CN Freight Train - 16th St. Chicago

  Contact RRT | Misc. | Locks | Keys | Home | Lanterns | Picture Gallery | Payment  

"a website for the railroad enthusiast"

All Key Sales are Final
Front Side: Boston & Albany Railroad Back Side: Boston & Albany Railroad B&A R.R. Flag

Boston & Albany Railroad

Item: 2-B     Price: $55.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by Miller.
Unique style steel switch key. Great silver patina.

History

The Castleton & West Stockbridge Railroad was incorporated in New York in 1834 as the New York part of the Western Railroad and changed its name to the Albany & West Stockbridge Railroad (chartered May 5, 1836, organized May 20). Construction began in December 1840 and the line opened from Greenbush (east of Albany) to Chatham on December 21, 1841 and to the Massachusetts state line on September 12, 1842. It was leased to the Western Railroad for 50 years from November 11, 1841. This railroad replaced the Hudson & Berkshire Railroad east of Chatham, which was abandoned around 1860.

Two mergers, on September 4, 1867 and December 28, 1870 brought the three companies together, along with the Hudson & Boston Railroad into one company, known as the Boston & Albany Railroad. The New York Central and Hudson River Railroad leased the B&A for 99 years from July 1, 1900. This lease passed to the New York Central Railroad in 1914; throughout this, the B&A kept its own branding in the public eye. The NYC merged into Penn Central on February 1, 1968.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Bangor & Aroostook Railroad Back Side: Bangor & Aroostook Railroad B&A R.R. Flag

Bangor & Aroostook Railroad

Item: 4-B     Price: $125.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the M.M. Buck Co.
Large block lettering on front, nice serif lettering on back.
Attractive tapered barrel and superb carmel patina.
13th street = Bangor Union Station now Amtrak.

History

The Bangor & Aroostook Railroad was a United States railroad company that brought rail service to Arostook County in northern Maine. Brightly painted BAR box cars attracted national attention in the 1950s. First-generation diesel locomotives operated on BAR until they were museum pieces. The economic downturn of the 1980s coupled with the departure of heavy industry from northern Maine forced the railroad to seek a buyer and end operations in 2003.

The company was incorporated in 1891 to combine the lines of the former Bangor & Piscataquis Railroad and the Bangor & Katahdin Iron Works Railway. It was based in Bangor & lines extended from there to Oakfield and Houlton in 1894.

BAR began hauling potatoes in heated box cars in 1895. Potatoes provided a stable income source through the great depression, and provided 50% of the railroad's revenue following World War II. BAR had the 2nd largest United States railroad-owned reefer fleet (after Santa Fe) during the 1950s. BAR made an arrangement with Pacific Fruit Express whereby, PFE reefers shipped Maine potatoes during winter months and BAR reefers carried California produce during the summer and autumn. While potatoes started moving by truck following completion of the Interstate Highway System into northern Maine in the 1960s, what actually resulted in the railroad losing its potato business forever was the Penn Central Transportation Company (PC), whose interchange service became so bad during the winter of 1969-70 that a large portion of the 1969 potato crop was spoiled by freezing when car heaters ran out of fuel. The claims process against PC was not resolved prior to PC's bankruptcy declaration the following June. As a result, several potato farms went out of business; and those that survived distrusted rail service and never returned to using the railroad.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Bangor & Aroostook Railroad Back Side: Bangor & Aroostook Railroad BAR GP9 No.77

Bangor & Aroostook Railroad

Item: 5-B     Price: $95.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Great serif lettering and gold patina.

History - See 4-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: British Columbia Railway Back Side: British Columbia Railway BC R.R. Flag

British Columbia Railway

Item: 6-B     Price: $65.00

Remarks: ca. late 1900's. Great block lettering and patina.

History

British Columbia's largest railroad and Canada's third largest was the Pacific Great Eastern Railway of the early 20th century. The system languished for years as an incomplete, money-losing operation with a few hundred miles in service north of Vancouver. This changed after World War II when government funding helped expand the PGE by several hundred miles and it continued to grow throughout the 1980s. By then the railroad was renamed as the British Columbia Railway and efforts were in place to extend it to the Alaskan border, finally allowing that state to connect with the North American rail network. This proposal would ultimately fall through due to rising costs. Later, the BC Rail system disappeared into Canadian National, which now leases the entire railroad from the local government.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Barre & Chelsea Railroad Back Side: Barre & Chelsea Railroad Block of Granite    C.E. Tayntor & Co's Quarry

Barre & Chelsea Railroad

Item: 7-B     Price: $125.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. B&C onced owned by the B&M.
Superb serif lettering and two-tone patina.

History

The Barre Railroad Company was incorporated April 9, 1888, under general laws of Vermont to construct, maintain, and operate a railroad from the village of Barre to the granite quarries in said town of Barre and Williamstown, Vt. The date of organization was April 10, 1888.

The East Barre & Chelsea Railroad Company, the only predecessor, was incorporated July 20, 1892, under general laws of Vermont to construct and maintain a railroad from a point of connection with tracks of The Barre Railroad Company in the town of Barre, to East Barre, Vt. The date of organization was September 11, 1892.

