Company official. The first section of the Morris Canal enlargement was the west end due to the iron traffic. ◆ The population of New Jersey reached 373,306.
1841 Martin Van Buren, the first presidential candidate to campaign by rail, traveled across New Jersey. ♦ Edwin Post's new iron furnace at Stanhope, on the Morris Canal, was the first in New Jersey to be put into blast successfully with anthracite coal. ◆ The Camden & Amboy RR replaced their last section of strap iron rail with “T” rail. ◆ The enlargement of the Morris Canal was reportedly assisted by 3,000 men paid for by the Lehigh Coal & Navigation Co. ♦ A great flood (the Bridges Freshet) occurred in the Delaware and Lehigh River valleys with water 35 feet above normal at Easton. It swept away nine bridges spanning the Delaware and damaged or destroyed much of the Lehigh Canal. ♦ The LC&N requested aid from the Morris Canal to repair flood damage. ♦ After several years of shadowy financial dealings, the Morris Canal went bankrupt. ♦ As many as 40 boats from the Morris Canal used the Delaware & Raritan (D&R) Canal in the fall of 1841. Because the Morris Canal was closed for enlargement work their boats navigated to the Lehigh Canal via the D&R (main line and feeder, crossing the Delaware River at Lambertville) and Delaware Canals to get coal to alleviate the shortage at NYC.
1842 The first American, twin screw, steam vessels - Anthracite, Black Diamond, Ironsides and Vulcan - were built at NY City for the Delaware and Raritan Canal Co. These iron-hull steam canal boats carried coal north and east of NY City. ♦ The first 125 ton experimental boat was built on the Delaware & Hudson Canal at Honesdale, PA, but that canal enlargement had not progressed enough to move it by canal. The boat was therefore floated down the Lackawaxen and Delaware Rivers to Bulls Island where it entered the D&R Canal and was delivered to NY. ♦ The bell-cord for use by conductors to signal engineers was invented on the Erie Railroad and they carried the first shipments of milk to New York City.
1843 A breach in the Morris Canal at Port Delaware broke through the embankment and emptied itself into the Delaware (ca. 7.18).
1844 A hot water heating system was adopted for warming the passenger cars of the Camden & Amboy Railroad. ♦ The Morris Canal Co. was reorganized and "Banking" was dropped from their name.
1845 The Trenton Iron Company was established by Peter Cooper and Abram S. Hewitt to meet a steadily mounting demand for railroad iron. The first American "T" rail was rolled in Trenton for the Camden & Amboy Railroad. This plant mass-produced the first high quality iron and steel rails for American railroads, the first structural I-beams for building construction, artillery carriages and gun-metal for the Union Army in the Civil War, the first steel made in the US by the open hearth process, and countless materials for bridges and buildings all across the country as well as overseas. ♦ The enlargement of the Morris Canal was completed. ♦ New Jersey History was established as the Proceedings of the New Jersey Historical Society.
1846 One of the earliest commercial installations of the telegraph was to control boat traffic, water flows and levels on the Delaware & Raritan Canal. ♦ A series of excursions were operated by the Camden & Amboy Railroad from Philadelphia. Passengers took a steamboat to Bordentown, the railroad to (South) Amboy and another steamboat to cruise around Staten Island. Return was again via the C&A RR and a Delaware River steamboat. ◆ The Pennsylvania Railroad was officially chartered. ◆ The Morris Canal Co. announced prizes of $200 for the fastest boaters. The Cavanaugh brothers of Phillipsburg took their boats from Port Delaware, in Phillipsburg, to Jersey City in four days
1847 Newark Gas Lighting Company was the first in New Jersey to have an operating gas company. ♦ The Erie was the first railroad to use iron rails rolled in America.. ♦ The Somerville & Easton RR was incorporated to build a railroad from Somerville to the Delaware River opposite Easton, PA. Their prospectus to potential stockholders reported on a branch costing $200,000 to be built to Belvidere to connect with the Susquehanna & Delaware RR. The branch was never built.
1848 Outlet locks and a cable ferry were completed between New Hope, PA and Lambertville, NJ to allow Delaware Canal boats to take advantage of a short cut to Trenton and New York Harbor via the Delaware & Raritan Canal. ♦ The first modernized Morris Canal inclined plane was completed at Port Colden. A Scotch turbine replaced the original overshot water wheel and wire rope replaced the earlier chains as the hauling device. ♦ Cooper & Hewitt built America's largest blast furnaces between the Morris Canal and the Bel Del Railroad at Phillipsburg. Soon Phillipsburg pig iron nourished the fifty-eight furnaces and six rolling mills at Trenton to an annual production of 14,000 tons of rails and wire. At the time the Trenton works were called "the leading establishment in the United States." ♦ Charles Danforth & Co. was organized to manufacture machinery at Paterson. ♦ A new campaign was started to complete the Bel Del RR to Phillipsburg. It was backed in large part by the Trenton Iron Works, which had blast furnaces in the neighborhood of Phillipsburg. The Camden & Amboy RR was given legislative permission to subscribe to $500,000 of Bel Del stock, and work was begun on the line. The Camden & Amboy finally wound up as owner of practically all the stock. The Bel Del also issued over $2,000,000 in bonds, which were guaranteed by the Camden & Amboy. ♦ John A. Roebling, America's pioneer suspension bridge builder, relocated his wire rope manufacturing business along the Delaware & Raritan Canal and Camden & Amboy Railroad at Trenton. Here the Roebling Company became world-renowned. His factory also produced the wire rope for the Morris Canal inclined planes, Delaware & Hudson Canal suspension aqueducts, cable railways and elevators.
1849 Freight containers were first used in this country on the Camden & Amboy Railroad. ♦ The Newark Plank Road and Ferry Company, the first plank road organization, was incorporated to construct a highway from Newark to the Hudson River.
1850 The Sayre & Fisher brick works were established at what is now Sayreville. They prospered and grew with excellent transportation available via schooner, barge, canal boat, railroad and more recently, motor truck. In their first 100 years the firm had made 6,250,000,000 bricks. ♦ Wagon top boilers were introduced by Thomas Rogers on a locomotive named the Madison. ♦ Construction of the Bel-Del RR was begun under the direction of Ashbel Welch, a civil engineer of considerable ability. Welch had been in charge of the construction of the D&R Feeder Canal and became the superintendent and chief engineer of the Bel-Del. He went on to become the chief engineer of the D&R Canal and the Camden & Amboy RR. ♦ The Cooper Hewitt furnace at Phillipsburg yielded 235 tons of iron in one week, a US record. ♦ The Somerville & Easton RR (CNJ) extension from Whitehouse to Phillipsburg was begun under James Laurie, Chief Engineer, a founder and first president of the American Society of Civil Engineers. ♦ Morris Canal inclined planes were rebuilt and the capacity of the waterway was enlarged.
1851 The Erie Railroad was first to use the telegraph for directing train operations. (This occurred across the New Jersey border in the state of New York, but the Erie became a major freight and passenger carrier in our state with an extensive marine fleet as well.) ♦ The Cummings Car Works built railroad cars in Jersey City for 25 years. ◆ The Sussex Mine Railroad, a mule-drawn narrow-gauge tramway, was completed from Andover to Waterloo, where the iron ore was transferred to Morris Canal boats. In three years the line became a branch of the Morris & Essex RR and was converted to standard gauge and steam locomotion.
1852 Robert F. Stockton, President of the Delaware & Raritan Canal Company, urged Congress to construct a steam-powered warship as designed by Robert L. Stevens of Hoboken. ♦ The steamboat Major William C. Barnett made many successful runs on the Delaware River between Lambertville and Easton/Phillipsburg. ♦ The Central Railroad of New Jersey (CRRNJ) was opened to Phillipsburg making connections with the Lehigh Valley Railroad and providing the first all rail route for coal from Pennsylvania fields to tidewater at New York. ♦ The steamboat Maj. Barnett commenced regular trips on the Delaware River between Lambertville and Easton ◆ Rogers, the most advanced builder in the US introduced a “modern” 4-4-0 locomotive.
1853 Enlargement activity took place on the Delaware and Raritan Canal. Locks were lengthened to 220 feet and banks were riprapped. ♦ The first locomotive was completed by the Danforth Works at Paterson. ♦ The Ringwood Company laid out the Montclair-Greenwood Lake Railroad (NY & Greenwood Lake Railway had trackage rights on the Ringwood Valley RR) to their iron mines. Later, it was extended to the shores of Greenwood Lake at Happy Landing. When leased to the Erie Railroad, this line brought tourists to the Lake in summer and moved vast quantities of ice to the cities. ♦ The LV RR began to build a bridge over the Delaware River to connect with the Central Railroad of New Jersey and the Morris Canal Co. lands at Phillipsburg. ♦ The Morris Canal received 222,582 tons of Lehigh coal at Port Delaware.
1854 The Bel-Del RR was completed from Trenton to Phillipsburg. Access to Easton for the Bel-Del was provided on the lower level of the Lehigh Valley's double deck bridge. This connection required a tunnel under Mt. Ida. ♦ The first train over the Bel-Del, a 15 car special from Philadelphia and Trenton, arrived in Phillipsburg. ♦ Cooper & Hewitt made America's first structural iron beams at Trenton. ♦ The Camden & Atlantic Railroad was the first to reach Atlantic City. ♦ The LaMothe steel passenger car was patented by Dr. B.J. LaMothe and developed in Paterson with funds provided by E.W. Sargent, a Paterson merchant. (August Mencken, The Railroad Passenger Car) ♦ The Trenton Iron Works produced the first rolled steel beams from Ringwood Company ore. ♦ Breese, Kneeland & Company of Jersey City began building steam locomotives. The firm built about 300 locomotives up to 1873, when they went out of business. The only known survivor built by this firm is on display in El Paso, Texas. ◆ A wide firebox was designed by Z. Colburn for the DL&W RR. ◆ Fluted locomotive side rods were first used by Rogers. ◆ Cabooses were in service on the Erie RR; the origin of the first such cars is unknown.
1855 On Jan. 24th Miss Lucretia Bradley became the first American woman to fly alone in a gas-filled balloon (from Easton, PA to Still Valley, NJ). ♦ A wreck which occurred on the Camden & Amboy Railroad near Burlington killed 24 passengers and injured many more. It was caused by one train backing to give clearance to another on single track. It derailed when it backed into a carriage and team of horses. The wreck brought a storm of protests concerning the use of single track and lack of protection at grade crossings. ♦ The 4-4-0 General was completed at Paterson by Rogers in December. It was the locomotive stolen by Yankee forces in the Civil War Great Locomotive Chase. ◆ The Warren RR was given permission to construct the Oxford or Van Ness Gap tunnel. ♦ John I. Blair and the officers of the Warren RR Co. published a letter to the NJ Assembly and Senate seeking permission to construct a temporary rail line over the top of Van Nest Gap due to their having a difficult time driving the tunnel through. ♦ The CNJ was extended from Phillipsburg over the newly completed LV RR bridge across the Delaware River. LV passengers were transferred to and from the Jersey Central at So. Easton. ♦ Train service on the Bel-Del between Phillipsburg and Belvidere was inaugurated. ♦ The false work and chords of the 183' span of the bridge connecting the LV RR wooden bridge with the Bel-Del on the Jersey shore were carried away by high water (July). ♦ A Morris Canal boat struck the trestle work of the LV RR double-deck bridge at Phillipsburg. The entire woodwork of the span that connected the bridge with the Bel-Del tracks gave way and, along with all the workmen's tools, bolts, etc., fell into the water. Fortunately, since the accident occurred at noon there was no one on the bridge, there were no injuries. The men on the boat escaped injury by jumping into the cabin (August). ♦ The upper tier of the LV RR bridge across the Delaware River was opened for traffic. It was first crossed by the CNJ locomotive Lehigh with J.W. Murphy, builder of the bridge, and Robert H. Sayre, chief engineer of the LV RR aboard. At this time LV RR locomotives were both housed and repaired by the Jersey Central RR at Phillipsburg. ♦ The Bel-Del connecting track on the lower level of the LV bridge rose to the LV grade in South Easton about a mile up the Lehigh River. ♦ Lehigh anthracite coal traffic began moving from the mines to Phillipsburg and via the Bel-Del to Trenton and South Amboy. The Bel-Del was used by the LV RR because the Stevens family/Camden & Amboy RR loaned the LV RR $100,000 to complete their line to Easton. For this the C&A RR got two seats on the LV RR board. Later, LV RR coal traffic also moved via the CNJ to tidewater. ♦ The Bel-Del opened the Lehigh Junction Station in Phillipsburg, at the LV RR bridge. ♦ The Bel Del advertised two trains each way, daily, between Phillipsburg and Philadelphia. A through car was on the rear of the train. Travel time was 4.5 hours and the fare was $1.50. ◆ Thousands of four-wheel coal cars were in use on the Central of NJ, Lackawanna, Lehigh Valley, and Reading railroads. They carried 5 to 6 tons each.
1856 Cooper & Hewitt made the first American experiments with the Bessemer steel process at Phillipsburg. ♦ A steam boat was tried on the Morris Canal. ♦ The Delaware Lackawanna & Western RR began advertising their broad gauge "New RR Route" with their first public timetable. The route began at New York City where passengers boarded the steamboat Wyoming for Elizabeth Port; there they took a Central Railroad of New Jersey train to (Hampton) "Junction" where the DL&W tracks actually began and ran through the Delaware Water Gap to Scranton, and on to Great Bend, PA where passengers could transfer to trains of the New York & Erie Railroad. ♦ The 4-4-0 Texas was completed at Paterson by Danforth Cooke in August. It overtook the General in the Civil War Great Locomotive Chase. ◆ The first LV RR train from Mauch Chunk arrived in Trenton. ♦ A two week strike occurred on the CNJ RR. ♦ The inaugural train operated over the completed Warren Railroad between Hampton Jct. and the Delaware Water Gap on May 27th. It began at Elizabeth on the CRR of NJ and ended at Scranton. This train was actually the first train to operate on the newly formed DL&W RR. ♦ A coal burning locomotive was tried out on the CNJ RR. ♦ The first span on the NJ side of the LV RR bridge collapsed under the weight of two coupled LV locomotives on 8.27. The locomotive Mauch Chunk fell onto the Morris Canal inclined plane at Phillipsburg and the locomotive Robert H. Sayre was left hanging in a web of broken timbers. The bridge was soon repaired. ♦The LV RR began shipping large quantities of coal via their connection with the Bel-Del at Phillipsburg to Coalport on the Delaware & Raritan Canal in Trenton for transhipment by canalboat. ♦
1857 Two ten wheel locomotives, the Investigator and the Decision built by Cooke for the Lackawanna were said to be the "first outstandingly successful hard coal burners." ♦ The boiler of the steam canalboat, Fanny Garner, exploded hear Weston, on the Delaware & Raritan Canal, killing five crew members and destroying the boat to the waterline ◆ Breese, Kneeland & Company of Jersey City built a 26-ton 4-4-0 steam locomotive for the Milwaukee & Mississippi Railroad. It later became the El Paso & Southwestern No. 1 an has been on display in El Paso since 1909. ♦ The Central Railroad of New Jersey began using coal as locomotive fuel and consistently found it 35% cheaper than wood. ♦ A flurry of plank road construction projects peaked in this year and then such roads faded.
1858 A plan was put forth to construct a canal along the NJ side of the Delaware River from Phillipsburg to the head of the navigable feeder of the Delaware & Raritan Canal at Bulls Island. ♦ George P. Maccullough, who conceived the idea of the Morris Canal, was instrumental in its chartering and was its chief promoter, died.
1859 The first iron passenger car was completed at the shop of W. Cundell at Paterson and it was tested on the Erie Railroad. The LaMothe cars were built until 1861. ♦ The Orange & Newark Horse Car Railroad, New Jersey's first street car company, was chartered and began operations a year later. ♦ The Jersey City &Bergen Railroad Co., Jersey City's first street car company, was chartered. ♦ The Hoboken & Hudson City Horse Car Railroad Company was organized. ♦ Through passenger service was established between New York (via ferry connection to Elizabethport) and Pittsburgh via CNJ, LV, East Pennsylvania & Pennsylvania Central Railroads. ♦ The first steel piston rods were introduced by the Rogers Locomotive Works. ♦ The Central Railroad Co. of NJ commenced operating multiple day excursions from New York (by steamboat) to Elizabethport and via the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western RR and other railroads to the coal fields of Pennsylvania including the Delaware Water Gap, Scranton, Wilkes Barre and Mauch Chunk. The special half fare rate was only $5.25 for the entire itinerary. ◆ The Oxford Iron Company was formed and its connections with the DL&W RR were strengthened via the Scranton family whose members sat on both boards. The business had been producing RR wheels, primarily for the DL&W, since the late 1840's.
1860 Paterson's three locomotive plants (Rogers, Danforth, & Cooke) took national leadership by producing $1,565,000 worth of locomotives in this year. ♦ The Perth Amboy to Tottenville, SI, NY ferry commenced operation. ♦ The Raritan & Delaware Bay Railroad (later the Southern Railroad of New Jersey) began construction of their line south from Port Monmouth on Raritan Bay. ♦ One of the last recorded commercial Durham boat trips on the Delaware River occurred, with Isaac Van Norman commanding. Four replica Durham boats are used in the annual re-enactment of the Christmas day crossing at Washington's Crossing. ◆ On its maiden run north on the Delaware River, the boiler of the steamboat Alfred Thomas exploded near the site of the present Rt. 22 toll bridge and many of the passengers and crew were killed or severely injured. ♦ The Morris Canal Directors took an excursion on their canal from Easton to Jersey City in one of their own boats which was comfortably fitted for the purpose. They were most favorably impressed with the importance of the canal and the trip was a success. ◆ Steel locomotive piston rods were first used by Rogers.
1861 The heaviest raft ever was floated down the Delaware. It was 190' x 60' and weighed 255 tons. ♦ The New York and Lake Erie Railroad completed their 8,000 foot long tunnel blasted under Bergen Hill, the first in New Jersey. The work had taken 5 years and 57 lives, putting the railroad in bankruptcy. ♦ A flotilla of fourteen Delaware & Raritan Canal steam transports were employed to carry 3,000 New Jersey troops and equipment south to the defense of the Capital at Washington, early in the Civil War. ♦ The New Jersey Railroad and Transportation Co. reported that they had transported as many as 3,000 soldiers, with baggage, in one day and claimed the resources to carry 10,000 men in one day. ♦ Due to the pressure of war demands, a supplemental route from NY to Baltimore was opened. On May 6th through trains began operating via the Central RR of New Jersey to Easton and other railroads through Allentown, Reading and Harrisburg to Baltimore. In this year over 26,000 troops plus a large amount of freight was carried south over this route. ♦ In November arrangements were made to run through trains between NY and Washington via the Camden and Amboy Railroad. The necessity of changing cars at the Susquehanna River was eliminated by running the cars themselves onto the ferry. This cut travel times to 12 hours or less. ♦ The Erie Railroad was the first to provide tank cars for movement of petroleum. ♦ The New Jersey Locomotive and Machine Co. of Paterson built the William Crooks for the Minnesota and Pacific Railway. The locomotive has been used in many railroad events and celebrations over the years. ♦ The Central Railroad of New Jersey had more double track than any other New Jersey railroad. ♦ The Pavonia Ferry Co. (Erie RR) opened their Jersey City to Chambers Street, Manhattan ferry.
1862 Congress authorized President Lincoln to take possession of any or all RR lines in the US. ♦ A small ironclad steamer (and the first), the Naugatuck, was presented to the national government for the war effort by E.A.Stevens. She was rebuilt at Bordentown, received her armament at Hoboken, and traveled through the Delaware & Raritan Canal en route to Fort Monroe. ♦ Paterson built locomotives General (Rogers - 1855) and Texas (Danforth Cooke - 1856), were both involved in "the great locomotive chase" of the Civil War. ♦ The Camden & Amboy Railroad implemented a novel idea - they outfitted an older steamboat to carry through passenger and freight cars across the Delaware River from their terminus at Camden to the Philadelphia, Baltimore & Washington Railroad terminal at South Philadelphia. ♦ The Orange and Newark Horse Railroad, the first streetcar company in New Jersey, began operations on June 6th. ♦ The first federal tax, to help pay for the Civil War, was imposed on railroads. ♦ The Exchange Place, Jersey City ferry to Desbrosses St., Manhattan, opened on 8.1. ♦ The CRR of NJ boasted the shortest route to Chicago and the west - 898 miles in 36 hours, via connecting railroads. ♦ The US Monitor Weehawken was launched at Jersey City. ♦ The Warren RR completed the Oxford or Van Ness Gap tunnel. It was 3,500 feet long and was cut through bedrock. ♦ A sixteen page memorial pamphlet on John Owen Sterns, late Superintendent of the Central Railroad of New Jersey was published by the RR. ♦ The Central RR of NJ became the first railroad to use creosote to preserve ties and timber. An apparatus to creosote wood with oil of tar or "Burnetizing" it with chloride of zink, was built at Elizabethport. It was first used to preserve the timbers of the Newark Bay Bridge. ♦ The first Hoboken (DL&W RR) rail/ferry terminal was built. ♦ The Raritan and Delaware Bay RR opened their route from New York to Philadelphia. Steamboats departed from New York City for Port Monmouth where a transfer was made to their railroad. The route was via Red Bank, and Manchester to Atsion where a connection was made with the Camden and Atlantic RR for Camden and a ferry connection to Philadelphia. Early traffic was mostly Union soldiers and Army freight. Their route competed with the Camden & Amboy and was challenged by the latter.
1863 The Union Transportation Company began operating through freight service from the Midwest via the Raritan & Delaware Bay RR to New York. The impetus for the service came from the Pittsburgh, Ft. Wayne & Chicago RR which demanded direct access to New York.♦ The first mechanical interlocking system in America was installed at Trenton by the United New Jersey Railroad and Canal Company. About the same time the first recorded use of any Space Interval system was implemented on a portion of the same main line. This was the first manual block system for controlling train movements in America. ♦ The first Mogul (2-6-0) type locomotive was built by Rogers Locomotive Works for the New Jersey Railroad & Transportation Company. ♦ The first direct trains began operating from the Hudson opposite New York City to Washington, DC. ♦ In June, Dr. Solomon Andrews of Perth Amboy successfully flew a dirigible balloon of his own design, the first airship of its kind in the US. ♦ The first street cars were operated in Passaic County by the Paterson Horse RR Co. ♦ The Trenton Horse Railroad began operations on October 23rd. ♦ The Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers was founded. ◆ The Union Line for fast freight was established.
1864 The Camden & Amboy Railroad began operation of their new “straight” main line between New Brunswick and Trenton to replace the meandering line along the east bank of the Delaware & Raritan Canal. The new line became the main line of the Pennsylvania Railroad, currently operated by Amtrak and used by NJ Transit & Conrail Shared Assets. ◆ The CRRNJ opened America's first prefabricated railroad station. It was built in sections in Bound Brook and transported by train to Jersey City where it was assembled. ♦ The CRRNJ began operating the first sleeping cars in regular service in New Jersey. ♦ The first US Railway Post Office east of the Alleghenies was inaugurated between New York City and Washington. It was also the last such route to be operated. ♦ The CRR of NJ Jersey City to Liberty Street, Manhattan ferry opened on 7.29. ♦ The operation of street cars by steam dummies was tried by the Jersey City & Bergen Railroad but was abandoned after six years. ♦ The LV RR began replacing iron rails with steel. ♦ The Central RR of NJ was the primary artery of westward travel for immigrants entering the US at Ellis Island. The CNJ ran one or two trains daily until the 1940's to convey recent immigrants westward.
1865 The block signal system, through telegraphic communication, was introduced by Ashbel Welch. ♦ The funeral train of Abraham Lincoln traveled across New Jersey to Jersey City on April 24th where his coffin was placed on a ferryboat to be carried to New York City. ♦ The Camden & Amboy Railroad opened its Dinkey line between Princeton University and Princeton Junction. It continues in operation as New Jersey's shortest rail line at 2.7 miles. ♦ The Camden & Amboy Railroad began to use flat boats with track on their decks to carry rail cars across the Delaware River between Camden and Philadelphia. ♦ A few miles east of Phillipsburg two CNJ trains were wrecked at the Musconetcong River bridge. The bridge collapsed under the weight of a coal train of which the locomotive and all 45 coal cars went into the stream. A closely following iron train with 22 cars fell on top of the first train. ♦ New Jersey Locomotive and Machine Works of Paterson built 20 heavy 0-8-0 freight engines (called "Jersey Greenbacks" - the color of their boiler jackets) for the Baltimore & Ohio RR. One of them (#316), operated in rebuilt 0-6-0 form until 1946 and was finally scrapped in the 1950's by Naporano Iron & Metal at Newark. ♦ The Morris & Essex RR was completed to Phillipsburg. ♦ The nation's railroads were released from military control.
1866 Jersey City's rail and water connections, especially from the western plains, made it one of the country's great meat centers when the Central Stockyard and Transit Company built its "Abattoir" on the waterfront. ♦ Peak net earnings year for the Delaware & Raritan and the Morris canals. ♦ Green Sergeantsville, New Jersey's last remaining old covered highway bridge was built on the location of piers dating back to 1750 at Sergeantsville. It's still in service! ♦ This was the peak year of Morris Canal - traffic was 889,229 tons. ◆ The first 2-8-0 locomotive was introduced - the Lehigh Valley’s Consolidation.
1867 The Delaware & Raritan Canal Co., the Camden & Amboy Railroad & Transportation Co. and the New Jersey Railroad & Transportation Co. were authorized to consolidate their interests with each company retaining its separate organization. The new parent conglomerate was known as the United New Jersey Railroad and Canal Company. ◆ The Grant Locomotive Works were established at Paterson. The America, a 4-4-0 locomotive built by Grant was awarded the Grand Prize at the Universal Exposition in Paris. All of America's fittings and trim and entire boiler jacket were fashioned of German silver and her cab was made of hardwood with intricate inlays of contrasting woods. ♦ The first coal train over the Lehigh & Susquehanna Division from Mauch Chunk arrived at Phillipsburg on the Central Railroad of New Jersey. ♦ The Phillipsburg Horse Car Railroad Co. was chartered. It began operations four years later. ♦ The first NJ/NY harbor RR floatbridge and carfloat operation was commenced by the Central Railroad of New Jersey, but it did not initially involve interchange with other railroads. At first it was used as a way to deliver merchandise freight to New York City without first unloading it from boxcars. The cars were placed on carfloats which were then floated to pier stations around Manhattan. The freight was unloaded via the center platforms and then into the piersheds. ♦ The Morris & Essex Railroad (DL&W RR) reached Phillipsburg. ♦ Coal traffic transferred from the DL&W RR to the Morris Canal at Washington peaked at 146,359 tons in this year. ♦ On 12.20 the CNJ RR issued General Order #2 prohibiting the operation of trains on Sundays except through express passenger trains, stock trains or those carrying perishables. ◆ The first compound locomotive was built in the US - Erie Railroad’s No. 122. ◆ The 2-10-0 type locomotive was introduced on the Lehigh Valley Railroad.
1868 Steam power was applied to winches, valves and gates of the Delaware & Raritan Canal locks to greatly increase the speed and safety of operation. ♦ America's first open hearth furnace for steel production was built at Trenton. ♦ The Central RR of NJ advertised three daily express trains for the west beginning May 11th. Their route would require but one change of cars to Chicago or Cincinnati and but two changes to St. Louis. However, their route would save 60 to 130 miles and three hours time. ♦ Ulysses S. Grant traveled by train to spend his summers at Long Branch, NJ. ♦ The CRR of NJ was the first railroad in America to introduce uniforms for employees. It consisted of a blue coat, pants, vest, cap with "CRR" and gilt buttons. ♦ The Pavonia Ferry Co. opened W. 23rd Street service from Jersey City on 5.6. ♦ The Hoboken Railroad Terminal was replaced by a larger building.
1869 The monopolistic provisions of the "joint companies" (C&A RR and D&R Canal Companies) eventually aroused so much public indignation that they were terminated. Without the special privileges conferred by the State the "joint Companies" were no longer immune from competing transportation systems. ♦ George Westinghouse fitted out a Pennsylvania Railroad exhibition train with his new straight air brake system and it was sent to large cities in the east and midwest. Orders began to come in and he received his patent for the air brake a month before the Golden Spike Ceremony. His compressed-air brake system worked well with short passenger trains and was quickly adapted by the more progressive railroads. The Erie Railroad was the first to use air brakes. ♦ Paterson - built #119 was one of the two locomotives which took part in the Golden Spike Ceremony marking the completion of the first United States transcontinental rail link between the Central Pacific and the Union Pacific railroads. ♦ The steam yacht Gussie carried Morris Canal directors through their waterway. ♦ On Nov. 6th a special train carried students from Princeton to the first intercollegiate football game at New Brunswick: Princeton vs Rutgers. ♦ For the first time in the history of the Morris Canal the US Government slapped a "surplus profits tax" on the Morris Canal Co. earnings. In addition to having to pay $25,000 tax-rent to the State of NJ, $1,263.10 was owed to the Federal Government.
1870 The first sheet asphalt road pavement was laid in Newark. ♦ Asa Packer, needing a through route for LV RR coal to the Hudson, began buying an interest in the Passaic Valley & Peapack RR. The charter of the PV&P RR was amended to change its name to the New Jersey West Line. Construction began on the line. ♦ Steamboat and rail service to Sandy Hook commenced in June. ♦ The first "boardwalk" was opened in Atlantic City and named after Alexander Boardman, a Camden & Atlantic Railroad conductor and owner of a small Atlantic City hotel. ♦ DeCamp was established. It became DeCamp Bus Lines and is one of the oldest continuously operated transportation companies in the US. ◆ The Joint (United) Companies installed a manual block system on the Connecting Railway, completing installation between Jersey City and Mantua Jct.
1871 The properties of the United New Jersey Railroad and Canal Company were leased to the Pennsylvania Railroad for 999 years. The Pennsylvania Railroad grew to become the largest railroad in the world at its peak. It operated 28,000 miles of track, directly served half of the US, and hauled more freight and passengers than any other railroad in the world. ♦ The Lehigh Valley Railroad leased the Morris Canal for a period of 99 years. ♦ An earthquake on June 18th caused a sinking and washout of the Morris Canal, draining of a mile and a half of the canal. ♦ In this year 1700 canalboats were registered for service on the Morris Canal. ♦ Eugene Beggs, a real toy pioneer, began making handsome miniature live steam-powered locomotives in Paterson at a time when the city gloried in its reputation as one of the world's great locomotive-building centers. Beggs and other competitors also made model railroad cars to go with the locomotives. ♦ Simon Ingersoll developed the first practical steam powered rock drill. His business later became Ingersoll-Rand. ♦ This was the peak traffic year for the Delaware and Raritan Canal. Nearly three million tons of cargo passed through the canal in 13,215 canalboats, 1,545 steamers, 688 sailing vessels, and 434 rafts. ♦ Thomas N. McCarter ended his service as a director of the Morris Canal Co., and later became president of Public Service Corp.
1872 The first loading of the huge Phineas T. Barnum's circus onto railroad freight cars occurred at New Brunswick on April 18. ♦ The new Giant (now Hercules) Powder Company plant at Kenvil supplied dynamite to the Easton & Amboy (Lehigh Valley) Railroad for their tunnel through Musconetcong Mountain. It was reputed to be the first major job to use dynamite. ♦ The Sergeantsville covered wood bridge was built. It was restored in 1961 and survives as the only covered bridge in New Jersey. ♦ Regular service on the NJ West Line (in which LV RR had an interest) was begun between Summit & Bernardsville and they were authorized to extend their line to the east bank of the Hudson River. ♦ The Easton & Amboy RR was chartered to build a double track line east from the Delaware River to link the LV with tidewater at Perth Amboy. The parent LV RR viewed the Morris Canal, which they leased, as a second-best option to reach NY Harbor. It is not surprising that when they were finally granted permission to construct the E&A they immediately requested permission to cease maintenance of the Morris Canal as a navigable waterway. ♦ General George B. McClellan began his campaign for standardization of railroad gauges. He is credited with being the father of standard gauge, which placed the United States years ahead of Europe in transportation. For a time he was Chief Engineer for the Morris & Essex Railroad and lived in West Orange. He was later Governor of New Jersey.
1873 The New Jersey Legislature passed a bill which opened the state to railroads competing with the old Camden & Amboy (now Pennsylvania Railroad) monopoly between Jersey City and Philadelphia. ♦ The Reading, in concert with the CRR of NJ, LV, DL&W, and Delaware & Hudson Railroads established the first American cartel in an attempt to fix the price of anthracite coal and to limit volumes. ♦ The Hudson Tunnel Railroad Co. (predecessor to the Hudson & Manhattan) was incorporated. ♦ The DL&W RR Terminal at Hoboken was destroyed by fire. ♦ The Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen was founded. ◆ Three boats were required to carry the estimated 250 to 300 Sunday School scholars on the Morris Canal from the First Presbyterian Church in Bloomfield to the Paterson Falls. There the annual excursionists had a day’s outing and picnic.
1874 Work on a trans-Hudson tunnel, which eventually became the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad, was begun. The Lackawanna Railroad obtained an injunction which halted construction for 5 years. ◆ The Jersey City Wagon Elevator was built, initially to elevate horse cars until 1886 when it was opened to public vehicles. This first effort to scale the ramparts of the Palisades had a 480' incline, a 102' rise, and was abandoned in 1928. ◆ Southern RR of NJ built their boxcar #31943. In 1902 it was rebuilt as a caboose and survives at Allaire on the Pine Creek RR.
1875 The Easton & Amboy Railroad (LV RR) was completed from Phillipsburg to Perth Amboy and included the 4,827 foot long Musconetcong Tunnel. ♦ Ashbel Welch designed the first interlocking switch system. It was first used on the Pennsylvania Railroad at East Newark, Hudson County. (per Armstrong & Wilk in New Jersey Firsts) ♦ The Central RR of NJ five arch stone bridge over the North Branch River in Branchburg was completed. It remains as the oldest unaltered railroad viaduct in New Jersey. ♦ On June 25th, the Central Railroad of NJ operated a special excursion train to tour the just completed NY & Long Branch Railroad. President Grant helped to inaugurate the new line. His private car was attached to the train which traveled from Jersey City to Long Branch. The bridge built for this line over the Raritan River was called a “mammoth triumph of civil engineering.” ◆ The Erie Railroad inaugurated a through train service over its own and connecting lines between New York and Chicago. George Pullman offered the Erie exclusive use of his equipment. They jumped at the opportunity and immediately launched an advertising and publicity campaign with this announcement: “From the first of November, 1875, the Pullman hotel and drawing room coaches... ...with new and increased improvements will hereafter run exclusively on the Erie - forming the first and only Pullman hotel coach line between Chicago and New York.” ◆ The PRR surpassed the Philadelphia & Reading RR, and all US RR's, in total annual freight tonnage.
1876 The Pennsylvania Railroad attempted to halt the Delaware & Bound Brook Railroad (which became the Reading Railroad) from crossing their Mercer & Somerset Railroad at Hopewell. The resulting skirmish which became known as the "Frog War" was quelled by the New Jersey Militia. The D&BB RR was allowed to finish their line which connected with the Jersey Central. The monopoly of the United Companies was broken. ♦ The large ferryboat Maryland commenced carrying trains of the New York and New England Railroad, with their passengers aboard, from their terminal at 130th Street and the Harlem River to the Pennsylvania Railroad at Jersey City. This permitted a journey from Boston to Philadelphia and beyond without change of cars. Later freight cars were also transported. At the peak of these operations there were dozens of carfloat routes crisscrossed the NJ/NY port area. The sole remaining New Jersey carfloat operation is operated by NY Cross Harbor RR between Jersey City (Greenville) and Brooklyn. ♦ The Bergen Point to Port Richmond, SI, NY ferry began service on 7.15. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad operated the longest non-stop run - from Jersey City to Pittsburgh. A baggage car was fitted to reinforce the coal and water supply carried in the tender. ♦ The Delaware, Lackawanna & Western Railroad completed their first two-track tunnel under Bergen Hill. ♦ In the first half of the year 1,400 rafts containing 70 million feet of lumber were floated down the Delaware River. ♦ An interesting speed run was that of the transcontinental special which originated on the Pennsylvania Railroad at Jersey City and ended triumphantly at San Francisco. The trip was made in a record eighty-three hours and thirty-four minutes. ♦ Following a big decline in the price of coal, John Taylor Johnston, president (an office he held for 28 years) of the Central Railroad of NJ resigned on Oct. 5th. ◆ The CRRNJ built the largest petroleum transfer and storage facilities in the United States at Jersey City. ♦ The original Trenton covered wood bridge across the Delaware was replaced. It was considered an engineering marvel of its day. ♦ The DL&W RR completed conversion to standard gauge.
1877 The Central railroad of NJ filed for receivership on February 13th. They were involved in bankruptcy reorganization for much of the next decade. ◆ After raising freight rates in the east, four major lines - the Pennsylvania Railroad, the New York Central & Hudson River Railroad, the Erie Railroad and the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad - set up a rate control pool, and then, to increase profits, decided to cut their workers’ pay by ten percent. Other companies, representing over half of the total mileage in the country, agreed to take the same action. The stage was set for the first national strike. The Great National Railroad Strike grew into the largest mass labor action in American history and was accompanied by monumental violence. "The Great Upheaval" was also the worst in the history of the state of New Jersey and impacted Phillipsburg severely. ♦ A new ferry service commenced between Exchange Place (formerly known as Paulus Hook), Jersey City and the foot of Fulton Street, Brooklyn. ♦ The narrow- gauge Philadelphia & Atlantic City Railway was built to compete with the Camden & Atlantic, but was cheaply built and financially unsuccessful. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad completed the laying of steel rail on their Jersey City to Pittsburgh main line. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad adopted the patented Janney automatic coupler as standard equipment.
1878 Irish born John Holland of Paterson gave the world its first successful submarine. He launched it into the Passaic River and made a dive. ♦ The Hudson Tunnel Railroad Co. began excavating a railway tunnel under the Hudson River from Jersey City but work was halted several times due to financing problems and a cave-in which drowned 28 workers. ♦ With the successful completion of the Easton & Amboy, the LV RR no longer had a need to financially back the NJ West Line and the latter went into bankruptcy. It was reorganized as the Passaic & Delaware RR, became a branch of the DL&W RR and survives as the Gladstone Branch of NJ Transit. ♦ Thomas A. Edison founded Edison Electric Light Co. ◆ The Southern Pacific Railroad convinced the Union Pacific and its eastern connections to handle not more than two cars of California fruit per day on passenger trains bound for New York City.
1879 Thomas Edison invented the first incandescent light bulb. It burned continuously for 40 hours in his Menlo Park laboratory. ♦ The Tidewater Oil Company built a pipeline from their oil wells near Titusville, PA to Williamsport. The CRRNJ then carried their oil in tank cars to the Tidewater refinery in Bayonne. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad became the first railroad at New Jersey/New York harbor to establish a marine department when it bought out National Storage, the firm which had been handling their lighterage. ♦ A small steamboat named the Kittatinny was taken up the D&R Canal Feeder to Bulls Island, where it was locked into the Delaware River. It passed up the river to the Delaware Water Gap where the owners planned to run trips to Port Jervis. ♦ A railroad wreck at Mays Landing killed 40 on Aug. 11th. ◆ Thomas Edison demonstrated his incandescent electric lamp at his Menlo Park, NJ laboratory on 10.21. ♦ The CRR of NJ was reorganized. The first recorded CNJ sponsored employee outing was from Jersey City to Coney Island for a day.
1880 Philadelphia & Reading Railroad locomotive #507 set the world speed record between Jersey City and Philadelphia, averaging 55 mph. It was the 5,000th locomotive manufactured by Baldwin and was a 4-2-2 "bicycle" type. ♦ Thomas Edison originated two-rail electric railroading at his Menlo Park laboratory where he demonstrated an electric locomotive which could haul a passenger car at up to 40mph. It was the first full-sized electric locomotive ever made in America. Scientific American stated: “The difficulties were great, the cost of experiments a deterrent to most inventors, but Mr. Edison, more fortunate in this way than many of our experimenters, has not been hampered by monetary difficulties. Having ample means for carrying out his inventions more rapidly perhaps than any man living.” ♦ The NJ Southern Railroad came under the control of the CRR of NJ. ♦ A blow-out during the construction of the Hudson & Manhattan rail tunnel in Jersey City killed 20 workers and delayed completion of the project for 26 years.
