Adirondack Scenic Railroad 25th Anniversary.

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Adirondack Railway Preservation Society Press Release: 7/17/2017

Re:                  Adirondack Scenic Railroad Celebrates 25th Anniversary

Contact:         Bethan Maher, Executive Director, (315) 724-0700


Old Forge – Full steam ahead! The Adirondack Railway Preservation Society, operator of the Adirondack Scenic Railroad, will be celebrating its 25th Anniversary with a variety of activities August 12th, including a vintage steam engine excursion.

The railroad was founded in 1992 by a group of devoted rail enthusiasts that banded together to operate a four-mile section of the line from Thendara south to Minnehaha. Twenty-five years later the line now runs from Utica to Lake Placid and has been declared a National Historic Landmark and placed on the New York State Register of Historic Places. Run. Over 79 miles of track have been returned to operation and the railroad carries over 70,000 passengers annually.

To celebrate, ARPS is bringing a steam engine back to the Adirondacks. The “Viscose #6” will be running hourly with the open air car and caboose which is available for charters to Otter Lake all day on the 12th of August. For the first time the ARPS’s twin Alco engines, the #8223 and #8255, will be running scenic trips and canoe & rail packages between Thendara and Otter Lake. The regularly scheduled Utica to Thendara excursion, pulled by vintage F Units, 1502 and 1508, will be depart Union Station in Utica at 9:30am and will include four hour layover in Thendara for passengers to enjoy the events.

Scotty’s Jump and Fun Party Rentals will be on hand providing Trackless Train rides and other amusement attractions for children, as well as their food truck and snack trollies. Music provided by 97.9/105.5 KISS FM while broadcasting live on location.

Visitors will also be able to be “Engineer for a Day” on Sunday. Patrons will be able to “drive” the Viscose #6 from the cab just as if they were a regular train engineer. There is a limited schedule and patrons are strongly encouraged to book their spot in advance.

There will also be a shuttle service to transport patrons from downtown Old Forge to the Thendara Station throughout the day.


The Adirondack Preservation Society operates the Adirondack Scenic Railroad, offering heritage train excursions through the beautiful six million-acre Adirondack Park. This rail line has the ability to safely and predictably transport any individual without exception into the wilderness of upstate New York, affording every passenger the opportunity to view and enjoy Forever Wild spaces that are otherwise unreachable. Learn more and purchase tickets at or by calling 1-800- 819-2291.

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Exciting NYCS Logo and Loco Art

Exciting NYCS Logo and Loco Art

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Click Here to Order

Be sure to sign into the store to receive the

NYCSHS discounts.


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Click Here to Order


Be sure to sign into the store to receive the

NYCSHS discounts.



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Valley Railroad and NYCSHS Unveil a Piece of NYC History

Some Additional Photos of the Unveiling

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Close ups of the 213173

The Friends of the Valley RR had the Essex RR Saturday night Dinner Train engineer move the boxcar into the sunlight so the photos would be well lit. (they would not uncouple it from the PRR caboose, we asked!)

 The boxcar and the Headquarters of the Valley Railroad on Unveiling day.

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The attendees assembled near the car around 4:30. Paul Costello (FOTVRR) brought over the stantions. Nick Ariemma (NYCSHS Director)mounted the ribbon, while Dave Mackay (NYCSHS President) held the scissors.

We then adjourned to the meeting center for cutting the ceremonial cake, as well as snacks and coffee. We got to meet several Board Members of the FOTVRR, as well as the woman who did all the stencils and lettering. We discussed the car’s history about which most of the attendees were unaware.

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A final shot of the NYCS Auto Boxcar #213173.  It is a beauty and looks like the day it came out of the builders shop.

 All Photos by Nick Ariemma, NYCSHS Director


We Were There

Take a Look at the Finished Boxcar


Photos By Joe Burgess, NYCSHS

Valley Railroad Did a Great Job and the NYCSHS

Was There to Help Them Celebrate.

You’re Invited!

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The Valley RR & The NYCSHS

Unveil A Restored Piece of

New York Central History

Come and be part of this exciting event, as your New York Central System Historical Society and the Valley Railroad of Essex, CT celebrate the restoration of an important NYC artifact.


One Railroad Avenue, Essex, CT

Ceremonies will follow the return to Essex Station of the last tourist train of the day (4:45pm).  A post unveiling reception for NYCSHS Members follows in the Oliver Jensen Gallery.

Join Society President Dave Mackay, and Director Nick Ariemma, along with the leadership of the Valley RR as they celebrate the joint effort to preserve this car.