The owned mileage was acquired partly by construction and partly by merger. The records reviewed indicate that 13.819 miles of road was constructed by The Barre Railroad Company during 1888-89, and 1.673 miles was acquired by merger from the East Barre & Chelsea Railroad Company, constructed by or for that company during 1891-92, or a total of 15.492 miles.

The majority of the Granite District was part of the Boston & Maine Railroad (B&M) system until 1926, when the Barre & Chelsea Railroad (Barre to Graniteville) and Montpelier & Wells River Railroad (Barre and Montpelier to Wells River) were sold to local interests. The latter was consolidated into the former in January 1945, but in 1957 the entire Barre & Chelsea Railroad was abandoned.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Buffalo Creek & Gauley Railroad Back Side: Buffalo Creek & Gauley Railroad BC&G R.R. Flag

Buffalo Creek & Gauley Railroad

Item: 8-B     Price: $95.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Large block lettering.
Nice carmel patina and fine pocket wear.

History

The Buffalo Creek & Gauley Railroad (BC&G) was a railroad chartered on April 1, 1904 and ran along Buffalo Creek in Clay County, West Virginia. The original Buffalo Creek & Gauley ended service in 1965.

The BC&G was one of the last all-steam railroads, never operating a diesel locomotive to the day it shut down in 1965. Its primary purpose was to bring coal out of the mountains above Widen to an interchange with the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad at Dundon.

After the BC&G ended operations in 1965 it was reactivated in 1971 by the Majestic Mining Company to serve a mine at Widen.The company used an Alco S-2 for power and the operation concluded in 1985. The line was then again reactivated in the mid-1990s when the Elk River Railroad, Inc. (TERRI) reopened the route to Avoca to serve a mine there. The operation lasted only a few years until 1999 when American Electric Power (AEP) determined the coal to be too poor in quality.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Butte-Anaconda & Pacific Railway Back Side: Butte-Anaconda & Pacific Railway BA&P diesel engine No.101

Butte-Anaconda & Pacific Railway

Item: 9-B     Price: $75.00

Remarks: ca. early-mid 1900's. Elongated barrel.
Nice serif lettering and dark patina.
Key listed in the "American Railway's Switch Key Directory."

History

The Butte-Anaconda & Pacific Railway short-line railroad was founded in 1892. It was used primarily to take copper ore from the mines to the smelter in Anaconda, though it did also carry passengers and freight. The railroad converted to electric in 1913, the first primarily freight line in the nation to do so. Electrification was abandoned in 1967 when it became cheaper to use diesel-electric locomotives.

During the past decade, a portion of the line has been converted to the BA&P Copperway Trail, and is part of an ever-growing network of walking trails in Butte. Though BA&P is still in operation, the railroad's parent company, Patriot Rail Corp., closed the railroad's office in Anaconda earlier this year.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Butte-Anaconda & Pacific Railway Back Side: Butte-Anaconda & Pacific Railway BA&P diesel engine No.101

Butte-Anaconda & Pacific Railway

Item: 10-B     Price: $125.00

Remarks: ca. early-mid 1900's. Elongated barrel.
Superb serif lettering and dark patina. Early key.
Different style cut than key above.

History - See 9-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Belt Railway Back Side: Belt Railway Chicago Belt R.R. Flag

Belt Railway of Chicago

Item: 11-B     Price: $45.00

Remarks: ca. late 1900's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Superb block lettering and patina.
FYI: A C&WI key will open an Adlake Belt lock and vice-versa.

History

Chartered in 1882, the Belt Railway Company of Chicago (BRC), headquartered in Bedford Park, IL, is the largest switching terminal railroad in the United States. It is co-owned by six Class I railroads; BNSF Railway, Canadian National Railway, Canadian Pacific Railway, CSX Transportation, Norfolk Southern Railway, and Union Pacific Railroad, each of which uses the switching and interchange facilities of the BRC. Owner lines and other railroads bring their trains to the Belt Railway to be separated, classified, and re-blocked into new trains for departure. The BRC also provides rail terminal services to approximately 100 local manufacturing industries.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Belt Railway Back Side: Belt Railway BRC Clearing Yard

Belt Railway of Chicago

Item: 12-B     Price: $35.00

Remarks: ca. mid-late 1900's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Superb block lettering and patina.
FYI: A C&WI key will open an Adlake Belt lock and vice-versa.


History - continued from above

The Clearing Yard, located on the boundary between Chicago and Bedford Park, Illinois, just south of Chicago Midway International Airport, is one of the largest hump classification facilities in the United States. Some 5.5 miles in length and covering 786 acres the yard supports more than 250 miles (400 km) of track. It has six main subdivisions; one arrival, classification, and departure yard in the eastbound and westbound directions.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Belt Railway Back Side: Belt Railway Chicago Belt R.R. Flag

Belt Railway of Chicago

Item: 13-B     Price: $35.00

Remarks: ca. mid-late 1900's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Superb block lettering and patina.
FYI: A C&WI key will open an Adlake Belt lock and vice-versa.

History - See 9-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Beaver & Ellwood Railroad Back Side: Beaver & Ellwood Railroad PL&E R.R.Flag

Beaver & Ellwood Railroad Company

Item: 14-B     Price: $95.00

Remarks: ca. late 1800's-early 1900's. Low serial number.
Fine pocket wear and nice gold patina. Very rare key.