1881 The Standard Oil Company constructed a 315 mile pipeline from Olean, NY to Bayonne, NJ. It was 6" in diameter and was laid to a depth of 18 inches. ♦ James A. Garfield was brought to his cottage at Long Branch, NJ to recuperate from his attack in Washington. Five-eighths of a mile of track was laid overnight to get his rail car close to his cottage. Garfield died 15 days later and new US president, Chester Arthur took a Central Railroad of NJ train from Jersey City to Long Branch. The Garfield funeral train departed Long Branch for Washington. ♦ The Pennsylvania RR invented the "limited" train. The Pennsylvania Limited operated between Jersey City & Chicago on a schedule of 26 hours and 40 minutes. It was the world's first through deluxe express train. It was the first train to carry a diner and to introduce the vestibule. It later became the first train in the world to be illuminated by electricity. ♦ Paterson boasted that its big three had built 5,871 locomotives in 45 years. ♦ Paterson's Grant Locomotive Works built a "hydrocarbon" locomotive which used the Holland process to generate hydrogen from water. Despite months of testing, during the actual trial on the Erie Railway, the train's passengers were nearly suffocated by the exhaust and the engine was never applied.
1882 The first Pennsylvania Railroad passenger car to be illuminated by electricity was put into service and they began lounge car service.
1883 Thomas Edison's first commercial generating station in New Jersey began serving Roselle and Roselle Park. Wires were connected to the CRRNJ's Roselle station, making it the first to be illuminated by electricity. ◆ The “Edison Effect” presaged the electronic revolution. ♦ The first hydropneumatic interlocking, invented by Westinghouse, was installed at Bound Brook, NJ on the Philadelphia & Reading Railway. ♦ William F. Allen of South Orange was commissioned by the railroads to adopt time zones across the country. Standard time was invented and went into effect. ♦ The Electric Railway Co. of America (a subsidiary of the Edison Co.), was incorporated. It carried on development work based on the patents and inventions of both Thomas Edison and Stephen Field, creating the first widespread public interest in electric railways. ♦ The City Council of Newark adopted an ordinance permitting use of electricity as motive power on the Newark & Bloomfield Street Railway Company in Bloomfield Avenue, Newark. ♦ The Daft Electric Light Co., located in Greenville (now a section of Jersey City), conducted experiments on the successful and commercial application of electricity to motors, including those powering street cars. He built the first successful standard gauge electric locomotive, the Ampere, in the United States for the Saratoga and Mt. McGregor Railroad. ♦ The Essex Passenger Railway, a consolidation of street car lines in Newark and vicinity was organized. ◆ Buffet cars appeared on the West Shore Railway.♦ The Tidewater Oil Co. pipeline was completed by this year from Corryville, PA through Warren County to Hampton, NJ and ultimately to Bayonne.
1884 The West Shore RR Weehawken to 42nd Street ferry commenced operation on 1.1. ♦ Construction was begun on the first elevated cable road in the United States, to span the two miles from Hoboken Ferry to Jersey City Heights by the North Hudson Railway Company. ♦ The second lodge of the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen was organized at Phillipsburg. ♦ Thomas A. Edison introduced the central generation of electric power which soon propelled New Jersey into a major manufacturing state. ♦ The Leslie brothers organized the Rotary Steam Snow Shovel Manufacturing Company to build snow blowers for railroads. This they did until 1926, with the actual construction being done by Paterson locomotive builders. They became known as the Leslie company and for their air horns, some of which are still in service. ♦ The Rolling Chair made its debut on the Atlantic City boardwalk. ♦ The New York Yacht Club, the first important yacht club in the US, was founded at Hoboken. ♦ The Delaware, NJ Post Office, (07833) building was built as a general store by rail baron John I. Blair and the post office has leased a portion of the space. It is the oldest NJ post office in its original building and the second oldest in the US.
1885 Thomas Edison, assisted by others, worked out a system of communication between railway stations and moving trains by means of induction. ◆ A presidential special train carrying Grover Cleveland in the palatial car Minerva made a round trip via the Bel-Del to Phillipsburg and the LV RR to his home in Buffalo.
1886 State legislation was passed allowing street railway lines to use electricity as motive power. ♦ The Hoboken Elevated, with its spectacular trestle, initially opened as a cable railway from the Hoboken Ferry to Jersey City Heights. ♦ The experimental Sea Shore Electric Railway operated at Asbury Park utilizing the Leo Daft system of two overhead wires. The system had 11 open and 4 closed electric cars. ◆ The Statue of Liberty was completed and unveiled on October 28. It later was utilized as the logo for the Jersey Central Railroad. ♦ The Tuckerton Railroad leased their Edge Cove branch to locals to haul clams. Oral history reports that two means of propulsion were used to move the small flat car loads of clams - horse power and later sail power. The unique Clamtown sailcar operation ended about 1916. ◆ The first 4-6-2 type locomotive was built by Vulcan Iron Works to a design by G. S. Strong , for the Lehigh Valley Railroad.
1887 The Interstate Commerce Commission Act was signed into law on February 4th. It established the ICC as an independent agency of the US government to oversee increasingly fractious modes of transport including the motorcoach industry. ♦ The Erie Railroad was the first to transport California fresh fruit to the New York market. A Central Pacific carload of deciduous fruit from Vaccaville, CA arrived at the Erie’s Jersey City Terminal on June 28th. ♦ The Tidewater Pipe Company completed their 6" oil pipeline from Titusville, PA to Bayonne, NJ. It was the longest pipeline built to date. ♦ Olympic (amusement) Park opened. ♦ The Essex Passenger Railway initially served it with horse cars. It generated much trolley and later bus traffic for Public Service. ♦ An improved design of the Leslie Rotary Snowplow was introduced and built by Danforth Cooke Company at Paterson. ♦ The first tests of electrically powered trolley cars in New Jersey were made on the Orange Crosstown line (for one month only) using a system designed by Leo Daft. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad’s Pennsylvania Limited was the first train in the world to be fully equipped with electric lights, and made its first run in June. ◆ One of the first battery-operated street car lines was developed by the Jersey City and Bergen line Railway. ♦ Elevators and a viaduct to Eldorado Park were constructed by the North Hudson County Railway Company at Weehawken. ♦ Thomas A. Edison's kinetoscope (for motion pictures) was invented. ◆ A 55-ton twelve-wheel flatcar was built by the Lehigh Valley RR. ◆ After a successful test of the Westinghouse ‘automatic air brake’ air braking for long freight trains was accepted as the way forward. ◆ Oil was first used for locomotive fuel on the Pennsylvania Railroad.
1888 A blizzard with violent (50mph) winds caused drifts as high as 20 feet, bringing all transportation to a halt except the Princeton Dinkey line. In three separate tragedies multiple engined drift breaking trains on the LV, CNJ and M&E (DL&W) were wrecked, killing five and injuring several others. ♦ The Connelly naphtha powered motor car began test runs towing trolley cars in the streets of Elizabeth. ♦ The Hoboken Ferry was the first line to use screw propellers. The ferryboat Bergen, the first single shaft, double end, screw propelled ferry in the world, was delivered to the DL&W RR (it was scrapped in 1953). ♦ Cable cars operated on Springfield Avenue, Newark but were abandoned after a short trial. ♦ The Lehigh Valley RR published Vol. 1, No. 1 of The Lehigh Valley Comet. It was a booklet promoting the stops along their RR, the nearby hotels/resorts and the diversified industries. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad Jersey City train shed, spanning 252 feet, was completed. It was the largest steel arch shed built in New Jersey. ♦ The Edgewater (Undercliff) to 125th Street, NYC ferry was opened by the Hudson River Ry and Ferry Co. on 12.13. ◆ The iron gun car, with sixteen wheels and 60 tons capacity was ,running on the Pennsylvania railroad. ◆ The Erie RR purchased ore cars with three four-wheel trucks. ◆ The first 4-4-2 type locomotive, designed by G. S. Strong for the Lehigh Valley Railroad, was built by Vulcan Iron Works. The type name “Atlantic” did not appear until 1894.
1889 The Passaic, Garfield & Clifton Railroad, was the first in New Jersey chartered to operate solely on electric power, was organized. ♦ Electrical pioneer, Leo Daft, succeeded in operating streetcars by electricity on Bloomfield Avenue, between Newark and Bloomfield, but in 1891 the operation returned to horse power. ♦ The Connolly Street Railway Equipment Company developed a gas(oline) motor car which the test operated on the Elizabeth & Newark Horse Railroad Co. pulling horse car #1. The idea foundered and horse power was reinstated. ♦ A new Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal at Jersey City, designed by Peabody & Sterns, was completed and opened. ♦ The Leslie Bros. Mfg. Co. of Paterson, NJ advertised their rotary as "America's Famous Snow Plow, guaranteed to clear two miles of track to any other device's one, and do the work 50% better." ♦ Thomas A. Edison built one of the first battery-powered vehicles.
1890 CRR of NJ business car Atlas was the first railroad car in the United States to be fitted with electric lights, generator and regulator. ♦ Essex and Union County street car lines were merged to form the Newark Passenger Railway. ♦ The Springfield Avenue, Essex County, car line was the first to be successfully electrified, using the Thompson - Houston (General Electric) system. It was immediately followed by the Central Avenue line.
1891 The first scheduled mile-a-minute passenger train in the US operated across New Jersey on the Philadelphia & Reading Railroad. Their locomotive #206 also pulled the first train to reach a certified speed of 90mph between Philadelphia and Jersey City. ♦ New Jersey established the Commission of Public Roads and became the first state to grant funds for the construction of public roads. ♦ Colonel Frank N. Barksdale, head of the PRR's advertising department invented the Limited booklet. His Pennsylvania Limited booklet documented the services of the PRR's fastest train beginning with the Hudson River ferry and ending with a view of the observation platform, with illustrations by Joseph Fleming, Charles Howard Johnson, and Charles Dana Gibson. It was referred to as "one of the cleverest little booklets devoted to advertising." ♦ Members of the Newark Camera Club explored the Delaware Division and Delaware & Raritan Canals on their third annual canal trip in August. ◆ The carhouse of the Newark Passenger Railway Co. on Bergen Street, near Clinton Avenue burned to the ground on Nov. 11th destroying ten trolley cars. ◆ The Railroad Employee, a monthly magazine was founded by Ben E. Chapin. It was described as the "Journal of Railroad Veteranism and Official Publication of United Associations of Railroad Veterans, Lackawanna Veterans' Association, New England Association of Railroad Veterans, Central Railroad of NJ Veterans' Association, Lehigh Valley Railroad Veterans' Association, Ontario & Western Ry. Veterans Association, Lehigh and Hudson River Ry. Veterans Association, Lehigh and New England R.R. Veterans' Association, (and) Railroadians of America." The above organizations were all listed in 1940, but may not have been original members in 1891. For many years their editorial offices were located at 494 Broad Street, Newark.
1892 Upon conversion of Castle Garden at the Battery, Manhattan, Ellis Island opened as a US immigration station for the processing of European immigrants, most of whom were ferried to and boarded trains at the nearby Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal to travel to their new homes in the US. ♦ CRR of NJ locomotive #385 set the world speed record of 105mph between Plainfield and Westfield. ♦ The Hyatt Roller Bearing Company was established in New Jersey and later became a division of General Motors Corporation. It's bearings kept the transportation industry rolling. ♦ Frank Sprague was an associate of Thomas Edison who worked on the experimental electric railway at Menlo Park. Sprague built a major plant at Bloomfield which made electrical equipment. One of the chief industrial contributions of the Bloomfield firm was a system of multiple-unit electric train controls, basic to the operation of subways and elevated railways. Ten years later General Electric bought Sprague's Bloomfield plant. ♦ The New Jersey Traction Company was incorporated and took over the Newark Passenger Railway by the next year. ♦ On May 24th the first electric street cars were operated by Trenton Passenger Railway. ♦ On May 30th the Long Branch and Sea Shore RR opened a new pier at Atlantic Highlands to provide train-boat connections. ♦ The Taylor Iron & Steel Company, which could trace its High Bridge roots back to 1742, began concentrating on manganese steel, the country's first commercial alloy steel. Taylor had been a respected manufacturer of railroad wheels. ♦ The widespread introduction of miniature steam locomotives and trains for pleasure resorts is credited to the Cagney brothers. They began business in Buffalo, NY, but moved to Jersey City and finally Leonardo, NJ. Their "Smallest steam railroad train in the world" won praises and gold medals. Scientific American considered it one of the greatest inventions of the 19th century. The Cagney Brothers went on to produce over 1,200 steam trains used around the world. ♦ Arthur Hotchkiss created the first bicycle railway for workers to travel between Mt. Holly and his Smithville factory. It fell into disrepair and was abandoned six years later ♦ The Central States Dispatch fast freight route between New England and the Mid-Atlantic via the NY,NH,&H; L&HR; CNJ; RDG; WM; and B&O Railroads. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad began calling itself "The Standard Railroad of America." ♦ The Hoboken Elevated was extended west to the Hudson County Court House in Jersey City for trolley operation and the original section to the Hoboken ferry was converted to trolley operation as well. ♦ The CRR of NJ terminal on Sandy Hook was moved to Atlantic Highlands. ◆ The Central Railroad of NJ began changing the colors of its equipment. Passenger cars went from yellow to dark green; freight cars were changed from yellow to brown; and its Hudson River ferries were changed from white or cream to dark green.
1893 World's first electrically operated semaphore signal was installed by the CRRNJ at Black Dan's Cut, Phillipsburg. ♦ New Jersey's first locomotive, the John Bull, was put back in service to haul a special train to the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad began operation of The 20-Hour Special between Jersey City and Chicago to provide deluxe transportation for passengers going to the Columbian Exposition. ◆ Consolidated Traction Company was incorporated and within a couple of years acquired most of the street railways of Essex, Union and Hudson Counties. ♦ Paterson Wagon Co. was founded as a builder of horse drawn vehicles. Their business shifted to bodies for trucks and buses and in 1906 they became known as Paterson Vehicle Co. Later, they shifted into diners which they built under "The Silk City Diner" name until the 1960's when they went out of business. ♦ The old Newark Plank Road Company completed construction of New Jersey's first interurban electric line, connecting Newark and Jersey City. ♦ The Pennsylvania expanded to four tracks its main line across New Jersey. ♦ The Delaware and Raritan Canal experienced its first year of deficit operation. ♦ Construction of the Orange Mountain Cable Railway was completed on 4.29. ◆ The Delaware River RR, controlled by the DuPont Co. began a carfloat operation between Carney’s Point (Deepwater -future site of the DuPont plant) and the Wilmington & Northern at Pigeon Point on the Delaware side. The Delaware River RR was acquired seven years later by the Pennsylvania RR-controlled West Jersey & Seashore RR which later became PRSL and finally Conrail. The Carfloat operation lasted until 1982. ◆ Thomas Edison patented an apparatus for exhibiting photograph of moving objects.
1894 Taylor's manganese steel made at High Bridge was tested on trolley trackwork in Brooklyn and Philadelphia and was found to be superior. ♦ New Jersey established the first Department of Public Roads and Commissioner of Highways in the US. ◆ The Pennsylvania Railroad introduced class GG 35-ton-capacity hopper cars.
1895 The Pocket List of Railroad Officials began to be published. It continues, and is currently published by Primedia Information Inc., at Hightstown, NJ. ♦ Snow drifts caused by a blizzard required 48 hours and 15 minutes for a CNJ train to travel the 14 miles between Somerville and Flemington. ♦ The Camden & Atlantic Rail Road put three steam launches in service on Great Egg Harbor Bay. Ferry service was provided from Longport to Ocean City and Somers Point. ♦ The United Pipelines Company and Pure Oil Company constructed the first long distance refined products line in the United States for kerosene. It was extended east on a route through Warren County, terminating at the Jersey Central RR at Hampton Junction. ♦ The Whippany River RR (which later became the Morristown & Erie Railroad) began operations.
1896 The Camden & Atlantic and West Jersey Railroads were consolidated to for the West Jersey and Seashore Railroad on May 4th. ♦ Lehigh Valley RR Black Diamond Express trains began operating between NY and Buffalo on May 16th. ◆ Motion pictures of one short trolley and several railroad scenes were filmed by W.K.L. Dickson. Paper positives are thought to exist in the Library of Congress. ♦ The Howland Hook to Elizabethport ferry began on 7.4. ◆ The Delair Bridge over the Delaware River was completed, linking the PRR at Frankford Junction with the WJ&S at West Haddonfield. The route was double track and the south track is now used by NS & CSX freights and the north track is now used by NJ Transit Atlantic City trains. ◆ Atlantic City Railroad (Reading) Atlantic locomotives #1026 &27 were built by Baldwin and traveled the Camden to Atlantic City route at an average speed of 71.6 mph, the world record.
1897 On March 2nd, Central RR of NJ locomotive #457 pulled a train consisting of a baggage car and the private cars of the presidents of the Jersey Central, Reading and Baltimore & Ohio Railroads to take Garret A. Hobart from Jersey City to Washington, DC to be sworn in as Vice President of the United States. ◆ The Philadelphia & Reading Railroad reduced the running time, including the ferry, from Philadelphia to Atlantic City to 60minutes. This was possible because Baldwin Locomotive Works, the manufacturer of the Atlantic type steam locomotives with Vulcain compound cylinders, guaranteed they could make the 55.5 mile run in 50 minutes with 6 cars. Their average speed was 69 mph. ♦ Palisades Amusement Park was built by the Bergen Traction Co. to generate ridership for its trolleys as well as to make a profit in itself. ♦ An experiment at the New Jersey Agricultural College placed six inches of trap rock macadam eight feet wide on a 660-foot section of the main road to the college. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad opened an all-rail route between Southern New Jersey and Philadelphia via the new Delair Bridge over the Delaware River. ♦ Somerset County became the first in New Jersey to hire a professional civil engineer for both road and bridge projects. ♦ The PRR opened an Exchange Place, Jersey City to Fulton Street, Brooklyn (Annex) ferry route on 12.1. ♦ The New York & New Orange Railroad (later known as the Rahway Valley RR) began operations.
1898 Klondike fever induced the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad to run sleeping cars from Jersey City through to San Francisco - the first such transcontinental operations. ♦ The Alvorado, a warship captured during the Spanish American War traveled through the Delaware & Raritan Canal on April 6th, ◆ The Pennsylvania Railroad published a 48 page promotional booklet on their line from Philadelphia to Atlantic City. ♦ John Stephenson Car Company moved from New York City to Elizabeth (the location is now in Linden). They started business in NYC in 1831 and were one of the largest builders of omnibuses, horse cars and later electric street cars and interurban cars for many companies. ♦ On August 11th, hundreds of Jersey City’s African-Americans cheered as an all-black regiment disembarked at the Central Railroad of NJ Terminal for service in Cuba during the Spanish-American War. ◆ The superstructure of Erie Railroad caboose #4259 was brought to Jersey City and hoisted onto and secured to the deck of explorer Capt. Robert E. Peary's steamship Windward in NY Harbor. It served as a deckhouse, his headquarters and a living room. The following year the caboose was hauled ashore at Etah, Greenland and dragged up to the top of a cliff. Following Peary's exploration of northern Greenland the caboose was placed back on the ship and returned to the Erie Railroad when they got back in the NY area in 1902. ♦ "The Book of the Royal Blue," a monthly publication for passengers and the general public began to be published by the Baltimore & Ohio RR. Although created and oriented to stimulating business on the New York line, it also served as a general public relations medium for the railroad. The B&O's "Royal Limited" was advertised as the "Finest Daylight Train in the World." ◆ On Dec. 14th, two days after the Cuban-Spanish-American War ended, Ferro Carril Urbano (the street railway system of Havana) sold its railway to a syndicate of US, Canadian and French capitalists. Less than a month later the syndicate gathered in NJ and formed the Havana Electric Railway.
1899 The USS Holland, built in New Jersey and the first submarine to be accepted by the US Navy, traveled through the Delaware & Raritan Canal on its delivery voyage. ♦ Spanish gunboats, Alvarado and Sandoval captured in the Spanish-American war were brought north through the D&R Canal by the US Navy. ♦ The Philadelphia and Camden Ferry Co. was formed on 4.1 by consolidation of two PRR-controlled ferries - the Camden & Philadelphia Steam Boat Ferry Co. and the West Jersey Ferry Co. ♦ The CRR NJ's new Jersey City Terminal opened. Although it is no longer served by railroads, it has been refurbished and is on the National Register. ♦ The Morris County Traction Co. was incorporated with very ambitious plans to connect Morristown with Paterson, Phillipsburg and Elizabeth. Their first operations did not begin until 1903. ♦ Thwarted in their effort to gain passage to Liberia in Africa, a group of 104 African-Americans from Oklahoma spent nine days and nights in two Central Railroad of NJ passenger cars at the Jersey City Terminal before a train took them to Matawan, NJ, where a brick company offered employment to men and boys of the group. ◆ The Riker Electric Motor Co. in Elizabethport was taken over by Electric Vehicle Co. to build the Riker electric car. This was the first auto manufacturer in New Jersey. ◆ Muskrats made a hole in the banks of the Delaware & Raritan Canal which flooded miles of farming country near Port Mercer on December 6th. More than a hundred freight boats were tied up by the closing of navigation at the busiest time of the year.
1900 The Pennsylvania Railroad established pension service. ♦ The NJ Automobile Club was founded. ♦ A disastrous fire at the North German Lloyd Line piers in Hoboken destroyed three ocean liners and took 326 lives. ♦ The population of New Jersey grew to 1,883,660. ♦ The Holland VI was accepted by the US Navy as the first vessel in the American submarine fleet. It was built by Paterson schoolteacher, John Philip Holland, "Father of the modern submarine." The vessel traveled through the Delaware & Raritan Canal on its way south to the US Navy. ◆ A battery powered vehicle for towing canalboats was tested on the Delaware & Raritan Canal. Performance was satisfactory until it had to turn around. It backed into the canal and sank.
1901 On February 21st the third section of the PRR’s New York to Atlantic City express, Nellie Bly, collided head-on with a local train south of Trenton on the bank of the Delaware & Raritan Canal. Much of the wreckage landed in the canal which fortunately had been drained for winter. Many were injured and 20 where killed. ◆ Work on the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad tunnel between NJ & NY was restarted by William Gibbs McAdoo. ◆ The Pennsylvania Railroad and Southern Railway inaugurated a limited train, "the most magnificent and luxurious train in the world," between New York and Florida. ♦ When President McKinley was shot at Buffalo, a special Lackawanna Railroad train with a heart specialist made the 395 mile run from Hoboken in 405 minutes - a rail record which still stands. ♦ The PRR opened a new Camden rail-ferry terminal at the foot of Federal St. on June 23. ♦ The American Locomotive Company was formed and combined ten companies including the Paterson, NJ firms of Cooke Locomotive & Machine Works (in 1902) and Rogers Locomotive Works (in 1904). ♦ The first auto hill climb race in the US was up Eagle Rock Road in West Orange. ◆ The experimental PRR electrification from Burlington to Mt. Holly was returned to steam operation after the power plant burned down. ◆ Attorney George Frederick Baer helped banker J.P. Morgan engineer purchase of much of the Central Railroad of NJ stock by the Reading Company. Baer became president of both the Reading and CRR of NJ.
1902 The Magor Car Company (became a corporation in 1917) began to build railroad cars in Clifton and did so until 1973. They were a pioneer in the fabrication of steel rail cars. ♦ Ingersoll introduced the world's first portable air compressor. The firm later became Ingersoll-Rand. ♦ The Great Anthracite Strike occurred. ♦ The NJ Automobile Club was one of nine state clubs which met to found the American Automobile Association. Their first president was a resident of East Orange. ♦ The PRR placed in service their new Camden ferry terminal at Federal Street. ♦ William Gibbs McAdoo gained control of the Hudson Tunnel Railroad Co. which was halted in 1892 due to lack of funds and launched an effort to finish the tunnel. (Work on the tunnel had actually begun as early as 1872.) ♦ Five Mile Beach Electric Railway began operating street railway cars in Wildwood. They were replaced by buses in 1945 and in 1981 they began operating rubber tired trolley buses. They are the oldest privately owned trolley & bus company in the US. ♦ The "Queen of the Valley" a joint CNJ/RDG passenger train began operating between Jersey City and Harrisburg 0n 5/18. ♦ The Cooke Locomotive & Machine Co. became part of the American Locomotive Co. The Lackawanna Railroad completed the 402 foot Kingsland Tunnel, their shortest. ◆ Former Southern RR of NJ box car #31943 was rebuilt into a caboose by the Central RR of NJ. It survives at Allaire on the Pine Creek Railroad.
1903 A Philadelphia express train, going at full speed, crashed into the rear of a local train just west of the Westfield station, killing 22 passengers and injuring scores on 1.27. ♦ A North Jersey Street Railway Co. trolley car with mostly school children aboard could not stop in time and crashed into a Lackawanna Railroad express train in Newark, killing 9 and injuring 26 on February 19th. There was no derail switch at the grade crossing which might have prevented the accident. Safety lapses and unreliable service were common among transit providers then. The same was true for the many small gas and electric providers. Public outcry after the tragic event produced corrective measures. The Lackawanna Railroad began a massive grade separation program. It also prompted Thomas N. McCarter to resign his job as New Jersey Attorney General to begin the consolidation and strengthening of electric, gas and transportation companies under a single corporate umbrella. Public Service Corp. of New Jersey was incorporated on May 6th by McCarter who led it as President and later Chairman of the Board for the next 42 and a half years. Public Service began operations on June 1st and grew with the amalgamation of over 500 gas, electric and transportation companies. ♦ The Erie RR Garfield to Dundee passenger shuttle was discontinued. ♦ The B&O RR discontinued passenger service on their Staten Island RR subsidiary between Plainfield, NJ and Arlington, SI, NY. ♦ The Liberty Bell made its last trip away from Philadelphia when it traveled across New Jersey on a special train on the Pennsylvania Railroad to the Battle of Bunker Hill celebration at Boston. It made a diversion into Princeton for a 20 minute stopover. ♦ The first trans-state trolley trip departed Trenton and arrived in Jersey City. ♦ Clarence Spicer patented the universal joint for motor vehicles at South Plainfield. ♦ Horatio Nelson Jackson was the first American to travel across the country by automobile. He drove from San Francisco to NY in 64 days. The CRRNJ Veteran Employees Association, the first in America, was founded. ♦ The completion of the Philadelphia, Bristol & Trenton Street Railway permitted continuous trolley connections between Jersey City and Philadelphia as well as Wilmington, DE, Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton, Reading and other points. ♦ The Great Train Robbery, a Thomas Edison film made near Paterson, the first film to employ storytelling by editing, was filmed on the DL&W RR near Paterson and included trolley views. ♦ Leon W. Pullen, a young Camden inventor demonstrated his new system of electric power pickup on the West Jersey & Seashore RR (PRR) at Atlantic City. His system did not require the use of overhead wires, third rail, conduit, cables or batteries. ♦ Although the Ringwood Company had existed as a distinct enterprise as early as 1740, it was incorporated for the first time in NJ in this year.
1904 The New York and New Jersey Railroad, successor to the Hudson Tunnel Railroad Co., broke through to the tunnel constructed from the New York side. Chief engineer, Charles Jacobs, and workmen walked from NJ to NY through what became the “uptown” tunnel. ♦ A record speed run on the Atlantic City Railroad between Camden and Atlantic City in 43 minutes, covered one segment at 115.2mph. ♦ Public Service commenced through street car service from Jersey City to Trenton via Newark, Elizabeth, Plainfield, Bound Brook, and New Brunswick. The completion of the Camden and Trenton Railway in the same year permitted a trolley trip from New York to Philadelphia in eight hours. ♦ The final spike of the Morristown & Erie RR was driven and passenger service was started between Morristown and Essex Fells. ♦ Sixteen were killed in a rear end collision of two Erie RR trains at Midvale. ♦ The Keansburg Amusement Park opened. For many years patrons traveled to the oldest such park in New Jersey by steamboat. ♦ The Morris County Traction Co. began operations in Dover on July 1st. ♦ Paterson's Rogers Locomotive Works produced their 6,271st - and last locomotive before becoming part of American Locomotive Co. However locomotives continued to be built in the Rogers plant in Paterson by the American Locomotive Co. ♦ The John Stephenson Co. of Elizabeth built a high speed electric railway car capable of "120 miles an hour with safety and comfort." The car was equipped with special six-wheel trucks and was exhibited at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition at St. Louis. ♦ The Christie Front Drive Motor Company was established in Hoboken. By the time they went out of business in 1918 they had built more than 600 ninety-horsepower two wheel tractors to pull former horse-drawn fire apparatus, mostly steam fire pumpers. (The Campbell-Christie house is preserved at Bergen County's New Bridge Landing historical recreation.) ♦ The Lackawanna Railroad began to use Phoebe Snow, a fictitious traveler, dressed in white, to advertise the clean burning qualities of anthracite coal in their locomotives. ♦ The Hoboken Ferry Co. 14th Street, Hoboken to W. 23rd Street, Manhattan ferry was opened on 11.1. ♦ The first steel baggage car was delivered to the Erie Railroad. ◆ The CRR of NJ Belford to Red Bank Branch was abandoned.
1905 The Erie Railroad was the first to publish an employee news magazine. Back issues of Erie Railroad Magazine are a treasure trove of information of our country's first long-distance railroad. ♦ Henry Ford and Louis Chevrolet staged an auto race on the Cape May beach. ♦ The Stephenson Car Co. was acquired by the J.G. Brill Co. of Philadelphia, but production continued under the Stephenson name. However, Stephenson never produced steel cars. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad established the world's fastest long-distance train, setting a new record by running between New York and Chicago in 18 hours. (N.A.Critchett, 12.1934 Railroad Stories Magazine) ♦ The Atlantic City Railroad ran a train from Camden to Atlantic City at an average speed of 78.3 mph. ♦ The Lehigh Valley Class K-1's, built by Baldwin, were the only known camelback Pacific type locomotives ever built. They hauled their Black Diamond Express. ♦ The Central Railroad of New Jersey Athletic Association was established and athletic fields were provided for employees. ♦ On June 12th, a collision occurred between CRR of NJ locomotive #410 and a Morris Canal boat at the Guard Lock in Dover. The train crashed through the open drawbridge and sank the boat. ◆ The depression of the Lackawanna RR between their Broad St. and Roseville Avenue stations in Newark cut through the bed of the Morris Canal. An electrically operated inclined plane was constructed by the RR to raise boats up, over, and back down to the same level of canal water. The canal water flow and level was maintained by a six foot diameter brick siphon culvert constructed under the RR. As the plane cars crossed Orange Street, which was parallel to the RR, they also crossed two trolley tracks in the center of the street. ◆ An August 7th fire destroyed the DL&W RR Hoboken rail and ferry Terminal. Work on a replacement (the current) terminal began. The Bush trainshed was invented by Lincoln Bush, Chief Engineer of the Lackawanna Railroad and the first US installation was at their Hoboken Terminal. ♦ The Hoboken Ferry Co. opened a Hudson Place Terminal to W. 28th Street, Manhattan route on 9.2. ♦ The Binghamton class ferries (Binghamton, Elmira, Ithaca, Pocono and Scranton) began to be delivered to the DL&W RR. ♦ The DL&W and L&HR Railroads worked out an agreement whereby the DL&W interchange with the New Haven would be handled by the L&HR from Port Morris to Maybrook, NY in lieu of the prior carfloat exchange at NY Harbor. ♦ Public Service Railway contracted with the Lorain Steel Co. to weld over 3,000 bolted joints of trolley track in the Camden area. ◆ The Lehigh Valley Railroad's 310,000 ton capacity Dodge coal storage plant at So. Plainfield was one of the largest ever built. ◆ Mechanical stokers were introduced on Pennsylvania Railroad 2-8-2s.
1906 The Electric Railway Journal stated: "The Public Service Corporation now controls... practically all of the electrical lighting,, power, gas and street railway utilities of the larger portion of the State of New Jersey." ♦ The first American made marine steam turbine engine was manufactured in Hoboken by W. & A. Fletcher & Co. for the coastal nightboat The Gov. Cobb. ♦ The Lionel Manufacturing Company was incorporated in New Jersey. ♦ Thomas Edison started the Lansden Company in Newark to manufacture (battery) electric trucks and wagons. By the end of 1911 when Edison sold Lansden, they had made 1,750 electric vehicles. ♦ On the opening day of the Orange Mountain Traction Co., on June 24th, the first car up the electrified former cable line lost adhesion and its patented brake system failed at the same time. It slid back down the grade and crashed into the second car at the bottom of the hill. ◆ A full page advertisement in The Chicago Sunday Tribune of July 8th (complete with a coupon to order shares) announced the launch of the Chicago - New York Electric Air Line Railroad. The line was to be almost straight as an arrow, avoiding all major cities, electrified, and would cut across northern NJ to reach NYC. Some 15,000 people purchased shares during the first 6 months, but only 20 miles of track was ever built (in Indiana). ◆ On August 19th The Sunday Tribune published an advertisement for the NY, Boston & Chicago Electric Railroad. It was to be more practical, with stops at many cities including Paterson and Hackensack. It also claimed to make the trip from Chicago to NYC in ten hours or less. ◆ In preparation for the New York electrification project of the Pennsylvania Railroad, several experimental electric locomotives were tested on the West Jersey & Seashore Railroad between South Glassboro and Franklinville, NJ. The WJ & S RR, the nation's first mainline electrification, was completed between Camden and Atlantic City on Sept. 18th. This 59-mile section was also the longest line which had been changed from steam to electric operation up to that time. Just weeks after the WJ & SRR was opened to Atlantic City an accident caused two cars to plunge into the intra coastal waterway, killing 57 passengers on Oct. 26th. ♦ Because the water table in the Atlantic City area was so high the Shore Fast Line purchased a funeral trolley car to transport caskets and the bereaved to inland cemeteries. ♦ The Trolley Electric Vehicle was given a public viewing/demonstration at the old Empire Theater on Newark's Washington St. The primitive chain driven wagon-like vehicle had one trolley pole to pick up current from the street car overhead and the return ground was made to the street car rails via a dangling metal chain. ♦ The NJ Legislature established the Division of Motor Vehicles to administer the laws of safe driving. Prior to this time 13,000 unlicensed NJ motorists drove their vehicles without license plates wherever they pleased at any speed they wished. ♦ The New York and New Jersey (Bridge?) Commission was established to investigate the feasibility of building a bridge and to promote crossing the waterways between the two states. ◆ The first cars of the structurally unique Stillwell design were ordered for the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad. Lewis B. Stillwell made his home at Princeton, NJ. He was chief electrical engineer of Westinghouse Electric at 27, worked on a half-dozen important railway electrifications, and designed some of the ruggedest passenger cars ever built.
1907 Public Service Railway Company became a separate subsidiary corporation of Public Service Electric & Gas Co. following passage of a utilities law. ♦ The annual convention and exhibit of the American Street and Interurban Railway Association was held at Atlantic City. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad was the first to convert to all-steel coaches, introducing the first of more than 5,000 P70 coaches to follow. ♦ The Public Service Railway Company was created by separating transit-related functions within the parent corporation. More than 300 separate transit companies were combined under one corporate umbrella. ♦ The Shore Fast Line instituted automobile ferry service utilizing flat cars between Somers Point and Atlantic City. ♦ The Erie Railroad purchased a Ganz motor car abroad and operated it on a trial trip of 700 miles from Dayton, OH to Jersey City. It was the first of its kind to get a tryout in this country and was to be put in service on a small branch line. ♦ The Atlantic City and Shore Railroad (a/k/a Shore Fast Line) was extended to Ocean City and became an important feeder to the West Jersey & Seashore's new electrified Camden-Atlantic City route. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad ordered their first experimental Pacific type locomotive. ◆ A heavier-than-air ship was launched at Iselin. ♦ The first DL&W RR concrete structure was the freight station built at Newton. It survives as an adaptively reused structure. ♦ The new Kenneth Murcheson designed Hoboken Terminal was opened by the DL&W RR. ♦ The first Hudson & Manhattan Railway train operated between Hoboken and Morton St., NYC on Dec. 28th. ◆ Seeking better rail service for immigrants, the US Immigration Commissioner filed accusations that the Central Railroad of NJ and six other railroads had been charging immigrants nearly first-class fares but provided inferior service. ◆ The Pennsylvania Railroad completed their Greenville Yard, Jersey City. At the time it was the largest rail-marine terminal in the US.
1908 Work began on the world's largest embankment for the New Jersey Cut-Off, the Pequest Fill, which required 6,625,000 cubic yards of material. ♦ President Theodore Roosevelt, sitting in the White House, sent a ceremonial telegram to the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad Power House in Jersey City to signal the start of the first direct rail service between New York and New Jersey (Hoboken) by tunnel under the Hudson River on Feb. 25th. This historical event connected the island of Manhattan with the rest of the country by rail for the very first time. ♦ William C. Durant incorporated General Motors of New Jersey, forming the nucleus of the world's largest motor vehicle maker.
1909 Hudson & Manhattan Railroad service was inaugurated between Hudson Terminal, New York and Exchange Place, Jersey City. ♦ The Lackawanna was the first railroad to install paper cup dispensers next to their water coolers and abolish the common drinking cup. ♦ Westinghouse Electric & Manufacturing Co. developed the largest electric locomotive at the time for the Pennsylvania Railroad electrification into NYC. It weighed 166 tons, developed 4,000hp and was powered by two of the largest electric railway motors ever constructed. ♦ Ralph H. Beach, built the first storage battery powered street railway car at Thomas Edison's West Orange plant, using Edison's nickel-alkaline batteries. It was test operated on Public Service Railway in the West Orange area. Beach organized the Federal Storage Battery Car Company and moved to Belleville, building a total of nearly two dozen storage battery powered street railway and railway cars. ♦ Frank and Joe Boland, of Rahway, designed and built the first fixed wing aircraft in NJ. ♦ The first automobile rides under the Hudson River were made on June 21st when two autos were lowered into one of the partially completed PRR tunnels at Weehawken and driven through to 10th Avenue in Manhattan. On the return trip to NJ a delegation of engineers and PRR officials, including Samuel Rea and Charles Jacobs were driven through. ♦ The Central Railroad of NJ inaugurated The Mermaid, a summer train which ran direct from Scranton to Point Pleasant. ◆ The Mercer Automobile Co. was formed by the Roebling family in Hamilton. The Mercer plant, a former brewery, made fast, sporty cars, but the plant went out of business by 1925. ♦ Special ladies only cars were introduced on the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad. ♦ The Wright Company opened the first manufacturing plant for airplanes in Paterson. ♦ The NJ Legislature established the Public Road Commission.
1910 Service through the Hudson River tunnels into their New York City station was begun by the Pennsylvania Railroad. The PRR New York extension, including the Greenville Yards was the largest engineering project undertaken by a private company. It has also been called the most complex engineering feat attempted by any railroad before or since. (Railroad History, Autumn 2000) The American Society of Civil Engineers devoted 800 pages to the project's technical aspects. Included was the electrification from Sunnyside, Long Island to Manhattan Transfer, just east of Newark. This was the first main line electrification for heavy-duty service. ♦ Public Service Railway opened their Hudson Place Terminal at Hoboken. It facilitated the connection of their street car lines with the Hudson & Manhattan tubes and the Lackawanna ferries. ♦ The Erie Railroad opened their Bergen Cut (a/k/a Bergen Arches) on June 13th. It had taken four years to remove 160,000 cubic yards of earth and 250,000 pounds of dynamite to blast through 800,000 cubic yards of trap rock to complete the cut. An estimated 400 men either perished or suffered crippling injuries during the four years of construction. ♦ The North Jersey Rapid Transit Co. opened the first segment of their line from East Paterson to Ho-Ho-Kus. ♦ At the American Electric Railway Association Convention in Atlantic City the J.G. Brill Co. of Philadelphia exhibited a car with a plain arch roof and subsequently the majority of city and interurban cars built had this type of roof. ♦ The Keansburg Steamboat Co. was started by real estate man W.A. Gehlhaus to provide transportation to New York. ◆ The Hudson & Manhattan Railroad opened their Henderson Street Car Shop in Jersey City. ♦ Mack Trucks predecessor, International Motor Corp. produced the first motorized hook-and-ladder truck in the US for Morristown, NJ. ♦ The 50,000th steam engine constructed by the American Locomotive Co. was demonstrated on several roads and finally purchased by the Erie Railroad. It became their K-3 class #2509 and was used in Northern New Jersey commuter service. It represented the most advanced design of the 4-6-2 type ever seen in the US. ♦ Walter Wellman took off from Atlantic City in a twin-engine dirigible and although the airship was forced down 100 miles from shore and lost, he and his crew of six survived and established a record for powered aircraft of 71½ hours. ♦ The NY Central RR Weehawken to Cortland Street, Manhattan ferry opened on 12.1.
