645 posted:

The Pennsylvania and New York Central railroads merged to create the Penn Central Transportation Company. The New Haven was merged into Penn Central on December 31, 1968. It was a merger that should not have taken place as history shows but there was a bunch of fascinating railroading going on in those days too even with deferred maintenance and being restricted by regulations of the time.

http://trpmagazine.com/50th-anniversary-penn-central/

Picture looks to be Meadows Yard, South Kearny NJ

Buzz 191

I'll agree that it was a significant date.  I'm sure that I'm not the only one here with mixed feelings about the Penn Central merger.

The result was awful, but it preserved a lot of northeastern railroad routes to be taken over by Conrail and once again restored to good condition and operation.

Tom

 

Superintendent, High Plains Division (O Gauge) 

The Panhandle & Santa Fe Railway Co.

Lone Star Hi-Railers

Santa Fe, All the Way

The Wall Street Journal came out with a nice little paperback summary (of the merger), Riding The Pennsy to Ruin.  I'll always remember one section mentioned that they were so broke, they had trouble paying for all the red pens they needed to report all the "Red Ink" they were in. Not making fun of their situation, that was just how dire it was back then. 

The Penn Central was the first railroad I really followed so as bad as they were, it still brings back good memories of RS-3m's and FL-9s in the New York metro area.

Tom 

 

Penn Central, while an ugly experiment in not how to do corporate mergers, served it's purpose in bringing about Conrail and the Staggers Act as Tom mentioned.  With the state of NE railroads throughout the 60's, I don't see how a more positive outcome could have happened merger or not.  US railroading as a whole benefited from this failed merger ultimately.

Jonathan

 

Gregg posted:

What Railways merged?

New York Central... N & W... Pennsylvania....  C&O? B&O? That's as far as I can get.

Only the NYC and PRR. Neither the N&W, nor the C&O, nor the B&O were involved. Don't confuse the Penn Central merger with the later to come CONRAIL mess.

 

Hot Water posted:
Gregg posted:

What Railways merged?

New York Central... N & W... Pennsylvania....  C&O? B&O? That's as far as I can get.

Only the NYC and PRR. Neither the N&W, nor the C&O, nor the B&O were involved. Don't confuse the Penn Central merger with the later to come CONRAIL mess.

 

Thank you  That's exactly what I did.  

falconservice posted:

How could anybody have accepted the plan to merge parallel railroads with Management that hated each other?

Nobody had a better plan.  There were four railroads running between the New York area and Chicago (if you count LV and NKP as one railroad).

Tom

 

Superintendent, High Plains Division (O Gauge) 

The Panhandle & Santa Fe Railway Co.

Lone Star Hi-Railers

Santa Fe, All the Way

Ironic that the long-time money losing commuter lines that the Pennsylvania, New York Central and New Haven operated and sought to exit from would later become subsidized/managed by state authorities in Pennsylvania (SEPTA), New York (LIRR & Metro-North) & Connecticut (Metro-North). 

Tom 

Wow, I didn't realize that. Of course just not old enough to be alive when all that was going on doesn't help. I remember reading somewhere(think it was late 1800's) that both railroads made shell railroads to compete with each other. It ended up with more twisting track along the other's mainlines annoying each other. I believe that the government stepped in and had the PRR buy the shell company from NYC, and NYC buy the shell company from PRR. The government told them to knock it off but not in so nice terms.

Dave NYC Hudson PRR K4 posted:

Wow, I didn't realize that. Of course just not old enough to be alive when all that was going on doesn't help. I remember reading somewhere(think it was late 1800's) that both railroads made shell railroads to compete with each other. It ended up with more twisting track along the other's mainlines annoying each other. I believe that the government stepped in and had the PRR buy the shell company from NYC, and NYC buy the shell company from PRR. The government told them to knock it off but not in so nice terms.

You are referring to the Penn building a rival line on the west shore of the Hudson to compete with the NYC (or irritate them). The government didn't step in, seeing the carnage that could unleash JP Morgan (if I remember the story correctly) basically grabbed the heads of the two companies and basically threatened to knock their heads together (figuratively) and forced a settlement whose details escape me at the moment. 

The person who dies with the best toys dies a happy person

It took a while after that merger for everything to fall out, that is for sure. You had Conrail, which took over the freight operations of various railroads, running commuter lines (DL and W now NJ transit), The old NYC harlem , hudson lines and the New Haven (all now MTA).