History

The Beaver & Ellwood Railroad Company was organized May 20, 1890. Known as the Beaver & Ellwood Railroad, the line provided passenger service to the Park Gate station, as well as freight service to Ellwood City industries. In April of 1892 The Ellwood Connecting Railroad was incorporated by the Pittsburgh & Lake Erie to make the connection to the Beaver & Ellwood Railroad but did not open until June of 1893. In May of 1899, the Beaver & Ellwood Railroad was leased to the P&LE for twenty years. On a side note, July of the same year, the Beaver & Ellwood Railroad acquired the Ellwood Southern Railroad Company.

Ellwood City was the concept of 19th-century entrepreneur Henry W. Hartman. In 1889, he formed the Pittsburgh Company to create a town south of the Connoquenessing Creek near the village of Hazel Dell. Local farm properties were purchased, and the town quickly began to take shape. Along with houses, the first major building was the Hotel Oliver. The Ellwood Short Line and later the Beaver and Ellwood Railroads were built to meet the demands of the growing steel industry. In 1891, the Ellwood Shafting and Tube Company was founded, producing the first seamless steel tubing and establishing Ellwood City as the birthplace of the seamless tube industry. Mills, financial institutions, stores, schools, churches, civic organizations, and building trades thrived as construction in the new town grew.

Finally June 6, 1910 the P&LE purchased the entire issue of stock of the Beaver & Ellwood Railroad Company and merged it with the Ellwood Connecting Railroad Company in January 1911.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Buffalo & Lake Huron Railway Back Side: Buffalo & Lake Huron Railway GT R.R. Flag

Buffalo & Lake Huron Railway

SOLD     New Listing     Price: $275.00

Remarks: ca. late 1800's. A 147 year old rarity!
Neat block lettering and superb patina.

History

The Buffalo & Lake Huron Railway was constructed between the communities of Fort Erie, at the base of the Niagara River on Lake Erie, through Brantford and Stratford to Goderich, on the shores of Lake Huron. citizens from the Brantford, Buffalo and Goderich areas began investigating the possibilities of constructing a railway. To improve local trade, the Buffalo & Brantford Joint Stock Railroad Company in 1851was established, a name that was changed to the Buffalo, Brantford & Goderich Railway Company in 1852. Funding was found from the communities participating and by 1856, the company had completed 83 miles (134 km) of track between Fort Erie and Paris.

Early on, the B&LH suffered financial woes and was forced to cease operations. To raise revenue, the B&LH allowed Grand Trunk to permit joint operations of passenger and freight traffic between Detroit and Buffalo via Stratford, to compete with Great Western Suspension Bridge at Niagara Falls. This agreement with the GT would eventually backfire and prompt the GT to purchase the B&LH outright in 1870.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad Back Side: Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad B&LE R.R. Flag

Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad

Item: 16-B     Price: $65.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the Bohannan Co.
Superb serif lettering and carmel patina.

History

The Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad (BLE) is a class II railroad that operates in northwestern Pennsylvania and northeastern Ohio.The railroad's main route runs from the Lake Erie port of Conneaut, Ohio to the Pittsburgh suburb of Penn Hills, Pennsylvania, a distance of 139 miles. The original rail ancestor of the B&LE, the Shenango & Allegheny Railroad, began operation in October 1869.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad Back Side: Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad B&LE RR

Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad

Item: 17-B     Price: $65.00

Remarks: ca. early-mid 1900's. Forged by the Bohannan Co.
Superb serif lettering and gold patina.

History - continued from above

In 1988 the Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad became part of Transtar, Inc., a privately held transportation holding company with principal operations in railroad freight transportation, dock operations, Great Lakes shipping, and inland river barging that were formerly subsidiaries of USX, the holding company that owns U.S. Steel. In 2001 the Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad became part of Great Lakes Transportation, LLC. On May 10, 2004 Canadian National Railway acquired the Bessemer and Lake Erie Railroad. Iron ore and coal are still the route's major freight commodities.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad Back Side: Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad B&LE R.R. Flag

Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad

Item: 18-B     Price: $55.00

Remarks: ca. mid 1900's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Nice block lettering and gold patina.
Different style cut than B&LE keys listed above.

History - See 16-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Boston & Maine Railroad Back Side: Boston & Maine Railroad B&M R.R. Flag

Boston & Maine Railroad

Item: 20-B     Price: $65.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the Sherburne Co.
Attractive serif lettering and two-tone patina.
Both styles of B&M keys on page are listed in the
"American Railway's Switch Key Directory."

Chartered in 1836, the Boston & Maine Corporation , known as the Boston & Maine Railroad (B&M), was a former U.S. Class I railroad in northern New England. It became part of what is now the Pan Am Railways network in 1983.