1911 Public Service, a pioneer of employee benefits, on January 1st instituted the system of paying life insurance, sick benefits and pensions to employees or their beneficiaries. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad inaugurated refrigerated barge service in NY harbor to facilitate the handling of dressed meats, provisions and other perishable freight. (Railroad Mans Magazine, Vol. XIV, No. 1, Feb. 1911) ♦ Willis Haviland Carrier invented the air conditioner at his Newark factory. ♦ The United States Congress’s Rivers anf Harbors Committee made an inspection trip through the Delaware & Raritan Canal on a yacht in June. ◆ The Morris County Traction Co. began sponsoring moonlight excursions to Bertrand's Island at Lake Hopatcong. ♦ The Saurer Motor Truck Company, with a plant at Plainfield, was licensed to build the Swiss-designed Saurer motor truck in America. International Motor Co. was formed as a holding corporation for both Saurer and the Mack Brothers Motor Car Company, which began in Brooklyn as a builder of wagons, buses and trucks. ♦ A head-on collision occurred on the North Jersey Rapid Transit line below Ridgewood, killing three and injuring many others. It happened on July 21st, only 40 days after the line began running through to Suffern and NJRT never recovered financially. ♦ Thomas N. McCarter was elected President of the American Electric Railway Association which later became the American Transit Association. ♦ A Trenton & Mercer County Traction Co. trolley went through an open bridge and landed in the Delaware & Raritan Canal feeder at Prospect Street, Trenton on Sept. 21st. ◆ Public Service Railway of New Jersey was the feature of Vol. 38, No. 15 of the Electric Railway Journal Convention Number of Oct. 7th. The 83 page item with maps plus 48 pages of photos covered: The Corporation and its Organization; Office Building; Way Dept.; Power Generation; Rolling Stock; Maintenance of Car Equipment; Transportation Dept.; Purchasing and Storeroom Depts.; Accounting Dept.; and Claim Dept. ♦ The Lackawanna Railroad opened their $11,000,000, 28.45-mile-long New Jersey Cut-Off, which included the reinforced concrete Paulin's Kill Viaduct - the largest built to date - 115 feet high and 1,100 feet long. Construction required 14,000,000 cubic yards of cuts and 15,000,000 cubic yards of fills. The Pequest Fill required 6,625,000 cubic yards and was the largest railroad fill ever built. ♦ H&M began regular train service between Hudson Terminal and Newark on Nov. 28th. ◆ The Hudson River (electric railway ) Line, built by A. Merritt Taylor of the New Jersey & Hudson River Railroad & Ferry Co., was sold to Public Service. Taylor used the money to expand his growing traction system West of Philadelphia. It became Philadelphia Suburban Transportation Co (a/k/a Red Arrow Lines). The Media, Sharon Hill, & Norristown portions of the system survive and are operated by the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority.
1912 The first flashing light grade crossing warning device in the world was installed on the CRRNJ at Sewaren. ♦ The New Jersey legislature directed the Public Road Commission to establish a comprehensive scheme of roads to be known as the State Highway System. The state began to fund the building of bridges. ♦ The first successful solid concrete highway in New Jersey, and one of the first in America, was constructed between Stewartsville and New Village, along the Morris Turnpike. (Actually, the first concrete road was placed at this location in 1905, but it quickly disintegrated. It was rebuilt twice more and the same thing happened.) Thomas Alva Edison closely supervised the successful 1912 work using donated Portland Cement manufactured in his New Village plant, as well as the Alpha and Vulcanite plants. ♦ Taylor Iron & Steel Company merged with and absorbed the William Wharton Company of Philadelphia, a specialized manufacturer of railway switches and frogs, to form the Taylor-Wharton Iron & Steel Company. ♦ The world's first battery train was assembled at Ralph H. Beach's Federal Storage Battery Car Co. at Silver Lake, NJ and powered with Thomas A. Edison storage batteries. Initial test runs of the three car train were made on the Erie Railroad between West Orange, Silver Lake and Jersey City.
1913 The route of the first coast-to-coast paved road, the Lincoln Highway (much following the current Rt. 27 - formerly known as Rt. 13, and parts of US Rt. 1 in NJ), was announced. ♦ The Lackawanna Railroad was the first in the East to successfully establish a wireless (radio) equipped train. It initially provided telegraph and later voice communications between moving trains and transmitter stations. ♦ The new Public Service Fast Line commenced service from Newark via Woodbridge and Metuchen to New Brunswick and Trenton. ♦ Woodrow Wilson departed Princeton via the Dinkey on the first leg of his trip to Washington, DC where he was sworn in as the 27th President of the US. ♦ Ingersoll-Rand introduced the world's first railroad tie tamper & compressor. The first unit was made for the New York Central Railroad and was displayed at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C. ♦ The New Jersey full crew law required railroads to provide an engineer, a fireman, a conductor, two brakemen and a flagman for each freight train of 30 or more cars. ♦ Perth Amboy, the oldest port of entry in the US was merged with the Port of New York. ♦ American Locomotive Co. closed its Rogers plant in Paterson. The last locomotive, an 0-6-0 was sold to Eastern Car Co. as their #1. ♦ An extensive series of tests of an electro-pneumatic brake system was made jointly by the Pennsylvania RR and the Westinghouse Air Brake Co. on the Atlantic City division of the West Jersey & Seashore RR near Absecon Station. The system applied the brakes to all cars in a train at the same instant. The trials were made over three months in which time 691 stops were made from speeds up to 80 mph. The shortest stop from 80 mph was made in 1,422' with a modern steel passenger coach and was a record for stopping a railroad car. (Engineering News 4.1.1915, pg. 627) ♦ Richard Brookins set a record flying a Wright biplane to an altitude of 6,176 feet at the Atlantic City Air Carnival. ♦ The NJ Division of Motor Vehicles introduced a system of driver examinations. ♦ The Rockaway Valley RR discontinued passenger and freight service between Whitehouse Station and Watnong. ♦ The Hudson & Manhattan Railroad began carrying mail between Hudson Terminal (NYC) and Manhattan Transfer (NJ) on Nov. 17th. ♦
1914 On March 1st, a Central Railroad of NJ Atlantic City Express train got stuck in an 18-foot snow drift near Red Bank. It was two days before the passengers were rescued and taken to nearby homes. ◆ The Motor Truck Club of New Jersey, forerunner of the New Jersey Motor Truck Association was organized. ♦ The CRR of NJ was the first railroad to adopt the standard "stop" sign for grade crossing watchmen. ♦ The Central RR of NJ completed the largest Bush train shed (over 7 acres for 20 tracks) at their Jersey City Terminal. ♦ The Morris County Traction Co. finally completed their line between Wharton and Maplewood. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad designed and built their first K4s Pacific type locomotive. It became their most outstandingly successful locomotive and 424 more of them were built. ◆ The NJ Uniform Traffic Laws replaced local motor vehicle laws. ♦ Henry Ford began to mass-produce cars on an assembly line. ♦ The Lehigh Valley Railroad had wooden covered lighter #79 constructed at Perth Amboy. It has been kept afloat and in use by the Hudson Waterfront Museum as the last vessel of its kind and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
1915 The Motor Truck Club of New Jersey was formally organized at Newark. It became the New Jersey Motor Truck Association. ♦ The Atlantic City Jitney Association was established and continues as the longest running non-operating subsidized operation in America. ♦ Port Newark was officially opened. ♦ From this year until 1920 it was possible to travel by trolley car from New York City (across New Jersey) to Washington, D.C. ♦ Alfred J. Ferraro started in the transportation business by converting an Oldsmobile truck to carry soldiers from New York City to Fort Dix, NJ. In 1921 he purchased the nation's first all-steel coach body. He founded Trans-Bridge Lines in 1941 which has become a major coach operator (nearly 70 vehicles) between eastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey Points and New York City. ♦ Lionel's Irvington plant produced the first O gauge model electric trains. ♦ About 1,000 horses awaiting shipment to Allied cavalry during World War I were stampeeded from their Central Railroad of NJ corrals in Jersey City before dawn on Aug. 25th. German agents were suspected. ◆ A moving picture was made of the first transcontinental highway, the 3,389 mile Lincoln Highway which passed through NJ and opened in this year. ♦ Position light signals were introduced on the Pennsylvania Railroad and its affiliate Lehigh Valley Railroad. The signals use fog-penetrating yellow lights displayed three at a time to mimic semaphore positions. ♦ The Dyckman Street to Englewood Ferry Co. began cross Hudson service. ◆ The Jersey City Chamber of Commerce proposed an electric railway to link the six trunk line railroads in the city as detailed in a report by Van Z. Lane, resident engineer.
1916 Port Newark welcomed its first ship, the schooner A.J. West. ♦ Public Service Terminal in Newark opened with PS corporate offices located within. It contained trolley terminals in the basement and on the second floor with a total of over a dozen passenger platforms. Lines operating to and from the terminal included: Bloomfield, Central, Elizabeth, Hackensack, Jersey City, New Brunswick, Orange, Paterson, Perth Amboy, South Orange, Springfield, Trenton and Union. It was called by some "the seventh wonder of the street railway world." ♦ The first American Automobile Association School Patrol (crossing guard) was established in Newark. ♦ US railroad trackage reached a peak of 254,000 miles and thereafter began to decline. ♦ An explosion at the munitions depot of the Lehigh Valley RR at Black Tom Wharf, Jersey City destroyed piers, 13 warehouses, 161 railroad cars, barges and canalboats. Property damage was estimated at $20 million in what was thought, at the time, to be one of the worst acts of terrorism in American history. ♦ The Adamson Act gave railroad labor the eight hour day. ◆ Carteret, NJ to Travis/Linoleumville, SI, NY ferry service began on 5.5. ♦ Two gentlemen in a new Pathfinder auto departed NYC via the 42nd Street ferry to Weehawken en-route to Indiana for “A Hoosier Holiday.” Their trek resulted in a 500 page book of the same name authored by Theodore Dreiser It was the first American automobile road book. The journey took them via Paterson, along the Morris Canal and through the Delaware Water Gap.◆ The Salem & Pennsgrove Traction Co. began operating on Aug. 16th with second hand 1908 streetcars from Yonkers Railroad. The S&P, which replaced a bus line, did a booming business during the war years primarily serving the DuPont plants at Deepwater. ♦ The Cape May, Delaware Bay & Sewell's Point RR declared bankruptcy on Sept. 28th and ceased operation two weeks later. ♦ A Deusenberg engine plant opened in Elizabeth to build Army and Navy motors during World War I. It was sold, first to Willys-Overland and then to Durant Motors as a car assembly plant. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad was proclaiming it self "The Standard Railroad of the World."
1917 The greatest traffic tie-up in NJ history occurred during WW I. With manpower shortages, the worst winter in history and a German U-boat campaign against commercial shipping, 180,000 loaded railroad cars sat in NJ yards waiting for unloading at NY piers. A food and coal shortage resulted in northern NJ. ♦ The New Jersey State Highway Commission replaced the Public Road Commission and a State Highway Department was created with 15 routes comprising the nucleus of the system. Two of those original routes served Phillipsburg. ♦ On March 19th the US Supreme Court upheld the eight-hour work day for railroads. ♦ Public Service Railway Company organized a subsidiary, the New Jersey Transportation Company, to operate buses. ♦ Hell Gate Bridge was officially opened on March 9th. It gave the Pennsylvania Railroad a direct connection for passenger trains north to New England via the New Haven Railroad and provided better connections for freight traffic. ◆ Just as scrapping of the Cape May, Delaware Bay & Sewell's Point RR was to begin the US Navy, which had started to construct Section Base No. 9 at Cape May. The Navy leased 4+ miles of the line from the scrapper, rebuilt it and used it to haul freight cars to the base. Two storage battery trolley cars provided transportation between Cape May and the barracks for personnel on "liberty." ♦ Streetcar production ended at the John Stephenson Company Elizabeth plant, which had been taken over by Brill in 1904. Stephenson was the oldest car building concern in the world when the plant closed. Stephenson produced the world's first street car in 1832 at their original New York plant. ♦ The Stephenson plant was purchased by the Standard Aero Corp. of Plainfield. The plant was converted to produce aircraft and thousands were hired at salaries far higher and benefits much greater than average. The production goal of 60 aircraft per day was never reached and the plant closed at the end of the war. An investigation disclosed that 51% of the stock was owned by a financial institution in Japan. ♦ The first operation of buses by Public Service began between Tenafly and Camp Merritt. The service was provided by New Jersey Transportation Co., a subsidiary of Public Service. ♦ Teterboro Airport, the first in the NJ-NY region was built. ♦ Railway Storage Battery Car Co. No. 100, built by Brill was operated to Atlantic City for a railroad equipment convention. While there it made demonstration runs to Ocean City. (Note: Edison archives gives the date as 9 April 1921...) ♦ On Nov. 9th the War Board of the American Electric Railway Association was organized with Thomas N. McCarter (of Public Service) as permanent chairman. ♦ The last run of a horse-drawn street car in the US took place in New York City. ♦ The New Jersey & Pennsylvania (Rockaway Valley) Railroad was abandoned and dismantling commenced. ♦ The Lionel Manufacturing Co. introduced an armored military train set.
1918 The New Jersey Transportation Company used buses to extend service from a street railway line at Tenafly to Camp Merritt. ♦ International Motor Company purchased the Saurer Motor Car plant in Plainfield and began producing truck motors, transmissions and rear axle carriers for Mack. ♦ The US Railroad Administration took control of railroads and their Division of Inland Waterways assumed administrative control of the Delaware & Raritan Canal. ♦ Passenger trains of the Baltimore & Ohio and Lehigh Valley railroads were shifted from the Jersey Central's Jersey City terminal to Pennsylvania Station in New York City in April. ♦ Marconi's radio telegraph station along the Delaware & Raritan Canal at New Brunswick was the most powerful in the world. General Electric constructed its great Alexanderson alternators and motors at Schenectady and they were delivered by canalboat. ♦ The first fabricated steel ship to be built in America was launched by the Submarine Boat Corporation at Port Newark. ♦ Skip-stop operations of street cars was inaugurated by Public Service Railway to conserve energy. ♦ Ford opened a plant in Kearny to build the popular Model T. Peak employment was 8,000, but the plant closed in 1929. ♦ The Lionel Manufacturing Co. was restructured as the Lionel Corporation. ♦ New England Motor Freight started business in Paterson with one truck delivering Nabisco products from New York City to Northern New Jersey customers. The firm now operates a large regional network from a 22-acre headquarters complex in Elizabeth. ♦ Public Service Ry Co. was authorized by the NJ PUC to raise fare rates from 5¢ to 7¢ on Sept. 25th. ♦ An explosion at a shell plant at Morgan Station on Oct. 4th, killed 64. ◆ A report on the “Bonner Rail Wagon System” appeared in the October 12th issue of Electric Railway Journal. It described a system of freight haulage using containers on wheels which could be carried on rail cars as well as via public roads using the “Auto Hoss” - a flatbed truck which could carry one container. The report found the scheme to be sound and recommended a full equipment and service test of the system on the lines of Public Service Railway of New Jersey. It recommended freight haulage over the Passaic line from Hoboken to Paterson, a service over the North Hudson County lines as far as Coytesville, with pick-up and delivery service by “Auto Hoss” in the various districts. In addition, a service would be given from the Hoboken section to and from New York and Philadelphia. There is no record of the experiment having been carried out. ◆ West Jersey and Seashore RR steam ferry service between Longport, Ocean City and Somers Point on Great Egg Harbor ended. ♦ Full time airmail service from Curtiss Field, Long Island to East Potomac Park, Washington, DC used Hadley Field in South Plainfield as an alternate landing site. ♦ The Salem & Pennsgrove Traction Co. carried 4,500,000 passengers in this their peak year. ◆ Jersey Central locomotives were equipped with Pyle-National 500-watt steam turbo generators to power new electric headlights and classification lamps.
1919 The Day-Elder Truck Company was initially established in Irvington (later Newark to 1937) as the National Motor Manufacturing Company to build trucks. ♦ The Central Railroad of NJ opened a new bridge over the Delaware River at Phillipsburg which could handle the weight of new Mikado and Pacific locomotives. ◆ A US Navy 14" long range artillery gun was moved to Virginia Avenue at the Boardwalk in Atlantic City for postwar display. Baldwin Locomotive Works built the 40 wheel undercarriage which carried the gun. ♦ International Motor Truck Company purchased the assets of the Wright-Martin Aircraft Corporation, including their main engine plant at New Brunswick which became the International-Brunswick Motor Company. The plant was originally built by Simplex Automobile Company to fabricate automobile chassis. The Mack Truck General Service Parts Depot was moved from the former Wasson Piston Ring plant in New Brunswick to Plainfield. Three years later the name International Motor Truck Company was changed to Mack Truck Company. ♦ The Delaware River Joint Commission was established. Their first order of business was approval of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge construction to connect Camden and Philadelphia. ♦ The Rahway Valley RR discontinued all passenger service.
1920 The Pennsylvania Railroad began experimenting with radio communications with its tugs in New York Harbor. ♦ Public Service Railway Co. purchased a fleet of 200 single truck, one man, light weight Birney "safety" trolley cars. They were first used in Paterson. ♦ William C. Durant, ousted from General Motors, incorporated Durant Motors and moved manufacturing operations to Elizabeth. ♦ The Cooke Locomotive Works (Alco) built a 2-6-0 steam locomotive for Cuban sugar mill railroads, but this one never left the US. It is currently in storage at the Middletown & New Jersey RR. ♦ The Morris County Traction Co. reached its peak with 50 miles of track and 42 trolley cars and entered a period of decline.
1921 Public Service purchased a fleet of 200 single truck Birney Safety Cars from Osgood Bradley for lightly patronized lines. The first car operated on a test run on the Valley Road Line in Montclair on Jan. 8th. The cars were all scrapped in 1931. They also ordered 100 double truck, center entrance, trailer cars from the same company, but they were unpopular and did not last long. These were the last "modern" cars built for PS until the PCC cars were purchased second hand for the Newark City Subway. The PS trolley fleet reached an all time high of 2,500. ♦ Public Service Electric Co. began to take delivery of their order of 600 hopper cars. The purchase was made to insure coal deliveries in a period of rail car shortage. ♦Railway Storage Battery Car Co. Displayed their car #100 at Atlantic City on 9 April. It was operated on its own battery power from Silver Lake on the Erie Orange Branch. (Note also see 1917 entry.) ‚ Lionel Corporation opened a large model railroad manufacturing plant in Irvington. ♦ Stephan Schaffan began the Atlas Tool and Die Co. which became a leader in the worldwide model railroad industry. Atlas was one of the first companies to mass produce HO gauge track products. Now known as Atlas Model Railroad Co., they are located in Hillside, NJ and continue to produce hundreds of model items. ♦ The State Highway Commission purchased the Gloucester-Woodbury Turnpike (chartered in 1850) eliminating the last toll gates in New Jersey. ♦ The concrete paving of White Horse Pike was completed and dedicated on June 29th. It was claimed to be the first hard surfaced highway to cross our state. ♦ West Jersey & Seashore Railroad E6 4-4-2 #787 hauled the train carrying the first Miss America Pageant Beauties to Atlantic City. ♦ Thomas T. Taber, of Montclair and later Madison, NJ, was the first railfan photographer to begin to take locomotive pictures throughout the US of every Class 1 railroad. (Railroad History Bulletin #171) ♦ The bi-state Port of New York Authority (later renamed the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey) was created by New York and New Jersey and ratified by Congress to jointly build important transportation related projects. PONYA was the first "port authority" in the US and the second in the world. ♦ The Lackawanna RR grade separation and station improvement projects at East Orange commenced with approval by the city. This final project which completed grade separations and triple tracking between Newark and Millburn is the subject of a detailed article in Flags Diamonds and Statues, Vol. 9, No. 1, Issue #32, 1990. ◆ The Pennsylvania Railroad began using roller bearings on passenger cars. ◆ The Railway and Locomotive Historical Society was organized. Their Railroad History is the oldest railroad journal in North America. ◆ The Central Railroad of NJ sold their Lehigh and Wilkes-Barre Coal Company for over $32 million used the proceeds for capital improvements.
1922 New Jersey ratified the US law which prohibited the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages. This caused a big business in rum-running, the process of smuggling rum and alcohol, to prosper. Speedboats and fast trucks were the popular way to move the illegal supplies. ◆ The Mack Truck Company rail car department displayed an unidentified omnibus rail motor car at the Railway Supply Manufacturers Association exhibit in Atlantic City and later conducted demonstration tests over eastern and midwestern railroads. ♦ The Union Transportation Co., operating the Pemberton & Hightstown RR, developed a gasoline driven motorcar to carry passengers, baggage and freight with a crew of two at a great savings over a steam locomotive hauled train with a crew of 4 or 5. ♦ The Alpine, NJ to Yonkers, NY ferry opened on 5.23. ♦ The CRR of NJ inaugurated their "Mermaid" train to carry summer vacationers from as far as Scranton to the Jersey Shore via Elizabethport. ♦ A tower operator at Winslow Junction mistakenly set a switch to a branch line before the Reading's Night Owl Express passed at 70mph. The engineer of the Camden to Atlantic City express train failed to notice the stop signal and his train derailed on the curve. The rainy night wreck killed seven and injured 89. ♦ It was estimated that 1,700 independent buses were in operation on 179 different New Jersey routes. ♦ A Bond Issue that provided $40 million for 726 miles of additional NJ roadways over five years was used up in four years. ◆ The Palmyra, NJ to Tacony, PA ferry began operations. ◆ The ICC ordered 49 passenger railroads to equip at least one division with Automatic Train Control. ◆ Leo Daft, an important early inventor and developer of electric trolleys died and his grave is in Holy Cross Cemetery on Ridge Road in North Arlington, NJ.
1923 Public Service decided to acquire independent bus operations. In the next six years it bought out more than 1,300 operating permits. ♦ The first substitution of buses for streetcars in New Jersey took place on Kaighn Avenue in Camden. ♦ Arthur Rehberger & Son. built 323 trucks and buses in Newark until they went out of business in 1938. ♦ The original Ingersoll-Rand/General Electric oil-electric demonstrator locomotive was completed at the I-R Phillipsburg plant. It was equipped with trucks which had roller bearings - one of the earliest such applications in any locomotive. Although it was demonstrated on 13 different railroads and it did much to advance the acceptance of the diesel locomotive as a replacement for the steam locomotive, it was never sold. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad produced their 192 page illustrated New Jersey Seashore Folder. It promoted the attractions, hotels and vacations to Atlantic City and the entire Jersey Shore from Cape May to Long Branch and was sent free upon request. A separate newspaper advertising campaign later focused on the promotion of fishing at the New Jersey coast resorts. ♦ The great Public Service trolley strike began on August 1st, lasted 51 days, and was finally ended by a court order. ♦ Lake Hopatcong to Edison mines RR passenger service was discontinued. ♦ Ownership of the Morris Canal and Banking Company passed to the State of New Jersey, which thereafter destroyed most of the structures. ♦ The NYS&W discontinued passenger service between Columbia and Delaware, NJ. ♦ Durant Motors produced its 100,000th "Star" auto at Elizabeth. ♦ Atlantic Track & Turnout Co. started a railroad material supply business. Their headquarters office has been at 270 Broad Street, Bloomfield for many years. ♦ The Jersey Central Traction Co. which served South Amboy - Red Bank - Long Branch - Highlands was abandoned.
1924 John W. Christie, born in River Edge, was an inventor and designer of tanks and other armored vehicles, having built 15 such vehicles for the Army. He produced an amphibious gun carriage which was successfully demonstrated on the Hudson and Potomac Rivers. He later developed an independent suspension system which allowed his M1928 tank to achieve a speed of 42mph. ♦ The Morris Canal ceased operation. ♦ The 10,000,000th Ford made (a touring car) was shipped to NYC and then driven to San Francisco over the Lincoln Highway. ♦ The Dorfan ("Fandor" reversed - was the European parent company) Co., a pioneering model railroad manufacturer, began business in Newark, NJ. Dorfan introduced white metal die casting to the model business and their trains rank among the finest from the standpoint of construction and technical design, ever made in the US. The firm went out of business in 1933. ♦ The North Jersey Rapid Transit Commission and the Transit Commission of New York City proposed to extend the NYC subway system to provide connections with Erie and Lackawanna Railroads on the West side of Jersey City. It was never built. ♦ The DL&W RR discontinued passenger service between Branchville Jct. and Franklin. ♦ Lehigh Valley Railroad's Alco-built prototype three-cylinder 4-8-2 #5000 was exhibited at the June convention of the American Railway Association at Atlantic City. ♦ A (12 inches to one foot) scale model of a Reading Pacific was displayed on the Atlantic City boardwalk for the Miss America Pageant. It was built almost entirely of wood and sheet metal. The Collectors Book of the Locomotive by Alexander ◆ Backus Motor Truck Co. began building both trucks and buses in East Rutherford, NJ and built about 150 vehicles until they went out of business in 1937. ♦ Public Service began to standardize almost exclusively on buses built by the Yellow Coach company. Some of these buses later had trolley poles installed for use as "All-Service Vehicles." ♦ The National Pneumatic Co. of Rahway developed a new automatic step treadle for operating doors on trolleys and buses. ◆ The Statue of Liberty was declared a national monument.
1925 The first traffic circle (later called "Airport Circle") was built at Camden. This was followed by approximately 75 more traffic circles - more than any other state. ♦ The first commercially successful diesel-electric locomotive in America, with an American Locomotive Co. carbody, powered by an Ingersoll-Rand diesel was completed by General Electric, in Erie, PA and operated under its own power to the Ingersoll-Rand Phillipsburg plant. It was sold to the CNJ, shipped to Jersey City, and carfloated to the CNJ Bronx terminal where it operated successfully until 1952. After retirement in 1957 was loaned to the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad museum in Baltimore, where it remains. ♦ The Bachus Motor Truck Company built trucks and buses (approx. 150 in total) in E. Rutherford until 1937. ♦ Gravel washed onto a grade crossing by a rainstorm caused the derailment of a Lackawanna passenger train at Rockport, near Hackettstown, killing 50. ♦ Louis B. Miller and C.I. Hansen departed the Western Union telegraph office, two blocks from the Cortland Street ferry in New York City at 1pm on 14 July in Miller's new Wills Sainte Claire roadster. They followed the Lincoln Highway to Oakland, CA, 3,423 miles, in a record breaking 102 hours and 45 minutes. ♦ German artillery guns captured during WW I were shipped to all parts of the US from Port Newark in 3,000 freight cars and were distributed to cities and towns throughout the country. ♦ Dorfan made their first O gauge model electric trains in New Jersey. ♦ In celebration of Lionel's 25th anniversary, Lionel Quarter Century Club members, executives and plant employees were conveyed from the Irvington plant to celebrate with a picnic in the country. ♦ The American Electric Railway Association held their annual convention in Atlantic City in October. The 172 exhibitors requested over 8,000 sq. ft. of space beyond the 90,000 sq. ft. available. Special display space for buses, including double decker models and other equipment was provided across the boardwalk from the pier. ♦ The Mercer Automobile Co. ceased production after producing more than 25,000 luxury sports cars - America's first. ♦ Public Service ordered 333 gasoline-electric (gasoline engines drove a generator which powered electric traction motors) buses from Yellow Truck & Coach Company with electric components from General Electric Company. This was, at the time, the largest single order of buses in this country. In the next four years the PS fleet of gas-electric buses totaled nearly 1,000. ♦ Mack Trucks, Inc., expanded it Plainfield plant with the $13,000,000 purchase of a factory from Niles-Bement-Pond Co., manufacturers of lathes and tools. Engines for trucks and buses, manufactured at Plainfield and transmissions manufactured at New Brunswick were shipped to Allentown, PA for final assembly. At the time Mack claimed to have the largest bus body plant in the world.
1926 In a full page advertisement in the January issue of Saturday Evening Post, Campbell’s Soups identified their “Standard quality of the world” with the “Standard Railroad of the World” - the Pennsy. ◆ The North Jersey Transit Commission published a report RAPID TRANSIT For Northern New Jersey. The major recommendations were for an interstate loop line between Manhattan and a new Meadows Transfer Station to provide access and connections to Manhattan for the various commuter railroads including the CRR of NJ. ♦ The Central Railroad Company of New Jersey opened their new Newark Bay bridge. At 1.4 miles it was the longest four track bridge of its type in the world. ♦ The last locomotive was constructed at the American Locomotive Co., Cooke Works in Paterson and shipped on Feb. 25th. The stock locomotives and rotary snow plows still remaining at Paterson were shipped in several lots to the Schenectady Works and there disposed of as orders came in from domestic roads. ♦ The Benjamin Franklin bridge opened. It was the world's largest single span suspension bridge. At 1,750' it was 155 feet longer than Roebling's Brooklyn bridge. Public Service entered a cooperative venture with the Philadelphia Rapid Transit Company forming the Penn-Jersey Rapid Transit Company which operated double-deck buses between Camden (later expanded into South Jersey) and Philadelphia. The bridge was primarily for vehicles, but also had provisions for trolley tracks and a trolley terminal in Philadelphia. The "Bridge Line" was finally opened in 1936, but with subway type cars, not trolleys, operating across the bridge to Camden. ♦ A. Philip Randolph organized the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters on May 8th. ◆ The Erie Railroad Veterans Association, Jersey City Chapter held their first annual picnic. ♦ James Thomas and John Tyler formed a partnership to manufacture model boats in Mantua, NJ. In the 1930's they began to produce model railroad cars, locomotives and track. Mantua Metal Products Co. survives in New Jersey as Mantua Industries, a pioneer in model railroading, a promoter of model railroading, and a major producer of model railroad products. "Ready-Laid" flexible track was a Mantua "first." ♦ An explosion at the Lake Denmark Arsenal killed 21 people and caused damages estimated at $75 million. ♦ New Jersey's Railroad Construction Company, Inc. (contractors and engineers) was established. ♦ The Motor Bus Division of the American Automobile Association was formed. ♦ The NY area terminal for Baltimore & Ohio passenger trains was changed from NY Penn Station to the Jersey City Terminal of the Jersey Central RR on August 29th due to the refusal of the Pennsylvania Railroad to extend the B&O's lease. The Jersey Central assigned B&O the two most northerly platforms in the terminal. Tracks were removed from between the platform and paved over as a driveway for the B&O Train Connection motor coach service which commenced in August. A short turntable was installed at the west end of this driveway to turn the motor coaches. A fleet of Deluxe motor coaches carried B&O passengers from train side via the Jersey Central ferries to several routes in New York City. This was the first railroad operated trainside motor coach connection. In addition there was a B&O Train Connection motor coach from Elizabeth to Newark, operated by Public Service. ♦ The American Bus Association was organized. ♦ The New York Society of Model Engineers was formed in NYC. However, for many years they were located on the upper ferry concourse of the Lackawanna Railroad Hoboken Terminal and have been located in Carlstadt for nearly 50 years. ♦ Johnson & Towers, Inc. was founded and continues to be headquartered in the greater Camden area. They are Detroit Diesel's oldest distributor and one of its largest, with locations in Mt. Laurel (HQ) & Egg Harbor, NJ and Maryland. ♦ The Victory bridge was opened for vehicles between Perth Amboy and South Amboy. Serious congestion occurred within four years of its completion. ♦ Lawnside, a stop on the "Underground Railroad" was the first African-American community to become a municipality. The Peter Mott House in Lawnside is the only known black-owned and -operated Underground Railroad station. ♦ Public Service Railway obtained control of the faltering North Jersey Rapid Transit Co. and extended their line from East Paterson to the PS Broadway Terminal in downtown Paterson. ♦ The DL&W RR discontinued passenger service between Washington and Hampton via Changewater. ♦ Electric Ferrys, Inc. began Weehawken Undercliff to W. 23rd Street ferry service on 11.8. ◆ Railroad Construction Co. by the Daloisio family. Over the years they have expanded to become the largest railroad contractor in NJ.
1927 A major fire in the PRR's Pier K in Jersey City destroyed 35 freight cars. ♦ February 28th - the Baltimore & Ohio was the first railroad to keep its charter name for a century. ◆ The Holland Tunnel, world's first and for many years longest underwater vehicular tunnel opened. The 1.6 mile subaqueous road tunnel was the first built to handle the ventilation problems associated with automotive traffic. Besides being listed on the National Register of Historic Places, it has been named a National Historic Landmark, a National Civil Engineering Landmark, and a Mechanical Engineering Landmark. ♦ The Central Railroad of NJ started their first bus route on May 22nd under their Jersey Central Transportation Company. It operated between Lakewood and Tom's River and was called the Jolly Tar Trail route. ♦ The Lindbergh special train traveled on the Pennsylvania Railroad between Washington (through NJ) and New York at an average speed of 74mph on 11 June. Powered by 4-4-2 Atlantic locomotive #460, it rushed films of Charles A. Lindberg’s Presidential welcoming ceremony at Washington, DC to NYC in a record two hours and 56 minutes. ♦ Public Service began extra fare, express bus lines called "Super Service" routes. ♦ On July 16th a well used 12-passenger Flxible Buick sedan bus departed NYC, passed through the then-new Holland Tunnel and traveled across New Jersey to Trenton, en-route west. Four days later the bus arrived in Los Angeles. ♦ New Jersey became the 45th th state to pass a gasoline tax - it was 2¢ per gallon. ♦ Mack Truck Company began producing a completely new line of gasoline-electric rail motorcars and small locomotives at their Plainfield plant. ♦ New Jersey completed a Master Plan for the first truly comprehensive network of state highways. In the plan was a new forty mile road to connect Elizabeth and Trenton - which became known as US Rt. 1. ♦ Fred W. Icken founded Icken Model (railroad) Locomotive Company at Palisades Park, NJ to custom build "O" gauge steam locomotives. ♦ L.B. Miller set another record on a round trip between New York City and San Francisco on the Lincoln Highway in one minute less than a week by auto. ♦ As part of their 100th anniversary celebration the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad held a month-long “Fair of the Iron Horse.” Several New Jersey heritage locomotives were in the display and parade: The John Bull; The General; The William Mason; and others. ◆ The New Jersey State Highway Department became one of the first in the US to propose dualized highways for heavily traveled routes. ♦ Air express service began at Hadley Field at South Plainfield and had two international air services. One route transported passengers and mail to Montreal and the other carried mail to Mexico City. ♦ PRR passenger service between Mt. Holly and Medford were curtailed. ♦ PRR/WJ&SS abandoned passenger service between Medford and Haddonfield. ♦ The PRR abandoned their Burlington to Mt. Holly branch - it was the site of early electrification experiments. ♦ Public Service acquired 50 double deck Yellow Coach buses when it took over Penn Jersey Rapid Transit - a Camden to Philadelphia operator. Twenty-six of the buses went to the Essex Division and 24 stayed in the Camden area. All were cut down to single decker by the late 1930's. ◆ This was H&M's busiest year - 113,141,729 passengers were carried. ◆ Public Service carried a record 450 million passengers statewide in this year. ◆ Air horns became standard equipment on Lackawanna Railroad steam locomotives to supplement whistles.
1928 Artist Griff Teller's first painting was used by the Pennsylvania Railroad on their calendar this year. For the next 26 years the PRR calendar used paintings by Teller, who lived in Little Falls, NJ. ♦ The Morris County Traction Co. abandoned its last trolley line - from Morristown to Public Service Terminal, Newark and its substitute bus lines were taken over by Public Service on February 4th. Five of their trolley cars were purchased and operated many years by the Montreal & Southern Counties Ry. Their hulks remained in a nearby salvage yard for many more years. ♦ The first revenue-service cross country bus line departed San Francisco and arrived in New York City in five days, 14 hours. The Pioneer Yelloway Stage, operated through our state via Camden, Newark and Jersey City. The first revenue-service cross country bus line departed San Francisco and arrived in New York City in five days, 14 hours. The Pioneer Yelloway Stage, operated through our state via Camden, Newark and Jersey City. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad ordered 629 new steel passenger cars to eliminate the use of wooden passenger equipment in regular service. This was the largest order for steel passenger cars ever placed at one time in railroad history. ♦ The first full "cloverleaf" intersection was constructed in Woodbridge to improve highway safety and save time. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad was the first railroad to invest money in air transport when it took a subsatantial interest in Transcontinental Air Transport. ◆ Public Service Coordinated Transport, the transit arm of Public Service Corporation, was formed to operate trolley and bus lines in most of New Jersey, succeeding Public Service Railway Co. ♦ The American Electric Railway Association held a convention and exhibition in Atlantic City. ◆ On 10.14 the CRR of NJ began operating special trains for the American Zeppelin Transport Company to carry their passengers between the US Navy Lakehurst base and New York City. ♦ Mexican aviator, Capt. Emillo Carranza, while attempting a non-stop solo flight from NY to Mexico City, encountered a violent thunderstorm and crashed at Tabernacle, in the South Jersey Pinelands. ♦ American Rolling Mills (Armco Steel), which purchased the first diesel locomotive bought by any steel mill, ordered three more Ingersoll-Rand units. These units pioneered the use of multiple-unit control on diesel locomotives, now a standard feature. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad inaugurated container service for less-than-carload freight between So. Kearny, NJ and other states. They formed Keystone Container Car Co. and built 7' x 9' steel containers, 8' high of which five could be loaded on one flat car. ♦ Public Service initiated interstate bus service between Newark and New York City via Jersey City. ♦ The Baltimore & Ohio was the first railroad to install tight-lock couplers on cars - November. ◆ Public Service helped introduce the diesel-powered bus to America by sending Vice President Matthew Boylan and Chief Engineer Martin Schreiber to England to investigate the diesel-electric drive there. The following year PS imported a couple of Mercedes-Benz diesel buses with electric drive. They gave very satisfactory service but replacement parts supply was a problem. ♦ Newark Airport officially opened on October 1st with both passenger and mail service. With a 1,600-foot asphalt-topped runway, it was the first hard-surface strip on any commercial airport in the country. The art deco passenger terminal building was topped by the world's first airport control tower. ♦ A northbound train on the PRR Belvidere Delaware branch derailed at Titusville and its Atlantic type locomotive landed on its side in the Delaware & Raritan Canal feeder. ◆ Public Service street cars and buses established a new record for total miles covered in regular operation in one year when the total for this year reached 102,405,081 miles. Of that number, their 1,538 buses were running a total of 5,000,000 miles per month. ♦ Outerbridge Crossing (between Perth Amboy and Tottenville, Staten Island), the first bridge built by the Port Authority of NY & NJ, was opened. ♦ The Goethals bridge between Elizabeth and Howland Hook, Staten Island was opened. ♦ From this year to 1957, the Montclair Branch of the Lackawanna Railroad was the most heavily traveled commuter branch in the country. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad began extensive purchases of bus and truck lines, which became Pennsylvania Greyhound Lines and Pennsylvania Truck Lines respectively. ♦ The American Locomotive Co. Cooke Works in Paterson closed. Most of the land and buildings were sold to the Wright Aeronautical Corporation. Wright razed locomotive shop buildings and erected a large airplane engine cylinder foundry. ♦ PRR Monmouth Jct. - Kingston - Rocky Hill passenger trains were discontinued. ♦ The Morristown & Erie RR discontinued all passenger service. ♦ The CNJ discontinued passenger service between Hopatcong Jct. & Lake Hopatcong; between High Bridge, Rockaway and Hibernia; and on the Long Valley - Chester Branch. ♦ The NYS&W abandoned track between Delaware Jct. and Delaware. ♦ The Jersey City Wagon Elevator was abandoned by Public Service.