Not so sure Conrail could be considered a mess, they took over rail lines that their management had run into the ground, and ended up turning their holdings into a modern railroad that was valuable enough to be bought by two big railroads,something not true when the predecessor railroads went south. Among other thing, by the time they were done, the people running Conrail had it running systems for shipping that made it one of the most efficient in the country (when CSX and Northfolk Southern bought the various parts of Conrail, it wasn't just the routes, they were also buying the technology Conrail had developed, was a big article in Harvard Business review about it when I was in grad school).  

The person who dies with the best toys dies a happy person

bigkid posted:You are referring to the Penn building a rival line on the west shore of the Hudson to compete with the NYC (or irritate them). The government didn't step in, seeing the carnage that could unleash JP Morgan (if I remember the story correctly) basically grabbed the heads of the two companies and basically threatened to knock their heads together (figuratively) and forced a settlement whose details escape me at the moment. 

One of the unfinished routes became the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

Frisco, MoPac, and T&P near Rolla, MO

645 posted:
Philzy posted:

Did Conrail end up as a maintenance division to maintain the better technology?

Conrail still exists to this day as a bona-fide operating railroad which serves three metropolitan areas:

Conrail Shared Assets Operations

While it is Conrail they use Norfolk Southern and CSXT locomotives for power so it does not have a Conrail "look" to it other than when the NS Conrail heritage unit happens to operate in these territories on occasion.

Thank you, That would explain the Conrail logos on the maintenance vehicles and track equipment and NS and CSX on the locos where I live, on the old Reading Seashore Line in South Jersey. I don't think I'll get to see any Heritage units on this line. Last thing we seen close to interesting here was the Ringling Bros train when the circus would go to Atlantic City

The best things in life are not things.

I was 8 when PC started, only effect in Western Maryland where I lived was the slow death of the Bedford,PA. branch. However, in the town of my birth, Foxboro, Mass., PC changed everything.
The former NEW HAVEN track through Foxboro had a big infusion of traffic, as this became PC's connecting route from the former B&A down to Southeastern Mass. The first N.E. Patriots stadium opened in 1970, and MBTA trains to the stadium also used the branch, which meets the NEC at nearby Mansfield,Mass. In 1972, TRAINS had a very interesting article about a PC Track supervisor's job, which included this trackage.
My maternal grandparents home was about a quarter mile from the tracks in Foxboro, I really liked the Hancock air whistles on the x-NH diesels.
I did not get a camera until age 16, the old Kodak 127 print camera wasn't capable of much, but during a family vacation laundromat trip, I went across the street to the Mansfield station, and shot this GP9 on a 2-car local.
This was in June, 1976, 2 months after Conrail, and things would change again. This was the only PC diesel I ever shot.

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bigkid posted:
Dave NYC Hudson PRR K4 posted:

Wow, I didn't realize that. Of course just not old enough to be alive when all that was going on doesn't help. I remember reading somewhere(think it was late 1800's) that both railroads made shell railroads to compete with each other. It ended up with more twisting track along the other's mainlines annoying each other. I believe that the government stepped in and had the PRR buy the shell company from NYC, and NYC buy the shell company from PRR. The government told them to knock it off but not in so nice terms.

You are referring to the Penn building a rival line on the west shore of the Hudson to compete with the NYC (or irritate them). The government didn't step in, seeing the carnage that could unleash JP Morgan (if I remember the story correctly) basically grabbed the heads of the two companies and basically threatened to knock their heads together (figuratively) and forced a settlement whose details escape me at the moment. 

You remembered correctly.  Morgan took the CEO’s of both railroads out on his yacht and refused to return to port without a settlement between the two.

The PRR sold the NYC what became the West Shore Line and NYC sold PRR the South Pennsylvania.  As Palallin points out; parts of the South Penn including several of the original tunnels were used to build the PA Turnpike in the 1930’s.

The piers for what was to have been the South Penn bridge over the Susquehanna River in Harrisburg still lie just to the north of NS’ former Reading bridge over the Susquehanna.

Curt

bigkid posted:
Dave NYC Hudson PRR K4 posted:

Wow, I didn't realize that. Of course just not old enough to be alive when all that was going on doesn't help. I remember reading somewhere(think it was late 1800's) that both railroads made shell railroads to compete with each other. It ended up with more twisting track along the other's mainlines annoying each other. I believe that the government stepped in and had the PRR buy the shell company from NYC, and NYC buy the shell company from PRR. The government told them to knock it off but not in so nice terms.

You are referring to the Penn building a rival line on the west shore of the Hudson to compete with the NYC (or irritate them). The government didn't step in, seeing the carnage that could unleash JP Morgan (if I remember the story correctly) basically grabbed the heads of the two companies and basically threatened to knock their heads together (figuratively) and forced a settlement whose details escape me at the moment. 

The person with the most toys still dies.

 

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