B&M's earliest corporate predecessor was the Andover & Wilmington Railroad, opened in August 1836 from Andover, Massachusetts, south to a junction with the B&L at Wilmington, approximately 7 miles. The B&M grew for the most part by acquisition, not by construction. The oldest component of the B&M was the 25-mile route between Boston and Lowell, Massachusetts, opened by the Boston & Lowell Railroad (B&L) on June 24, 1835, but not acquired until much later. The B&M's 19th century history consists of four distinct routes

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Boston & Maine Railroad Back Side: Boston & Maine Railroad B&M RR No.115

Boston & Maine Railroad

Item: 21-B     Price: $45.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Excellent dark block lettering.
Fine pocket wear and superb carmel patina.
Given the moniker, "Broken and Maimed."

History - continued from above

B&M dieselized quickly, except for suburban passenger trains, and it was an early user of Centralized Traffic Control. In 1950 it was a well-run, progressive railroad, in a region that was losing its heavy industry and beginning to build interstate superhighways. In 1956, Patrick B. McGinnis became president of the B&M, bringing in a new image, not just blue replacing maroon on the locomotives and cars but a new way of doing things: deficits, deferred maintenance, and kickbacks on the sale of B&M's streamlined passenger cars, which ultimately culminated in a prison sentence that ended his career in railroading.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Boston & Maine Railroad Back Side: Boston & Maine Railroad B&M R.R. Flag

Boston & Maine Railroad

Item: 22-B     Price: $35.00

Remarks: ca. early-mid 1900's. Great gold patina
Different style cut then the two B&M keys above.

History - continued from above

Rather than split B&M among its connections or ask for inclusion in Conrail, B&M's trustees decided to reorganize independently. Under the leadership of Alan Dustin, the B&M bought new locomotives, rebuilt its track, and changed its attitude. The revived B&M went after new business and expanded its operations. It sold the tracks and rolling stock to MBTA in 1975, but retained freight rights on those lines and continued to operate the trains for MBTA. In 1977 it assumed operation of commuter trains on the former NH and B&A lines out of Boston's South Station. In 1982 it bought several Conrail lines in Massachusetts and Connecticut and began operating coal trains and piggyback service.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Boston & Maine Railroad Back Side: Boston & Maine Railroad B&M No.810

Boston & Maine Railroad

Item: 23-B     Price: $35.00

Remarks: ca. early-mid 1900's. Attractive gold patina.
Ex-fine pocket wear. Nice early key.

History - continued from above

The revived B&M was purchased in 1983 for $24 million by Timothy Mellon's Guilford Transportation Industries, which had bought the MEC in 1981 and in 1984 would buy the D&H. Pan Am entered a joint venture with Norfolk Southern Railway (NS) in April 2009 to form Pan Am Southern (PAS). PAR transferred to the joint venture its 155-mile (249 km) main line track that runs between Mechanicville, New York, and Ayer, Massachusetts.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railroad Back Side: Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railroad B&ML R.R. Flag

Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railroad

Item: 24-B     Price: $125.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Bohannan forged steel key.
Superb block lettering and patina.

History

The Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railroad (reporting mark BML) was a standard-gauge shortline railroad that operated from 1871 to 2007 over a single-track grade from Belfast to Burnham Junction in Maine.

Chartered in 1867, the line was built between August 1868 and December 1870 by the Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railroad Company (B&MLRR), which was majority-owned by the city of Belfast until 1991. For its first 55 years, the road was operated under lease by the Maine Central as its Belfast Branch, which provided daily passenger and freight service to eight stations over the length of Waldo County, Maine. After the MEC cancelled its lease in 1925, the B&MLRR began running trains under its own name. Passenger operations ceased in March 1960, although in 1988, the railroad began operating summer tourist trains to offset a decline in freight traffic. In 1991, the city sold its interest in the money-losing railroad to private owners. In 2007, the railroad ended operations as the B&MLRR.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railroad Back Side: Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railroad B&ML locomotive No.16

Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railroad

Item: 25-B     Price: $45.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Narrow gauge key.
Stylish ring barrel. Superb block lettering and copper patina.

History - continued from above

Today, the line is operated by the non-profit Brooks Preservation Society as the Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railway,
and runs weekend excursion trains in the spring, summer and early fall between City Point, Waldo, and Brooks.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Buffalo & Erie Railroad Back Side: Buffalo & Erie Railroad B&E R.R. Flag

Buffalo & Erie Railroad

Item: 26-B     Price: $125.00

Remarks: ca. mid 1900's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Elongated barrel. Superb block lettering and gold patina.

History

Buffalo had a track which was dignified by the name of railroad as early as 1834, and two years prior to that, two railway companies had succeeded in obtaining a charter with Buffalo as part of their respective corporate names. The two companies were incorporated on the same day, April 14, 1832, one becoming the Buffalo & Erie Railroad Company, with power to construct and operate a line from Buffalo through Chautauqua county to the State line, and the other, the Aurora & Buffalo Railroad Company, authorized to run from Buffalo to the village of Aurora, now East Aurora. Considerable stock was sold in Buffalo and elsewhere, and the route to Aurora was surveyed by William Wallace. But the monetary panic of 1837 occurred before construction of either railway had begun, and nothing was accomplished. Calvin Fillmore, uncle of Millard Fillmore, was among the incorporators of the Aurora & Buffalo Railroad Company.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Buffalo & Lockport Railroad Back Side: Buffalo & Lockport Railroad NYC R.R. Flag

Buffalo & Lockport Railroad

Item: 27-B     Price: $200.00

Remarks: ca. late 1800's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Great block lettering and gold patina. Merged in the NYC.
Key listed in the "American Railway's Switch Key Directory."