1929 The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad introduced their first lounge cars and the first air-conditioned test coach on trains operated through New Jersey. ♦ The CNJ established their Blue Comet train between Jersey City and Atlantic City. It was the first deluxe non-reserved coach train in America. ♦ The New Jersey law prohibiting street railways from operating buses was changed. ♦ While taking off from the new Newark Airport on March 17th (St. Patrick’s Day), on the last of a series of sightseeing trips, a large Ford tri-motor airplane crashed into a CNJ freight train. When two of the three motors went dead the pilot lost altitude over the Newark & Elizabeth Branch near Port Newark. No one on the ground was hurt. The pilot and two passengers were injured, but 13 passengers were killed. The survivor were put aboard a CNJ steam locomotive an rushed to Newark for medical help. Area newspapers claimed the incident was the worst wreck in aviation history. ◆ The Pennsylvania Railroad inaugurated Airway Limited coast to coast combination rail (during night)/air(during daylight) travel on July 7th in cooperation with the Santa Fe Railroad. The air portion of the journey was handled by Transcontinental Air Transport, a PRR subsidiary. The trip could be made in 48 hours - a record at the time when an all-rail trip took 100 hours. ♦ Ninety-four new Super Service buses were placed in operation by Public Service on interurban and interstate routes in northern New Jersey. They had deep leather seats with double cushions and were distinguished by an attractive maroon exterior color and cream trim. The second floor of the PS Newark terminal was renovated to accommodate the new buses along with street cars. ♦ Public Service built up a fleet of 2,300 buses on 150 routes, one of the largest such fleets in the world. Their buses then carried more riders than the trolleys. ♦ Mack Truck Company began building 12 to 60 ton gasoline engine powered industrial switchers at their Plainfield plant. ♦ A fire in the Trenton and Mercer County Traction Co. carbarn destroyed 35 trolley cars. ♦ A record-breaking chartered bus trip was operated on July 18th when 111 Public Service buses carried 3,343 members of the Prudential Life Insurance Athletic Association and their friends on an annual outing to Asbury Park. Five additional empty buses were sent to pick up passengers in any bus which might possibly be delayed by tire trouble. ♦ Public Service tested a Mercedes-Benz diesel engine in one of their buses. ♦ The October 29th Stock Market crash produced losses estimated at $50 billion and the worst American depression began. ♦ The Ford Edgewater plant opened with production of Model A cars. Jeeps and military vehicles were made there during World War II. ♦ The Lackawanna Railroad began the acquisition of a fleet of 50 modern 4-8-4 locomotives. They had the first frame and cylinders cast integrally. (Railroad History Bulletin #182) ♦ The Central Railroad of NJ inaugurated The Bullet train between Jersey City and Wilkes-Barre on 11/6. ◆ Newark Airport was designated as the metropolitan air mail terminus and operations began. Scheduled passenger service was begun by four airlines. ♦ The Montclair Connection between the Erie's Greenwood Lake Branch and the Lackawanna's Montclair Branch was first proposed. Seventy-one years later work on the project began. ♦ The Regional Plan Association first proposed a controlled-access beltway that would circle the New Jersey - New York metropolitan area. The final link in Route 287, through northern NJ, was completed in 1993. ♦ Hudson & Manhattan Railroad ridership peaked at 112.3 million. ♦ The North Jersey Rapid Transit Line was abandoned by Public Service. ♦ The Carteret, NJ to Travis, SI ferry was discontinued. ♦ Public Service began selling new fare tokens. The front showed a trolley and “PUBLIC SERVICE COORDINATED TRANSPORT - N.J. -” and the rear showed a bus; the signature of Thomas N. McCarter Pres. and “GOOD FOR ONE FARE” ◆ Public Service opened a new bus terminal on the upper level of the new PS Terminal Building in Newark. In addition to their routes to Asbury Park, Butler, Clifton,Denville, Hackensack, Newton, New York, and Plainfield, the following foreign lines also shared the terminal: Colonial-Greyhound Coach Line, Colonial Stages, Frank Martz Coach Lines, Golden Arrow Lines, Great Lake Stages, Philadelphia Rapid Transit, and Whiteway Tours. ◆ The peak year for pleasure boats on the Delaware and Raritan Canal was noted with 941 non-commercial vessels moving through the waterway. ◆ The Palmyra, NJ to Tacony, PA ferry ????
1930 The Central Railroad of NJ inaugurated The Williamsporter train between Jersey City and Williamsport, PA. ◆ The PRR Exchange Place to Desbrosses St. ferry was discontinued on 1.31. ♦ In conjunction with the electrification of the PRR’s main line, the aqueduct of the Delaware & Raritan Canal had to be raised three feet to provide clearance for the railroad catenary. A new concrete lock was constructed immediately south of the aqueduct and the banks of the canal banks were raised three feet from the new lock to the State Street lock. This permitted electric MU train operation to begin between Trenton and Philadelphia. ◆ The Baltimore & Ohio introduced the first successfully air conditioned dining car, the Martha Washington, in April. ◆ Thomas Edison was at the controls of the first passenger-carrying Lackawanna Railroad electric train which departed Hoboken for Montclair. This electrification was the first usage of 3,000-volt direct current in railroad suburban service in America. The rectifiers in the sub-stations at Bergen Junction and Roseville were the first in America and the largest in the world to operate at 3,000-volt direct current in railroad service. ♦ The Baltimore & Ohio was the first railroad in the east to introduce reclining-seat cars - July. ◆ The Reading was the first eastern railroad to announce plans for a streamlined train, the Crusader. ♦ A cooperative alliance with the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad and others provided a coast to coast transport service (to and from Jersey City) using airplanes during daylight hours and passenger trains for travel at night when the aircraft of the time could not navigate. ♦ The Baltimore & Ohio was the first railroad to use pre-cooling machines for overnight sleepers in Summer. ◆ The following locomotives were among those displayed at the annual convention of railroad Master Mechanics at Atlantic City: Timken Roller Bearing equipped 4-8-4 #1111, built by Alco; Delaware & Hudson 4-6-2 #651; Gasoline-electric locomotive #463, built by General Motors?; A six wheel gasoline-electric locomotive built by Mack Trucks Rail Car Dept.; and Westinghouse oil-electric locomotive #23. ♦ The Reading Railroad, The NY & Long Branch Railroad, the Atlantic City Railroad and the Central Railroad of NJ joined together in a National Accident Prevention Drive, October 18-31. ♦ New Jersey was the first state to have legislation in place to construct sidewalks along rural highways. ♦ Joshua Lionel Cowen launched a magazine to transform toy-train fans into railfans. It was titled The Lionel Magazine: The Model Railroad Magazine for Every Boy, but it focused on real railroad practice and operation. ♦ The classic period of Standard gauge model trains reached its zenith with the production of Lionel's Blue Comet, one of the most popular of all Standard gauge trains. ♦ New Jersey is credited with the first use of economic analysis to determine highway placement and design (for the Pulaski Skyway). ♦ Greyhound Corp. was established and adopted the "running dog" as its symbol. They purchased a 50% interest in the PRR owned Pennsylvania Greyhound lines. ♦ Newark Airport was the busiest commercial airport in the world. ♦ The President's Conference Committee was formed to design and produce an entirely new streetcar. Public Service was initially a member. ♦ The first ever gasoline-electric streetcars were designed, built and put into regular service by Public Service on the Fast Line between Elizabeth, New Brunswick and Trenton. They allowed removal of overhead wires and reduction of operating costs. ♦ L&HR Ry curtailed passenger service between Warwick, NY and Easton, PA. ◆ The Central RR of NJ abandoned passenger service between East Long Branch and Branchport. ◆The Holland Tunnel was acquired by the Port of NY Authority.
1931 The first official electric train operations began on the Passaic and Delaware Branch of the Lackawanna Railroad on January 6th. ◆ The George Washington bridge was completed over the Hudson to Fort Lee, NJ. With a span of 3,500 feet it was the longest suspension bridge completed to date. It was designed to be able to accommodate rail transit with a connection to the New York City 8th Avenue subway line (currently known as the "A" Train). ♦ On February 5th Col. Howard G. Hill received permission to ride in the cabs of the locomotives hauling the Pennsylvania Railroads’ Broadway Limited from New York to Chicago. He was thought to be the first and only person to make the entire continuous 908-mile trip in an engine cab. ◆ The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad introduced the first fully air-conditioned passenger trains in history. The Columbian trains operated across New Jersey between Jersey City and Washington. (August Mencken, The Railroad Passenger Car) ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad adopted 152-lb. rail for main lines. The first ten miles were laid between Deans and Plainsboro. These were the heaviest steel rails ever laid in the main line track of any railroad in the world. ♦ The Bayonne Bridge was completed and for 45 years was the world's longest single span steel arch bridge. The main arch span was designed to accommodate rail transit outboard of the vehicle lanes, but the approaches were supported by concrete piers which were not so designed. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad opened their 2,371,000 sq. ft. Rail-to-Keel Terminal (a/k/a Harborside Terminal) at Jersey City. It was said to be the largest, most modern, and most unusual waterfront terminal in the country. Included in the complex were two piers, warehouses, a cold storage plant, offices and stores. The facility has been converted to office occupancy and is now known as Harborside Financial Center. ♦ The Tacony - Palmyra road bridge was opened to traffic. Its 540' center span was the world's longest vertical lift span. ♦ The Tacony - Palmyra ferry ceased operation. One of their boats was the Mt. Holly, built in South Jacksonville, FL in 1913. It survives on Lake Champlain as the Adirondack and is the oldest operating ferryboat in America. ◆ The Lackawanna Railroad suburban electrification was completed. It was the first use of 3000-volt DC MU cars on a large scale and the first major all-rectifier 3000-volt electrification. ♦ Spicer, of South Plainfield, introduced a heavy duty transmission with helical gears. ♦ The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad inaugurated "Rail-Air Passenger Service" between Jersey City and Los Angeles/San Francisco. ♦ Ground was broken for construction of the Newark City Subway. ♦ Jersey Central’s The Bullet stopped running on 7/12. ◆ The Pennsylvania Railroad had a minority interest in the Greyhound Corporation; acquired a 50% interest in Pennsylvania Greyhound; and had interests in other bus lines making a system of 8,000 miles. ♦ The innovative SeaTrain Lines Service was incorporated. Entire railroad freight cars were hoisted aboard their specially equipped steamships first at Hoboken, then Edgewater and transported to and from Savannah, New Orleans, Texas and Cuba. ♦ The Erie Railroad placed four new diesel-electric tugs in service in New York Harbor. ♦ The Timken Roller Bearing Co. 4-8-4 locomotive No. 1111 pulled Lackawanna passenger trains in demonstration service. (Railroad History Bulletin #182) It also operated on the Lehigh Valley RR. ♦ Public Service established "Bus Information" telephone service in the Newark area. ♦ Eckel's Autogiro Port was established in Washington Township, Warren County. It was the first exclusive autogiro airport in America. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad inaugurated The Speed Witch, one of the pioneers in initiating fast merchandise freight service on the railroads of America. ♦ Coast Cities Railway (Long Branch - Asbury Park - Manasquan) abandoned its streetcars. ♦ Trenton & Mercer County Traction trolleys were abandoned. ◆ Lincoln Stages, Inc. was established by William Van Loy and Earl Johnson who thought they could make money carrying passengers between New York, Lakewood and the seashore resorts. ◆ The PRR electrification between Camden and Atlantic City was changed back to steam operation east of Newfield.
1932 Timken roller bearings were installed on two of the Lackawanna's new 4-8-4 locomotives built by Alco. These were the first applications on a steam locomotive after Timken's own 4-8-4 #1111 was built. Railroad History Bulletin #182) ♦ The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad introduced the first air-conditioned sleeping-car train, the National Limited on April 20th. ◆ The Pulaski Skyway opened and quickly became the busiest stretch of highway in the country. It was New Jersey's first superhighway; was the world's first true expressway and most expensive highway when built. This spectacular skyroad is carried on a mammoth viaduct extending 3.7 miles over the Passaic and Hackensack rivers and Meadowlands. Connecting with it, the first "double-dual" highway in the world was constructed between Newark and Elizabeth. The American Institute of Steel Construction called it the "most beautiful steel bridge" and it has been designated a civil engineering landmark. ♦ The Model Railroad Shop, the longest continuously established in the business, opened in Dunellen, NJ. It was one of the first retail model stores to offer mail order/catalog service. ♦ The Delaware & Raritan Canal was abandoned as a waterway but continues as a water source for various communities in central New Jersey.. ♦ Salem & Penns Grove Traction Co. abandoned streetcar service on 8.16 - sixteen years to the day after it began. ♦ DL&W discontinued passenger train service between Dover and Chester. ♦ The Wharton & Northern RR curtailed all passenger trains.
1933 The Pennsylvania Railroad completed electrification of their main line between Manhattan Transfer and Trenton on 1.16. This permitted through main line trains to run between New York and Wilmington or Paoli with electric locomotives. It also replaced the third rail operations between NYC and Manhattan Transfer. ◆ After Franklin D. Roosevelt became president he frequently traveled the Baltimore & Ohio - Reading - Jersey Central - National Docks Railroad and New York Central West Shore routes to his family home in Hyde Park, NY. ♦ The London Midland & Scottish Railway sent "The Royal Scot" one of their heaviest standard steam passenger locomotives and an eight car train of coaches and sleepers to the US for a tour and display at the Century of Progress Exposition in Chicago. The train was unloaded at Boston, was shown at New York for two days and then spent a full day at Newark, then Trenton and Atlantic City before continuing on tour to Chicago. ♦ The PRR and Reading RR (West Jersey & Sea Shore and Atlantic City RR) were combined to form Pennsylvania-Reading Seashore Lines ♦ Lionel installed the first "chugger" units in its model trains. ♦ The first issue of Model Craftsman Magazine was published. The periodical continues to the present as Railroad Model Craftsman under Carstens Publications at Newton for the last several decades. ♦ The Interstate Trolley Club was founded in Trenton. This group led to the formation of the National Railway Historical Society in 1936. ♦ The Newark Evening News experimented with use of airplanes to help speed delivery of newspapers throughout the state. ♦ PRR Millstone Branch passenger trains were discontinued and Flemington Branch passenger trains curtailed. ◆ The Erie Railroad inaugurated an expanded freight collection and delivery program on December 1st, advertising it with the jingle: ‘Today a phone call to your Erie agent solves all your problems on less-than-carload shipments.
1934 The first New Jersey State Chamber of Commerce train was run to Washington, DC. It has become an annual event for lobbyists, executives, Assembly members and Senators, legislative candidates and gubernatorial hopefuls, staff and Cabinet officers, Republicans and Democrats. ♦ Public Service converted their first electric-drive bus to an "All-Service Vehicle" and tested it on Pershing Road Hill in Weehawken on January 11th. Those present included Public Service President, Thomas N. McCarter; other PS officials; representatives from General Motors and General Electric and local officials. Many other tests followed as it was demonstrated to transit officials from foreign countries. Patent application #S.N. 707,053, on the All-Service Vehicle, signed by Martin Schreiber was filed in the US Patent Office. Eventually 226 older gas-electric buses were converted for ASV operation. ♦ Converted/test All-Service Vehicle B 2015 was driven to the Brill Company plant at Philadelphia and exhibited to company officials as well as transit officials from Baltimore, Boston, Brooklyn, Indianapolis, New York City, Philadelphia and Washington. ◆ Martin Schreiber delivered a paper on the All-Service Vehicle to the Cleveland Section of the Society of Automotive Engineers. Many articles on the All-Service Vehicle were published in the journals and periodicals of the time. ◆ NJ Governor Harry Moore signed into law: “An act to authorize the operation by any traction company operating a street railway, or railroad operated as a street railway, of trackless trolleys, trolley buses or motor vehicles which are operated in part by electricity furnished by an overhead trolley system and in part by other motive power in substitution or partial substitution for street railway operation.” ◆ The Baltimore & Ohio was the first railroad to use the light-weight Cor-Ten steel freight car - May 21st. ◆ The former Atlantic City RR station was replaced by the new Atlantic City Union station which opened on June 24th. ◆ A Texaco advertisement in the July issue of Transit Journal stated "America's largest transit operation (Public Service) is now lubricated by Texaco." ♦ The first mechanical plant for transfer of bulk cement from rail cars to marine vessels in the United States was opened in Jersey City by the CRRNJ. ♦ The New Jersey Motor Truck Association sponsored their first of a series of week-long National Motor Truck Shows at the former Newark Municipal Center Market. ♦ Captain Eddie Rickenbacker landed at Newark Airport, setting a new passenger transport record of 12 hours and three minutes from Los Angeles. ♦ The Ohio Brass Co. Designed an electrically powered trolley pole retriever for Public Service All-Service Vehicles. It was the first of its kind ever built. It was installed on ASV bus #2015 ♦ A Los Angeles to Newark air-mail speed record of 11 hours and 31 minutes was set by Jack Frye. ♦ The first prototype of the famous 100mph GG-1 electric locomotives, streamlined by Raymond Loewy, entered test service on the Pennsylvania Railroad. They were the first streamlined electric locomotives. Eventually, by 1943, a total of 139 GG-1's were built. ♦ The gasoline-electric cars on the Public Service Fast Line were replaced by rail buses which could operate on either road or rail. ♦ On Sept. 8th, the SS Morro Castle, en-route to New York City, caught fire off the NJ coast with the loss of 133 lives. The smoking hulk drifted ashore at Asbury Park. ◆ Public Service All-Service Vehicle #2015 was driven from Newark to Cleveland to be part of the General Electric Company exhibit at the National Association of Motor Bus Operators and American Transit Association conventions. ◆ In October, the Union Pacific’s new light-weight, streamlined train , —10001 ran from Los Angeles to New York City, a distance of 3,248 miles, in 56 hours and 55 minutes. It attained a maximum speed of 120 miles an hour and ran 506 miles at an average of 82.7 m.p.h. ◆ The $1 Mickey Mouse windup handcar helped Lionel stay afloat in the midst of the Great Depression as the company teetered on the brink of insolvency. Lionel produced its first streamliner, the O gauge M-10000, just as the real-life Union Pacific M-10000 (it was the world’s first lightweight streamliner) caught the public eye, adding a sorely needed shot of excitement and publicity to the line. The streamliner also ushered in Lionel's "age of realism" and O-72 Model Builders track. ♦ After contributing financially to the Electric Railway President's Conference Committee to aid the development of a modern street car, Public Service Coordinated Transport suddenly initiated a research program to radically rebuild a number of compromise roof cars built in 1916-22. In addition, they designed an entirely new car somewhat different from the prototype P.C.C. "Model B" car built by Pullman Standard for the E.R.P.C.C. and the 20 modern cars built by Brill and St. Louis for Capital Transit, Washington, D.C. The program included the design of a new railway truck with resilient wheels. The "Newark Experiment" resulted in some modernization of cars #8006, 2614 and 2666, without the new trucks and the entirely new car was not built. ♦ The DL&W Franklin Furnace branch was abandoned. ♦ South Plainfield - Perth Amboy passenger trains were discontinued by the LV RR. ♦ Buses were substituted for the last trolleys operated by Trenton Transit Co. ◆ The original owners of Lincoln Stages could not raise sufficient capital to properly operate their bus line, so a substantial interest in the company was sold to Benjamin Casser and their name was changed to Lincoln Transit.
1935 Public Service placed orders for 61 All-Service Vehicles with General Motors and one with Mack-International on January 8th. ◆ PRR GG-1 No. 4800 and modified P5a No. 4780 began a week-long display tour on Feb. 4th. Stops included Newark and Trenton. ◆ Franklin D. Roosevelt made the first presidential trip over the newly electrified main line of the Pennsylvania Railroad. The GG-1 powered train set a speed record of 2 hours and 53 minutes from Washington to New York. ♦ On a test run between Jersey City and Philadelphia, a Reading Co. streamlined "Pacific" locomotive covered the 90 miles in 88 minutes including three station stops. ♦ Public Service Coordinated Transport began replacement of street cars with the new hybrid gasoline-electric All-Service Vehicle. The first ASV to arrive on April 24th, #B-9000, was the only unit built by Mack. Since it was the first ASV on the property it made numerous appearances for publicity and to gain approval for operation in various municipalities. ◆ On May 8th Amelia Earhart departed Mexico City on the first non-stop flight to Newark Airport. The 2,125-mile trip took 14 hours and 18 minutes. ◆ The first General Motors (Yellow Coach) ASV (#9100) arrived on PS property. It was followed by more than 350 of the new ASVs (a combination trolley bus and gas-electric motor bus), built by GM. Most were transported east to NJ from the Pontiac, Michigan area on flat cars via the CRR of NJ Main Line. The ASV's were the first bus vehicles to employ a supercharged engine. ♦ The Mack and one of the new Yellow Coach ASV’s were taken to the American Transit Association Convention at Atlantic City for exhibition and demonstration rides. A special committee of the American Transit Association, headed by M.R. Boylan, Vice-President, Public Service Coordinated Transport recommended the formation a new Bus Division. It was approved by the ATA executive committee and Boylan was made chairman. ♦ Public Service engineers developed a new electric railway truck. It featured divided axles (to prevent wheel slippage on curves) with each wheel driven by an individual motor; pneumatic tires with steel treads; roller bearings; and magnetic track brakes in addition to the usual clasp breaks. ♦ Following tests with a single car, the Lackawanna Railroad modernized an entire six-car electric suburban train. The car exteriors were sheathed in aluminum and interiors were painted in various pastel colors. ♦ The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad placed their new Royal Blue train in service between Jersey City and Washington. The blue and gold train was the first full size train ever built of aluminum. Two months later it was powered by the 1,800 HP #50, the first self contained, non-articulated, diesel-electric passenger locomotive in the nation. No. 50 was built by the Electro-Motive Corporation and sparked a revolution which replaced the steam locomotive. It now resides in the National Museum of Transportation at St. Louis. ♦ Volume 1, No. 1 of Railroad Fans Journal was edited and published by Francis E. Meaney, Jr. and Edward F. Gardner who both lived on Charles St. (#68 & #47 respectively) in Metuchen. They dropped "Fan" from the title and John Brinckmann who lived on the same street at #44 became the editor until publication ceased in 1943. ♦ Mantua Toy & Metal Products Company was the first manufacturer to introduce American "HO" gauge model railroad parts and mechanisms. ♦ Lionel produced the first whistle unit for their model trains. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad completed electrification on their entire New York to Washington line. In conjunction with this project, a cab signal system was installed. This inductive cab-signal and train control system was the very first application of vacuum-tube electronics outside of the communications industry. Through freight trains on the main line began to be regularly powered by electric locomotives. ♦ Newark City Subway, which was built in the bed of the abandoned Morris Canal, opened. ♦ Pennsylvania Railroad trains began using their new Newark Station. Three vertical-lift bridges carried the six tracks across the Passaic River. One of the spans was built with three tracks and it was the longest three-track lift span ever constructed. ♦ The American Transit Association held their 54th annual convention at the Ambassador Hotel in Atlantic City. ♦ The Lincoln Highway was marked coast-to-coast with concrete posts set by Boy Scouts. The distinctive posts, which featured Lincoln medallions, contained directional arrows. The only one remaining in New Jersey is in Princeton. ♦ Newark Airport opened the world's first air traffic control tower. ♦ The film Highway Mania was produced by Pathe for the NJ Dept. of Motor Vehicles. ♦ The Polk brothers started a retail model hobby products business in Newark, NJ, then New York City, but in 1950 they setup a warehouse in Jersey City and Polk's Model Craft Hobbies / Aristo-Craft moved to Irvington in 1999. The firm designs, (manufacturing is outsourced), sells, distributes and services large scale model trains which can operate both indoors and outdoors in gardens. ♦ National Trailways Bus System was formed. ♦ Amelia Earhart flew non-stop from Mexico City to Newark in 14 hours and 19 minutes. ♦ The NJ Highway Department opened the first laboratory for the research and testing of road materials and products. ♦ NYS&W Beaver Lake - Water Gap and Stroudsburg passenger service was discontinued. ♦ Ogden/Edison Mines branch was abandoned (not dismantled until 1944). ♦ All Public Service Camden-based Southern Division, wide gauge, streetcars were discontinued except for a franchise car which continued to operate between Station Avenue, Haddon Heights and Clementon. Some of the Camden trolley lines were converted to All-Service Vehicle operation. ♦ The Erie RR Erskine Jct. to Greenwood Lake/Stirling Forest passenger service was curtailed and the line was abandoned. ◆ The National Railway Historical Society was founded. ◆ As of December 31st, Public Service Coordinated Transport and its subsidiary companies had in operation 162 motor bus lines, 32 street car lines, two ferries and were providing taxicab service in seven municipalities. Equipment on the same date included 2,178 motor buses, 1,220 street cars, 61 All-Service Vehicles, 401 taxicabs and 7 ferry-boats.
1936 An article in the February issue of Transit Journal was titled "All-Service Vehicles Highly Successful." ♦ A new coast-to-coast bus network was revealed with the formation of the National Trailways System. ♦ The Shore Fast Line was the first to put trolley hostesses on its cars to comfort passengers. ♦ The first air-conditioned buses were operated by the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad between the Jersey City Terminal and New York City. The fleet was made up of 30 coaches with White chassis, Otto Kuhler designed streamlined bodies built by Bender with mechanical air conditioning using blocks of ice. ♦ The June issue of Transit Journal featured an eight page "Yellow Coach" ad about the $3,500,000 Public Service modernization program and the PS purchase of 377 more Yellow buses. It stated that PS had the largest bus fleet in the transit industry; operates the largest fleet of gas electrics; operates the largest fleet of "All-Service Vehicles; and purchased the first fleet of diesel-electrics. ♦ The Delaware River Joint Commission opened their High Speed Line over the Delaware River Bridge between Camden and Philadelphia. ♦ The first use of a public address system on a train in the United States was on a CRRNJ excursion between Jersey City and Valley Forge, PA. ♦ The August issue of Transit Journal featured a four page Yellow Coach ad about the light weight, low cost model 733 which they developed for Public Service. ♦ An "Off the Beaten Track" excursion was operated through New Jersey by the Pennsylvania Railroad. It was routed from Philadelphia via Trenton, the Bel Del (through Phillipsburg), the Delaware Water Gap, Scranton, Norristown and return to Philadelphia. ♦ An inspection tour to the Lehigh Valley Railroad Sayre, PA shops of the Lehigh Valley Railroad was organized under the auspices of the NY Chapter, Railway and Locomotive Historical Society, Inc. and Railroad Stories Magazine on Sunday, October 25th. It operated across NJ on the route of the Lehigh Valley RR Black Diamond. ♦ Pioneer railfan, Thomas T. Taber, organized the first chartered railfan train on a Class 1 railroad - DL&W RR locomotive #1035 hauled the excursion from Hoboken to Scranton and return. (Railroad History Bulletin #171) The Lackawanna became far and away number one in hosting fan trips, and the road's management actually welcomed such opportunities to exhibit their equipment to the public. ♦ The State of New Jersey began inspecting buses. ♦ Trailways (Bus) Transportation System was established. ♦ Howard Hughes landed at Newark Airport 9 hours and 26 minutes after leaving Burbank, CA to set a new west-east record. ♦ The first divided highway was constructed on Rt. 1 in Elizabeth. ♦ The third annual National Motor Truck Show conducted by the New Jersey Motor Truck Association was held in Newark. It was claimed to be the largest exhibition of motor trucks, trailers, accessories and safety devices that had ever been gathered under one roof. ♦ The first bus fleet in the world to utilize diesel-electric power was built for Public Service Coordinated Transport by YellowCoach. These two-cycle "oil-electrics" (or diesel-electrics) were first put into service on the No. 60 Montclair line. Public Service soon operated the largest fleet of such buses as well as the largest fleet of "All-Service Vehicles" and the largest bus fleet in the transit industry. Public Service also was a major purchaser of light weight Chevrolet-powered (model #733) buses built specifically for them by Yellow Coach. None of the 395 model 733's built for Public Service survive, but "Friends" has one of this type in the Heritage Center collection. ♦ LV RR passenger service on their Clinton and Pittston branches was discontinued. ♦ The Tuckerton RR discontinued all passenger trains. ◆ The Baltimore & Ohio RR, in conjunction with The Model Craftsman magazine conducted a contest among model builders for the construction of a model of the railroad’s Washington to Jersey City lightweight, streamlined “Royal Blue” train which was placed in service the prior year. First prize of $500 was won by Fletcher G. Speed and his model was presented by the B&O RR to the Smithsonian Institution (USNM 311191).
1937 ♦ Mantua Toy & Metal Products Company introduced the first "HO" scale train set. ♦ Spicer introduced syncro-mesh transmissions for trucks. ♦ The German zeppelin Hindenburg exploded and burned while landing at Lakehurst, killing 36, on May 8th. ◆ The nation's gold bullion stockpile was secretly moved from lower Manhattan to Fort Knox. Armored trucks transported the gold on CRRNJ ferryboats to the Jersey City Terminal where it was loaded on special, heavily guarded, trains at night. It took three years to complete the move. ♦ On July 25th Railroad Magazine and the NY chapter of the Railway and Locomotive Historical Society sponsored an excursion on the Lackawanna Railroad from Hoboken to East Binghamton, NY and return in the same day. The 14 car special trip was billed by the DL&W as an Educational Inspection Tour. From Scranton west the special was hauled by double-headed, newly streamstyled Pacific locomotives #1136 and 1123. The excursion is regarded by many as the Greatest Rail Fan Trip of all time. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad operated the "Finest, Fastest and Farthest" railroad inspection tour ever operated - from New York City and Newark to their Juniata shops at Altoona and return. ♦ The Reading Railroad placed their new, five car, bi-directional Crusader train into service. It was the first stainless steel train in the east. ♦ The North Jersey Chapter, National Railway Historical Society, was organized at Roseville Carhouse in Newark. Their early meetings were held in one of the trolley cars. Over the years the chapter has accumulated a black and white negative collection numbering over 50,000, in addition to a significant movie film collection. ♦ On May 6th the rigid airship Hindenberg, pride of Nazi Germany, exploded, burned and crashed in a ball of fire as it prepared to be secured to the mooring mast at Lakehurst Naval Station, NJ. The flammable hydrogen gas in the ship, which provided buoyancy, had ignited. Although it carried a crew of 41, 36 passengers and 21 young aviators in training, only 36 lives were lost in the crash. The event marked the ignominious end of lighter-than-air travel around the world. It also marked the end of special CNJ sight-seeing trains to Lakehurst each time a zeppelin arrived. ♦ General Motors Electro-Motive Corporation developed the first streamlined independent road-going diesel-electric locomotive. It was powered by four 12-cylinder, 900hp diesel engines housed in two carbodies. It was first sold to the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad and made its official debut hauling the Royal Blue across New Jersey to and from the CNJ Jersey City Terminal on May 25th. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad operated "A Little Off the Beaten Track Excursion" from Philadelphia via the White Marsh Branch, the Trenton Cut-off, the Rocky Hill Branch, and the Pemberton & Hightstown R.R. on June 6th for $1.50. ♦ Several hundred railroad enthusiasts departed the CRR of NJ Jersey City terminal on an excursion train to tour the Baldwin Locomotive works at Eddystone, near Philadelphia. ♦ "All-Service Vehicles Boost Riding 38%" was the title of an article which appeared in the July issue of Transit Journal. ♦ The Shore Fast Line instituted hostesses on their Atlantic City to Ocean City route to attract more passengers. ♦ America’s first authentic scale model 6 drive wheel Hudson, class JIE #5344 was produced by Lionel in NJ. ◆ The largest single excursion on the CRR of NJ operated between Bayonne and Asbury Park, carrying 17,347 passengers on 19 trains of 12 cars each. ♦ The General Motors Linden assembly plant opened. At one time it was the only GM plant that built six different truck models. ♦ The annual convention of railroad Master Mechanics was held at Atlantic City in June. The locomotives displayed just west of the station included: Southern Pacific cab forward 4-8-8-2 #4171, newly built by Baldwin Locomotive Works at Philadelphia; Union Pacific 4-6-6-4 #3915; as well as two Baltimore & Ohio locomotives: Streamlined EA diesel #51 and pioneering duplex drive semi-streamlined steamer, the George H. Emerson. ♦ The last trolley car in the Camden area ceased operating when the Haddon Heights - Clementon franchise car was replaced by a gasoline rail bus on July 2nd. The rail bus was taken off during October. ◆ An Educational Inspection Tour, jointly sponsored by Railroad Magazine and the NY chapter of the Railway and Locomotive Historical Society departed from the Lackawanna Hoboken Terminal for East Binghamton and return on July 25th. The 483 guests were carried in 14 cars. ◆ The Newark City Subway and the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad were both routed into the new Newark Penn Station. Since the Hudson & Manhattan trains were now provided with PRR train connections at Newark, Manhattan Transfer was abandoned. The new station was also served by urban, suburban and interurban buses; All-Service Vehicles and had a covered taxi stand as well. ♦ The first air-conditioned buses were introduced by the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad. They were cooled by circulating air through a compartment filled with blocks of ice and served on the Jersey City to New York City train connection routes. ♦ Lionel created a masterpiece - a magnificently detailed scale Hudson locomotive. It has a profound influence on all die-cast steam locomotives made to this day. ♦ The September 15th Convention Issue of Transit Journal carried an eight page ad titled "A plan that worked in carrying the millions safely, quickly, economically: Public Service Writes the Textbook on City Transportation." ♦ The directors of Public Service Corporation of NJ honored Thomas N. McCarter on the occasion of his 70th birthday. McCarter helped to found Public Service in 1903 and was the only president the company ever had. ♦ As part of New Jersey's Transportation Week, Public Service participated in the first transit pageant in Newark with a horsecar, a streetcar, several gas and diesel buses and no less than fifty All-Service Vehicles. ♦ Thomas T. Taber organized what we believe was the first community (not railfan) railroad appreciation project in Madison, NJ. (Railroad History Bulletin #171) ♦ Lionel began publishing Model Builder magazine, and did so until 1949. ♦ Public Service Railroad abandoned major parts of the Fast Line route between Newark and Trenton. ♦ The Lincoln Tunnel opened for traffic, becoming the second subaqueous vehicle tunnel to connect New Jersey and New York. ♦ A 1920 Paterson-built, Cooke (Alco) 2-6-0 steam locomotive, was at Jersey Central's Elizabethport shops during transition from original owner to the Bath & Hammondsport RR. The locomotive is currently in storage at the M&NJ RR. ♦ The PS New Brunswick/Milltown-Trenton Fast Line was dismantled. ♦ All PS Bergen County trolley lines were converted to bus operation.
1938 The first train route interlocking control system in the world was installed at "RU" tower in Elizabethport. ♦ The first chartered trip of any streamlined train was from Reading (to Jersey City) using the new Crusader equipment. ♦ The North Jersey Chapter, NRHS sponsored a multiple-car excursion covering the remaining trolley divisions on March 27th. The tour included an inspection of the then new Newark Penn Station, the Newark City Subway, the Cedar Street Subway, the Union City Car House, Edgewater Ferry Terminal, the Hudson River line to Paterson, and return to Newark. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad completed the greatest railroad electrification in the world. ♦ Thomas T. Taber organized the first railfan group restoration of a locomotive in the country, Lackawanna #952. (Railroad History Bulletin #171) ♦ The Railroad Journal, a monthly railroad newsmagazine began to be published. For many years John H. Brinckmann, Jr. was the editor. ◆ The Reflecting Curb was invented in New Jersey. It had contoured angled grooves that reflected light from headlights making drivers more aware of the edge of the road and center islands. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad introduced their all-new lightweight NY to Chicago Broadway Limited train. ♦ A railfan excursion was operated from Weehawken, NJ on the New York, Ontario & Western Railway on May 15th. ♦ The expanded All-Service Vehicle operations of Public Service were the largest among trolley bus operators in the US and were second place among those of the entire world. ◆ (Jun. 19) The National Railway Historical Society and the Central RR of NJ operated an "Out-of-the-way Places" excursion for $2.50 using 4-6-2 #812. It ran from Jersey City to Phillipsburg; Easton, PA; the L&HR to Andover Jct. & Port Morris; the DL&W to Lake Jct.; the Wharton & Northern to Green Pond Jct. & return; and the CNJ back to High Bridge and Jersey City. ♦ The 1,000,000th export Chevrolet was shipped out of the Bloomfield boxing plant of General Motors International via the Erie RR. ♦ In July, Robert R. Golem was given a summons for flying low over Paterson. ♦ The first 100 feet of the miniature Centerville & Southwestern Railroad was built at the Henry Becker & Son, Inc. dairy farm at Roseland, NJ. ♦ Transit Journal of August had an article titled: "World's largest double-trolley installation: How Public Service Coordinated Transport has rebuilt 287 miles of street railway overhead line for operation of 583 All-Service Vehicles by electric power." ♦ On September 21st the first major hurricane experienced by the Northeast in modern times struck with little warning. New Jersey railroads, bridges and highways near the coast were heavily damaged. ♦ The Atlantic City and Shore Railroad Co. began operating a modern, streamlined demonstrator streetcar. Its design and purchase was funded by AC&SR parent Pennsylvania Railroad Co. Just before Christmas 1939, the Pennsylvania placed another order for 24 cars, for Atlantic City, which were delivered in 1940. They were the next to last sale made by the J.G. Brill Co. of Philadelphia and were called Brilliners. The new streamlined (by designer Raymond Loewy), light weight, fast and quiet cars had rubber insert wheels, rubber springs, magnetic track brakes, foot controls for the operator and were designed especially for Atlantic City. ♦ The world's first train route control interlocking with plug-in relays and fireproof wire was installed at Jersey Central's RU Tower, Elizabethport. The unit was preserved by the Tri-State Railway Historical Society in 1985. ♦ The first Mack diesel engine was released to the market. ♦ The Erie RR hauled the largest steel girder ever made from Transfer, PA to Weehawken, NJ. The 100 ton, 144' long, 17' 5" high beam was built by the American Shipbuilding Co. for the Lincoln Tunnel approach. ♦ PRR Camden & Amboy (Jamesburg - Bordentown) passenger trains were curtailed. ♦ All L&NE RR passenger trains in NJ were discontinued. ♦ NYS&W RR Sussex Branch (Sussex - Hanford) passenger trains were curtailed and Lodi Branch passenger trains discontinued. ♦ All passenger trains on the Raritan River RR were curtailed. ♦ The Erie Railroad succumbed to bankruptcy.
