Catskill Mountain Railroad

Catskill Mountain Railroad

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Catskill Mountain Railroad

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Description:
The Catskill Mountain Railroad , is a heritage railroad based in Shokan, New York, United States that began operations in 1983. It leases from Ulster County the former Ulster and Delaware Railroad tracks from Mile Post (MP) 2.8 in Kingston to MP 41.4 in Highmount, where it connects with the Delaware and Ulster Railroad.

History

The Ulster & Delaware Railroad was completed between Kingston and Oneonta in 1900. Generations of travelers flocked to the Catskills to vacation at the storied grand hotels and lodges. Lucrative freight traffic included coal, lumber and other commodities, as well as dairy and farm products. Passenger traffic began to fall off in the period between the wars, and plummeted during the Great Depression. Improved roads and the rise of the private automobile doomed the little railroad, and it became part of the New York Central in 1932. The last regularly scheduled passenger train on the Catskill Mountain Branch departed Oneonta on March 31, 1954. Freight service continued, though in diminishing amounts over the years. The line was cut back from Oneonta to Bloomville in 1965, ending the railroad's role as a through route. New York Central became part of Penn Central in February, 1968, and conditions continued to deteriorate. Federally backed Conrail took over the operations of Penn Central in April, 1976, and operated the Catskill Mountain Branch on a limited basis as an operator subsidized by New York State. The six-month subsidy gave the remaining...
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