History

The Buffalo & Lockport Railroad was chartered April 27, 1852, to build a branch of the Rochester, Lockport and Niagara Falls from Lockport towards Buffalo. It opened in 1854, running from Lockport to Tonawanda, where it joined the Buffalo & Niagara Falls Railroad, opened 1837, for the rest of the way to Buffalo. One of nine other railroads that formed the New York Central.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Buffalo-New York & Philadelphia Railroad Back Side: Buffalo-New York & Philadelphia Railroad Pennsylvania R.R. Flag

Buffalo-New York & Philadelphia Railroad

Item: 28-B     Price: $175.00

Remarks: ca. late 1800's. Excellent block lettering and gold patina.
Key (railroad) pre-dates WNY&P railroad. Very old and rare key.

History

Due to the Depression of the 1880's the Buffalo-New York & Philadelphia Railroad slid into receivership. J.P.Morgan, who was just establishing his reputation as a financier, stepped in to sort out the mess. By 1887, he had reorganized BNY&P railroad as the Western New York & Pennsylvania Railroad.

The Buffalo-New York & Philadelphia Company is the only one of the great companies described which had its headquarters in Buffalo. Besides the roads consolidated with its own, the line controled at one time the following leased railroads: The Genesee Valley Canal Railroad; the Rochester-New York & Pennsylvania; the McKean & Buffalo; the Kendall & Eldred; the Olean & Bradford; and the Mayville Extension Railroad. The total number of miles of railroad owned and controlled by the company was seven hundred and eighteen.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Bainbridge Northern Railway Back Side: Bainbridge Northern Railway Manual engine turntable    Manual engine turntable

Bainbridge Northern Railway

Item: 30-B     Price: $145.00

Remarks: ca. late 1800's-early 1900's. Forged by the Handlan Buck Co.
Handsome tapered barrel and great gold patina.
Little known Georgia lumber line. A very rare southern key!

History

Known as "The Lumber Line," the Bainbridge Northern Railway was operated by the Flint River Lumber Company and originally began operations from Bainbridge, Georgia to Eldorendo between 1896 and 1899. It was then extended to Paulina. While principally a logging railroad, it also operated passenger service until 1908. The railroad quit operating about 1925.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Burlington Northern Railroad Back Side: Burlington Northern Railroad BN R.R. Flag

Burlington Northern Railroad

Item: 32-B     Price: $40.00

Remarks: ca. mid-late 1900's. Keyline forged.
Superb block lettering and gold patina. Given the moniker,
"Big Nothing."

History

The Burlington Northern Railroad was the product of a March 2, 1970, merger of four major railroads, the Great Northern Railway, Northern Pacific Railway, Spokane-Portland & Seattle Railway and the Chicago-Burlington & Quincy Railroad, as well as a few small jointly owned subsidiaries owned by the four. The merged railroad was initially going to be called Great Northern Pacific & Burlington Lines.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Burlington Northern Railroad Back Side: Burlington Northern Railroad Burlington Northern locomotives

Burlington Northern Railroad

Item: 33-B     Price: $45.00

Remarks: ca. mid-late 1900's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Attractive block lettering and patina.

History - continued from above

Although the four railroads shared common ownership (including the headquarters building in Saint Paul, Minnesota) from the days of the James J. Hill era, the four railroads previously had unsuccessfully attempted four mergers to unify the Hill Lines: 1896, 1901, 1927 and 1955. Surprisingly the merger was finally approved in 1970 even though a challenge occurred in the Supreme Court, which reversed the result of the 1904 Northern Securities ruling.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Burlington Northern Railroad Back Side: Burlington Northern Railroad BN R.R. Flag

Burlington Northern Railroad

Item: 34-B     New Listing     Price: $50.00

Remarks: ca. mid-late 1900's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Attractive block lettering and patina. M = post merger key.

History - continued from above

To further expand the Burlington Northern railroad, a single track was constructed in 1972 into the Powder River Basin to serve various coal mines. On November 21, 1980, the St. Louis-San Francisco Railway was acquired, giving the railroad trackage as far south into Florida. By 1981, however, the holding company of the railroad, Burlington Northern, Inc. relocated headquarters from Saint Paul, Minnesota to Seattle, Washington and spun off all non-rail operations to Burlington Resources in 1988.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Burlington Northern Railroad Back Side: Burlington Northern Railroad BN alt=     BN RR Flag     BN helper/pusher engines 682, 816, & 808

Burlington Northern Railroad

Item: 35-B     Price: $45.00

Remarks: ca. mid-late 1900's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Attractive block lettering and patina.

History - See 32-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Columbus & Newark Route Back Side: Baltimore & Ohio Columbus & Newark Route Pennsylvania R.R. Flag        B&O RR Flag

Baltimore & Ohio

Item: 37-B     Columbus & Newark Route    Price: $65.00

Remarks: ca. mid 1900's. Elongated barrel.
Superb serif lettering and gold patina.