1939 A NY Railroad Enthusiasts inspection trip on the NYO&W RR was organized by Bob Collins to Cadosia, NY and return on Feb. 5th. An observation parlor car was attached to the regular train for their group. ◆ Paterson-built (in 1861 by NJ Locomotive & Machine Works) 4-4-0 William Crooks traveled under steam 1,500 miles from St. Paul, MN to the New York World's Fair. At its birthplace - Paterson - it was accorded a civic reception. The NY World's Fair -NJ Connection is detailed in NJ Transport Heritage, Vol. 10, No. 2, April 2001. In addition, DL&W 4-6-4 Pocono #1151 (renumbered 1940 for the occasion) was displayed at the fair in the summer of 1940. ♦ A National Railway Historical Society excursion, using Blue Comet cars, was hauled over the Southern NJ Railroad Co. (originally the Tuckerton Railroad) by their two steam locomotives from Barnegat to Tuckerton and return. ♦ Their Majesties, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth of England made a special tour by train of Canada and the US. The Royal train took an interesting detour on its American itinerary, en-route from Washington, DC to New York City. It left the PRR main line at Monmouth Junction, and followed a routing through Jamesburg (where a steam locomotive was exchanged for the electric), Freehold, and Sea Girt to Red Bank. A pilot train ran ahead of the blue-and-silver painted Royal Train, carrying members of the press. The Royal Train arrived at Red Bank at 7am on June 10th. The King and Queen detrained there and traveled by automobile to Fort Hancock on Sandy Hook, where they boarded the destroyer USS Warrington for the trip to New York City. ◆ The newly organized Railroadians of America operated their first inspection train, the first using a 4-4-0 in the New York area on 6.19). Lackawanna locomotive #970 hauled the six car train, including the first gondola to be used on such a train for passengers in the New York area. (Railroad History Bulletin #171) The Railroadians were primarily a New Jersey-based organization. ♦ GM developed a 16-cylinder, 1,350hp diesel engine which powered the first road freight diesel locomotives. These units were designated the "FT" series and were eventually purchased by the Baltimore & Ohio; Erie; Lackawanna; Lehigh Valley; NY, Ontario & Western; and Reading railroads, which operated in New Jersey. ♦ Eastern Airlines began a shuttle operation between Central or Camden Airport and the roof of the 30th Street Post Office in Philadelphia on July 5th. The air mail service utilized a Kellett Autogiro and was the smallest and shortest scheduled airline operation in the world; the first one with a rotary aircraft; and the first scheduled operation from a rooftop. ♦ An excellent promotional documentary film, Public Service, showing trolleys, buses, All-Service Vehicles and ferries was produced by Public Service Coordinated Transport. ♦ The New York, Ontario & Western Railway began operating their refurbished "Mountaineer" passenger train. Its steam locomotive was streamstyled by Otto Kuhler. ♦ Susquehanna Transfer was opened in North Bergen adjacent to the entrance ramp leading to the Lincoln Tunnel. It allowed Susquehanna Railroad passengers to transfer to buses providing connecting service into midtown Manhattan and later the Port Authority Bus Terminal via the Lincoln Tunnel. This routing saved half an hour for passengers en route to midtown NY over the Jersey City-Erie Terminal-ferry-subway routing that was required prior to the bus connection. Public Service buses under contract with the NYS&W were painted in the same maroon and grey colors connected with the trains. ◆ Although no stops were made in New Jersey the London Midland & Scottish Railway "Coronation Scot" steam locomotive passed through our state en-route to Baltimore for storage by the B&O RR following the 1939 New York World's Fair. In spite of the outbreak of WW II it was decided to reopen the Fair for 1940 and "Coronation Scot," one of the class of most powerful express steam locomotives in Britain, came back through NJ to the Fair. ♦ Ohio Brass, a manufacturer of trolley & trolley coach overhead line materials placed a two page ad in the November issue of Transit Journal titled: "From 7 to 295 miles in 5 years: (Public Service) All-Service Vehicle ably copes with traffic conditions in densely-populated Newark area." ♦ The Greenwood Lake branch of the Erie RR was cut back to Wanaque-Midvale and dismantled. ♦ The Rt. 9 Thomas A. Edison Bridge over the Raritan River was completed. It was the largest, highest, and longest continuous girder structure in the US when completed. ♦ The grand era of Standard gauge quietly ended as Lionel focused on realistic O gauge trains. ♦ Erie RR Wanaque - Ringwood passenger trains were discontinued and from Midvale north was abandoned. ♦ Future "Friends" founding directors, Walter Grosselfinger, Bill McKelvey (Past President), Dave Phraner (Past President) & John Wilkins (Secretary) were born. ◆ The Brill engineers produced drawings for a double ended interurban Brilliner for the Atlantic City - Ocean City line, but the only order came from Philadelphia Suburban Transportation Co..
1940 From a six page January ad by Yellow Coach in Transit Journal: "...having pioneered Diesel Power in Coaches in the United States...having operated them successfully over 8,000,000 miles...Public Service gives Diesel Power the greatest of testimonials...a Repeat Order...the largest single Transit order of 1939" (242 more Diesel Yellows and 100 additional diesel engines). ♦ A two page General Electric ad in the March issue of Transit Journal touted: "Public Service KNOWS Electric Drive Pays!: 14 years experience with electric buses - 1712 purchased to date - latest order brings diesel-electric fleet to nearly 400." ♦ Under the leadership of Trustee Walter Kidde, the Susquehanna Railroad purchased two innovative, streamlined, light weight, air-conditioned, bi-directional, self-propelled rail passenger cars with hydraulic transmissions from American Car & Foundry Co. These were the first self-propelled rail cars in the country to feature air conditioning. ♦ An explosion at the Hercules Powder Co. plant at Kenvil killed 49 people and injured over 200 on Sept. 12th. An extensive narrow gauge railroad system was used to move the hazardous materials around the facility. ♦ Railroad Model Craftsman magazine, started in 1933 in NYC, moved to Ramsey, NJ. It continues to be produced by Carstens Publications (now in Newton, NJ) along with other railroad and hobby publications. ♦ The Davidson Laboratory was built at Stevens Institute in Hoboken. It featured a 300' long wave and towing tank for marine research. ♦ The remaining Tuckerton RR line from Whiting to Tuckerton was abandoned. ♦ The Morristown & Erie RR paid off their last bond - The M&E was the only US railroad to rid itself of all debt during the Great Depression. ♦ The Trenton - Princeton Traction Fast Line trolley service was abandoned on Nov. 1st, but freight service continued to be provided on the Trenton end of the line by the Reading and later Conrail???
1941 Public Service ordered its first diesel-hydraulic (transmission) buses. ♦ A waterfront conflagration in Jersey City resulted in the loss of 1500 head of cattle, two grain elevators, an engine house, a pier, 11 barges, warehouses and 15 freight cars. ♦ On May 9th, the NYS&W RR ran an inspection trip with motor car #1001 from Susquehanna Transfer to the Delaware River at Columbia and return to show off their new ACF streamliners and the new “Times-Square Service.” ◆ The NY Chapter of the Railroad Enthusiasts organized an excursion for about 225 railfans on May 25th. Their special train departed from the Jersey City terminal of the Lehigh Valley Railroad and two diners were added at Easton, PA. Upon reaching Wilkes-Barre the group boarded the electric cars of the Laurel Line and were whisked to Scranton. At Scranton waiting buses took them to a New York, Ontario & Western special train which was waiting for them on the other side of town. The O&W train made a fast run to Cadosia, and on to Middletown, NY where they stopped for lunch at the depot lunch room. They departed Middletown about 8pm for Weehawken, ferries and trains back to their NY or NJ starting points. (The O&W Observer, July, 1941) ♦ The 60th convention of the American Transit Association was held in Atlantic City. A trolley and trolley coach exhibit was set up on Virginia Avenue. Matthew R. Boylan, Vice President of Public Service Coordinated Transport was president of the ATA at the time. ♦ Alco-GE delivered their first 1000hp "road-switchers" (later called RS-1's) to several railroads, including the Susquehanna. The Army subsequently requisitioned all of the units. ♦ Sandy Hook Route was abandoned on 9.16, ending CNJ's steamboat service from the NY metropolitan area to their Atlantic Highlands Pier. ♦ The Jersey Central's Jersey City-Atlantic City Blue Comet train made its last run on September 28th, marking the end of all passenger service on the Southern Division below Lakehurst. Of the 173 passengers on the final trip from Atlantic City, 157 were a special party of Railroad Enthusiasts members. ♦ The CNJ Atlantic Pier to Atlantic Highlands service was discontinued and Lakehurst to Winslow Jct. passenger service was discontinued. ♦ The US Government began a $4-million project to reactivate the Peters and Cannon iron mines and rebuild the Ringwood branch railroad. When completed, the war was almost over. The line was later used by Ringwood Iron Mine trains and tracks were finally abandoned in 1961. ♦ The US declared war against Japan. ♦ Germany and Italy declared war against the US. ♦ The CNJ Jersey City to W. 23rd St. ferry closed on 11.14. ♦ DL&W passenger trains were discontinued between Washington and Phillipsburg. ♦ The NYS&W discontinued Butler - Sussex and Hainsburg Jct. - E. Stroudsburg, PA passenger trains and the latter line was abandoned & dismantled. ◆ Suburban Bus Company was founded.
1942 World War II caused gasoline and tire shortages and the cessation of automobile production for the general public. The use of public transit and ridership numbers exploded. ♦ New "South Kearny" and “Federal” streetcar lines were opened to serve the multitude of war workers at the Federal Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Corporation and the Western Electric Company from Exchange Place and Journal Square in Jersey City. The former route lasted until 1948, but the latter ended in 1945. ♦ The US government stopped production of toys using materials vital to the war effort and the Lionel factory produced Naval instruments. ♦ A Yellow Coach ad in the February issue of Transit Journal touted "Doing the job in... Arsenal for Liberty: Public Service Coordinated Transport... carrying thousands of workers to man important posts on our Battle Front of Production buys 181 diesel-hydraulic and 29 diesel-mechanical Yellows." ♦ The roofs of approximately 3,000 Public Service buses were painted olive drab in April to make them less visible as possible targets in enemy air raids. ◆ All production of civilian motor trucks was halted and the manufacturers geared for all-out war production. The Mack Truck Plainfield plant began turning out heavy gasoline and diesel engines and power trains for Army trucks and tanks. They also built the T-8 tank transporter, the largest and most powerful motor vehicle ever undertaken. ♦ On May 27th, The Newark Evening News began chartering trolley cars to deliver newspapers to the suburbs due to rubber and gas shortages. ♦ Synthetic rubber tires were experimentally tested on the Clifton Avenue All-Service Vehicle route of Public Service at the suggestion of United States Rubber Company and Firestone Tire & Rubber Company. ♦ A long time Hudson and Manhattan motorman was at the controls of an eastbound train from Newark when it entered the Journal Square station at full speed. Most of the cars derailed and did a tremendous amount of damage to them, the tracks, the station, telephone and communication cables, injuring 200 and killing 5 passengers. The motorman was later convicted of manslaughter and operating a train while under the influence of liquor. ◆ The Hoboken Ferry Co's 14th St. - W. 23rd St. ferry was discontinued on 4.27. ♦ The Dyckman St. - Englewood Cliffs ferry was discontinued on 5.21. ♦ The North Jersey Chapter hosted the NRHS convention at the Elizabeth-Carteret Hotel on May 30th. On the following day they went on an excursion over the NYO&W RR. ♦ The first radio-telephone system was installed on the Pennsylvania Railroad's Belvidere-Delaware branch. ♦ Wartime "PT" boats were built by the Electric Launch Company. The sleek, multi-engined, high horsepower, high speed, "ELCO" vessels were tested in the open waters around the Bayonne plant. ◆ The PRR Greenville to NH Bay Ridge carfloat route had the highest volume in the US - 90 cars per hour. (TOM FLAGG)
1943 The world's largest railroad tank car yard opened at Tremley on the CRR of NJ. ♦ By summer movement of petroleum to the East by rail reached the unprecedented volume of 1,000,000 barrels per day. This was done under the control of the Office of Defense Transportation, making possible the largest movement of petroleum by rail in the history of transportation. The pre-war movement had averaged only 5,000 barrels per day. ♦ The "Big Inch" oil pipeline of 24" diameter was completed from Longview, TX and across New Jersey to the New York Harbor area. ♦ Public Service experienced a boom in demand for trolley service due to the war. The number of trolley lines was increased from 8 to 10 and all remaining cars in dead storage (approx. 50) were placed in service. ♦ PRR Atlantic City to NYC train #1080 derailed at Delair on 5.23, two employees & 12 passengers were killed and 81 others were injured. ♦ On July 1st, the Central RR of NJ regained control of its railroad from the Reading. To visually celebrate this event, an new corporate logo and system name was adopted. The symbol of the CNJ became the bust of “Miss Liberty” and the system name changed from “New Jersey Central” to “Jersey Central Lines.” ◆ The Electric Ferry’s Weehawken - W. 23rd St. ferry was discontinued on 7.21. ♦ Lionel's on-schedule wartime production contributions earned the toymaker-turned-defense-contractor the United States Maritime Commission's coveted "M" Pennant (three gold stars were added to it before war's end) and the Victory Fleet Flag. ♦ Maersk, Inc., a subsidiary of Copenhagen, Denmark based A.P. Moller began shipping operations in the US.
1944 A Comfort Line bus crashed through the guard rail of the Market Street bridge in Passaic on March 20th. It plunged into the Passaic River drowning 19 riders and one pedestrian. All six tires on the 20-year-old bus were bald and tire chains were not used in spite of snow conditions. ♦ The Southern Pacific RR leased 14 coaches from the Central RR of NJ to help ease their commuter car shortage caused by the demands of WW II. ♦ The NRHS West Jersey Chapter was established.
1945 The Williamsporter trains of the Jersey Central were terminated on 2.28. ◆ The New York Susquehanna & Western Railroad became the first Class 1 railroad to be completely dieselized. ♦ During World War II (December 1941-August 1945) the railroads moved 97% of American troops - approximately 43.7 million military personnel, which excludes weekend passes, furloughs, emergency leaves and POW movements. ♦ The Five Mile Beach Electric Railway in Wildwood was abandoned. This was the last community/system to operate single truck open bench trolley cars in the US. Car #34 operates in Shore Line (Branford) Trolley Museum East Haven, CT and #36 survives at Warehouse Point, CT. ♦ A second tube was added to the Lincoln Tunnel. ♦ Lionel resumed toy production and unveiled a new knuckle coupler. ♦ The CNJ Highlands to East Long Branch via Sea Bright passenger service was discontinued.
1946 The Jersey Central Lines (formerly the CRR of NJ) placed into service new double ended Baldwin locomotives. They were the first diesel-electric units to be used in suburban passenger service by any railroad in the world. These units were named for former railroad employees killed in WW II and the Jersey Central was the first railroad to so honor employees. ♦ The Jersey Central became the first railroad in the nation to provide a meeting place for the Boy Scouts of America by presenting the East Long Branch railroad station to Troop 39 of Long Branch. ♦ The 75,000th locomotive built by the American Locomotive Co. was PA model, A & B unit diesel demonstrator #51 completed in September. It hauled the Lehigh Valley’s Black Diamond train. ◆ DL&W "Old Road" passenger service was discontinued between Washington and Slateford Jct. ♦ The CNJ's West Side line to Kearny passenger service was discontinued after the Hackensack River bridge was damaged by a ship. ♦ The W. 23rd St. ferry terminal was closed with the discontinuance of the last DL&W ferry from 14th St. Hoboken on Dec. 31st. ♦ Fire damaged only a short section of the PRR's mile+-long wood Barnegat Bay Bridge trestle between Seaside Park and Barnegat Pier on Dec. 1st. However, it was not rebuilt and severed their Camden to Bay Head Jct. line. ◆ The wooden Matawan Creek trestle on the NY & Long Branch Railroad was destroyed by fire on December 6th. It was replaced by a new single track wood trestle in ten days! ◆ The Lackawanna Railroad provided space for the NY Society of Model Engineers layout on the upper ferry concourse at Hoboken Terminal.
1947 A report on a Proposed Union Terminal and Airport Project was completed by L. Alfred Jenny, a consulting engineer from Dumont, NJ. It envisioned connecting all major NJ railroads with a huge new airport in the meadows north of Secaucus; and a new Union Passenger Terminal in NYC near Grand Central Terminal via a new Hudson River Tunnel The passenger terminal of the airport was to be close to a major rail junction station at North Bergen. It suggested a later extension via a new subway from the Union Passenger Terminal to the Battery with a tunnel connection to the Jersey Central Jersey City Terminal. Later improvements included extension of electrification to most North Jersey rail commuter routes. ◆ The first automatic grade crossing gates were installed at White House on the Jersey Central. ♦ The miniature Centerville &Southwestern Railroad opened for their first public season at Roseland. ♦ Two new Budd built Vista Dome coaches (Silver Island & Silver River), the first of an order for 40 for the Burlington RR were attached to the Lehigh Valley Railroad Asa Packer train on a demonstration run west from Newark. This was the first time that production vista domes appeared on any railroad and Edward Q. Budd was among the dignitaries aboard. They were touted as the greatest innovation since the 1934 Pioneer Zephyr. ♦ The American Transit Association annual meeting was held in Atlantic City. ♦ Public Service purchased 246 Ford Transit buses - the largest order ever placed for this model. ♦ The annual convention of railroad Master Mechanics was held at Atlantic City in June. The locomotives displayed just west of the station included: Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad coal fired gas turbine #500; An Alco PA demonstrator diesel; Fairbanks-Moorse demonstrator diesel #2000; Seaboard Railroad centipede diesel #4507; and Union Pacific diesel #9850 and sister "A" unit, built by Fairbanks-Moorse. ♦ SeaTrain Lines moved their operations from Hoboken (where they began in 1931) to Edgewater, where they were served by the Susquehanna Railroad. ♦ The "Tour of Somerville", America's oldest, continuously-run bicycle race was re-established. It was actually started in 1940, but was not run from 1943 to 1946. ♦ The 1889 Staten Island Rapid Transit/B&O Arthur Kill swing bridge was struck by an oil tanker, forcing all freight traffic to be rerouted to Jersey City and floated to St. George. The substandard bridge was replaced by a new bridge which opened in 1959. ♦ On August 13th a journal burnout caused a massive wreck which blocked the PRR main line at South Elizabeth Station. Twenty-three cars had piled up in a jumbled mass of coal, sand, wheat, bricks, broken glass bottles and other cargoes. Five wrecking cranes were rushed to the scene, including one from the CNJ and one which had been brought by carfloat from the Long Island RR. PRR through passenger trains, including their GG-1 locomotives - towed by PRR steam locomotives, were routed through Bound Brook and via the Lehigh Valley RR ◆ The Freedom Train began a country-wide tour on Sept. 17th. After Philadelphia it stopped at Atlantic City 9/20; Trenton (Post Office) 9/21; Elizabeth (PRR Elizabeth freight yard) 9/22; Paterson 9/23; and then went on to NYC. ♦ The Freedom Train visited Jersey City on PRR 10/13 & 14; Princeton 10/15; Camden 10/16-17; Red Bank 10/19; Orange 10/20; Montclair 10/21; Passaic 10/22; Ridgewood 10/23; Hackensack 10/24; New Brunswick 10/25 and went on to Havre De Grace, MD. ♦ The Port of NY Authority signed an agreement with the City of Newark to lease and operate Newark Airport. Or was it 1948? ♦ The heaviest snow (up to 30") in New Jersey's recorded history occurred on December 26th. It snarled transportation and left 16 dead. Approximately 600 pedestrians were permitted to walk through the Lincoln Tunnel because vehicle movements were frozen. ♦ Lionel introduced their classic Pennsylvania RR GG-1 locomotive and its most popular freight car ever, the operating milk car. ♦ The CNJ abandoned their Rockaway to Hibernia branch. ♦ The PRR curtailed their Bay Head - Birmingham (Pemberton Twp.) passenger service.
1948 The first practical demonstration of television reception aboard a moving train was on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad between Washington, DC and Jersey City. ♦ The last Public Service All-Service Vehicle electric route operations were replaced by diesel buses. However, some of the ASV’s continued to operate with poles down after electric operation ended. Some of the newer and better ASV’s had some or all of their electric hardware removed and were retained in the fleet as motor buses. In any event all former ASV’s were off the roster and sold for scrap by the end of 1949. ♦ With the Utility Commission's approval, Public Service increased its basic fare from five to seven cents. ♦ The Chicago Railroad Fair opened for a two year stint with the following New Jersey related exhibits: The Lionel Corporation; a Rogers locomotive; the General locomotive (built in Paterson); and the Eastern Railroads pavilion included exhibits of the B&O, Erie, NY Central, and Pennsylvania Railroads. ♦ The National Motor Bus Association was founded. The organization is currently known as the Motor Bus Society, a not-for-profit New Jersey Corporation which publishes two magazines, Motor Coach Age and Motor Coach Today. ♦ The first day of operations of the Centerville & Southwestern Railroad for paying passengers at Roseland occurred on July 31st. ♦ In early August, Baldwin sent a set of demonstrator locomotives to the L&HR. They were an A-B-B-A set of DR4-4-1500 “shark nose” cab units. ◆ The first New Jersey Highway Post Office route was established from Newark to Wanaque. ♦ The General Motors Train of Tomorrow made the following NJ stops (near GM plants): Bloomfield (Erie RR freight yard on Bloomfield Ave.); New Brunswick 11/15; Clark Twp. 11/16; and Trenton (Reading RR - Willow Street) 11/17&18. ♦ The Port of New York Authority leased and took over operation of Newark International Airport and Port Newark from the City of Newark. ♦ The Big Little Railroad, a classic documentary/promotional film was produced by the Central Railroad of NJ to commemorate their centennial. ♦ The West Side Avenue to Communipaw Ave. passenger shuttle was discontinued by the CNJ (this line is now part of the Hudson Bergen Light Rail Transit System. ♦ The DL&W Rockaway loop passenger service was discontinued. ♦ The PRSL was ordered by the PUC to remove their remaining wooden passenger cars from service by the end of this year. PRSL agreed to purchase diesel locomotives and rebuild/modernize P-70 coaches as replacements. This ended electric service east of Camden. ◆ The Lackawanna Railroad erected and placed in service the first of a series of 61 new cabooses. They were built in their Keyser Valley Car Shops utilizing the cast steel tender beds from recently retired steam locomotives. ◆ Bell Telephone laboratories announced the invention of the transistor.
1949 Fire and explosions in the New Jersey side of the Holland Tunnel destroyed 10 trucks, damaged 13 other vehicles and injured 66 drivers and fire fighters on May 13th. Fortunately, three busloads of children and several autos were able to back out of the tube and there was no loss of life. ♦ The SS Magellan arrived at the Erie RR Weehawken piers with 49 "Gratitude Train Cars" from France. New Jersey's 40 et 8 "Merci" boxcar was unfortunately later destroyed by fire and no one knows what happened to the contents. ♦ A Mack EH tractor left the Allentown Plant and went to the Mack Long Island City Plant to pick up a specially painted and prepared display trailer and returned to Allentown to begin a 7½ month cross country tour. The Mack Diesel Caravan carried the story of Mack diesel power to truckers in every part of the United States. The trailer featured Mack END 672 and END 457 diesel engines, Mack's exclusive Monoshift transmission and a Mack diesel fuel injection system as well. ♦ Teterboro Airport was acquired by the Port of NY Authority. ◆ Public Service replaced the last trolleys in Hudson County with buses on routes 7, 8, 17, 19, and 37 on August 7th. The Hoboken El which the trolley cars used was dismantled shortly thereafter. ♦ Havana Electric Railway announced that it had acquired 44 trolleybuses (used All-Service Vehicles) from Public Service to replace its aging trams. The transition would be easy as the streetcar lines already had double overhead trolley wire. One ASV demonstrator made several trips around the Havana central area on Sept. 18th. HER declared bankruptcy shortly thereafter and the ASV’s were never placed in service. In fact, no proof has ever surfaced that the balance of the ASV were ever shipped south. ◆ The "Jersey Barrier" was designed by the state of New Jersey as a way of reducing head-on collisions. It was first installed on Rt. 22 over Jugtown Mountain and was of concrete construction, 18" high. ♦ Iron Ponies, a film about model and prototype trains was produced by Lionel Corporation. ♦ The Model Railroad Club of Union, NJ was organized (as the Summit - New Providence HO Railroad Club) and is still going strong. ♦ The New Jersey Public Utilities Commission requirement that all wooden Multiple Unit cars be replaced by steel cars brought an end to electric operation on the former West Jersey and Seashore Railroad. ♦ The Lackawanna Railroad renamed their premier main line train the Phoebe Snow. ♦ The Erie Railroad’s first diesel tugboat, Paterson, was built. ◆ The pioneer of the postwar ultra-lightweight trains, the Talgo, a low slung speedster was built by the American Car & Foundry Co. It was tested on the Lackawanna Railroad between Hoboken and Denville. ♦ The PRR Exchange Place to Cortland St. ferry service and their Bay Head Jct. to Pine Beach service ended on 12.31.
1950 The Port of New York Authority completed the Newark Union Motor Truck Terminal near the Port Newark Marine Terminal. With 160 truck berths, it was the largest truck terminal in the world. It was a consolidating terminal at which less-than-truckload, common carrier mixed merchandise shipments were received and sorted for interchange between line-haul and local carriers. At first local pickup and delivery service was also provided by the Port Authority. ♦ A new GMC bus, Public Service #D900 was purchased and underwent operating tests on the #29 Bloomfield Line Montclair hill. It was equipped with the standard diesel-hydraulic drive to which an electric motor, trolley poles and retrievers had been added. It was proposed to replace trolleys in the Newark City Subway with the new All-Service Vehicle, but the project died. ♦ Munitions barges exploded at South Amboy on May 19th, killing 30. ◆ The Somerset Bus Co., Inc. was the first in NJ to install two way radios in their fleet. ♦ The Erie Railroad was the first to install a complete and comprehensive train radio communications system over their entire main line. ♦ Thomas T. Taber was the primary spirit in setting up the second railroad museum in the US at the New Jersey Historical Society in Newark. The dedication was attended by M.W. Clement, chairman of the board of directors of the Pennsylvania Railroad, R.S. Henry, vice-president of the Association of American Railroads and other notables in the railroad field. (Railroad History Bulletin #171) ♦ The Pennsylvania-Reading Seashore Lines made arrangements with the Budd Co. for a trial trip of one of their new Rail Diesel Cars (RDC's) between Camden and Atlantic City. Later in the year PRSL took delivery of the first group (6) of Rail Diesel Cars (RDC's) from the Budd Company. ♦ The NYS&W was so pleased with the performance of an RDC demonstrator that the railroad purchased four of them. The NYS&W took delivery of the 7th production RDC in October. —it is now part of the URHS collection. ♦ Mack inaugurated a free Diesel Training Course held in 29 cities across the country. It was attended by more than 14,000 persons. ♦ The NY, Ontario & Western Railroad passenger service became summer-seasonal only to Roscoe, NY, but this only lasted until 1953 when all passenger service was discontinued from Weehawken. ♦ The US Army seized all railroads on August 27th on President Truman's order to prevent a general strike. Two years later they were returned to their owners. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad ordered two Ignitron rectifier electric freight locomotives which utilized d.c. traction motors. They formed an important stage in the application of rectifiers on locomotives. ♦ The Erie Railroad was presented the gold "Oscar of Industry" for the best annual report of all United States Industry for this year by Financial World Magazine. ♦ The Port Authority Midtown Bus Terminal opened in NYC. At the time it was the largest and busiest in the world. It fostered growth of bus lines in northern New Jersey which siphoned passengers from rail commuter lines. The NYS&W RR had the interesting distinction of being the only NJ commuter railroad to operate out of the PABT. ♦ Lincoln Transit replaced the candy store which had served as their Lakewood depot with a new $200,000 facility combining a waiting room, loading docks, lunch counter, offices, and garage. “Friends” now leases the unused garage portion of the building for storage of most of our historic coach collection. ◆ Public Service Railway Co. discontinued its Edgewater to 129th St., Manhattan ferry route on 12.15.
1951 The Delaware Memorial Bridge over the Delaware River was opened to connect New Jersey and Delaware. ♦ The first 53-mile section of the NJ Turnpike, from Deepwater to Bordentown was opened. ♦ The derailment of a Pennsylvania Railroad commuter train at Woodbridge which killed 84 and injured 350 was New Jersey's worst rail disaster. The February 6th incident was caused by the failure of the engineer of the speeding Broker to reduce speed before crossing a temporary diversion track and wooden bridge which had opened for service only three hours earlier. ♦ On March 1st Public Service converted the #21 Orange streetcar line to bus. ♦ The heaviest single unit of freight on record originated on the Erie Railroad and was a 7.5 mile long high-voltage submarine power cable manufactured by the Okonite Co., Passaic, NJ. The world's largest such cable was loaded in nine Erie gondola cars, all in one piece, and was shipped to the state of Washington for use in Puget Sound. The 4.66" diameter cable weighed 745,000 pounds (803,000 pounds including blocking, bracing, etc. Heavy chains were welded between the cars to keep the cable from breaking if a coupler failed. ♦ PRSL ordered a second six RDC cars from Budd. For over 30 years these cars provided the base service on Cape May County lines. ♦ Lionel produced 622,209 model engines and 2,460,764 freight and passenger cars. ♦ The New York-Keansburg-Long Branch Bus Co., a division of Keansburg Steamboat Co., began operations. ◆ The NYS&W purchased sixteen 133-passenger light weight stainless steel coaches from Budd. Thus the NYS&W passenger fleet was dieselized and modernized long before new Jersey’s other railroads replaced their old commuter equipment and steam motive power.
1952 The final 9 miles of the New Jersey Turnpike were opened. It utilized the 6,955' Passaic River and 5,623' Hackensack River bridges which were the longest steel-plate girder bridges ever constructed. ♦ Public Service Coordinated Transport increased first zone fares from 8¢ to 10¢. ♦ The DL&W, PRR, WSRR, & Erie RR increased commuter fares. ♦ The Pine Creek Railroad was established - as the first, and continues as the oldest steam preservation railroad in the United States. They were founded as an informal club by Jay L. Wolfson who bought a used Baldwin 0-4-0 from the Raritan River Sand Co. at Nixon, NJ. ♦ Newark Airport suffered its third major aircraft crash in three months. The airport closed for eight months while investigations were conducted. ♦ Iron from the Mount Hope mine was being brought up 2,700 feet, the deepest vertical shaft and narrow gauge mining railway in the Eastern United States. ♦ Public Service Coordinated Transport; Hudson Bus Transportation Co.; The Somerset Bus Co., Inc.; Hill Bus Co. and Orange & Black Bus Lines began operating 40' buses about the same time. This was the pioneering GMC TDM 5701suburban (old look) model bus - all were ordered by NJ operators. ♦ The New Jersey Highway Authority was created to commence building the Garden State Parkway. ♦ The last Newark City Subway surface trolley feeder route, #29-Bloomfield, was converted to bus on 3.30. ♦ On its maiden voyage to the NY/NJ port area, the SS United States, with its 268,000-shaft horsepower set a trans-Atlantic speed record: three days, 10 hours and 42 minutes. ◆ The last traffic circle in New Jersey was built on the Trenton Feeder. ♦ The 71st annual meeting of the American Transit Association was held at Atlantic City's Hotel Traymore. With 1,800 attendees it was the largest ATA gathering since 1934. ♦ The Port of New York Authority took over operation of the Hoboken Marine Terminal. ♦ The CNJ took delivery of the first of four new diesel tugboats for its marine operations in NY Harbor. They were part of a $27,000,000 improvement program which included 93 locomotives, 625 freight cars, 22 lighters, 4 carfloats and other improvements. ♦ Public Service Coordinated Transport discontinued their Newark Taxi operations on 10.14. At one time PS operated large Yellow Cab fleets in Newark as well as Camden. ♦ Passenger service between Phillipsburg and the Delaware Water Gap/Stroudsburg was discontinued by the Pennsylvania Railroad. ♦ Public Service Coordinated Transport replaced Johnson fareboxes with National Cash Registers. ♦ Lehigh Valley Railroad shuttles between Flemington and Flemington Junction were discontinued.
1953 New York Airways, the first helicopter airline in the world, inaugurated mail, express, freight and passenger service between Newark & NY area airports and Teterboro, New Brunswick and Trenton. ♦ The Lackawanna Railroad purchased the first order of ten H-24-66 Train Master locomotives at $250,000 each from the Fairbanks-Morse Co. They were the highest horsepower per unit locomotives available and were used to replace the last DL&W steam locomotives in New Jersey. ♦ The PRR's Philadelphia & Camden Ferry Co. discontinued operations on March 31, ending 114 years of service on this route and 264 years of ferry service between the two cities. The Haddonfield made the last run. ♦ Thirty used President's Conference Committee (PCC) cars were purchased from Twin Cities Rapid Transit (Minneapolis-St. Paul) for the Newark City Subway. ♦ A railfan excursion was operated on the High Bridge Branch of the CNJ, on May 17th, using 4-6-2 #810. ♦ A new double track earth fill which replaced the NY & Long Branch temporary 1946 single track wood trestle at Matawan was opened for traffic on June 18th. ◆ Two new Fairbanks-Moorse 2,400hp demonstrator diesel locomotives were exhibited at the Railway Supply Manufacturers' Association convention at Atlantic City, the week of June 22nd. They were touted as "the most useful locomotive ever built." Immediately thereafter they were delivered to the Reading RR at Port Reading, NJ and began a week of tests, mostly in Pennsylvania. ♦ All Erie Railroad freight service was dieselized and the last steam locomotives in commuter service were retired about a year later. ♦ The largest and most important group transaction in the history of the intercity bus industry was completed with a series of agreements whereby the Greyhound Corporation acquired railroad interests (Pennsylvania & Southern Pacific Railroads) in the two largest Greyhound operating companies and another connecting line. Greyhound achieved the status of the nation's largest transportation system, operating more than 550,000,000 bus miles and employing nearly 30,000 people. ♦ Lionel was the world's largest toy (mostly model railroad) maker but then demand faded, with the advent of television and video games. ♦ The CNJ discontinued passenger service on the Matawan - Freehold; Red Bank - Barnegat; and Somerville - Flemington branches.
1954 PRR Atlantic #460 (the Lindbergh Special engine) headed a railfan excursion from Newark to Atlantic City in January, 1954. It was the last passenger train to traverse the venerable Camden and Amboy line between South Amboy and Camden. When the special reached PRSL tracks, the crew opened up the old locomotive, topping 80 mph at several points along the route to Atlantic City. After returning the special to Newark, #460 resumed its regular Camden-Pemberton commuter assignment until Oct., 1955, when it was retired. ◆ Public Service Coordinated Transport ordered their first air-conditioned buses. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad inaugurated TrucTrain Service between Kearny, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Chicago. The railroad furnished the trailers and flat cars on which they were hauled and performed all the services. ♦ All old 1912-1917 era Newark City Subway cars were replaced by second hand PCC cars. ♦ On March 17th, St. Patrick’s Day, Rogers built K-1 4-6-2 #2530 pulled the last regularly scheduled steam-powered train on the Erie Railroad (from Spring Valley, NY to Jersey City). ◆ Service on the Summit and Gladstone Railway Post Office route on the Lackawanna ended. At 22 miles it was the shortest RPO route in New Jersey. ♦ The Pine Creek Railroad opened to the public on April 25th at Freehold. It was the first operating railroad museum in the Middle Atlantic states. ◆ On May 17th President Harry S. Truman seized control of the nation's railroads, delaying a threatened strike by engineers and trainmen. ♦ The first traveling sidewalk (Speedwalk) began operation at the Erie Railroad Jersey City Terminal. ◆ The Lackawanna Railroad instituted “Piggy-Back” (trailer on flat car) service from Secaucus, NJ to points west. ◆ The Hudson & Manhattan Railroad filed for bankruptcy on Aug. 11th. ♦ Ten percent fare increases were put in place by the CNJ, Erie, LV, NJ&NY, and Pennsylvania railroads on 11.21. ♦ Greyhound Lines introduced their new Scenicruiser coach to operate on lines throughout the US. ◆ The Asphalt Institute produced The Garden State Parkway, a film documenting the construction and paving of this road. ♦ The New Jersey Turnpike, an outstanding promotional film was produced by Cities Service Corp. ♦ An Erie Railroad K-1 Pacific locomotive, formerly used in North Jersey commuter service was sent to Korea to help in the rehabilitation of that war-ravaged country. ♦ New Jersey taxes took $2.29 for each $1 earned by railroads in the state before taxes. ♦ American Airlines replaced the Pennsylvania Railroad as the country's largest passenger common carrier. ♦ The Central Railroad of New Jersey loaned retired 4-4-2 camelback locomotive #592, built in 1901, to the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad museum in Baltimore. ♦ Passenger service was discontinued on the Reading RR Trenton - W. Trenton branch. ◆ Ellis Island was closed as a US immigration station. During its 62 years of operation, 17 million immigrants were processed. Most boarded trains at the nearby Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal to travel to their new homes across the US.
1955 The Pennsylvania RR cut one day travel time off the schedule of their NF-6 livestock train from Chicago to Jersey City. This allowed them to skip a mid-way stop to feed and water the animals. ♦ A centralized bureau to process freight paperwork and accounting for forty-eight freight stations surrounding Trenton was set up by the Pennsylvania RR. ♦ East Orange had six railroad passenger stations until the abandonment of commuter trains on the Erie Orange Branch in this year. However, Montclair still has six stations - more than any other town of its size in the country. ♦ The DL&W Christopher St. ferry closed on 3.30. ♦ On April 2nd, a railfan excursion on the Jersey Central from Jersey City to Bridgeton was powered by 4-6-0 camelback locomotive #774. ◆ The Electro-Motive Division of General Motors Corp. exhibited their new model DH-2, a 900hp diesel-hydraulic switching locomotive at the Atlantic City railroad suppliers' equipment exhibit, but no sales were ever made. ♦ The Ford Motor Co. Edgewater assembly plant last built light trucks and closed in this year. Ford's Mahwah assembly plant opened. ♦ A full day was cut from the schedule of the Pennsylvania RR's L(ess than) C(ar) L(oad)-1 freight train. From Jersey City, second morning delivery was made to Chicago. ♦ The "Killer Flood" spawned by tropical storm Diane (Aug. 18 & 19) caused the collapse of the center span of the Phillipsburg-Easton Northampton Street Bridge. The 1869 covered wood bridge spanning the Delaware between Columbia, NJ and Portland, PA (the longest in North America) was washed away and destroyed. ♦ The same storm (14" of rain in 24 hours) paralyzed the Lackawanna main line east of Scranton, forcing it to reroute traffic, including the Phoebe Snow between Port Morris and Phillipsburg and via the LV RR between Phillipsburg and Pittston Jct. ♦ The last Susquehanna RR employee picnic train operated to Lake Susquehanna. ♦ Malcolm McLean sold his interest in McLean Trucking and formed McLean Industries; McLean Industries acquired Waterman Steamship Co. and formed Pan-Atlantic which later became Sea-Land Service. The firm grew to become the largest United States-based ocean carrier and a leader in the global shipping industry with 94 ships. For years their corporate offices were in New Jersey and their ships sailed from Port Newark/Elizabethport. ♦ On September 24th, a railfan excursion on the Jersey Central from Jersey City to Jim Thorpe was powered by 4-6-0 camelback locomotive #774. This was the final steam run of the last Jersey Central steam locomotive. ◆ On Oct. 17th the state and Newark Chambers of Commerce and the Newark Railroad Community Committee traveled over the Pennsy, Susquehanna, Lehigh Valley, Erie and Jersey Central Railroads. Their train of Jersey Central coaches was hauled by CNJ 1515, a Fairbanks Morse H-15-44 diesel locomotive. ♦ The Lincoln Tunnel parking lot (park and ride), owned by the Port of NY Authority and operated by Public Service Coordinated Transport opened on Nov. 2nd. ♦ The Trailer Train Company was incorporated on Nov. 9th with ownership by the Pennsylvania Railroad, the Norfolk & Western Railway, and Rail Trailer Co. Within a few years, ownership had broadened to include virtually all Class I railroads in the US and Canada. ◆ The concrete Jersey Barrier was the first scientifically-designed highway barrier used to separate opposing lanes of traffic and reduce head-on collisions. ♦ The Atlantic City trolley system, the last to operate on city streets in New Jersey, was abandoned.
1956 The General Motors lightweight "Aerotrain" made its first run from Washington to Newark and return. It was displayed on track "A" at Newark's Penn Station. The cars were essentially GM bus bodies and interiors, each mounted on four railroad wheels. For a time the experimental train made a daily round trip between New York and Pittsburgh, but it did not last long. ♦ Trailer Train, a company founded by the Pennsylvania and Norfolk & Western Railroads that supplied piggyback flat cars to various railroads, began operations on March 17th. ♦ The last steamer on the Jersey Central roster, 4-6-0 #774, was scrapped in March. ◆ On April 16th, Pan-Atlantic's Ideal-X, a T-2 tanker, made the first voyage between Port Newark (the first container port) and Houston with 58 containers on deck. ♦ The Budd built "Tubular Train" began operating on the Pennsylvania Railroad between New York and Washington. The light weight coaches of the unique eight car train had a center of gravity only 39" above the rails. ♦ The Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus raised their "Big Top" in New Jersey for the last times at Atlantic City, Oceanport and Newark in early June. ♦ A Venezuelan Super-Constellation crashed in the Atlantic Ocean off Asbury Park, killing 74 on June 20th. ◆ The Federal-Aid Highway Act was signed June 29th, authorizing the construction of a 41,000-mile interstate highway system, with the federal government paying 90% of the costs. ♦ The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad extended their trailer-on-flat-car service to 32 North Jersey points and New York City via the Reading and Jersey Central Railroads. ♦ The Jersey City extension of the NJ Turnpike was opened. ♦ The first Transport Workers Union Railroad Division contract was signed with the Pennsylvania Railroad. ♦ Vehicle carrying service on the Erie RR Chambers St. ferry was discontinued on 10.12. ♦ The Alpine - Yonkers ferry was discontinued on 12.27. ◆ The Hoboken-Port Authority Piers were dedicated.
