N&W in 1908 -- Cincinnati line

NW Mailing List nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
Wed Sep 10 19:46:03 EDT 2008

Ah, but Gary, the New Castle Cutoff would never
have come to fruition had it not been for the
perseverance of one N&WHS member. Some
N&W folks just weren't buying the plan.

En route from New York on Amtrak one night,
the conductor checking my pass asked me
what road I worked for. Minutes later, along
comes W. Graham Claytor and sits down
beside me. We talked about Navy mine sweepers
and how he'd ridden Norfolk Southern #1 to
take command of his first ship at the shipyard
where "Pop" worked during World War II. Then
things turned to railroading. His interest in N&W
was a route from Gest Street to Chicago.
And all the time, the department was crunching
numbers on diverting Chattanooga - Potomac
Yard traffic from New Line, TN to Bristol, N&W
to Lynchburg, then back to Southern.

Of course CSX just couldn't handle any addi-
tional traffic on their line north of Gest Street.
So men from the Transportation Department
went to Cincinnati and camped out in a city
park overlooking CSX. They recorded train
movements 24 hours a day and were
approached by the city cops only once.

Perseverance -- that's what it took.
Harry Bundy

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