History

The rails heading east from Columbus to Newark, Ohio were jointly owned by the "Pennsylvania Railroad" and the "Baltimore & Ohio Railroad." This 33 mile stretch was a bit like the waist of an hour glass. At the Newark end PRR trains from Steubenville - Pittsburgh and B&O trains from Wheeling - Pittsburgh shared the track. From the west at Columbus PRR trains from Cincinnati, St. Louis and Chicago came together on the Columbus-Newark Sub-Division along with B&O trains from Midland City-Cincinnati.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co. Back Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co. B&O R.R. Flag

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co.

Item: 38-B     Price: $85.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Fraim forged.
Superb serif lettering and copper patina.
Elegant elongated barrel. A real beauty!

History

The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, based in Baltimore, Maryland, was one of the two or three oldest, largest, most important railroads in the history of the mid-Atlantic region. Its great rival was the Pennsylvania Railroad. The B&O was the first Class I railroad in the U.S. as well as one of the first in the nation. During its peak years, the railroad carried coal, steel, and other freight, as well as passengers, as far North as New York City, and as far west as Chicago. Most surviving trackage is operated by CSX Transportation. The B&O provided critical logistic support to the Union during the Civil War, when it was the target of repeated Confederate raids.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co. Back Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co. Peter Cooper's steam locomotive, the Tom Thumb

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co.

Item: 39-B     Price: $45.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Fraim/Slaymaker forged.
Superb serif lettering and gold patina.Given the moniker,
"Best and Only."

History - continued from above

The B&O was not the first railroad in the U.S., but it was the first common carrier railroad and the first to offer scheduled freight and passenger service to the public. It was the first intercity railroad in the United States. The most important American East Coast seaports in the early 1800s were Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Charleston, South Carolina. Baltimore had an advantage in being farther inland than the others (and therefore closer to many markets), being located almost at the head of navigation on Chesapeake Bay, the estuary of the Susquehanna River. New York gained an advantage in 1825 with the opening of the Erie Canal, permitting navigation as far as Lake Erie, and in 1826 the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania chartered a system of canals to link Philadelphia with the Ohio River at Pittsburgh.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co. Back Side:Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co. B&O R.R. Flag

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co.

Item: 40-B     Price: $85.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Fraim forged. Another beauty!
Elegant elongated barrel. Superb serif lettering and dark patina.

History - continued from above

The B&O was the target of repeated Confederate attacks during the American Civil War. Union forces often failed to properly secure the region, despite the vital importance of the railroad in providing supplies and troops to the battlefronts. Confederate general "Stonewall" Jackson made the Railroad his favorite target. Nevertheless, under the leadership of president John W. Garrett the B&O increased its operations, and increased its profits during the war.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Back Side:Baltimore & Ohio Railroad B&O Railroad depot, Pittsburg

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad

Item: 41-B     Price: $85.00

Remarks: ca. late 1800's. A rarity.
Nice cursive style lettering and superb patina.

History - continued from above

In 1960 the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway (C&O) began to acquire B&O stock. NYC made a bid, but B&O's stockholders approved C&O control, and on May 1, 1962, so did the ICC. By early 1964 C&O owned 90% of B&O's stock. In 1967 the ICC authorized C&O and B&O to control WM; B&O's WM stock had long been held in a nonvoting trust. On June 15, 1973, B&O, C&O, and WM were made subsidiaries of the newly created Chessie System, although they continued to operate as separate railroads. There was no great surge of track abandonment, because in most areas B&O and C&O were complementary rather than competitive. In 1981 B&O leased the former Rock Island trackage from Blue Island to Henry, Illinois. B&O continued to exist with the Chessie System. On May 1, 1983, B&O assumed operations of the WM. Four years later, on April 30, 1987, C&O merged B&O, and four months after that, CSX Transportation merged the C&O.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Back Side:Baltimore & Ohio Railroad B&O R.R. Flag

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad

Item: 42-B     Price: $60.00

Remarks: ca. early-mid 1900's. Eye catcher!
Attractive serif lettering and patina. Unique style!

History - See 38-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co. Back Side:Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co. B&O Lift Bridge

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co.

Item: 43-B     Price: $45.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. F/S Hdw. forged?
Superb serif lettering and superb patina.

History - See 38-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad RT Back Side :Baltimore & Ohio Railroad RT B&OCT bascule bridge spans over the Chicago River

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad

Item: 44-B     Repair Track    Price: $55.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the Fraim/Slaymaker Co.
Attractive serif lettering and carmel patina.

History - See 38-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad RT Back Side :Baltimore & Ohio Railroad RT B&O R.R. Flag

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad

Item: 45-B     Repair Track    Price: $65.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Slaymaker forged.
Superb serif lettering and patina.

History - See 34-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Back Side : Baltimore & Ohio Railroad B&O R.R.

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad

Item: 46-B     Chicago Terminal     Price: $85.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the F-S HDW CO.
Superb serif lettering and gold patina.

History

In 1910 the B&O purchased the Chicago Terminal Transfer Co., a belt line and renamed this
section of it's line the Baltimore & Ohio - Chicago Terminal. In 1910, the B&O
absorbed this line and continued to use the CTT's key style.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Back Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad B&O Jay St. freight station

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad

Item: 47-B     Chicago Terminal     Price: $75.00

Remarks: ca. mid 1900's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Superb block lettering and patina.