1957 The Erie, DL&W & B&O railroads raised commuter fares 5% while the CNJ raise was 10.4%. ♦ The New York, Ontario & Western Railroad became the first major rail carrier in the US to cease operations. The 541-mile line died at the age of 80 after a lingering bankruptcy which built up $100 million in debts. Many of the O&W diesel locomotives sat in the Erie's Croxton (Secaucus) yard for years, awaiting sale. ♦ The two heaviest loads ever handled by the Lackawanna Railroad were two roller mill housings weighing 231 and 261 tons. which they handled from the Brooklyn Navy yard by carfloat. ◆ Most Erie RR commuter trains began using the Lackawanna Railroad Hoboken terminal. This coordination plan resulted in 444 trains arriving and departing every 24 hours with 28,000 passengers at Hoboken. ♦ The Lackawanna Railroad inaugurated coast-to-coast piggyback service with the shipment of printing press equipment from Hoboken to California. ◆ The full 173 miles of the Garden State Parkway was completed and opened to motorists. It became the longest and most modern barrier toll road in the country. It had more toll plazas per mile than any other toll road in America. ♦ A strike by employees of the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad stopped service for their 65,000 riders for 32.5 days beginning 3.28. ♦ The Eastern Live Steamers were established. It took them two years to build operating track at Riverside Park in Lyndhurst. ◆ The third tube of the Lincoln Tunnel opened on 5.25, giving it the status of the world's first triple tube underwater roadway. ♦ The first diesel-electric locomotive bought and used by a railroad in the US, the Central Railroad of New Jersey, was retired on June 13th after nearly 32 years of service. They later sent their Ingersoll-Rand locomotive #1000, the world's first commercially-built diesel locomotive, to the B&O RR Museum on loan. ♦ The Walt Whitman bridge was opened between Camden and Philadelphia. ♦ The Metropolitan Rapid Transit Commission recommended that the NYC subway system be extended in a loop to serve the various New Jersey railroads. (The American City, September 1957) ♦ A new piggyback service called "Flexi-Van" was begun by the New York Central Railroad. One of their terminals was their North Bergen yard. (Railway Progress, May & Sept., 1957) ♦ The Susquehanna Railroad was granted a 22% fare increase. ♦ On October 6, Pan-Atlantic's Gateway City (one of six C-2 freighters converted to container ships), holding 226 containers made the first containership sailing from a pier at Foot Doremus Ave., Port Newark to Miami and Houston. ♦ On October 20th/21st a 12 car B&O train was utilized to transport Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and His Royal Highness Prince Philip from Washington, DC, via Camp Kilmer to Staten Island. The LV RR made the move to Cranford where the train was turned over the Staten Island Railroad at Staten Island Jct. ♦ A special PRR Farewell to Steam excursion was operated on the NY & Long Branch on October 20th. ◆ On November 4th, K-4 #612 made the last regularly scheduled steam run on the NY & LB. ◆ The last run of a Pennsylvania Railroad K-4 was #5351 from Pemberton to Camden, NJ on Nov. 12th. ♦ Additional fare increases were granted to railroads and these were followed shortly by others including increases for ferry passengers. ♦ This was the last year the Lionel Corp. made a profit on sales of electric trains. ♦ PRR Jamesburg EMU passenger trains were discontinued.
1958 Seventy-six of the Pennsylvania Railroad's 139 GG-1 locomotives were disabled when fine, wind blown snow entered their ventilation system, melted and caused short circuits. It took almost a week to get service back to normal by Feb. 22nd. ♦ On March 6th, Pan-Atlantic containership Bienville made the first trip to Puerto Rico where stevedores refused to unload containers; on March 25th the ship went to New Orleans where the cargo was placed on a break bulk ship for return to Puerto Rico; In May Pan-Atlantic General Offices were moved from Mobile, AL to Foot Doremus Ave., Port Newark; A San Juan stevedoring agreement was signed in July and containership service between Port Newark and Puerto Rico commenced. ♦ NJ railroads were granted another round of fare increases in March. ♦ The NYC RR inaugurated container on flat car service in March. ♦ Herman T. Stichman, trustee of the bankrupt Hudson & Manhattan railroad announced that they planned to drop 252 one-way train trips due to losses in the number of passengers. ♦ The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad terminated all passenger service between Jersey City and Baltimore. Thus ended nearly a century of luxurious "Royal Blue" trains and over 30 years of connecting bus service from the Jersey City terminal to NYC. ♦ Thirty-five passengers were injured when two Newark City Subway cars collided between Orange and Norfolk Streets in Newark. ◆ The World's first production air-conditioned rapid transit cars, the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad "K" cars, went into service. ♦ The opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway diverted freight traffic from the Lackawanna, Lehigh Valley, Erie, New York Central and other railroads. ♦ The Erie & DL&W ferry fares increased to 25¢. ♦ After hard times hit the NYS&W they sold their four RDC cars to the CNJ. ◆ The Lehigh Valley Railroad became the first major passenger carrier to petition for total discontinuance of passenger service. ♦ The Lehigh & Hudson River Railway became the first railroad in the east to be completely equipped with two-way radios. ♦ A Jersey Central passenger train ran through a red signal and a derail, plunging off the gap of the raised Newark Bay bridge, killing 48. Why the spectacular wreck occurred remains a mystery. Three passengers who survived the Woodbridge wreck also survived this accident. ♦ The Lackawanna Railroad began planning to halt all commuter service as promptly as possible unless they were relieved of all taxes on transportation property. ♦ Joshua Lionel Cowen retired and was given the title Chairman Emeritus; his son, Lawrence, took full charge. ♦ The Erie Chambers St. ferry was discontinued on 12.13. ♦ The NYS&W Sussex Branch, Beaver Lake - Hanford Jct./Unionville was abandoned.
1959 A press release from Mack Trucks, Inc. at Plainfield, NJ announced that they had developed and put into production a “new look” transit bus. ◆ The last Pennsylvania RR steam locomotive was retired. It had been on lease to the Union Transportation Co. of NJ. ♦ The last passenger run on the oldest railroad line in New Jersey ended 127 years of service on the former Camden & Amboy line between South Amboy and Jamesburg. ♦ West Shore RR ferry services from Weehawken to 42nd St. and Cortland St. were discontinued on 3.24, ending 135 years of ferry service. The last boat was the Weehawken. ♦ The Nuclear powered merchant ship N.S. Savannah was launched at Camden. Ingersoll-Rand supplied condensers fabricated at their Easton Plant and compressors from their Phillipsburg plant. ♦ The DL&W RR discontinued 80 scheduled passenger trains on 5.9. ♦ The Lehigh Valley Railroad’s Black Diamond train was discontinued on 5.12. ◆ The CNJ RR was granted a temporary 20% fare increase on intrastate passenger trips. ♦ The CNJ, DL&W, & NYS&W railroads were granted fare increases. ♦ The Arthur Kill vertical lift railroad bridge, with the longest center span (558') of any moveable bridge in the world, was completed and opened in August by B&O subsidiary Staten Island Rapid Transit. ♦ CNJ diesel locomotive #1706 suspiciously broke loose in the Jersey City yard and ran unattended, under power, 22 miles to Morgan, NJ where it was finally "caught" by another locomotive. ♦ A tugboat strike in NY Harbor caused a lengthy rerouting of Pennsylvania RR cars at Jersey City destined for Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. They were sent to Trenton, then via Phillipsburg, Maybrook, NY, the Poughkeepsie Bridge, Danbury & Norwalk, CT, and over the Hell Gate Bridge to Bay Ridge. ♦ Diesel units of the NY Ontario & Western RR were still in storage in the Erie's Croxton yard awaiting sale. ♦ All passenger service on the NY Central West Shore RR was discontinued on 12.10. ♦ CNJ Sound Shore Branch (Warners to Chrome) and Atlantic Highlands to Highlands via Water Witch passenger service was discontinued. ♦ The DL&W abandoned Washington - Hampton (former Warren RR) trackage. ♦ F. Nelson Blount, founder of Steamtown, purchased the former Rahway Valley 2-8-0 steam locomotive #15. It is now at Steamtown in Scranton, PA.
1960 The State of New Jersey signed its first commuter rail subsidy contract with Jersey Central Lines to continue essential passenger service. ♦ In March the world's largest double track lift span was floated into place on the Pennsylvania RR's Delair bridge, ♦ The very last Pennsylvania Railroad steam locomotive ended regular service. The 0-6-0 #5244 had been on lease to the Union Transportation Co., serving Fort Dix and McGuire Air Force Base. ♦ The Morristown & Erie RR roundhouse at Morristown burned, heavily damaging their only diesel locomotive. They arranged to lease a replacement locomotive from the Erie RR. ◆ The largest road cut east of the Rocky Mountains, at the time, was completed utilizing Ingersoll-Rand rock drills, for I-78 at Jugtown Mountain (Pattenburg). ♦ The Lackawanna and Erie railroads merged to form the Erie Lackawanna Ry. ♦ Public Service purchased the first production new look, 40' suburban "fishbowl" buses ever built. Public Service called them "Downtowners" and paid $29,000 each for the first order of 130 of the buses. The first bus of this order, General Motors SDM-5301 serial #001 is in the NJ Heritage Center collection. It is first in a generation, first in a series and the first of a major redesign. ♦ Single truck, car #71, built in 1912 was imported from Gothenburg, Sweden and arrived at the Pine Brook Auction Market on Rt. 46 at the end of July. The owner planned to mount it on rubber tires and operate it like a bus. It did later operate on its steel wheels on McDonald Avenue trolley track in Brooklyn. It joined the collection of the Shore Line (Branford) Trolley Museum, East Haven, CT but was later returned to Sweeden. ◆ Pan-Atlantic's name was changed to Sea-Land Service. ♦ The National Model Railroad Association National Convention was held in Elizabeth. ♦ Pennsylvania Railroad workers won a 12 day strike. The Transport Workers Union settlement guaranteed job security, and prevented contracting out work. ♦ October was designated as "Railroad Month" in Newark by Mayor Leo Carlin. The focal point was the New Jersey Historical Society where the Railroadians of America and others provided a special exhibit entitled "Railroads in Color." Motion pictures were shown to almost 3,000 attendees until the end of November. ♦ The Black River & Western RR was incorporated and received their charter the following year. The initiative was started by William R. Whitehead of Oldwick who began collecting rolling stock and relaying track on the long abandoned Rockaway Valley RR right-of-way which crossed his property. When I-78 was projected to take the property, the equipment was moved to the CNJ Chester Branch and then to Flemington. ♦ The CNJ discontinued all passenger trains on their Bayway - Warners line (northern portion of the Sound Shore branch). ♦ Passenger trains on the NYS&W Paterson City Branch were discontinued. The Susquehanna purchased six old former Boston & Albany commuter coaches from the Delaware & Hudson RR and the following year sold their sixteen much newer stainless steel coaches to Saudi Arabia. ♦ The PRR discontinued their Phillipsburg to Trenton doodlebug Passenger service. ♦ Approximately 2000 pedestrians were permitted to walk through the Lincoln Tunnel because vehicle movements were frozen by blizzards. ♦ The Carriage Association of America was founded. Their headquarters office is currently located in Salem, NJ.
1961 On January 10th, the 664 men who operated tugs and ferries in New York harbor for eleven railroads went on a strike which lasted fourteen days. ♦ The Elizabethport to Port Ivory, SI/Howland Hook ferry was discontinued on 1.31. ♦ Four GM EMD GP-20 demonstrator locomotives made the first of three periods of test operation on the Susquehanna Railroad. ◆ The first dedicated charter bus stop was opened at Cranbury by the New Jersey Turnpike Authority. ♦ The Pennsylvania RR instituted a new fast freight train, the Yankee Jet, between New England and Chicago. It traveled via Maybrook and Phillipsburg to provide second morning delivery at Chicago. ♦ The Erie Lackawanna Railroad was the first to haul piggyback trailers in passenger train operations. The service was initiated between New York (Jersey City) and Chicago with Railway Express Agency shipments. ♦ The PRR ended their Nellie Bly train between NY and Atlantic City via Trenton on 4.29. ♦ The Garden State Parkway established itself as the safest superhighway in the nation. ♦ Paul and Daphne Carleton began publishing railroad books, most on NJ and local lines. D. Carleton Railbooks produced 11 titles at Rivervale, NJ and 9 more from FL over the next 38 years. ♦ The Morris County Board of Transportation was founded. The creation and continued existence of the Board - one of only five such boards in New Jersey - was due largely to the efforts of railroad historian and former mayor of Madison, Thomas T. Taber. ♦ The last passenger train departed from the Pennsylvania Railroad Exchange Place, Jersey City station. Service had commenced on September 15th, 1834 by the New Jersey Railroad and Transportation Co. ♦ Dale Boat Lines, Bay Head, NJ began operating the Coastal Queen, a 65 foot diesel passenger vessel on cruises via the Inland Waterway between Trenton, NJ and Daytona Beach, FL. ♦ The L&NE RR discontinued all rail service in NJ. ♦ The LV RR discontinued all remaining passenger trains (Meeker Ave., Newark to Niagara Falls). ♦ The Ringwood Branch railroad, rebuilt during WW II to serve Ringwood Co. iron mines was scrapped and equipment and right-of-way was sold. ♦ The New Jersey Live Steamers organization was established.
1962 Sunrise Ferrys discontinued the former Public Service Railway Co. Bergen Point, Bayonne to Port Richmond, Staten Island ferry. ♦ The Pennsylvania RR began using multi-level cars to transport new automobiles. A major new terminal was built at Kearny, NJ for the service. ♦ The great Atlantic Coastal storm of March, knocked out Pennsylvania-Reading Seashore Lines service to Atlantic City, Ocean City, Wildwood and Cape May. It took weeks to repair wash-outs and damaged bridges. ♦ The Pennsylvania RR announced one of the earliest applications of the integral (or unit) train to deliver coal to the Pennsylvania Power & Light Co. power plant at Martin's Creek, north of Phillipsburg. ♦ The New York Central Railroad inaugurated coal-shuttle service between a western Pennsylvania mine and the Bergen Generating Station of Public Service Electric & Gas Co. The 8,400 ton shipment was made in 120 70-ton hopper cars. ♦ In the prior year the Pennsylvania RR invested heavily in the Lehigh Valley RR and on Apr. 11th the ICC gave PRR authority for stock control of the LV. ♦ When NY real estate developer, Irving Maidman, gained control of the NYS&W, he came up with an innovation to end passenger service. He offered each commuter $1,000 to quit riding the Susquehanna. There were only five takers. He then offered to purchase new air-conditioned equipment with lounge and beverage service if the three round trips could be consolidated into one. Again the commuters refused. ◆ Pennsylvania RR doodlebug #4666 made the last passenger run from Trenton to Red Bank. ♦ The Port Authority Trans-Hudson Corporation (PATH) was chartered by law and assumed ownership, operation and modernization of the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad "tube trains" on Sept. 1st. ♦ The Port Authority of NY & NJ opened Port Elizabeth Marine Terminal, the world's first all-container port facility - a prototype which other modern ports would copy Elizabeth became known as "America's Container Capital." ♦ A lower highway deck added to the George Washington Bridge opened on 8.28, making it the world's only 14 lane suspension bridge. The second deck was originally designed for rail rapid transit use. ♦ The Pennsylvania Railroad ordered an additional 66 Ignitron rectifier electric freight locomotives. The were identified as type E-44, and were the first "all adhesion" high speed electric freight locomotives used in the US. ♦ The famed Civil War-era steam locomotive General, built in Paterson by Rogers in 1855, was restored to operation to commemorate the centennial of its exploits in the Great Locomotive Chase of 1862. ♦ The Sea-Land container terminal was moved from Port Newark to Port Elizabeth; The Elizabethport, a converted T-3 tanker holding 476 containers made its first intercostal voyage in Sept. ♦ The Hoboken to Buffalo Phoebe Snow train was eliminated by the Erie Lackawanna Railway. ♦ The NYS&W RR was granted a Federally guaranteed loan of $555,000 to buy three new EMD GP-18 diesels. The sorely needed replacements for their early Alco locomotives were delivered on Sept. 4th. ♦ The CNJ Long Valley - Chester branch was abandoned and the Black River & Western RR tourist line was evicted. ♦ The former Erie RR Jersey City terminal was abandoned and remaining passenger service was discontinued. ♦ NYS&W RR abandoned trackage between Sparta Jct. and Hainsburg Jct. ♦ Erie Lackawanna Newton to Branchville passenger trains were curtailed. ♦ The PRR Trenton - Red Bank via Freehold and Sea Girt doodlebug service was curtailed.
1963 A new experimental "Park 'N Ride" commuter station was opened at Jersey Avenue, New Brunswick on the Pennsylvania RR. A free parking lot for 300 autos was provided. ♦ The New York, Susquehanna & Western Railroad offered each of its 200 passengers $1,000 if they would stop using their service in the hopes that the railroad would find it easier to get permission to discontinue the money-losing trains. ♦ The Erie Lackawanna resurrected the Phoebe Snow name for their re-established main passenger train, but now it ran between Hoboken and Chicago. ♦ Royal Blue bus line sold its Allentown to NY route to PSCT. ♦ On June 28th Pennsylvania RR doodlebug #4666, pulling a P-70 coach, made the last run from Camden to Trenton over one of the oldest rail lines in America - the Bordentown branch, which began as the Camden & Amboy RR and has now been resurrected as the route of the Southern NJ Light Rail Transit line. ♦ A new trailer on flat car "TrucTrain" service was begun by the Pennsylvania RR. One of the routes to the west was from New England via the Lehigh & Hudson River RR, through Phillipsburg. ♦ The Staten Island Railroad (Sunrise Ferry) discontinued its Perth Amboy to Tottenville, Staten Island ferry on 10.17. ♦ Penn Station in NY City was demolished to make room for Madison Square Garden. Trains continue to run below street level. ◆ The Public Service Cedar Street subway, last used by buses, was closed. ◆ Erie Lackawanna Ry discontinued Carlton Hill passenger service. ♦ The George Washington Bridge Bus Station opened to primarily serve bus routes from northern New Jersey. ♦ Erie Lackawanna Ry abandoned Passaic - Passaic Park to Paterson - Totowa trackage as most of the right of way was needed for the construction of I-80. ◆The Ontario & Western Chapter of the NRHS was founded..
1964 The Cape May-Lewes Ferry began daily service which it has continued except for a 45 day suspension in 1977 due to extreme ice conditions on Delaware Bay. ♦ The Mack Trucks, Inc. Corporate offices were moved from NYC to Montvale, NJ. ♦ A 16 day strike shut down Public Service Coordinated Transport beginning 3.9. ♦ Essex County Freeholders proposed that the Newark City Subway be extended along the existing Greenwood Lake, West Orange, and Caldwell branches and the Morristown & Erie Railroad lines. ♦ America's first bus, a Mack built in 1900, was operated in the New Providence Memorial Day parade. It was borrowed from the Mack Museum for the event. The vehicle is now in the America On Wheels museum collection. ♦ The National Railway Historical Society annual convention was based at Newark on September 3rd through 7th The Robert Treat Hotel was the Convention Headquarters. Excursion trips were: the CNJ to Asbury Park and Bay Head; Erie Lackawanna to Port Jervis; E-L MU trip to Gladstone; and a tour of the Newark City Subway. The package price for the above plus the Convention Banquet was $23.50. Supplemental trips to the NY World’s Fair and a NY Harbor Tour were also offered. ♦ A lengthy Teamsters strike stranded 100,000 new cars at railheads, auto plants, etc., including 13,000 new Buicks and Pontiacs parked at Linden, NJ airport. In the end the Teamsters union got its first national contract with a trucking company. ♦ Sea-Land Service's General Offices were moved from Port Newark to a new building at Port Elizabeth. ♦ On Oct. 24th, in conjunction with the National Model Railroad Association Annual Convention, an excursion was run on the Hoboken Shore RR. The train consisted of four EL gondolas and an EL caboose and was pulled south and then north alternately by one of the two HS 44 tonner locomotives. ◆ Eighteen hundred+ linear shelf feet of records of the DL&W RR, including 15,000 glass and film negatives from the Erie Lackawanna Railway Company at Hoboken, Jersey City, New York City, Scranton and Cleveland were acquired by the George Arents research Library at Syracuse University. ◆ The Tri-State Railway Historical Society, a NRHS Chapter, was established. ◆ The Urban Mass Transportation Act was passed to help bail out failing transit companies.
1965 Effective Feb. 27th, a small brick depot replaced the former (1934) Atlantic City Union passenger station, which was converted to the Municipal Bus Terminal. ♦ Three new PATH "K" cars were delivered by GG-1 to Long Island City via Penn Station on March 14th. The following day they made test runs between Jamaica and Woodside towers. ♦ The Morris County Central Railroad was established and began steam excursion service between Whippany and Morristown or Roseland. ♦ Governor Richard Hughes cut a ribbon and rode the inaugural run of the Black River & Western Railroad steam excursion service between Flemington and Ringoes on May 16th. At the time the BR&W leased the ling from the PRR. ♦ Some 900 employees of the Lionel Corp. at Hillside went on strike. ♦ Erie Lackawanna and Jersey Central ferries were halted when engineers called in sick in support of the strike against New York City's Staten Island ferry. ♦ The Electric Railroaders annual convention was held in the NY area. On Monday, July 5th they sponsored a special trip on the "spanking-new, air-conditioned rapid transit cars" on PATH which covered all trackage including the Henderson St. shop and a high speed run to Newark. At Newark they boarded a PCC car for a tour of the City Subway. ♦ Erie Lackawanna Ry began a “Mail-Tik” plan so commuters could order their monthly rail tickets by mail ◆ With the delivery of 162 new PA-1 cars the Port Authority Trans-Hudson system became the first rail fleet in the country to be fully air-conditioned. ♦ Directors of the Norfolk & Western Ry and the Chesapeake & Ohio Ry approved a proposal to merge and jointly acquire the el, D&H, B&M, CNJ and Reading Railroads in late August. ◆ Joshua Lionel Cowen, founder (in 1901), and long-time president of the Lionel Corporation, died on Sept. 8th. ◆ Twelve trolley cars, originally built in the US were returned from Rio de Janeiro to the Port of NY/NJ. They were destined for various US trolley museums. At least half of the cars were moved on flat cars across New Jersey by the Pennsylvania RR, en-route to Orbisonia and Bloomsburg, PA. ♦ The Atlantic City Expressway - toll road opened. ♦ A massive electric power failure affected most of the tri-state area on 11.9. ♦ The Division of Traffic Engineering was created within the New Jersey State Highway Department. ♦ The Mack Trucks, Inc. Corporate offices were moved from Montvale, NJ to Allentown, PA. ♦ Erie Lackawanna Northern Branch passenger service was discontinued. ♦ Olympic Park closed.
1966 The State of New Jersey eliminated railroad right-of-way and rolling-stock taxes for passenger railroads. ♦ Under the New Jersey Transportation Act, a new Department of Transportation (NJDOT) absorbed the functions of the New Jersey State Highway Department. The Act also created the Commuter Operating Authority to administer rail carrier contracts and subsidies for capital improvements. It was the first legislation in the nation to combine funding for both highway and public transportation. ♦ The first push-pull trains in New Jersey and on the east coast was tested by the Jersey Central Lines. They were accomplished using the first conversions of standard, single level coaches in the US. ♦ A freighter plowed into the NY & Long Branch Railroad bridge over the Raritan River forcing passengers to find alternate routes for over two months. ◆ The lower level bus terminal below the Public Service Newark Terminal was closed. It was built as the Cedar Street trolley subway and was later converted to All-Service Vehicle use. ♦ A freighter slammed into the Jersey Central Newark Bay bridge on May 19th, causing the bridge to be closed for about a week for repairs. Some 13,000 commuters had to find alternate routes to their jobs. ◆ The Susquehanna Railroad terminated all rail commuter service on June 30th without PUC approval - which they eventually got three months later. ♦ Speeds of 152 mph were achieved by a US Dept. of Commerce test run of four Budd Co. self propelled electric cars on the Pennsylvania Railroad main line between Trenton and New Brunswick. ♦ A Railroad Enthusiasts, NY Div. Rail-Camera Excursion on many Erie Lackawanna branch lines was operated from Hoboken to Washington, NJ on Sept. 25th. ♦ On October 3rd Erie Lackawanna passenger service on the Sussex Branch; the Newark Branch; Caldwell Branch; and the Greenwood Lake Division between Mountain View and Wanaque was discontinued. ♦ Public Service published "Picture History of Transit Progress, City of Newark" commemorating the 300th anniversary of the City of Newark as well as the 100 anniversary of transit in the city. The latest PS buses were put on display. ♦ The final run of the Erie Lackawanna's luxury Phoebe Snow train was on November 27th. ♦ One of the original Hudson & Manhattan Railroad "black cars," #256, the last to be retired, was donated to the National Museum of Transport at St. Louis, MO by PATH. ♦ The Fairland, one of the original six Sea-Land (Pan-Atlantic) container ships made the first containership voyage from Port Elizabeth to Europe. ♦ PRR trackage between S. Toms River and Birmingham was abandoned. ♦ EL trackage between Andover Jct. and Branchville was abandoned. ◆ Keansburg Steamboat Co. service ended when the Atlantic Highlands pier burned. ◆ Black River & Western RR 2-8-0 #60 was posed with the “Classroom on Rails” for distributors of pressure sensitive tape manufacturer, Permacel. The three-car train of ex-Reading coaches equipped with training aids began a US tour in January of 1967. ◆ A pair of GM EMD SD45 demonstrators did a stint on the Lehigh Valley Railroad.
1967 Atlantic Container Lines began trans-Atlantic container operations at Port Elizabeth. ♦ In April the Central Railroad of NJ terminated its ferry service between Jersey City and lower Manhattan. Its trains were rerouted to Penn Station - Newark, where patrons could transfer to PATH. The PATH - Pennsylvania Railroad joint service agreement was terminated and PATH assumed full responsibility for the service between Jersey City and Newark. ◆ An American President Line World Cruise Liner, The SS President Roosevelt, was the first passenger liner to dock at Port Newark in modern times. The 573 foot vessel had 214 passengers on board. (3.20) ♦ The Jersey Central Lines filed for bankruptcy on 3.22. ♦ CNJ passenger service between Allentown and Jersey City was terminated on 4/29. ◆ With help from the NJ DOT, the Aldene Plan was implemented on 4.30 to bring their trains into Newark Penn Station, allowing the Jersey Central to abandon their costly Jersey City Terminal and ferry service. Several older coaches were converted to cab cars to permit push-pull operation. This plan allowed the CNJ to discontinue the following passenger services: Newark - Kearny; Elizabethport - Broad St., Newark; South Kearny; Elizabethport - Perth Amboy; Jersey City Terminal - East 33rd St., Bayonne; and Hampton to Phillipsburg. The Bayonne Shuttle (or “Scoot”) train was established to provide service between Cranford and Bayonne over the original CNJ main line. ♦ A High Iron Co. Steam Excursion which originated at Elizabethport went to Bridgeton, NJ and return. It was powered by former Canadian Pacific 4-6-2 #1286. ◆ A TurboTrain, built by the Sikorsky Aircraft division of United Aircraft Corporation with a gas turbine power plant reached 170.8mph on a special 21 mile upgraded section of test track between Trenton and New Brunswick. ♦ Riots by blacks in Newark, July 12-17, killed 26, injured 1,500 and resulted in more than 1,000 arrests. ♦ A massive power failure hit most of NJ, southeast PA and parts of DE and MD. ♦ Two derailments on the PC RR tied up 150 miles of track in NJ on 7.9. ♦ The LV RR declared bankruptcy on 7.24. ♦ The 15,000 ton former Mediterranean cruise ship, Exchorda was purchased by Stevens Institute of Technology and moored beside the 8th Street pier in Hoboken. Christened the S.S. Stevens, it provided additional campus residence space for 175 students for several years. ♦ The last PRSL "Pony Express" trains operated between Philadelphia and Atlantic City Race Course. ♦ The ESSO Malaysia, the first of 19 very large super-tankers joined the Jersey fleet of Standard Oil Co. of New Jersey. The Jersey fleet was at the time the largest privately owned tanker fleet in the world. ♦ Lionel offered no new catalog, but in an ironic twist they acquired the remnants of the American Flyer line from the failing A.C. Gilbert Co. ♦ Ninety-year old president of Quincy Mining Co. and former Mayor of Morristown, W. Parsons Todd was honored by the Erie Lackawanna Ry for his 70-year record of commuting on the railroad. ◆ The last railroad ferry commuter service in the United States (Hoboken to NYC), was terminated by the Erie Lackawanna Railway on 11.22. Passengers bound for NYC had to transfer to PATH trains. ♦ PRR Camden to Haddonfield passenger trains were discontinued. ♦ All passenger service between Susquehanna Transfer and Butler was discontinued by the NYS&W. ◆ “Fog Tickets” were last used by theCNJ for alternative transportation for rail passengers when fog prevented operation of their ferry boats.
1968 The Pennsylvania Railroad and the New York Central System merged to form the Penn Central. ♦ A twin Delaware Memorial Bridge was opened. ♦ The Urban Mass Transit Administration was established under the new US Department of Transportation. Through UMTA and its descendant, the Federal Transit Administration, financial assistance was channeled to transit systems and many were regionalized. ♦ Columbia Pictures filmed "Funny Girl," starring Barbara Streisand (her first film), at the Jersey Central Railroad Jersey City Terminal, with one scene taken on one of the railroad tugs, and other scenes filmed on the CNJ High Bridge Branch. The train used in the movie was hauled by a steam locomotive and was the last passenger train to depart from the Jersey City Terminal. ♦ The CNJ abandoned the Atlantic Highlands pier. ♦ EL trackage between Pompton Jct. and Wanaque - Midvale was abandoned.
1969 High-speed Metroliner rail service was inaugurated between Washington and New York by Penn Central RR on 1.16. ♦ The PATCO Lindenwold Hi-Speed Line, the nation's first rapid transit system to fully utilize automated train operation and an automated fare collection system opened. It utilized the former Bridge Line tracks from Camden into Philadelphia. Initially it provided the fastest scheduled transit service in the world - 14.2 miles in 22.5 minutes. ♦ State Senator Gerardo Del Tufo and the Newark Chamber of Commerce sponsored a demonstration of a hi-rail equipped bus from the Hotel Robert Treat to Newark Airport and return. The test round trip via the CNJ Newark to Elizabeth branch, to avoid traffic delays, took two hours. The bus was provided by Red Arrow Lines of Philadelphia. ◆ The Jersey Central became part of the first "land bridge" route for containers between the east and west coasts which by-passed the Panama Canal. ♦ The PRR ended the last scheduled passenger service between Camden and Pemberton on April 25th. Service had begun in 1867. ♦ Railfan photographer Paul Carpinito captured five moving PC & CNJ trains in one photo at Elizabeth station. ♦ The Electric Railroaders Assn., NY Division sponsored an inspection tour of the "Hudson Tubes" on June 21st. ♦ In response to impending severe cutbacks in bus service, on July 1st the New Jersey Commuter Operating Authority (NJ DOT) offered financial operating assistance to private bus carriers and new buses were purchased and leased to ailing motor carriers. ♦ On July 20th, Neil Armstrong landed on the Moon. ◆ The British steam powered "Flying Scotsman" train traveled across New Jersey on its tour to promote the trade of UK goods in America. ♦ McLean Industries, parent of Sea-Land Service was merged into R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co.; Shortly thereafter, founder Malcom McLean left the company and took over US Lines, which moved its General Office to Cranford, NJ. ♦ The Canal Society of NJ sponsored their first tour: from Saxton Falls to Phillipsburg along the Morris Canal. ◆ An exact fare system was instituted on 23 local bus lines in Newark by PSCT on 11.24. ♦ A NJDOT employee developed the nations first breakaway couplings for roadway signs and traffic signals to prevent death and injury to motorists in accidents. ♦ Lionel Corp. sold its train line to General Mills and the Irvington/Hillside plant complex was disbanded. ♦ The former Lackawanna "Old Road" from Washington to Delaware was abandoned. ♦ The LV RR Lansdowne - Pittstown Branch was abandoned. ◆ The Canal Society of New Jersey was chartered. Their first two public programs were held in the NJ room of Rutgers University Library at New Brunswick and covered the Delaware & Raritan Canal. ◆ The Ontario & Western Technical and Historical Society was founded.
1970 Contractor S.J. Groves & Sons built a construction railroad to build the I 280 freeway. Rock and dirt from the First Mountain cut at West Orange was hauled west in trains and dumped in marshy land on the route of the road through Parsippany. Their rail equipment gained access to the roadway via a connection with the Morristown & Erie Railroad. ♦ The Erie Lackawanna Railway discontinued the "Lake Cities Limited", the last scheduled passenger train using the former DL&W Cut-off. ♦ The Penn Central Railroad declared bankruptcy - at the time, the largest business bankruptcy in US history. ♦ The Emergency Rail Services Act provided bankrupt railroads with $200 million in loan guarantees. ♦ The Eastern Live Steamers were evicted from Riverside Park in Lyndhurst. Most of the nine members joined the New Jersey Live Steamers. ◆ Public Service Coordinated Transport, the largest independently owned bus operation in the world, requested a five-cent temporary increase in its basic fare of 25¢ while it awaited pending hearings before the NJ PUC for a 10¢ hike. ♦ The Black River & Western RR purchased the Flemington line from Penn Central and began operating freight service in addition to passenger excursion service. ♦ Veenema & Wiegers, Inc. of Paterson designed a new trailer with seamless wall construction -the first to eliminate conventional sheet-and-post construction. It increased trailer capacity by almost 100 cubic feet. ♦ The Tropicana juice train began operation between Bradenton, FL and Northern New Jersey. It continues as the nation's only food-product unit train. ♦ The first state of New Jersey funded U34CH locomotives rolled out of the General Electric, Erie, PA plant in November for service on the Erie Lackawanna’s non-electrified commuter lines radiating from Hoboken. ◆ Four railroad unions went on a one day national strike for higher wages which halted rail service coast-to-coast on 12.10. ♦ Sea-Land Service moved its container terminal to Berth 56, Port Elizabeth, which remains its current location. ♦ The 117-foot Jamaica, claimed to be the largest party fishing boat in the world, joined the fleet at Bogan's Basin, Brielle, NJ. ♦ The exclusive contraflow bus lane (XBL) leading to the Lincoln tunnel was established on 12.18. It was the first such lane in the greater NY-NJ metropolitan region and one of the first contraflow bus lanes on a freeway in the United States. ♦ The former PRR Farmingdale to Sea Girt line was abandoned. ◆ President Richard M. Nixon signed the Urban Mass Transportation Act. It has since delivered tens of billions of dollars in federal matching funds to public transit systems.
1971 Amtrak took over most of the remaining intercity passenger service in the United States from the individual railroads. ♦ Elephants, a pony, a zebra and a llama took an unscheduled march through the Lincoln Tunnel. The Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus was stranded by a national rail strike and this unorthodox route got them to their New York engagement on time. ♦ The NJ DOT- purchased fleet of General Electric U34CH locomotives entered push-pull service on commuter lines radiating out of Hoboken. This type of locomotive was the first to utilize shaft driven head-end-power for providing electricity to the passenger cars for heat and air conditioning, and was the predecessor of this methodology currently used by Amtrak and other passenger carrying authorities. ♦ The Clean Air Act forced the transportation industry to boost efforts to get new passengers and to develop technologies to make vehicles more efficient and cleaner. ♦ On 8.23 Public Service Coordinated Transport bus operations were taken over by Transport of New Jersey, also a subsidiary of Public Service Electric and Gas Company. ♦ Amtrak and NJ DOT opened the new Metropark station. ♦ The Reading RR declared bankruptcy. ♦ The Military Transport Association of North Jersey was founded. It was the first such club in the east. ♦ Palisades Amusement Park closed.
1972 The CNJ increased passenger fares 20% on intrastate trips on 1.1. ♦ On Jan. 3rd the Jersey Central and Erie Lackawanna began operating pool trains between Elizabeth and Scranton via the High Bridge Branch and the former DL&W Main Line. ♦The NY&LB RR increased passenger fares 20% on intrastate trips on 1.7. ◆ The NRHS Tri-State Chapter began publishing their newsletter The Blockline in January.◆ The Jersey Central ceased operating its own trackage in Pennsylvania on March 31st. ♦ Transport of New Jersey suffered a 75 day strike (the longest in the NJ transit industry) which ended on 5.15. ♦ The L&HR Ry declared bankruptcy on 4.18. ♦ The CNJ abandoned their Sound Shore (a/k/a Seashore) branch between Natco (Union Beach) and Atlantic Highlands. Most of the line has now become Henry Hudson Trail, administered by the Monmouth County Park System. ♦ The CNJ’s new “Portside” container facility was opened at Port Elizabeth on June 11th. ♦ The EL Ry entered bankruptcy on 6.26. ♦ Phillipsburg gained the dubious distinction, unparalleled in American railroad history, of being the only municipality in the US served by six bankrupt railroads: Penn Central, CNJ, LV, L&HR, Erie Lackawanna and Reading. ♦ The Port Authority of New York changed its name to Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. ♦ The Jersey Central's first Land-Bridge unit train arrived at the new Portside Terminal, Elizabeth, from Long Beach, CA, with 52 cars carrying 104 containers. ♦ Sea-Land Service discontinued Port Elizabeth to Florida, Texas and Intercostal domestic container ship services. ♦ Orange & Black Bus, Inter City Lines, Warwick Lines, and Northeast Coach were reorganized as Maplewood Equipment Co. ♦ CNJ/RDG pool freight train began operating between Jersey City and Rutherford Yard with RDG using trackage rights between Allentown and Phillipsburg to connect with CNJ. ♦ The CNJ abandoned their Barnegat Branch. ♦ The Penn Central abandoned the former PRR E. Millstone, Rocky Hill (Monmouth Jct. - Kingston), and the Union Transportation Co. (Ft. Dix - Hightstown) branches. ♦ The Reading RR (former Trenton - Princeton Traction) line between Trenton and Lawrenceville was abandoned. ♦ The CNJ's Wharton & Northern line between Picatinny and Green Pond Jct. was abandoned. ◆ The Alfred E. Driscoll bridge which carries the Garden State Parkway over the Raritan River was widened from four to ten lanes.
1973 The governors of New Jersey and New York announced plans for a $650 million program of rail transportation improvements to be undertaken by The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. The improvements included extension of PATH service from Newark Penn Station to Newark Airport and Plainfield; direct rail service to New York Penn Station for Erie-Lackawanna Railway riders at Kearny and Secaucus. ♦ A PATH strike beginning on 4.1 halted service for two months. ♦ Spicer developed a semi-automatic transmission for trucks and buses. ♦ The Delaware & Raritan Canal was put on the National Register of Historic Places. ♦ The 25th anniversary of the Motor Bus Society was celebrated at the annual meeting in Newark. (Apr. 7/8) ♦ Amtrak began their package express business on 7.1. ♦ The Morris County Central Railroad moved their tourist train operation from Whippany to Newfoundland, on an unused section of the Susquehanna RR. Their equipment, including two steam locomotives, was moved in one train down the former Erie Greenwood Lake line. ♦ The first Sussex Air Show was held. ◆ Nine people were killed and 40 injured in a series of chain-reaction collisions involving 75 vehicles caused by heavy fog on the NJ Turnpike on 10.24. The NJ Turnpike Authority developed a $5 million system of electronic sensors that alert approaching motorists of accidents in the roadway ahead. More than 800 sensors, each a half mile apart were imbedded in the pavement and any interruption in the normal flow of traffic triggered warning signs along the highway. ♦ The New Jersey Fact Book, published by Public Service Electric and Gas Company stated "New Jersey's transportation facilities are the best in the nation." ♦ The Arab oil embargo created gasoline shortages and directed the attention of the public and politicians back to public transit. ♦ The New Jersey Department of Transportation began a half fare program for senior citizens riding off-peak intrastate buses. Their interim bus subsidy program begun on 7.1.69 was made permanent. ◆ Amtrak ordered 57 new cars from Budd - the first conventional passenger equipment purchased in nearly ten years. ◆ The Mineola, the official car of the Interborough Rapid Transit Co. of NYC, and built in 1904, became a hunters lodge on a Flemington farm. In this year it was acquired by and moved to Shore Line (Branford) Trolley Museum, East Haven, CT. ◆ The Journal Square Transportation Center was opened in Jersey City.