In order to have a headcount for the reception, we need

your R.S.V.P.

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If you’re planning to join us, please R.S.V.P. “Yes” to:  by Wed. July 5th, 2017

A rare survivor of Lot # 594-B,  built by Merchants Despatch Transportation of Rochester, NY in 1930,  the restored car saw revenue service from its delivery until 1948 when it was moved into storage and eventfully steam generation service in Poughkeepsie, NY.
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Missing the sights, sounds and smells of steam? Come early and ride the steam train. NYCHS Members in good standing will receive a discount on their excursion tickets.
Directions and Information:

Make it a NYCS Day.  Wear your NYC hats and shirts. Collinwood Shop has plenty!    To order them click here:

July 8, 2017

Unveiling at 4:45PM

NYCSHS Reception Immediately Following


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NYCSHS 2018 Membership

NYCSHS 2018 Membership

New York Central System Historical Society, Inc. NYCSHS LogoSmall copy

Board of Directors

P.O. Box 130

Gates Mills, OH 44040-0130

July 1, 2017

NYCSHS Members:

Notice of Dues Increase

In an effort to ensure that the NYCSHS continues its mission of keeping the legacy of the New York Central System alive, the Board of Directors must ensure a stable financial foundation and provide for the longevity of the Society. Over the past 18 months the Board has conducted a complete financial review and initiated a number of actions necessary to underpin this effort. One of these actions is a small but necessary increase in our annual dues.

The Board has approved a $5 increase in the annual membership cost, raising Regular annual membership from $39 to $44. This increase will be reflected in 2018 membership renewals and in new memberships beginning August 1, 2017.

In reaching this decision, your Board recognized that the continuing increase in Member benefits, as well as the increase in the costs of providing member services, has continued to grow. Since the Society’s last dues increase eight years ago, the average household has experienced a cost of living increase of 13.5%, and your Society’s costs have grown at that rate as well. The dues increase is a full percentage point below those cost of living increases.

Since 2009 you’ve seen major changes in our best in class quarterly magazine Central Headlight. It now comes to you on time, in an expanded page format and with color images in each issue. Our website was a dream in 2009 and now is a reality. Collinwood Shop was an idea that has blossomed into an online retail service for all who share our common interest. Open to all on the Internet, it offers Members a significant 20% discount on NYC merchandise and models.

Collinwood Shop has brought NYC enthusiasts books, logo clothing, movies mastered to DVD, models, memorabilia, art prints, engineering DVDs, valuation map DVDs, and shortly will deliver photo DVDs. The Society maintains a social media presence beyond our web page with a Facebook page and a Members only Yahoo group. Our quarterly e-zine, NYCentral Modeler is recognized in the modeling community for both the quality and quantity of its articles.

We are proud that we now have a Society home and proper storage for the Archives. This move makes the Archives more accessible for your research. A capital campaign, Flight of The Century, raised the money necessary to move, complete minor site renovations, decorate and equip our new headquarters. Dues money was not used for those purposes. Dues have paid for multiple storage units over the years and will continue to pay our monthly operating costs for the new facility.

In short, we have multiplied Member benefits and created a dynamic, growing, and valuable benefit proposition for our Members. The NYCSHS is recognized as a leader in the railroad historical community. We value you as a Member and look forward to continuing to serve your needs in the coming years.

For the NYCSHS Board of Directors

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David Mackay, President


P.S. Remember that all correspondence in reference to membership should be addressed to:

NYCSHS Membership Chair

P.O. Box 264

Emerson, NJ 07630

We will begin to accept 2018 membership

applications and renewals on Aug 1, 2017.

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NYCSHS Press Release

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The 3rd Qtr. 2017 NYCentral Modeler is Ready to View

The 3rd Qtr. 2017 NYCentral Modeler is Ready to View

Final Cover

The cover photo for this quarter’s edition is from David Horn and he tells us about “Modeling the NYC in S-Scale”. Brad Andonian shares his modeling skills about painting some of Rich Yoder’s bulk dry cement canisters and the gondola to carry them. O-Gauge modeler, John Mercurio, has an extensive layout and some very interesting structures. He tells us about it in “The Boston & Albany in O-Gauge”. Bob Shaw continues his features on “NYC O-Gauge Model Railroading” that will now be a standard feature for us. Master modeler, Seth Lakin, provides some prototype background on SW-1 switchers in the first part of his series on that interesting NYCS loco. He will return next month to tell us how he modeled the switcher in HO-scale. And you also get all of the regular features with “NYCSHS RPO”, “Extra Board”, “What’s New” and “The Observation Car”. All in the July1, 2017 edition.