History - See 46-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad LS Back Side:Baltimore & Ohio Railroad LS B&O R.R. Flag

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad

Item: 48-B     local station     Price: $65.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Slaymaker forged.
Superb serif lettering and carmel patina.

History

In Philadelphia, Pa. the 24th St. Station, also known as B&O Station, 24th Street Station and/or Chestnut Street Station, was the main passenger station
for the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad. It would seem to me that this key would be utilized on a locked switch in or around a depot like Philadelphia's 24th Street Station.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad LS Back Side:Baltimore & Ohio Railroad LS B&O RR System Map

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad

Item: 49-B     local station     Price: $55.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Stylish barrel accent ring.
Large serif lettering and superb carmel patina.

History - See 48-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Burlington Route Railroad Back Side: Burlington Route Railroad BR R.R. Flag

Burlington Route Railroad

Item: 51-B     Price: $75.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the A&W Co.
Attractive block lettering and excellent gold patina.

History - See 32-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Burlington Route Railroad Back Side: Burlington Route Railroad BR Chicago 12th St. Yard

Burlington Route Railroad

Item: 52-B     Price: $95.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the A&W Co.
Attractive silver patina and excellent stamp markings-front and back.
Without camera flash, key is actually very dark. A nice "Q" oldie!

History - See 32-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Burlington Route Railroad Back Side: Burlington Route Railroad Burlington Route

Burlington Route Railroad

Item: 53-B     Aluminum Key    Price: $50.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the A&W Co.
A few roads experimented with aluminum keys,
the result was non-durable. Though not a very attractive key,
it is one to own just for the bragging rights. Key is light as a feather.

History - See 32-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Burlington Route Railroad Back Side: Burlington Route Railroad Burlington Route

Burlington Route Railroad

Item: 54-B     Price: $40.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the A&W Co.
Superb block lettering and gold patina.

History - See 32-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Buffalo-Rochester & Pittsburgh Railway Back Side: Buffalo-Rochester & Pittsburgh Railway BR&P R.R. Flag

Buffalo-Rochester & Pittsburgh Railway

Item: 55-B     Price: $60.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the Adlake Co.
Attractive block lettering and superb patina.
This key stamp RY + BR&P key below stamped RR = nice set.

History

Chartered in 1869, the BR&P, a former class 1 railroad, aquired a reputation as a coal hauler line. In 1932 the Baltimore & Ohio purchased the BR&P. Fast forward to 1973, the C&O created the Chessie System who then sold the Rochester branch to the Genesee & Wyoming Railroad in 1986. Thus creating the Rochester & Southern Railroad. In April 1988 the remainder of the BR&P became the Buffalo & Pittsburgh Railroad, also a G&W subsidiary. Except for several branches, the lines of the BR&P of 1930 remain intact.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Buffalo-Rochester & Pittsburgh Railroad Back Side: Buffalo-Rochester & Pittsburgh Railroad BR&P Railway

Buffalo-Rochester & Pittsburgh Railroad

Item: 56-B     Price: $75.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the A&W Co.
Superb gold patina. Great dark lettering and fine pocket wear.

History - See 55-B

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Buffalo-Rochester & Pittsburgh Railroad Back Side: Buffalo-Rochester & Pittsburgh Railroad BR&P Railway

Buffalo-Rochester & Pittsburgh Railroad

Item: 57-B     Price: $75.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the Bohannan Co.
Superb serif lettering and gold patina.

History - See 55-B

Click on image to view larger picture


Front Side: Bridgton & Saco River Railroad Back Side: Bridgton & Saco River Railroad MC R.R. Flag

Bridgton & Saco River Railroad

Item: 58-B     Price: $125.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Maine narrow gauge.
Superb block lettering and gold patina.

History

The Bridgton & Saco River Railroad (B&SR) was a 2 ft (610 mm) narrow gauge railroad that operated in the vicinity of Bridgton and Harrison, Maine. It connected with the Portland & Ogdensburg Railroad (later Maine Central Railroad Mountain Division) from Portland, Maine, to St. Johnsbury, Vermont, near the town of Hiram on the Saco River.

B&SR design was based on experience of the Sandy River Railroad. Hinkley Locomotive Works modified their 2 ft (610 mm) gauge Forney design to run boiler first with an extended frame similar to that installed on Sandy River Railroad No.1 following a wreck in early 1882. The successful design of the Bridgton Hinkleys was subsequently repeated for the Monson Railroad and the Franklin and Megantic Railway. Construction began in 1882, and trains were running to Bridgton by early 1883.

Under Maine Central operation, there were 4 mixed train round trips daily from Harrison to Bridgton Junction and return. The first left Harrison at 5:15 AM and the last returned to Harrison at 8:45 PM. Train speed seldom exceeded 20 miles per hour (32 km/h). Two passenger train sets were required for this service.