1974 Transport of New Jersey opened the nation's first shopping center park/ride facility at Willowbrook Mall, Wayne, NJ. ♦ The Delaware & Raritan Canal State Park was established. ♦ The Morris Canal was placed on the National Register of Historic Places. ♦ Vol. 1, No. 1 of Railfan magazine was produced by Carstens Publications at Newton, NJ. They later bought out the pioneer Railroad magazine (which began in 1906 as Railroad Man's Magazine) and became Railfan & Railroad magazine, covering North America. ♦ Ross Rowland, Jr. of Bernardsville, founder and head of the High Iron Co. first envisioned the American Freedom Train in talks around the old stove in the Lebanon station which was High Iron's headquarters. Delaware & Hudson RR diesel locomotive #2312 was moved to Lebanon where it was repainted in a bi-centennial color scheme and renumbered "1776." It was used to power the American Freedom Train Foundation's "Preamble Express." This train departed Lebanon with three coaches and an open end observation car on a four month tour of the US to make preparations for the Freedom Train to follow. ♦ The first state chapter of the Antique Truck Club of America was formed in New Jersey. They first met at Fisher Automatic Transmission Service in Fairfield. ♦ On April 27th, the Morristown & Erie RR began their own excursion service which they named the Whippany & Toonerville RR. ◆ The Regional Rail Reorganization Act (RRRA or 3R Act) was signed into law by President Nixon. The Federal government was forced to enact this law to prevent Judge Fullam from shutting down PC RR. The act established Consolidated Rail Corporation (ConRail) as "a financially self-sustaining rail service system" for the northeastern United States; and created U.S. Railway Association (USRA) to develop a plan for merging the bankrupt eastern railroads into ConRail at an estimated expense of $500,000,000, and thereafter managing federal investment in ConRail. PC got $85,000,000 to keep it running until ConRail took over. ♦ The Reading, PC, LV & CNJ railroads were ruled unreorganizable by the courts. ♦ The Lehigh Valley RR inaugurated a new fast Trailer/Container on Flat Car fast freight, called "The Mercury" between St. Louis and Oak Island Yard, NJ. ♦ The Jersey Central Lines began a summer-only seashore train called The Mermaid from Raritan to Bay Head on 5.22 in response to the oil embargo. The train was unfortunately poorly patronized. ♦ The Morris County Central Railroad began operations at Newfoundland. ◆ The D & R, an historic documentary film about the Delaware & Raritan Canal was produced for NJ Public Broadcast TV. ♦ Sea-Land's East Coast to Puerto Rico container ship service was sold to Navieras of Puerto Rico and that firm also later took over SeaTrain Lines of Edgewater, NJ. ◆ Legislation establishing the Delaware & Raritan Canal state park was signed by Governor Byrne on 10.10.
1975 On January 18th, at Waterloo Village, Her Serene Highness, Princess Grace of Monaco presented Governor Brendan Byrne with a plaque honoring the Irish immigrants who helped build the Morris Canal. ◆ NJ DOT received a $60 million grant to purchase 1,755 new buses. ♦ Railroad enthusiast extraodinair, Thomas T. Taber of Madison, died. In his honor, the Erie Lackawanna Railway named their 5:30 Hoboken to Dover commuter train the Tom Taber Express. This was the only known passenger train ever named for a railfan. The citizens of Madison later placed a bronze plaque honoring him in the Madison station and the legislature passed resolutions in recognition of his contributions to transportation. (Railroad History Bulletin #171) ♦ The PATH Journal Square Transportation Center was dedicated. It included a new PATH station and Operations Control Center, an enclosed bus terminal, a 10-story office building, a shopping center and parking for over 600 cars. ◆ The American Freedom Train made its official debut in Wilmington, DE on April 1st and then passed through New Jersey on the Penn Central Main and River Lines to begin its two-year Bicentennial tour at Albany, NY. ♦ A two day Model Railroad Hobby Show was sponsored by the Model Railroad Club at Kean College. Attendance was estimated at more than 7,000. ♦ A celebration of the 150th anniversary of the start of construction of the Morris Canal at Ledgewood and dedication of a monument was sponsored by the Canal Society of NJ. ◆ The Museum of the Canal Society of NJ was opened at Waterloo Village. ◆ DeCamp Bus Co. suffered a one month strike. ♦ The Sea-Land Service General Office was moved to Menlo Park, NJ (it is currently located in Charlotte, NC). ♦ The Electro-Motive Division of General Motors built a prototype electric freight locomotive with thyristor controls. The 6,000hp GM6C was painted white and was extensively tested between Kearny, NJ and Potomac Yard, VA as well as Harrisburg, PA. ♦ The PA of NY & NJ/PATH Journal Square Transportation Center opened in October. ♦ Summit minibus service was started on three intratown routes on 11.26. ◆ The Blue Comet Nostalgia Special was run from Raritan to Bay Head. The matched set of CNJ standard open-window coaches and open-platform observation #1178 were pulled by ex-Florida East Coast 4-6-2 #148. ◆ The NRHS Bergen Rockland Chapter was established.
1976 Under the Emergency Rail Services Act of 1970 the CNJ RR received a $6 million loan guarantee on 1.15. ♦ The NYS&W filed for bankruptcy on 1.22. ◆ The Railroad Revitalization and Regulatory Reform Act reducing governmental regulation was signed by President Ford on 2.5. ♦ UMTA approved a $39 million grant to EL RR for improvements and purchase of 180 new cars on 2.24. ♦ A strike of North Boulevard Bus began on 3.4 and lasted seven months. ♦ A two week TNJ employee strike began on 3.9. ♦ Conrail and USRA conclude a $2.026 billion startup agreement on 3.12. ♦ Bankrupt northeast rail properties, including the Penn Central; Erie Lackawanna; Lehigh Valley; Jersey Central; Pennsylvania Reading Seashore Lines; Reading and Lehigh & Hudson River, were conveyed to Consolidated Rail Corporation (Conrail) on 4.1. ♦ In order to preserve Eastern rail competition with a second carrier, the Delaware & Hudson Railway was given expanded trackage rights from Wilkes Barre, PA to Oak Island Yard, Newark. The D&H had the name with the longest continuity in the US transportation industry. They were founded in 1823 as the D&H Canal Co. ♦ Delivery of 866 new buses to NJ DOT began in April. ♦ DeCamp Bus Co. was hit by a one month strike on 5.22. ♦ The bankrupt REA (Railway Express Agency) Express was liquidated. ♦ The NJ DOT Commuter Operating Agency contracted with Conrail to operate the commuter rail systems in NJ. ♦ The Reading Co. Technical and Historical Society was formed. ◆ The American Freedom Train made stops in New Jersey at Morristown 7/23-25; Newark 8/21-23; New Brunswick 8/24-26; Trenton 8/30-9/1; Asbury Park 9/2-6; and Atlantic City 9/8-11. ♦ The first foreign-built electric locomotive in the US was placed in service between NY and Washington by Amtrak in "Metroliner Service." The 6,000 hp unit was built in Sweden by ASEA. ♦ The Betsy Ross bridge between Delair, NJ and Philadelphia opened. It was the first bridge in the United States to be named after a woman. ♦ The NJ Commuter Operating Agency (NJDOT) purchased 866 new, modern buses from Flxible Corporation and leased them at nominal charge to private bus carriers to provide service. The last known 35' bus from this historic, and one of the largest orders, is in the NJ Transportation Heritage Center collection. ♦ The Morris County Board of Transportation created the New Jersey County Transportation Association, the brainchild of Board chairman, Thomas T. Taber. ♦ The first annual US Diesel Truckin' National meet was held at Raceway Park in Old Bridge Township. The event has grown to become the largest single day diesel truck show in the country. It attracts over 1,000 trucks from current to antique. ♦ The celebration of our Nation's 200th birthday, featured Operation Sail, a gathering of tall ships from around the world which were paraded up NY Harbor and the Hudson River. Locomotives and rolling stock were painted in special bicentennial schemes. The following were in our state: BR&W RR RS-3 #1554; Conrail GG-1 #4800 & GP-38 #7776; Erie Lackawanna Ry SD-45's #3632 & 3638; Griffin Pipe - Florence, NJ, a Lima Hamilton switcher; Hercules Powder - Kenvil, Plymouth #1776; Ingersoll-Rand #90 & their GE 45 tonner; LV RR - a caboose; NJ DOT U34CH #3351; NY Dock Ry (BEDT #25); NYS&W RR RS-1 #252; and the entire fleet of Transport of New Jersey PCC cars. ♦ A reunion of Delaware & Raritan Canal workers at Blackwells Mills was sponsored by the Canal Society of NJ. ◆ The Electro-Motive Division of General Motors built a prototype electric freight locomotive with thyristor controls. The 10,000hp GM10C was painted white and was extensively tested between Kearny, NJ and Potomac Yard, VA as well as Harrisburg, PA.
1977 The Morristown & Erie Railway fell into bankruptcy. ♦ The "Friends of the GG1" raised $8,712 to restore Amtrak GG1 electric locomotive #4935 to the elegant prewar paint scheme of the old Pennsylvania Railroad. ♦ Transport of New Jersey extended their Exact Change fare system to the Newark City Subway on 2.21, making it the last trolley line in the US and Canada to adopt Exact Change. ♦ The NJ DOT received a $40.7 million grant on 3.30 to purchase 50 high-speed Arrow commuter cars and to extend electrification of the NY&LB RR from South Amboy to Long Branch. ♦ A freight train wreck at Metuchen in June blocked all four tracks of the Northeast Corridor. Through passenger trains, including their GG1 locomotives were hauled by a variety of diesel locomotives on a detour via the former Reading West Trenton and Lehigh Valley lines. ♦ After 113 years of continuous operation Railway Post Office service ended. The last run between New York (through NJ) and Washington finished on July 1st. ♦ The New Jersey County Transportation Association held the first transportation conference at Atlantic City (TransAction) with 75 people attending. Today, attendance at TransAction has grown to 1000+. ♦ Two surplus Transport of New Jersey PCC cars were sold to Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority on 12.20 and trucked there for use on the Shaker Rapid lines. One was subsequently returned to Minneapolis and the other to Shore Line (Branford) Trolley Museum in East Haven, CT.
1978 The world's longest miniature train was operated with 10 locomotives, 501 hopper cars and one caboose by the Model Railroad Club of Union, NJ. The record is listed on page 314 of the 1980 edition of the "Guinness Book of World Records." ♦ The 1885 square rigged sailing ship, Wavertree was moved from South Street Seaport to a floating dry dock at Bethlehem Steel, Ship Building Division, Hoboken Yard for hull repairs and repainting. ◆ The first annual New Jersey State Bus Rodeo took place. ♦ A new ferry service from Liberty State Park (Jersey Central Terminal area in Jersey City) was established to the Statue of Liberty by Circle Line. ♦ The National Model Railroad Association held their National Convention in Newark. ♦ The Motor Bus Society observed its 30th anniversary with a convention at Mt. Laurel, NJ on April 1 & 2. The society at that time had about 1,000 members. In addition to Motor Coach Age, they also published Model Coach News. ♦ The Hudson & Manhattan Railroad (PATH) Tunnels were designated a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark by the American Society of Civil Engineers. ♦ The Auto Train Co. studied the feasibility of starting their Florida train at Cranford. A special test train checked the clearances along the same route which the B&O RR used to Washington, DC on July 17th. Due to financial difficulties the new service did not materialize. ◆ The final run of the Bayonne Shuttle between Cranford and Bayonne was on August 6th, ending 114 years of service on that portion of the line. ◆ Tri-State Railway Historical Society sponsored The Pennsylvania Limited in cooperation with Amtrak. It operated from Penn Station, NYC to Harrisburg and return on October 8th. ◆ The Hoboken Shore RR was abandoned.
1979 The American Society of Mechanical Engineers designated the Reaction-Type Hydraulic Turbine (ca. 1850) at Plane 9 West on the Morris Canal "National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark." ♦ Tri-State Railway Historical Society sponsored a Military Special excursion train which was operated inside Picatinny Arsenal on May 19th. ◆ The NJ DOT Commuter Operating Agency purchased most active commuter track, some inactive track and all rail stations not privately or municipally owned. ♦ New Jersey Transit Corporation (NJ Transit) was created by the state legislature, replacing the former (NJDOT) Commuter Operating Agency, and was charged with the responsibility of overseeing most bus and rail service in NJ. NJ Transit was also granted the power to acquire and operate private bus or rail carriers when it is deemed to be in the public's interest, or to contract with private carriers or counties to provide subsidized service. They are to this day the only state-wide transit agency in the country. ♦ A second National trucker shutdown or strike lasted two weeks in June. It resulted in a federal mandatory fuel surcharge. ♦ The State of New Jersey responded to the gas crisis with The Seashore Special train. It was run direct from Trenton via Rahway for shore points to Bay Head on summer weekends. It was withdrawn after a few weeks due to poor patronage. ◆ CNJ corporate existence officially ended when the CNJ was renamed Central Jersey Industries on Sept. 14th. The new company received $42.5 million from the Federal government for property the CNJ had conveyed to Conrail and other excluded property. ◆ Foreign Trade Zone (#49) opened at Port Newark/Port Elizabeth Marine Terminal. ◆ SeaTrain Lines declared bankruptcy. ◆ The Ontario & Western Chapter of the NRHS and The Ontario & Western Technical & Historical Society merged to form the Ontario & Western Ry Historical Society, Inc. ◆ The Lackawanna Coalition, a rail advocacy group with a focus on NJ Transit’s Morristown and Gladstone lines, was founded.
1980 NJ Transit purchased and became operators of Associated Bus Co. (Paterson - Haledon), the first of many privately held transit operators/routes taken over by NJT. ♦ On May 6th, PATH opened the world’s newest and most modern control center at Journal Square. ◆ For the first time in over 50 years passenger service returned to the Rahway Valley RR. The occasion was the June US Golf Open at Baltusrol. Rail shuttle service was provided between a parking area and the golf course. The five car train, which included the Delaware Otsego’s dome car Silver View, was operated with a RVRR locomotive on each end. ◆ A strike by Port Authority Trans-Hudson union employees immobilized the PATH rapid transit system from June 12th to August 31st. ♦ The Jersey Central Railway Historical Society sponsored a four car RDC excursion over former DL&W Morris & Essex lines on July 20th. The cars were lettered for the Lackawanna Railroad. ◆ The American Society of Civil Engineers designated the Morris Canal a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark. ♦ Port Newark received 800,000 foreign-made automobiles. ♦ The first stage of the demolition and removal of the former CNJ Newark Bay Bridge was begun. ♦ The Staggers Rail Act substantially eased governmental regulation, giving railroads the freedom to offer innovative rates and services like any other business. ♦ When the Stirling Hill zinc mine at Ogdensburg, NJ ceased shipping by rail, Conrail ended operation of the Hudson Secondary south of Franklin. ◆ The local Metropark Shuttle(s) began operating. ♦ The International Bus Collectors Club had their first meeting and mini Bus Bash in September, based at the Holiday Inn, North Bergen, NJ. ◆ On 10.1 Transport of New Jersey & Maplewood Equipment Company, the largest privately-owned bus company in the US was purchased by and began to be operated by NJ Transit. ♦ The New Jersey Association of Rail Passengers was established. ◆ The Jersey Central Railway Historical Society was established as an NRHS chapter and began to publish their monthly Jersey Central News.
1981 New Jersey's pioneer John Bull locomotive was removed from the Smithsonian Institute and was returned to steam. It operated along a section of track paralleling the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal near Washington, DC to celebrate its 150th anniversary. New Jersey's first is the oldest complete and operable locomotive in the world. ♦ Ferry service was re-established between Liberty State Park (Jersey Central Terminal area in Jersey City) and Ellis Island. Ferry service between the Jersey Central Terminal and nearby Ellis Island existed after 1890 when it was a US immigration station. Over the years, the ferry delivered thousands of immigrants to the terminal where they boarded trains to transport them west to their new homes in the new country. ♦ The 400 member Garden State Division of the National Model Railroad Association helped sponsor a mini-convention in Trenton in June. ♦ The eight-story, 66-year-old PSE&G terminal and office building was demolished by 48 time-sequenced explosive charges. ◆ The New Jersey Council on Special Transportation was established. Their state-wide role is to promote paratransit and community transportation services for senior citizens, disabled and low-income individuals. ♦ Conrail abruptly ended electric freight operation over the former Pennsylvania RR system. ♦ The first Hoboken Terminal Renaissance Festival, sponsored by NJ Transit, was held on October 3rd. ◆ Tri-State Railway Historical Society sponsored an “Erie Limited” fall foliage excursion from Hoboken to Port Jervis and return on October 18th. ◆ Five Mile Beach Electric Railway began replacing their regular buses with rubber tired trolley buses. They boast that they are the oldest privately owned trolley company currently operating in the US. ◆ New Jersey Transit officially inaugurated a 25,000 volt AC test track in the Kearny meadows on December 10th. It was the first official run of a 25kv, 60hz electric passenger train on the Morristown Line (and in North America).
1982 The bankrupt Morristown & Erie Railroad was reorganized as the Morristown & Erie Railway, Inc. ♦ RailPACE Newsmagazine commenced publication with editorial offices in Piscataway. ♦ NJ Transit awarded a $72 million contract to Motor Coach Industries to build 455 commuter buses. It was the largest single order in the history of the intercity bus industry. Officials called the order “a major step in the rebuilding process for transit in NJ.” ◆ The inaugural trip of NJ Transit’s new Bombardier Comet III cars occurred on June 12th. On the Raritan Valley line. ◆ Pennsylvania Reading Seashore Lines passenger service between Atlantic City and Lindenwold was discontinued on 6.30 when FRA track inspectors found major portions of the line unsafe for speeds over 15mph. The last single Budd RDC cars departed, ending rail passenger service which had begun in 1854. On 7.1 NJ Transit began providing substitute bus service. ♦ On 7.1 NJ Transit Bus Operations, Inc. was formed to operate bus services and subsidize privately operated/controlled routes. ♦ A $17.7 million rebuilding of the Newark City Subway was announced with work focusing on installation of new welded rail and tie replacement. ◆ Five teens were charged in a crash of a commuter train in Fairlawn. The engineer was killed when the train crashed into a pasta factory after the teens threw a switch which sent the train into the dead end siding. ◆ The Air Horn and Steam Whistle Enthusiasts organization was established by Jack Hardman at Glen Ridge and published its first issue of “Horn & Whistle” for members. ◆ NJ Transit awarded a $72 million contract to Motor Coach Industries to build 455 new commuter buses. It was the largest single order in the history of the intercity bus industry. ♦ Railmen for Children, a volunteer group of NJ Transit employees, began running Santa Express trains for special needs students. Shriners dressed as clowns and entertained the young passengers.
1983 NJ Transit subsidiary, NJ Transit Rail Operations, Inc. assumed direct operation of the remaining commuter rail service. ♦ A labor strike halted NJ Transit rail service for 34 days. ♦ The American Association of Private Railroad Car Owners, Inc. held their Eastern Regional Meeting during a trip with the Clover Colony and Lehigh Valley 353 from NY to Bay Head, NJ on Feb. 20th. The editorial (for their bulletin "Private Varnish") and business address of the organization was listed as Mountainside, NJ at the time. ♦ (February 25th) PATH celebrated their Diamond Jubilee, marking a milestone of 4.3 billion passengers carried since 1908. ◆ Tri-State Railway Historical Society sponsored “West Shore Express” trains from Hoboken to Selkirk, NY and return on May 29th. and 30th. ◆ Mark I Video was founded by Marc Balkin as a natural outgrowth of Custom Steam Productions, a well-established producer of audio recordings, currently located at Washington, NJ. Over 150 video titles have been produced to date with more than 40 focusing on New Jersey subjects. All have been produced by Balkin. In addition to his audio collection, Balkin has over 450,000 feet of archive film of railroad, traction, etc. subjects including much unpublished New Jersey material. ♦ Pier 19, a film which documented the operations of McAllister Tug & Barge Drydocks (a former CNJ operation) at Jersey City was produced. ♦ Conrail filed to abandon the Belvidere to Franklin portion of the former L&HR including the Ogdensburg branch to the NJ Zinc Co. Stirling Hill mine. ◆ Tri-State Railway Historical Society sponsored their Erie Southern Tier Express from Hoboken to Susquehanna, PA and return on November 13th. ◆.The last of the former Pennsylvania Railroad classic GG1 locomotives were retired on 11.29 by NJ Transit after 50 years of service. ♦ Conrail became the most profitable railroad in the country. ♦ The American Truck Historical Society Metro Jersey Chapter was chartered.
1984 Cape May Seashore Lines was founded by Tony Macrie to operate passenger service on the NJ DOT owned Cape May branch. ◆ The New York, Susquehanna & Western Railway entered into a five year contract with Sea-Land to haul its container trains between the Delaware & Hudson Railway at Binghamton and a new dedicated Sea-Land terminal on Susquehanna property at Little Ferry. ♦ The last reunion of Delaware & Raritan Canal employees and boaters was sponsored by the Canal Society of NJ and organized by Bill McKelvey was held at Morven in Princeton on June 24th. The honored attendees included D&R Employees: Charles Wilson, and John Dargay; Boatmen/Boatowners: Capt. Jim McAllister, Bob Hughes, Capt. John Wright, Carl Eklof, Capt. Eliakim Van Pelt, Herb Wager, and James Brown - the only one who had boated on all four local canals - the D&R, the Morris, the Lehigh and the Delaware; Morris Canal and Pleasure Boaters: Russell Batson, Spaulding Settle, Carl Vilas, Bob Herbert, and Bill Glas; and Pennsylvania Canallers: Capt. Howard Swope, Frank Swope, Richard H. Arner, Leon Dreher and Edward Dreher. ♦ Tri-State Railway Historical Society sponsored their Harrisburg Express from Newark via the former Lehigh Valley, Reading and Pennsylvania railroads on June 24th. ◆ NJ Transit initiated the Shore Express train on summer weekends and holidays between Newark and Long Branch with intermediate stops between Long Branch and Bay Head. The train was well patronized. ◆ A massive, multi-year re-electrification project of the NJ Transit (former Lackawanna) Morris & Essex commuter lines was completed. Work included replacement of catenary for change-over from 3000 volts DC to 25,000 volt AC current; replacement of substations; upgrading of signal systems, replacement of interlocking towers by centralized control; and station repair and upgrading. After 54 years the old Lackawanna MU cars were replaced by Arrow III cars. ♦ Amtrak began operating "mail only" express trains between Boston and Washington. ♦ Sea-Land Service emerged from R.J. Reynolds as an independent company. ◆ The Lehigh River Express, sponsored by Tri-State Railway Historical Society was operated from Hoboken to Jim Thorpe & Haucks, PA and return, powered by Morristown & Erie Alco diesels 16, 17 & 18. ◆ The New Jersey Transportation Trust Fund was created to isolate money dedicated to transit maintenance, equipment and construction projects so state politicians couldn’t use it for some other purpose. ◆ The Alfred E. Driscoll bridge which carries the Garden State Parkway over the Raritan River was widened from ten to twelve lanes.
1985 The historic John Bull, New Jersey's first locomotive was loaned by the Smithsonian Institution and transported by air from Washington, DC to Dallas, TX for a 7 month exhibit at the Pavilion of LTV Center. ♦ NJ Transit began construction of their new Meadowlands Maintenance Complex. ◆ The United Railroad Historical Society was formed by 17 railroad historical and technical societies to preserve New Jersey railroad equipment and artifacts. ♦ Approximately 300 acres of Central Railroad of New Jersey land, in various parts of the state, was auctioned by Max E. Spann, Inc., Realtors. ♦ The New York, Susquehanna & Western Railway rebuilt their line west to Sparta Jct., which had been out of service for almost 17 years and began hauling the cross country Sea-Land intermodal trains on the former Lehigh & Hudson River Railway line, which they had acquired, their own lines and over trackage rights to and from Binghamton, NY. ♦ A new train of 20 cars conveying double-stacked containers began operating between Los Angeles and New Jersey/New York in March. The train could carry 200 40' or 50' containers stacked two high. The service was offered by American President Companies with the Susquehanna Railway. ◆ The Society for Industrial Archeology held their 14th Annual Conference in Newark. ♦ Tri-State Railway Historical Society sponsored the Hudson River Streamliner excursion from Penn Station, Newark via NYC, Amtrak, Hell Gate Bridge, Metro North and Conrail to Selkirk, NY and return via the River Line on August 11th. ◆ Tri-State Railway Historical Society sponsored an excursion to Jim Thorpe on October 13th. ◆ The Whippany Railway Museum held its Grand Opening on Oct. 26th. ♦ NJ Transit Bus Operations celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Newark City Subway (NJTBO operates the subway). ◆ The North Jersey Electric Railway Historical Society was formed.
1986 Morris County was the first county in New Jersey to purchase a rail line to preserve freight service. The Morristown & Erie Railway became the designated operator of the former Jersey Central Dover & Rockaway Railroad. ♦ CSX Corporation acquired Sea-Land Service. ♦Governor Thomas Kean rededicated the restored Central RR of NJ Jersey City Terminal at an event which was co-sponsored by the CNJ Veteran Employees Assn. ♦ Eastern Steam Spectacular “Erie Limited” trains sponsored by Tri-State and Jersey Central Railway Historical Societies, powered by Nickel Plate Road #765 were operated on August 2nd and 3rd. ◆ The Tri-State Railway Historical Society sponsored their first NY Harbor Rail Facility Cruise on Sept. 6th using Circle Lines XVII. ♦ The restored Statue of Liberty was rededicated on Oct. 28th. ◆ Volvo North America Corp. of Rockleigh, NJ, announced it would cease production and marketing of transit buses in North America. ♦ The Rahway Valley RR was unable to purchase liability insurance and the Delaware Otsego Corporation took over operations, later purchasing it. ◆ The Winchester & Western RR, New Jersey Division began operations south and west of Vineland, NJ. ◆ In the summer of this year, Conrail ripped up the L&HR from Limecrest south to Belvidere. ◆ The Stirling Hill Mine closed, thus ending underground mining in the state of NJ. ◆ NJ Transit purchased their first articulated buses, the first in NJ.
1987 United Railroad Historical Society of New Jersey, Inc. was incorporated by representatives from all of New Jersey's major railroad-interest organizations, in order to coordinate resources and avoid duplicative or conflicting historic preservation efforts. ♦ The New Jersey Railroad and Transportation Museum Study Commission was created. The sites they focused on were lost to real estate development. ♦ Morning Sun Books, Inc. was established by Robert J. Yanosey at Edison, NJ, and is currently located in Scotch Plains. They are America's #1 publisher of all-color railroad books. Over 130 titles have been published to date with more than 25 focusing on New Jersey subjects. Eleven of them have been authored or co-authored by Yanosey. 1.908.755.5454 ♦ NJ Transit ran a “Shore Express” from Bergen County to the Jersey Shore via West End on summer weekends. ◆ The official opening of the NJ Transit Meadowlands Maintenance Complex was on Oct. 21st. The complex consisted of seven buildings totaling 11.8 acres on a 78 acre site. It was formerly the site of the PRR Meadows roundhouse and engine terminal ◆ Greyhound bought National Trailways Bus System and allowed franchising of routes. ♦ NJ Transit opened a new rail Command Center in Hoboken Terminal. ◆ PATH purchased the Hackensack River bridge from Conrail. PATH predecessor, PRR shared the bridge with commuter trains going through Journal Square to Exchange Place.
1988 Electrification of the North Jersey Coast Line was extended from South Amboy to Matawan to Long Branch. ♦ The PA of NY & NJ concluded an agreement with NY Waterway as a public/private partnership to re-establish ferry service between Hoboken and Manhattan. ♦ The National Railway Historical Society annual convention was based at Somerset, NJ. ♦ The North American Rail Car Operators Association was founded and incorporated in New Jersey by Joel Williams of Greendell, NJ. ♦ The Waterfront Transportation Office (later integrated into NJ Transit) was opened to formulate plans for the development of a light rail system to support economic development along New Jersey's Hudson River waterfront. The study recommended and received planning approval for a $1.2 billion Hudson-Bergen light rail line. ♦ An $850 million Port Authority Trans-Hudson rehabilitation program brought the construction of a new maintenance shop and yard; power distribution improvements; major rehabilitation of stations; rehabilitation of 247 PA cars and delivery of 95 new PA-4 cars which permitted retirement of the "K" cars. ♦ Global shipping giant, Maersk Line, moved into their new headquarters in Madison. ♦ The Classic Vehicle Advocate Group was founded in New Jersey. ◆ The NY Susquehanna & Western Technical & Historical Society was formed. ◆ NJ Transit exited the charter bus business.???
1989 After an absence of 22 years, ferry service between Hoboken and Manhattan was reinstated. Since that time about a dozen new ferry routes between the two states have been established. ♦ Amtrak and NJ Transit rebuilt the Atlantic City Line and passenger service was reestablished by Amtrak in May after a seven year hiatus. ♦ The United Railroad Historical Society of New Jersey hosted a special public excursion, The Museum Limited, from Newark to Flemington and Lambertville on June 11th. At the time Flemington was the designated site of the proposed New Jersey Railroad and Transportation Museum. ♦ The Friends of the New Jersey Railroad & Transportation Museum was formed and incorporated for individual membership and to expand the museum concept to include all surface common carrier modes of travel. ♦ NJ Transit began passenger service on the Atlantic City line from Philadelphia on Sept. 17th. ♦ A fire involving a large volume of wood debris in an unlicensed dumpsite under an I-78 viaduct in Newark damaged the roadway closing it for nine days while emergency repairs were made. ♦ Amtrak operated a final passenger train from Hoboken to Scranton via the former DL&W Cut-off for railroad and government executives.
1990 PATH opened their new, $205 million, state of the art, Harrison Car Maintenance Facility. It included the following shops: Periodic Inspection; Running Repair; Battery; Air Brake; Machine; Motor; Carpentry; Sheet Metal; Air Conditioning; Compressor; Truck; Wheel & Axle; Heavy Repair/Scheduled Overhaul; Electric Bench; Electronic; etc. situated on 57 acres with 12 miles of trackage. ♦ The Phillipsburg Railroad Historians, Inc. was founded. ♦ Five former Philadelphia rapid transit cars were placed on an artificial reef off Sea Girt and four former PATH series "K" cars were dumped in the Atlantic Ocean to form a refuge for sea life as part of the New Jersey Artificial Reef Program. ♦ The Port Authority Auto Marine Terminal opened in Jersey City/Bayonne. ♦ The Americans with Disabilities Act was passed by Congress. It ushered in profound improvements in accessibility to public transportation for the disabled. ♦ The private rail cars of the American European Express began operating through New Jersey en-route between NY and Chicago. ♦ NJ Transit first purchased buses of foreign manufacture. A fleet of Volvo B10-M articulated buses were imported. ◆ The Susquehanna Railroad received the Short Line of the Year award.
1991 The Intermodal Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA) was passed. It committed our nation for the first time to building a balanced transportation system with seamless connections. It also provided federal funding for transportation-related restoration projects such as the grants URHS has received for restoration of rail cars for excursion service and Friends of the NK Tranmsportation Heritage Center received for bus restoration. The program has been succeeded by and continues under the Transportation Efficiency Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21). ♦ The New Jersey Short Line Railroad Association was established. ♦ The Port Authority began ExpressRail, an on dock intermodal rail terminal at the Elizabeth Marine Terminal. ♦ On October 7th, Conrail ran their office train as a special "Jersey - Pennsylvania Development Limited" ♦ The National Transit Institute was established at Rutgers University @ New Brunswick. It is a training and education resource for the transit industry and is funded through a grant from the Federal Transit Administration. ◆ Operation of the former Rahway Valley RR ceased.
1992 The Delaware River Ferry Company and Riverbus, Inc. re-established ferry service between Camden and Penns Landing (Philadelphia) across the Delaware River 40 years after Pennsylvania-Reading Seashore Lines ceased ferry service. (Copy of inaugural ticket from Bill Vigrass). ♦ The first Garden State Bus Bash took place in Bridgeport, NJ May 22nd - 24th with nearly 100 buses involved. ♦ Amtrak began testing prototypes from Europe in preparation for ordering a new high-speed Boston to Washington train. ♦ In conjunction with Hoboken Terminal Festival XII, the American Association of Private Railroad Car Owners held its annual convention in Hoboken the same weekend. Twenty eight private rail cars were present. ♦ The town of Phillipsburg acquired the miniature Centerville & Southwestern Railroad (which originally operated at the Becker Dairy Farm in Roseland, NJ) from the Monmouth County Park Commission. Included were the diesel locomotives, cars, track, ticket booth, etc. ♦ The Holland Tunnel was identified by the (US) Secretary of the Interior as a National Historic Landmark. ♦ Following the Adtranz rebuild of 230 Arrow III electric multiple-unit cars, NJ Transit operated the largest number of a.c.-propelled commuter cars in the U.S. ♦ The permanent New Jersey Railroad and Transportation Museum Commission was established. ♦ Smoking was banned on all intercity buses. ♦ The first Transportation Development District in NJ was established along the I-95 corridor in Mercer County soon after state legislation was passed. ♦ The Delaware Otsego Corp. abandoned the former Rahway Valley RR line, which at the end had only one customer. They also ceased operation/abandoned the Staten Island Railroad.
1993 Governor Jim Florio signed into law a bill establishing a long term New Jersey Railroad & Transportation Museum Commission.♦ The National Center for Transportation and Industrial Productivity was established at New Jersey Institute of Technology. Their mission is to increase efficiency and productivity in private and public sector entities and industries through passenger and freight transportation improvements by undertaking high-quality, multi disciplinary, innovative education; peer-reviewed research activities; and technology transfer. ♦ The World Trade Center was bombed and heavily damaged by terrorists. ♦ Conrail joined Norfolk Southern in creating Triple Crown Service Company to provide RoadRailer service throughout the East and South. ♦ The Ingersoll-Rand Contributions Committee declined to honor the request of the Phillipsburg Railroad Historians to provide funding for the transportation of a 600hp I-R diesel locomotive from Billings, Montana to Phillipsburg. It was saved and moved to the Portola, CA, Railroad Museum. ♦ The "Wheels" Suburban Transportation Services experimental shuttles began operation. ♦ A $5 million planning study, named "Access to the Region's Core", sponsored by the Port Authority, NJ Transit and the MTA, was begun. ♦ The final 20.4 mile segment of Route 287 was opened through northern NJ on Nov. 19th. The $720 million stretch was New Jersey’s most costly road project at the time. The route was first proposed in 1929. ♦ Switching Management Services (SMS) was incorporated to provide rail switching services for industries.
1994 SMS began operations based in Bridgeport, NJ, to serve local industries in the Pureland Industrial Park. They began acquiring and rehabilitating second hand Baldwin Locomotive Works diesel switchers and now own more of them than any other railroad in the US and probably the world. ♦ A New Jersey Historic Bridge Survey was completed by A.G. Lichtenstein & Associates, Inc. ♦ Steam and Pleasure boats invaded the Delaware & Raritan Canal on May 29 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Canal Society of New Jersey. A crane was hired to launch several small steam launches, an antique Chris Craft, a guide canoe fitted for electric propulsion, and a 28-foot rowed whale boat which had bee trailered down from Mystic Seaport. Over 100 trips were made by these vessels and more than 400 passengers were carried at the Colonial Park location near East Millstone. A wedding of the waters ceremony blended water collected from ten different canals and waterways in the eastern US. ◆ NJ Transit began a major station restoration program spending $42.2 million on 14 projects by 2001. New Jersey has 49 stations - more than any other state -on the National Register of Historic Places. ♦ A proposal for commuter-rail service by the National Interurban Consortium recommended the extension of NJ Transit's Raritan Valley Line to the Lehigh Valley as one of its most feasible candidate operations. The proposal was assembled by National Interurban Rail Transit Company, based in Princeton, NJ and headed by Rodney Fisk. ♦ NJ Transit established their Office of New Rail Construction. ♦ New Jersey Transit received the American Public Transit Association Achievement Award for #1 Large Transit System for this year, followed by 1996 and 1998.
1995 The Easton-Phillipsburg "free bridge" celebrated it's 100 anniversary and was designated an American Society of Civil Engineers National Civil Engineering Landmark. It is the last bridge of its type in America. ♦ Amtrak ended scheduled passenger service to Atlantic City on April 1st due to poor ridership. ♦ The New York Society of Model Engineers (of Carlstadt, NJ) sponsored the O Scale National Convention at the Marriot at Glenpoint, Teaneck, NJ. ♦ Captain Dick Titus, the last Morris Canal captain died on June 25th, less than a month before his 107th birthday. ♦ The first coast-to-coast trip ever made by an antique electric vehicle ended at Harrah's in Atlantic City on July 3rd. The transcontinental journey was made in an 83-year old battery-powered 1912 Baker Electric Car! ♦ Amtrak’s Broadway Limited service between New York and Chicago made its final run on Sept. 9th. ◆ The State of New Jersey condemned (and in 2001 paid $21 million for) the abandoned Lackawanna Cut-off which Conrail had sold to a developer for $1,000,000 in the 1980's. ♦ The Federal 55-mile-per-hour speed limit was repealed by a measure signed Nov. 28th. ♦ The Port Authority of NY & NJ (lead agency), NJ Transit, and NY's Metropolitan Transportation Authority jointly initiated a broad "Access to the Regions Core (ARC) Study" to examine the feasibility and advisability of adding new transit and freight capacity to connect northeastern New Jersey, midtown Manhattan, and Queens/Long Island.
1996 Governor Whitman's directive to close the entire New Jersey Turnpike during the blizzard of 1.7 was a first in the history of the roadway. ♦ Two NJ Transit commuter trains collided near Croxton Yard, Secaucus when one train ran through a stop signal. Three were killed and 162 injured in the February incident. ♦ Ground was broken for the $1.1 billion Hudson-Bergen Light Rail system. NJ Transit was the first transportation corporation in North America to opt for the Design, Build, Operate and Maintain (DBOM) method of construction. ♦ A new "on dock" Express Rail facility opened at Port Elizabeth Marine Terminal enabling direct ship to rail transfers of intermodal containers. ♦ A monorail people mover opened at Newark International Airport. ♦ NJ Transit opened their Midtown Direct connection which allowed Morris & Essex Division trains access to NY Penn Station and produced a vast increase in ridership. ♦ The first of a series of Iron Horse Enterprises steam excursions was operated from Hoboken to Port Jervis with 28 cars. ♦ New Jersey Transit received the E.H. Harriman Memorial Medal for Rail Safety. ♦ Amtrak awarded a $740 million contract to Bombardier Transportation to build new high-speed trainsets for Washington to Boston service. This was the largest single passenger rail equipment investment in this country since the Great Depression. ♦ NJ Transit and Amtrak installed the first regular service 80 mph turnouts in the US in connection with the Secaucus Transfer project. ♦ Misaligned rails on the Hackensack River swing bridge caused the derailment of two locomotives and four cars of an Amtrak train on 11.23. The train, which was traveling at 60mph, sideswiped a train going in the opposite direction and then plunged down a 30 foot embankment. The incident resulted in 31 injuries. ◆ The Railroadians of America organization was merged into the NJ Midland RR Historical Society. ◆ NJ Transit awarded a $12.2 million contract to Champion Motor Coach Inc. to supply 190 14-passenger jitney vehicles in a venture with the Atlantic City Jitney Association and the Casino Redevelopment Authority. The association is made up of 190 individually owned and operated jitney minibuses.