Click Here to View

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Along the Old West Shore

Along The Old West Shore

By John M. Ham

The Old West Shore was a fully equipped, signaled, double track railroad across almost the entire state of New York, i.e.: NOT a branch line.  Have you ever heard about how the Nickel Plate and the Erie advertised themselves as the express routes from Chicago to Buffalo and New Jersey?  Both of their premier freight trains regularly outperformed the NYC.  If you watch their steam era videos, you’ll see LOTS of high value perishable and manufactured goods traffic — all siphoned off the NYC.  They always beat the NYC’s freight schedules because nothing much got in their way.  Meanwhile the NYC struggled daily to get traffic through the likes of Toledo, Cleveland and Erie.

Well, speed-wise, the NYC fought back east of Buffalo with the West Shore’s unimpeded, direct route.  NYC’s freight trains that were “hot”, and full of New York City & Boston traffic, ran at high speed across upstate New York on the West Shore.  So, it was an IMPORTANT line, but missed out on all the publicity because the named passenger trains took the four track route through all the cities (Rochester, Syracuse, Utica).  Hence, with little publicity (out-of-sight, out-of-mind); some westerners ignored the West Shore, but the railroad oriented folks in New York State have not forgotten, and John is tapping their latent interest with quality photos depicting every station and wide spot that nobody has yet covered.

The West Shore’s creation is also an interesting tale.  In the late 1800’s rail competition between big cities got very ugly.  They would cut their rates to the point that margins to meet fixed costs were thin to nonexistent.  Weaker roads (hello Erie & Lehigh Valley) went bankrupt.  That’s one reason railroads got into so much trouble with the people and the government.  They would make up for their death spiral “big city to big city” rates by over-charging for shipments to/from small towns where they were the only railroad around.

So, in this environment, imagine the country’s two premier railroads building competing lines, each within sight of the other’s ‘bread and butter’ four track main line.  That’s exactly what was happening in 1883 & 84.  The Pennsylvania Railroad was clandestinely financing construction of the New York, West Shore & Chicago.  After detecting ‘a rat’, William H. Vanderbilt acquired a right-of-way and latent charter across Pennsylvania.  He started the expensive tunneling and grade work required for his own double track railroad, the South Pennsylvania.  JP Morgan saw that completion of these two lines would lead not only to ruination of the nation’s two strongest carriers, but the whole US economy could go into depression as a result.  So, he got Vanderbilt and the Pennsy to each send emissaries to negotiate a peace. 

Chauncey Depew for the NYC met George Roberts and Frank Thomson (President and Vice President of the PRR) aboard Morgan’s 165 foot yacht Corsair on July 10, 1885.  Why meet on a yacht?  No interruptions, and no places for people to storm out and pout.  Supposedly, Morgan told them, “Nobody’s leaving this vessel until you have an agreement, … and when the food runs out, the food runs out!”   Five hours later, the PRR had agreed to purchase Vanderbilt’s South Pennsylvania Railroad, and the NYC bought the West Shore.  NYC used the West Shore to great advantage while Pennsylvania’s anti-trust laws hampered the Pennsy from doing much with the South Penn.  The South Penn’s right-of-way lay dormant until the late 1930’s, when the state bought it and built what became the Pennsylvania Turnpike on it.

This is the only book ever published about the entirety of the New York Central’s West Shore Railroad, a 450 mile line that ran along the western banks of the Hudson River and west along the Erie Canal to Buffalo on Lake Erie.  The book covers over 100 stations and the West Shore’s branch line to Earlville with hundreds of steam locomotive action shots and dozens of color diesel era images.

Readers will discover that the West Shore was NOT a branch line.  It was a well engineered, double track, signaled main line railroad!  NYC used the route to move freight unimpeded from Buffalo to the Albany area, and then down the Hudson’s ‘West Shore’ to Jersey’s ports and the New York region’s manufacturers.  While the four track main line hosted premier passenger trains, this route labored unpretentiously in the shadows.  Now, John Ham shines deserved light upon a route dripping with history, and still a vital CSX link.

We cannot understate the quality or value of this 312 page book.   Six hundred photos; a color section; heavy duty hard covers; high grade glossy paper; Smythe sewn and bound. 

Reserve yours today.  Don’t miss out!!!

Expected shipping date October 2017

MSRP $59.95  NYCSHS Members Price $47.96


Shipping is extra and Ohio residents add 8.0% sales tax.

Click Here to Order

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