Operation ceased in September 1941. The rolling stock was preserved when the rails were converted to scrap metal as the United States prepared for World War II. The rolling stock was moved to Massachusetts for another half-century of operation on the Edaville Railroad after the war. Subsequent to the restructuring of the Edaville Railroad, the historic Bridgton and Saco narrow gauge equipment returned to the state of Maine and are mostly located at the Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad Co. & Museum in Portland.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Buffalo & Susquehanna Railroad Back Side: Buffalo & Susquehanna Railroad B&S R.R. Flag

Buffalo & Susquehanna Railroad

Item: 60-B     Price: $75.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the Slaymaker Co.
Superb serif lettering and carmel patina.

History

The B&S Railroad was a former Class I railroad that operated in western and north central Pennsylvania and western New York states. It was created in 1893 by the merger and consolidation of several smaller logging railroads. It operated independently until 1932, when a majority of its capital stock was purchased by the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad. In later years most of the B&S was siphoned off or abandoned.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Burlington & Missouri River Railroad Back Side: Burlington & Missouri River Railroad B&MR Railway crew    B&MR R.R. Flag

Burlington & Missouri River Railroad

Item: 61-B     Price: $115.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the A&W Co.
Superb block lettering and silver patina. Burlington style cut.
A great looking steel key!

History

The Burlington & Missouri River Railroad (B&MR) was an American railroad company incorporated in Iowa in 1852, with headquarters in Omaha, Nebraska. It was developed to build a railroad across the state of Iowa and began operations in 1856. It was acquired by the Chicago-Burlington & Quincy Railroad in 1872, and kept serving as its subsidiary.

The Burlington & Missouri River Railroad was incorporated in Burlington, Iowa in 1852. It commenced operations on January 1, 1856 with only a few miles of track. In 1857 it connected to Ottumwa, followed by Murray in 1858. It finally reached the Missouri River in November 1859. It used wood-burning locomotives and wooden passenger cars

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Burlington & Missouri River Railroad Back Side: Burlington & Missouri River Railroad B&MR Railway crew

Burlington & Missouri River Railroad

Item: 62-B     Price: $75.00

Remarks: ca. early 1900's. Forged by the Bohannan Co.
Pocket worn block lettering and superb silver patina.
Stylish ring barrel.

History - continued from above

After the Chicago-Burlington & Quincy Railroad (CB&Q) finished a bridge crossing the Mississippi River at Burlington, it connected to the Burlington & Missouri River Railroad. By 1868 the Burlington & Missouri River Railroad operated 13 locomotives and 429 cars, mostly freight, with net earnings of $299,850 in 1867. After the interest on loans, this meant a total net profit of $6,749

A sub-branch of the railroad was founded in Nebraska in 1869,with rails first entering the state in 1870 via Plattsmouth. That summer, the railroad reached Lincoln, the recently designated state capital. It later continued to lay rails westward and eventually joining with the Union Pacific Railroad on September 3, 1872 at Kearney; this had the effect of linking traffic from southern Nebraska to the rest of the continent. That same year it began advertising "millions of acres of cheap land" as an incentive to prospective settlers to Iowa and Nebraska.

Click on image to view larger picture



Front Side: Belvidere Delaware Railroad Back Side: Belvidere Delaware Railroad BD R.R. Flag

Belvidere Delaware Railroad

Item: 63-B     Price: $300.00

Remarks: ca. late 1800's-mid 1900's. Forged by Romer & Co.
Attractive serif lettering and great gold patina.

History

The Belvidere-Delaware Railroad was chartered on March 2, 1836 and was constructed from Trenton along the Delaware River north to Belvidere, New Jersey. Beyond Belvidere, the line would connect to a proposed line that headed west to the Susquehanna River through Pennsylvania. The Trenton-Lambertville section opened on February 6, 1851, eventually reaching Belvidere on November 5, 1855.

On June 7, 1854, the Bel Del agreed to operate the Flemington Railroad & Transportation Company, where a connection was made with the Lehigh Valley Railroad (LV) at Three Bridges, New Jersey. LV coal trains began using the Bel Del in January 1856, joining the Bel Del by the LV's bridge over the Delaware River where it connection in Phillipsburg, New Jersey. The Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR) began operating the Bel Del as the Belvidere Division of the United Railroads of New Jersey Grand Division by 1872 and purchased the line soon afterwards. The Belvidere Delaware Railroad and the Flemington Railroad & Transportation Company then merged on February 16, 1885 to form the Belvidere Delaware Railroad.

In 1908 the PRR acquired trackage rights on the nearby Lehigh & Hudson River Railway (L&HR) and DL&W. The following year, the PRR shifted its railyard from Lambertville to Trenton. By the 1950s steam locomotives had been replaced with diesel operated self-propelled Doodlebugs as a cost-saving measure resulting from dwindling patronage, In August 1955, flood waters from the Delaware River caused by Hurricane Diane washed out portions of the line north of Belvidere near where the right-of-way crosses modern-day US Route 46, although the line still remains active south of this point to serve a chemical manufacturing plant. North of where the plant is now to the junction at Manunka Chunk was subsequently removed. On December 31, 1957, the Bel Del was merged into the United New Jersey Railroad & Canal Company, with passenger services ending by October 25, 1960.

Click on image to view larger picture



Dates quoted for keys are approximate dates. Railroad switch keys initials (reporting mark) are assumed to be correct and accurate.
Comments on any railroad initials origin, including (typos), are welcome. Last update 01/02/2018

Top

contact webmaster