1997 PATH asked the Federal Railroad Administration to exempt them from their oversight to help reduce the PATH annual deficit. The FRA jurisdiction dated from the period when former Hudson & Manhattan trains shared track between Harrison and Journal Square with passenger trains of the PRR. ◆ "Friends" purchased Lisbon, Portugal trolley car #346 and returned it to New Jersey for the future Heritage Center. The car was built in 1906 by the John Stephenson Company at Elizabeth, NJ. ♦ Conrail hosted an open house and tours for members of the Conrail Historical Society in commemoration of the 70th anniversary of Oak Island Yard in Newark. Northlandz, @ Flemington, was listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the "World's Largest Model Railroad." ♦ The Maplewood Jitney, a local shuttle, began operations. ♦ The electric car "Power Commute" and "Capital Connector" projects allowed rail commuters at Woodcrest, Moorestown, Princeton and Trenton stations to drive electric cars from the stations to their offices.
1998 The Conrail Expressrail ship to rail terminal at Elizabethport delivered its 500,000th container. ♦ The Cape May Seashore Lines inaugural train arrived in Cape May, restoring rail passenger service for the first time in 18 years. Seasonal operation began the following year. ♦ Route 29 from Trenton to the Frenchtown area was designated a Scenic Byway, the first in New Jersey. ♦ NJ Transit was the first system in the nation to order hybrid-electric buses. The Orion VIs are powered electrically from batteries which are charged by an internal combustion engine which runs at constant rpm. Four buses were ordered by NJ Transit and the first was delivered, but the order was rejected because they were over the specified weight. ◆ Speed limits were raised from 55 to 65 on 475 miles of mostly interstate New Jersey roads. ♦ Congress approved the restoration of passenger service on the Lackawanna Cut-off as part of a package of transportation projects, but a specific amount of money was not set aside for it. ◆ Under the Morris & Essex Challenge Grant, four towns (Chatham Township, Maplewood, Springfield and West Orange) inaugurated local shuttle service. ♦ The first commuter ferry service between Jersey City and midtown Manhattan in more than a half century was begun by NY Waterway from Exchange Place on Sept. 1st. It was the eighth regular cross-Hudson ferry route established by NY Waterway since 1986. ◆ An International Intermodal Corridor was designated across the waist of NJ. ♦ On December 18th Cape May Seashore Lines re-opened their line into Cape May. It was the first passenger train since October, 2, 1981 when NJ DOT discontinued BUDD RDC commuter service between Cape May and Lindenwold. ◆ PATH won the top APTA prize for heavy rail system.
1999 NJ Transit closed the first Certificates of Participation lease using Federal Section 5307 funds for a nine year lease for 500 new Nova transit buses. ♦ CSX and Norfolk Southern began operating the portions of Conrail which they purchased. ♦ NJ Transit began testing of a Positive Train Stop system that, combined with Automatic Train Control, will make it the first transit property in the world to integrate these technologies. ♦ Seventy-five-year-old Yellow Corp. acquired non-union Jevic Transportation of Delanco, NJ for $200 million. ◆ The first freight car with a New England destination was transported across New York Bay in three decades. It was brought to New Jersey by Norfolk Southern, moved by Conrail Shared Assets, then New York Cross Harbor Railroad by carfloat to Brooklyn, thence via the NY & Atlantic RR, CSX and the Providence & Worster Railroad to its destination. ♦ Governor Christine Todd Whitman launched the Transit Village Program to "create development and investment centered around rail passenger stations." Rutherford, Morristown, Pleasantville (bus), Riverside, South Orange, and South Amboy were designated. ♦ The Delaware River Port Authority approved the construction of an aerial tram across the Delaware River linking the Camden and Philadelphia waterfronts. ♦ A.P. Moller, Inc. of Copenhagen, Denmark, closed on its $800,000,000 acquisition of Sea-Land Service foreign flag ships /operations from CSX Corp. The deal included acquisition of 70 container ships, 200,000 containers and two dozen terminals. Moller merged Sea-Land and their Maersk Line subsidiary to form the world's largest ocean carrier, headquartered in Madison, NJ. The two hubs of their combined operations are Port Elizabeth and Long Beach, CA. Sea-Land was the venerable US flag carrier that perfected the now dominant technique of moving ocean cargo in containers that are easily transferred by cranes between ships and trailer chassis or railcars. Sea-Land's operations began at Port Newark. CSX retained their American Flag ships and domestic operations to Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico. ♦ "The King Coal" (Farewell to Conrail #2), an excursion train sponsored by The Buy Miles Group of High Iron Travel Corp., Minneapolis, MN, was operated in cooperation with Conrail, Reading, Blue Mountain & Northern RR, Canadian Pacific and Amtrak on May 7-10. The routing was 30th St. Station, Philadelphia; Reading; Port Clinton; Carson; Packerton; M&H Jct.; Crestwood; DuPont; Pittston; Minooka; Steamtown (with a side excursion to Analomik and return on 5.8 on the Delaware-Lackawanna RR using 8 of the PV's); Binghamton; Cooperstown Jct., Albany; Rensselaer; Kingston; West Point; over the connection from the West Shore to former Erie Northern Branch; through Erie Bergen Tunnel; onto National Docks RR; Oak Island Yard; former LV RR to Bound Brook; and the Reading route back to Philadelphia. ◆ Local jitney service, funded by NJ Transit, was established to collect and distribute passengers to and from the South Orange railroad station. ◆ Hurricane Floyd struck central New Jersey closing highways and rail lines with high water. The Raritan Valley and Bound Brook areas were especially hard hit. The canal museum in the Griggstown Mule Barracks building was devastated by flood waters which inundated the first floor clear to the ceiling. The recently restored outlet lock at New Brunswick was heavily damaged. ♦ NJ Transit started their Hall of Fame to honor NJ transportation activists and advocates. ♦ A $9 million renovation of Hoboken Terminal waiting room was completed by NJ Transit. The Terminal is used by 37,000 passengers daily. ◆ iRail.com, Inc., Parsippany, NJ, was established. It is the leading business to business net market for the rail industry ( www.irail.com ). ♦ Irisbus North America opened an office in Maywood, NJ to sell their CIVIS system, a rubber tire, guided rapid transit system similar to a trolleybus. They were backed by parent companies IVECO and Renault. ♦ Federal Express opened their largest sorting hub, a 340,000-square-foot facility in Woodbridge. Bar coding permits sorting of up to 37,000 packages per hour. (Transport Topics 12.18.00) ♦ PATH ridership was 67.3 million, highest since 1947. ♦ The NJ Venturer electric vehicle won the Engineering Excellence Award and the Green Car Award in the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association's Tour de Sol rally. Fuel cells produce electricity for an electric motor without releasing any harmful emissions. ♦ The Council of Vehicle Associations was merged with the Classic Vehicle Advocate Group to form COVACVAG, based at West Paterson. Their purpose is to create a political power base to support the pursuit of the antique vehicle hobby and to present a united front for any detrimental issues or legislation.
2000 NJ Transit produced a map entitled "2020 Transit Score" depicting their ambitious plans to expand the statewide passenger rail network including two routes to Phillipsburg; the Susquehanna line; the Lackawanna Cut-off; a connection to Cape May; and routes in Middlesex-Ocean-Monmouth counties. ♦ New Jersey enacted fines for the state ban of through trucks, not making a pick up or delivery in New Jersey, traveling on non-federally designated truck roads. ♦ NJ Transit completed another Section 5307 lease transaction for the financing of 200 Alstom railcars. The NJ Transit board approved a $500 million order for 1,400 new MCI cruiser coaches over several years. This was the largest bus order in the US and the world. At the same time the Montclair Connection, on the drawing board since 1929, was approved and construction began. ♦ A conference "Preserving the Historic Road in America" which was attended by 300 was held in Morristown in April. It was sponsored by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the NJ Historic Preservation Office, the NJ DOT and others. ♦ The new NJ Transit Hudson-Bergen Light Rail Line initial operating segment opened for regular service. This was the first new "trolley" line in New Jersey in 58 years and 51 years after the last trolleys in Hudson County were abandoned. It was also New Jersey's largest public mass transportation project. ♦ Ground was broken at Camden for the Southern New Jersey Light Rail Transit System on May 8th. ♦ The Master Plan for the New Jersey Transportation Heritage Center at Phillipsburg with a satellite site at Netcong Station was completed. ♦ The National Conference of the Lincoln Highway Association was held in Edison, June 14-18. ♦ The Federal Railroad Administration decided that new PATH cars would not have to meet the stringent crash worthiness standards which apply to railroads. This ruling would save PATH 25% on the cost of new cars. The ruling paved the way for PATH, with the second oldest fleet of rapid transit cars in the US. to purchase 295 new cars. ◆ Both Friends and The New Jersey Museum of Transportation tried to save the oldest known surviving Pennsylvania Railroad passenger car, but it was demolished by the owner. It was a wooden type "PB," built between 1866 and 1872 and used for about 100 years as a bungalow at South Seaside Park. ♦ The NJ Transit Community Shuttle Program was launched. It grew rapidly to include about 40 participating communities. ♦ The 1935 Art Deco Newark Airport Terminal building was moved out of the alignment of a runway lengthening project. Over the next 2+ years $70 million was spent restoring the structure. ♦ The New Jersey State Legislature approved a $3.75 billion transportation trust fund to fund mass transit and road projects. A key project was the $1 billion plus Portway project, actually a series of projects to greatly improve freight access between the seaport, railroads and motor carriers. ♦ J. Supor & Son Trucking & Rigging Co. moved the largest load ever by road in New Jersey. A 500 ton cracking tower was moved four miles by road from a barge to the Tosco refinery in Linden. The trailer had 384 tires. ♦ A 27 car UP special train traveled through New Jersey in connection with the Republican National Convention at Philadelphia. ♦ A new Amtrak Acela light locomotive achieved 172mph between Trenton and New Brunswick breaking the 170.8mph record set 33 years prior on the same stretch of track. ♦ The NJ Transit Board of Directors authorized a $1 Billion operating budget for Fiscal Year 2001, holding fares steady for the 10th consecutive year. ♦ The US Postal Service's "Celebrate the Century Express" exhibit train visited the NJ Transit "Try Transit Festival" at Hoboken Terminal and a week later the Morristown & Erie Railway hosted the train at the Whippany Railway Museum. ♦ The North American Rail Car Owners Association sponsored a round trip run on the NYS&W RR between Paterson and Warwick, NY with a side trip on the remnants of the former Erie RR Greenwood Lake Branch at Pompton Lakes. A NJ record of forty-three track cars or speeders were on the Sept. 23rd & 24th run. ♦ The New Jersey Turnpike was the first major NJ toll facility to institute an effective traffic management tool known as Time Variable Pricing. The Authority approved a two-tier toll increase offering significant discounts for off-peak travel on 9.20. At the same time E-ZPass, a technology for electronically collecting vehicle tolls, began to be used in New Jersey for trucks, buses, and automobiles. ♦ Amtrak's new Acela Express high speed trains began operating on the Northeast Corridor through New Jersey. ♦ The King's Highway (in the Princeton area) was the first New Jersey "evolved" highway to be placed on the National Register. The route evolved from an Indian trail to a stagecoach route and became part of the original coast to coast Lincoln Highway. ♦ The International Intermodal Transportation Center was established in December at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, Newark.
2001 Motorcoach Expo 2001, was sponsored by the United Motorcoach Assoc. (their 30th anniversary), at the Atlantic City Convention Center (their 30th anniversary and first time in NJ), Feb. 3rd to 6th. ♦ The Port Authority of New York/New Jersey began charging higher tolls at rush hour at several of its bridge and tunnel crossings. This and the New Jersey Turnpike congestion pricing programs were among the largest road pricing schemes in the world in terms of vehicles affected. ♦ Irisbus North America, a joint venture of Renault and Fiat/Iveco, opened an office in Saddle Brook, NJ to promote and market their Civis and other bus and coach products. They are the second largest bus and coach manufacturer in the world. ♦ Intermodal trains operated by CSX, NS & NYS&W ceased regularly running over the Susquehanna's Sparta Mountain route. ♦ PATH increased their fare from $1 to $1.50 on 3.25. ♦ The new 800 ton steel arch bridge over Rancocas Creek for the Southern NJ Light Rail Transit system was assembled on a barge. On April 5th, it fell over and was damaged as it was being readied for installation. Seventeen weeks later it was righted, the damage repaired and it was floated into place. ♦ NJ Transit signed a $52 million contract to rehabilitate and upgrade the 1877 era DL&W north tube of the Bergen Tunnel. ♦ Newark City Subway PCC car #6 was repainted to the original Public Service livery. ♦ NJ DOT announced the creation of a 240-mile bicycle route from High Point to Cape May. ♦ Irisbus North America, a joint venture of Renault and Fiat/Iveco, opened an office in Saddle Brook, NJ to promote and market their CIVIS and other bus and coach products. They are the second largest bus and coach manufacturer in the world. CIVIS is a streamlined, rubber tire, low floor, optically-guided, transport system that can run on either a dedicated right of way or in mixed traffic on streets. The technology is referred to as Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) and the vehicles can be articulated. The CIVIS system can be all-electric as a trolley (bus) with overhead catenary for power collection; a diesel-electric vehicle; or a dual-mode vehicle, with both diesel-electric and electric overhead power. The latter is the very same technology, then called the All-Service Vehicle, which Public Service pioneered in our state in 1934. ♦ Burlington Northern & Santa Fe Railway Co. and Norfolk Southern announced the establishment of coast-to-coast, non-stop intermodal container service on 4.19. ♦ The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey approved the first phase of a $1 billion program to replace or rehabilitate all 340 aging PATH cars and install a new signal system that will improve reliability. This was the largest investment in PATH since the PA acquired the system in 1962. ♦ The NJ Senate voted to designate Phillipsburg the location for the New Jersey Transportation Heritage Center with a satellite location at Netcong Station. On 6.21 acting Governor Donald DiFrancesco signed the legislation into law creating the New Jersey Transportation Heritage Center. ♦ Cendant Corp., the world's largest hotel franchiser and the leading time-share provider, purchased Avis Rent A Car System (No. 2 in the industry) and moved their headquarters to Parsippany with Cendant. Hertz Corp., the largest rental car company in the world is located in Park Ridge, NJ. ♦ An accident on 6.22 involving a gasoline tank truck and two other tractor trailers caused an intense fire which severely damaged a Rt. 80 bridge over Den Brook in Denville, closing the busy interstate route for several days. A temporary two-lane bridge was installed while repairs taking several weeks were made to the damaged span. Later a $6.2 million claim was filed against Jersey City trucker J'Low Express which the state found was at fault. The trucker was put out of business by federal regulators, partly because it did not have sufficient insurance. ♦ Rockingham, the historic mansion once used by George Washington, was moved (7.21) for the third time, placing it back near the Delaware & Raritan and part of the D&R Canal State Park. Prior moves away from the canal were made in 1896 and 1956 due to expansion of the nearby Trap Rock Quarry. ♦ The old Rancocas Creek swing bridge was cut up for scrap. The historic span was originally built to allow Delaware & Raritan canalboats to pass under the Pennsylvania RR main line at New Brunswick. When it was replaced by a stone viaduct over the canal and Raritan River the earlier steel bridge was moved to the Rancocas Creek crossing. An extensive and expensive effort was made to find some entity to take and preserve the historic span. ♦ The Union County Department of Economic Development completed a study of the Global Freight Village concept and its applicability to the Tremley Point Area in the City of Linden. ♦ NJ Transit awarded a $175.3 million contract to Alstom Transportation for 33 new diesel-electric locomotives to be built in collaboration with the Electro-Motive Division of General Motors. The model PL42AC was the first new diesel-electric locomotive to be acquired by NJ Transit since 1981, and one of the few purpose-built passenger diesels in the US since the 1950's. The carbody design was the first major rolling stock industrial design project for NJT's new Chief Designer, Cesar Vergara. ♦ Final ceremonial runs of Newark City Subway PCC cars were made on the evening of 8.24 and all vehicles were moved to the new Bloomfield Vehicle Base Facility. These cars, purchased second hand from Twin Cities Rapid Transit Co. of Minneapolis/St. Paul served the City Subway well for over 47 years. Three of the cars, Nos. 6, 10, & 13 have been identified for assignment to the New Jersey Transportation Heritage Center. ♦ On Sat. & Sun. (9.25/26) Friends volunteers disassembled the segments of the Franklin Avenue (Branch Brook Park) loop which was donated by contractor M-Track. On Monday morning M-Track arranged for a crane to lift the segments onto three tractor-trailers obtained from H & S Enterprises of Columbia/Phillipsburg. The segments, pieces of rail and loose ties were unloaded in Phillipsburg by H & S using their 20 ton fork lift truck the next day. ♦ The new Newark City Subway articulated light rail cars which replaced the PCC cars went into revenue service on Monday 9/27. ♦ The Three Penny Ferry between the foot of Washington Street, Jersey City and Liberty State Park (across the Morris Canal big basin) was re instituted at a greatly increased fare over the original three pennies. The original ferry operated on the same route from the 1860's to the 1920's. ♦ Raritan Central Railway L.L.C. took over rail operations at Raritan Center Industrial Park. In less than a year it had boosted carloads handled per month from 60 to over 400. ◆ Hoboken Terminal Festival on Sept. 8th featured two rail excursions, rail displays including an Amtrak Acela train, a pair of Lackawanna RR livery E-8 diesel locomotives, NJ Transit, URHS, Tri-State Railway Historical Society, Morristown & Erie and PATH equipment. Newark City Subway PCC car #6 was on exhibit on the plaza north of the Terminal. ♦ On Sept. 11th terrorists hi-jacked four commercial passenger jet planes and crashed two of them into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in NYC. The resulting fires caused the collapse of both 110 story towers as well as four adjacent office buildings. Many other nearby buildings were damaged. About twenty eight hundred lives were lost. Bridges and tunnels were closed, halting rail and road service into and out of Manhattan for hours and days. Twenty three NY Waterway ferries rushed to the scene aiding in the rescue effort. In that first terrible day, NY Waterway evacuated 160,000 people, many of them injured, from Manhattan. All air service was grounded for nearly two days. PATH service to WTC and Exchange Place was terminated. Rail freight service into and out of the NY area was immediately suspended, but resumed the following day. ♦ One empty PATH train was partly damaged by debris in the WTC station. Ferries were utilized to evacuate victims and transport rescuers to and from Liberty State Park and other points. The Holland Tunnel was closed to normal traffic for weeks. It was used exclusively for emergency vehicles and trucks removing debris for many days. Many NJ truckers helped bring in emergency supplies and remove the 25,000 loads of debris. NJ Transit buses were operated as emergency services vehicles for the Salvation Army and others. Jevic Transportation of Delanco, NJ provided trucks to the Salvation Army to bring supplies and emergency equipment to NY. Randy Emr of Roxbury used his 1967 —35 Army truck to deliver tons of supplies to rescue workers at Ground Zero and to transport firemen. To help fill transportation voids, new ferry services were established. One of them connected Liberty State Park with South Street Seaport for Academy, Suburban and NJ Transit bus passengers. A bus loading area was quickly constructed adjacent to the marina. Fires burned in the debris piles for nearly four months. The steam excursion trains at the Dunellen Railroad Days were canceled. Ridership on NJ Transit trains into Penn Station, NY rose by 44% In 8.5 months 1.8 million tons of debris were removed by truck and barge to Staten Island. ♦ The Amtrak Reform Council voted to declare that Amtrak will not be able to meet a congressional deadline of 12.2.02 to end operating deficits. They ordered Amtrak to come up with a liquidation plan for itself within 90 days. ♦ BNSF and NS teamed up to run a super-fast test UPS train from LA to Croxton, NJ on a 67 hour 20 minute schedule. ♦ The new Rancocas Creek bridge was placed in service along the Southern NJ Light Rail Transit route. It was the first tied-arch railroad bridge in the country. ♦ Speed limits were raised from 55 to 65 on an additional 125 miles of mostly interstate New Jersey roads. ♦ On October 21st NJ Transit trains began stopping at the new Newark Airport station where passengers could connect with the extended monorail system to reach the air terminals. ♦ After 75 years, Mantua Industries of NJ, one of model railroading's pioneer companies stopped producing its train line. ♦ NJ Transit's "Transit Shoppe" opened for business at Newark Penn Station selling transit and railroad items including model trains, trolleys, and buses; books; videos; NJ Transit apparel; etc. It featured items available at the Transit Shoppe On-Line, www.njtransit.com ♦ NJ Transit began using an Automatic Train Control/Positive Train Stop system on the Pascack Valley Line in November. ♦ CSX developed an interesting solution to the dilemma of how to dispose of mountains of snow that fell in Buffalo in late December. At least three unit trains of gondolas were loaded with snow and shipped to FL for melting. One of these trains came east and then south on the River Subdivision through NJ. ♦ NJ Transit became the nation's largest statewide public transportation system for bus, rail and light rail services for 372,000 daily commuters on 240 bus routes, two light rail lines and 12 commuter rail lines. There were 162 rail stations, 26 light rail stations, and more than 17,000 bus stops linking major points in the tri-state area.
2002 Amtrak and Continental Airlines launched a partnership that will provide "seamless" air and rail service between Newark International Airport and four Northeastern cities. This integrated service was the first such arrangement in the US. ♦ The state of Texas funded a $1.1 million restoration of the only known surviving locomotive of the some 300 built by Breese, Kneeland & Company of Jersey City. The restored 4-4-0 steam locomotive, on display in El Paso since 1909 will be placed in the city's new Union Plaza Transit Terminal. ♦ A major derailment at Little Falls, NY forced CSX to detour numerous trains between Jan. 10th & 12th via the Lehigh Line and the NYS&W RR to and from Chicago. ♦ The NJ Transit Board of Directors approved a fare increase of 10%, the first in 10 years. ♦ Friends arranged to have an entry of two antique trucks, owned by John Donkersloot, in Governor McGreevey's Inaugural Parade, promoting the Heritage Center. The Star-Ledger termed the inaugural parade the largest and longest in state history. ♦ NJ Transit was named by Metro Magazine one of ten most innovative motorcoach operators. ♦ Ten Newark City Subway PCC cars were leased to MUNI Metro and began to be trucked from Bloomfield on 2.4 to San Francisco, CA. ♦ Amtrak and NJ Transit Northeast Corridor service as well as NJ Transit service on the Long Branch Line was halted on Feb. 9th when an over height Conrail freight train tore down approximately 1,000' of overhead catenary wires in the Linden area. ♦ On March 7th the name of Friends of the New Jersey Railroad and Transportation Museum, Inc. was changed to "Friends of the New Jersey Transportation Heritage Center, Inc. ♦ Colorado Railcar proposed their new FRA compliant diesel multiple unit passenger car for the Bergen County Rail Network with promotional materials at the TransAction Conference in Atlantic City. ♦ Ninety-one box cars were auctioned at the Earle Naval Weapons Station. ♦ BNSF and CSX teamed up to run a super-fast test UPS train from LA to Little Ferry, NJ on a 65.5 hour schedule. ♦ In a confidential report on the deteriorating finances of New Jersey's E-ZPass automated toll collecting system, state consultants calculated a $469 million deficit for a program that originally was supposed to pay for itself. ♦ Norfolk Southern won their 13th consecutive Harriman gold medal, the top safety award available to large US railroads. Among the switching and terminal railroads, Conrail Shared Assets earned the gold after winning the bronze a year ago. ♦ New state transportation commissioner James Fox and new NJ Transit executive director, George Warrington were confirmed. ♦ Union County reached an agreement with the Morristown & Erie RR to rehabilitate and operate the former Rahway Valley and Staten Island Railroads. In July the County approved the first $1.5 million for track rehabilitation. About two months later a Freeholder sent a letter to local residents stating in part: “Here are the facts: The clearing of these lines is strictly for health and public safety reasons, not for reactivation. There is no intention of starting any rail service along these lines in your community.” ◆ The Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus arrived at Atlantic City by train and performed there for the first time in 46 years. ♦ The New Jersey Museum of Transportation, Pine Creek Railroad Division, celebrated their 50th anniversary. ♦ The NJ Transit Board of Directors exercised an option with 21st Century Rail Corp. for $101.4 million to purchase 34 additional Light Rail Vehicles for the extension of the Newark City Subway and the Hudson Bergen Light Rail Systems. ♦ NJ Transit began receiving the first of their order of 24 high-horsepower ALP-46 electric locomotives. They are equipped with a full-scale digital train control network to replace the conventional trainline control system. ♦ On June 20th one of the destroyed NYC fire trucks was loaded on a trailer at Port Newark to be towed across the country by truckers Donnie and Diane Harper. They were part of a convoy which stopped in 18 states and 11 state capitals en route to Rancho Cucamonga, CA, the ultimate destination where the wreckage was to become part of a planned memorial. ♦ The Newark City Subway extension to Grove Street, Bloomfield opened to regular service on June 22nd. ♦ New Jersey Department of Transportation Commissioner, James P. Fox toured Phillipsburg, the future Transportation Heritage Center site and related storage locations on June 25th. ♦ CSX hosted more than 40 financial analysts, some of CSX's largest shareholders and CSX senior managers for an informational tour of CSX facilities from Pittsburgh to Philadelphia and the Northern NJ Shared Assets area during the last week of June. The consist of the special train included 27 CSX, NS and private passenger cars. ♦ The extensive and mostly Central RR of NJ collections of Warren B. Crater were donated to Friends for the NJ Transportation Heritage Center. ♦ NJ Governor James E. McGreevy canoed down the Delaware River, arriving at Union Square, Phillipsburg, on July 28th. He and several others spoke on environmental issues and a grant of $340,000 to improve Union Square was announced. ♦ The 1924 Mack railbus owned by the Lehigh Valley Chapter, NRHS was moved from Topton, PA to the Phillipsburg RR Historians enginehouse also on July 28th. ♦ NJ Transit began receiving the first of their order of 200 Comet V commuter rail coaches. ♦ On August 14th a giant Russian cargo plane landed at the Atlantic City International Airport with a passenger train in its belly. The Antonov An-124 aircraft of Volga-Dnepr Airlines had loaded the train at Berlin's Schonefeld Airport and carried it across Europe, the Irish Sea and the Atlantic Ocean to New Jersey. The 54 ton, 102-foot-long diesel-electric multiple-unit railcar was destined for the Southern New Jersey Light Rail Transit System. ♦ The discovery of cracked brackets on the undersides of Acela Express locomotives and 14 other similar locomotives caused Amtrak to suspend the high speed service and scramble to lease substitute equipment. Repairs took weeks to complete. ♦ Twenty-three pickup truckloads of cobble stones were moved from the Ironbound section of Newark to Phillipsburg for the Heritage Center. ♦ On August 25th a trolley tour bus originally used in Lowell, MA and donated to the Transportation Heritage Center by the Borough of High Bridge, was moved to Phillipsburg. ♦ On the evening of Sept. 19th a celebration benefitting the New Jersey Transportation Heritage Center was held in Hoboken Terminal Waiting Room. The Honorable Alex DeCroce, Chairman of the New Jersey Railroad & Transportation Museum Commission introduced the fundraiser speakers The Honorable James J. Florio and George Warrington, Executive Director, NJ Transit. ♦ Hudson-Bergen Light Rail service to Hoboken Terminal began on Sept. 29th during the NJ Transit Hoboken Terminal Festival.??????????????????????????????? ♦ The Montclair Connection opened on Sept. 30th, allowing Boonton line trains access to Newark and New York (via MidTOWN DIRECT) or Hoboken. The Regional Plan Association first recommended joining the former Erie RR Greenwood Lake Branch and the former Lackawanna Montclair Branch 73 years prior, in 1929. ♦ The New Jersey Railroad and Transportation Museum Commission sunsetted. ♦ Colorado Railcar Manufacturing LLC's diesel multiple-unit (DMU) railcar was displayed at Hackensack and made demonstration runs on the NYS&W between Hackensack and Hawthorne Oct. 10th -12th. ♦ Motor Coach Industries developed a prototype hybrid electric commuter cruiser bus for NJ Transit. It is a modified MCI D4000 powered by a smaller Cummins ISL diesel engine and an Allison electric-drive hybrid propulsion system which included a battery bank. NJ Transit also ordered three 40-foot Nova transit buses equipped with ISE Research hybrid drive systems. ♦ The second-oldest passenger coach in the US was moved from the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History to the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania on a renewable three-year loan. Camden & Amboy RR coach No. 3, an eight-wheel wood car built in 1836 was a native to New Jersey. ♦ Scotland-based transport group Stagecoach wrote down the value of Coach USA by $800 million following a $550 million writedown in 2001. They purchased Coach USA for $1.9 billion, but placed its 2002 value it at less than $600 million. They planned to concentrate on their contract and scheduled commuter services that are mostly in the Northeast, with those in NJ and NY performing especially well. ♦ For the first time in 65 years rail vehicles began operating in Camden. In mid-December the Southern NJ Light Rail Transit System began test operations of their new cars on street trackage. The last streetcars operated in Camden in 1937. ♦ NJ Transit approved a $250 million contract with Bombardier Transportation to build 100 bi-level passenger cars to ease overcrowding on its trains.
2003 "Friends" launched a letter writing campaign to help get legislation creating the Transportation Heritage Center Foundation and Board of Directors out of the Assembly Appropriations Committee where it had been languishing since June 17, 2002. ♦ A heavy snow storm collapsed half of the roof of the B&O RR Museum roundhouse building in Baltimore on the morning of Feb. 17th. Two New Jersey locomotives, the Jersey Central Camelback steamer #592 and Ingersoll-Rand diesel #1000, displayed in the historic structure were only slightly damaged. ♦ Hours later the same storm reached New Jersey and deposited two feet of snow. The Northeast Corridor trains kept running, but with delays. Service on the NJ Transit Raritan Valley Line was suspended but trains on other lines ran with delays. NY Waterway reduced their NJ-NY ferry service to two routes. The Newark City Subway suffered minor service interruptions but their 1920's vintage snow sweeper did its work. NJ Transit bus service and the Hudson Bergen Light Rail system were shut down for a day. The Newark Liberty Airport Airtrain monorail was knocked out by the storm. ♦ The entire New Jersey Turnpike was closed for the first time in 21 years due to the extreme fog hazard which caused a rash of accidents on Feb. 23rd. ♦ "Friends" leased the former Jersey Central Phillipsburg station from the Town of Phillipsburg at the end of February. ♦ A proposal was put forth on 4/15 to connect the proposed new Xanadu entertainment facility at the Meadowlands by rail with the Secaucus Transfer station. The $1.2 billion development would feature 600,000 sq. feet of retail space, four 12 to 14-story office towers, a state-of-the-art aquarium and North America's first indoor skiing facility. ♦ On 4.15 a truck collided with a Newark City Subway train at Orange St., Newark, derailing the train. A month later a truck was hit by a Hudson Bergen light rail train in Jersey City. Both trucks had run red lights. ♦ Governor McGreevy announced on April 28th an $80 million program to improve freight rail access to Port Newark/Elizabeth and the Meadowlands. A joint $50 million initiative between the state and NS, CSX and Conrail would increase rail capacity in the Port Newark/Elizabeth marine terminal complex, Oak Island Yard and along a 10-mile stretch of the Lehigh Valley Line leading into the port. Another $30 million would be used to eliminate a grade crossing at NS's Croxton Yard in Secaucus by building a bridge to carry New County Road over the yard. ♦ The new Union station on NJ Transit's Raritan Valley Line opened on April 28th. ♦ Morristown planners approved plans for a $45 to 50 million Transit Village adjacent to the NJ Transit train station on May 5th. The development would include 218 apartments, retail space, and 700 parking spots. ♦ A barge carrying a crane was pushed through the Raritan River swing bridge. The high boom of the crane cut six power wires (140' above the water) disrupting train service for 15,000 people. ♦ A four-week walkout, the largest dock strike in two decades, ended on June 11th. It was against Evergreen Marine, the world's third-largest container ship company. It centered on the unionization of a handful of "port captains," who eventually got their way. ♦ The NJ Transit Board of Directors approved a $4.9 million study for a proposed new rail tunnel under the Hudson to Penn Station, NYC. ♦ NJ Transit unveiled the first hybrid electric cruiser bus in the nation. The bus was part of an $8.5 million investment for seven hybrid electric buses, including four cruiser buses for intercity routes. ◆ On 6.29, PATH service was restored to an enlarged, modernized Exchange Place Station in Jersey City for the first time since 9-11-01. ♦ A total of 250 NYCTA “Redbird” subway cars built for the IND lines in the 1950's and early 1960's were dumped in the ocean off the coast of NJ. Fifty cars each were placed to form artificial reefs for fish and divers at Cape May Reef, Deep Water Reef off Ocean City, off Atlantic City, Garden State North Reef off Harvey Cedars, and Shark River Reef off Manasquan. ◆ NJ Law Enforcement officials and Norfolk Southern police rounded up 24 members of a cargo theft gang known as the "Conrail Boyz" on 7.10. Using scanners, night-vision binoculars, walkie-talkies and cell phones to avoid the law, in the last decade the gang was responsible for multi-millions in losses in North Jersey, including a single merchandise theft of $5,000,000. ♦ A NJ Transit express train lost a wheel and derailed in Secaucus on 7.14. The train was halted 30 minutes before when signaled by a hotbox detector; an inspection was made and the train continued. The accident caused many trains to be cancelled; Midtown Direct trains were rerouted into Hoboken and it snarled trains on the line for two days. ♦ Jersey Central Blue Comet observation lounge car #1169, the Tempel was moved from South Plainfield to Cape May Seashore Lines on 7.14. ◆ On 7.22 NJ Transit announced its first-ever customer refund, offering passengers 15% back on monthly tickets due to numerous train delays and cancellations. ◆ NJ DOT officials announced a $50 million, five year program to improve road signs throughout the state. ◆ A computer “worm virus” infected the telecommunications network and caused a slowdown of major CSXT applications, including dispatching and signal systems. ◆ The world’s largest utility grid power failure occurred on the afternoon of 8.14. The outage, which primarily affected north Jersey, paralyzed the region’s transportation system. It brought Amtrak, NJ Transit, PATH, Newark City Subway and Hudson Bergen Light Rail trains to a standstill for hours. It disrupted bus routes and rendered many roads dangerous because traffic lights were out. Because the Port Authority Bus Terminal was closed, NJ Transit operated a free bus shuttle to pick up passengers from curbside in NYC and brought them to a makeshift, open-air bus transfer station in the parking lot of Meadowlands Arena in East Rutherford. NY Waterway ferries carried about 170,000 from Manhattan, almost six times their normal load. Many commuters waited for non-existent taxis. ◆ The Sussex Air Show celebrated their 30th anniversary and last show. ◆ A new $60,000,000 Rail Operations Command Center at the Meadowlands Maintenance Center in Kearny was put in operation to dispatch NJ Transit trains. A phased switch-over which replaced the outmoded facility at Hoboken was completed on September 26th. ◆ The Frank R. Lautenberg Transportation Opportunity Center was opened on Sept. 29th. It is located in two of the 19th century Rogers Locomotive Works buildings in Paterson. ◆ Two Amtrak P42 locomotives and two Amfleet coaches had special Monopoly board-game decals applied for an October 16-17 charter train from Chicago to Philadelphia and Atlantic City for a national Monopoly tournament. Preliminary rounds were contested on the train; the October 18 finals were in Atlantic City, the town upon whose streets and sites the game is based. ◆ A new steel truss bridge for the Delaware & Raritan Canal towpath was installed over US Route 1 south of the I-95/295 crossing on October 18th. ◆ The NJ Transit New Brunswick railroad station celebrated its 100th anniversary. It is the last example of a PRR-designed town station still in service in NJ. ◆ On November 1st Norfolk Southern initiated test operation of intermodal trains on the Northeast Corridor through NJ. The trains, which will primarily serve United Parcel Service, were scheduled to begin regular operation early in 2004. ◆ PATH train service from NJ resumed to the former World Trade Center site on 11.23 with the same cars which were in the last train to depart WTC before the collapse. Ferry service to Pier A in lower Manhattan was discontinued and other ferry service was curtailed. ◆ NJ Transit’s new $450 million Secaucus Junction Station, the largest station in NJ began a phased opening in September and full use on Dec. 15th. ◆ In this year, for the first time, New Jersey invested more in its rail and bus systems than in its highways. ◆ The 350-acre joint Maersk/Sealand container terminal, which will eventually handle as many as 700,000 containers per year, began operations.
2004 This year began the twentieth year of the effort to establish a NJ Transportation Heritage Center... The effort began in 1984 with a site proposal for the South Amboy area... ◆ On January 1st, the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers became the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen, a division of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Rail Conference. ◆ The Ford Motor Co. closed their Edison Assembly plant on February 27th. In the final years it produced Ford pick-up trucks. ◆ NJ Transit opened their new Morrisville, PA train storage yard. It replaced the Barracks Yard in Trenton. ◆
MAY-?=?-Royal Caribbean Cruises opened// a passenger terminal at the former Military Ocean Terminal at Bayonne. It is?? The home port for two ships, including the Voyager of the Seas, a 3,114-passenger vessel that is one of the world’s largest cruise ships.
2005 In January, Raritan Central Railway LLC and the Modesto & Empire Traction Co. initiated their “Jersey Express” to market coast-to-coast perishable freight. They have partnered to offer transportation and distribution services for perishable and food grade products moving between Edison, NJ and Modesto, CA. ◆
2007 Centennial Celebration of the completion of Hoboken Terminal
Key reference sources
Adams, Arthur G., The Hudson Through the Years
Burgess & Kennedy, Centennial History of the Pennsylvania RR Co.
Conniff, James & Richard, The Energy People: A History of PSE&G
Bianculli, Anthony J., Trains & Technology: The American Railroad in the Nineteenth Century
Cunningham, John T., Railroads in New Jersey: The Formative Years Trains and Technology: The American Railroad in the Nineteenth
Cunningham, John T., Made in New Jersey: The Industrial Story of a State
Lane, Wheaton J., From Indian Trail to Iron Horse, Travel and Transportation in New Jersey, 1620-1860
William J. McKelvey, Champlain to Chesapeake: A Canal Era Pictorial Cruise
William J. McKelvey, The Delaware & Raritan Canal: A Pictorial History
Phraner, S. David (Tri-State Regional Planning Commission), Chronology of Transportation Events
Phraner, S. David (Tri-State Regional Planning Commission), Marine Transit Operations in the Tri-State Region, Dec., 1975
Phraner, S. David (Tri-State Regional Planning Commission), Status of Regional Rail Rights-of-Way, Active and Abandoned, Aug., 1975
Scull, Theodore, Hoboken's Lackawanna Terminal, 1986
Stanton, Samuel Ward, History of American Steam Navigation, Steven Daye Press, 1958
Tyler, David B., The Bay and River Delaware: A Pictorial History
Northern Railroads in the Civil War
- Pathways, Vol. XXIV, No. 2 (PATH's 40th Anniversary Celebration)
- Railway Age - various issues
- Railroad History - various issues
- Roll Sign, Special All-Service Vehicle issue, May, 1972
Our appreciation to the following who helped with this effort: Bob Barth, Tom Flagg, Walter Grosselfinger, Charles O. L. Lawesson, Bill McKelvey, Bill Moss, Frank Miklos, Frank Reilly, Rich Taylor, John Wilkins, Paul Taylor, Paul Schopp, Kerry Day, Robert Craig, Tom Jones, and many, many others. Of all the people who helped with this project, one stands head and shoulders above all others... Without his meticulously researched and detailed edits, additions, corrections and volumes of additional data this product would only be a ghost of the final version. I am extremely indebted to my long time and very good friend, Dave Phraner.
- Ferries - Del River: Need start &/or end dates;
- Burlington - Bristol
- Beverly (Dunk’s Ferry) -
- Fish House Cove - Port Richmond
- Coopers Point - Shackamaxon
- E. Camden - Shackamaxon
- West Jersey Ferry Co.
- Kaighn's Point - (Reading) - Phila. Began ca. 1818
- Bulson St., Camden Phila. & AC RR - Phila.
- Gloucester City - South St., Phila.
- Red Bank - League Island
- Billingsport (Paulsboro) - Ft. Mifflin
- Bridgeport - Chester
- Penns Grove - Wilmington???
- Pennsville - Newcastle
- NOTE: NEED TO ADD CNJ EXCURSION FROM ALDENE TO STATEN ISLAND CA. 1954
- Articles from NJTH?
- Items from CNJ Main Line?
- Bergen Shore Express
- Founding of: NYS&W T&HS, Volunteer RRers, Anthracite, NJ Midland, ELHS, PRRH, Antique truck club,
- Pburg Chronology stuff - done to 1889
- Watchung Railway