Montour Railroad 

Montour Railroad


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Milepost 22 Southview
 Shoving East, Montour 80 is going over the original Southview Road bridge. With empty gondolas for scrap rail loading over on the Westland Branch. - Gene P. Schaeffer
 About 1979 I handed my original amiya/Sekor 35mm camera to Roy Parkinson to use as he see's fit as I had switched to 2 Canon camera's. Credit Roy for this view of Montour R.R. Extra 80 West taken from the porch of Roy's caboose about to duck under the P&WV at Southview after picking up a gondola of scrap 90 pound rail off the Westland Branch. Behind Roy's caboose is caboose 39 with its air cut out after being burned by vandals as it sat at Morris Mine over the weekend. All we would of needed at this moment would of been some N&W power crossing overtop us. Gene P. Schaeffer

 The morning sunrise. A lazy start to a new day. Southview, Pennsylvania. June 1980. Montour Extra 80 East. In on the interchange with the N&W. Rail tops covered in overnight dew. The portrait taken from the porch of those former Union Pacific cabooses. Up ahead, leaning backwards, mile post 23, the Eastward tanget. A few memories of that tangent SW-9's being rerailed just beyond the Mile Post. A cold winters night. Coming out of Westland with coal. Roy running me back riding the 3rd unit of the 4 unit consist trying to stay awake during these cold winters nights.

Roy yelling over the radio. Hey Gene... Check out the 78. Like our own 4th of July celebration the 78 was throwing sparks tnder load, it was its own volcano of fire. Out of the stack and across the field. Good thing it was a frosty winters night and after all these years remembering that night like it just happened. Being inside the consist of SW-9's me having the cab door open even in the dead of a winter's night but I had that addiction ff those 567's under load. Just couldn't get enough of 'em. Then just before Christmas in '76 Jim Lane & crew derailing Westland loads right behind the camera. In the snow & cold and Christmas just ahead. The memories. A new railroad has come to these parts. But for a time Southview the way it originally was. Gene P. Schaeffer

This is one of only a few pictures of the Actual Montour #1 Mine in Southview, PA. I haven't located any others. This as picture by all counts was dated in 1927. I walk up to the site of the old mine and all that is left is the foundations for the buildings. Mike Feathers - Photo courtesy of Mike Feathers.

The former Pittsburgh & West Virginia Railway overpass at Southview. Once upon a time, was it the mid 1950's(?) a westbound Montour RR coal train derailed several loads of coal here, at the exact spot where I stand. Most of the loads turned over and a call for the P&LE Wreck Train was made. In the collection is a color print of the P&LE hook directly underneath this overpass, with its boom extended as best that can be expected in the confining space of overpass and derailed cars, as rerailing takes place. Today, some 50 years later, remnants of that derailment remain along side of the right of the form of Montour's #1 commodity... GPS
Gene P. Schaeffer

An little update for you, this overpass is still active with coal trains, at least 2-3 everyday. Mike Feathers

Montour overpass at Southview

Over the past 30 years, I stood in nearly this very same spot numerous times observing the passage of many Montour RR train crews. Eastbound empty hopper trains...westbound Champion Coal Trains... But today, in terrible lighting, this Saturday January 5, 2008 the chant of SW-9's no longer echo through the valley below. No longer do I breath in exhaust as a multiple unit consist of General Motors finest locomotive products pass underneath.

But I can still visualize,  P&LE Engineman R. Haus coming west one summers day, with coal from Montour 4, turning to his left as his 4 unit consist passes underneath me, giving me a non-chalant wave as he looks back and slightly skyward through those gigantic picture windows of those SW-9's...and me standing up there on the N&W overpass, placing on film that magic moment in time of yesterday. You could listen to those SW-9's seemingly forever up there on the N&W as the train made its way through Southview and Peacock, before starting down Primrose towards McDonald.

And the bounty of it all, being wreathed in diesel exhaust as car load after car load of Champion Coal precedes that tiny little caboose numbered 33. And Heaven forbid never forget that late night, riding with Roy and D.J., coming out at Gilmore with coal from Westland...Was it 2...maybe 3 in the morning of a wintry cold night...Cab heaters working in fury to ward off the cold... And hearing Roy, screaming over the radio... HEY Gene...check out the 78...

That 78 was celebrating a very late Fourth of July...
As Roy throttled them up coming out at Gilmore...
And as the Legend goes...Sky Rockets at Night...
Coming up that tanget there between Southviews two bridges...
There was plenty of seats available for the display of sparks coming out of 78's stacks...
An everlasting Memory never to be forgotten...
Thank You Roy...
Thank You D.J...
Thank You Montour Railroad Company.
Gene P. Schaeffer