-THE SHAWMUT LINE – Home Page

WELCOME TO THE PITTSBURG & SHAWMUT RAILROAD! 

What we’re about!   This is a place remembering the Pittsburg & Shawmut, Red Bank, and Mountain Laurel railroads of western Pennsylvania.  This is a personal site not connected to the former Pittsburg & Shawmut Railroad Company,  or Genesee & Wyoming company; present owner and operator.   The Genessee & Wyoming corporate site is at:  www.gwrr.com 

The site began in May 1996 to share history, memories, photos, and other information about these colorful railroads.  Email about the site may be sent to me, Dennis Snyder at:  dlswpfl@aol.com

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UPDATED: 05/08/24

Whew, living in the Orlando, FL area and we’re just into May and summer weather is here, 95 as I start this update! 

As mentioned, without question the most popular and visual aspect of railroading are the locomotives along with fair interest in cabooses (before cabooses faded out) as well as rolling stock, etc. This time we’ll finish up the SW9 before and after paint schemes.  Hope ya’ll have enjoyed this little before and after tribute, was fun to put together!  

This is the 237 looking mighty fine after having been repainted, this was one of those with just “Pittsburg and Shawmut,” with the word and rather than the &, as well as the solid red nose.   

The 237 would become Bill Ruger and renumbered to 1949 when repainted into Bicentennial colors.  Since I was born in 1949 of course this is a favorite!   

 

Here we have the next in line, number 238 also looking pretty good after the updated red and yellow paint job, this one with the “&.” 

The 238 became 1816 with the red, white, and blue treatment and was named Eliphaet Remington, whew, what a first name!   

Perhaps a drum roll is in order now, of course we’re talking about the most famous of all Shawmut locomotives, the 239 which its fame would come later.  Here’s the 239 still in nice new paint at BV!

Of course the 239 became 1776 named Betsy Ross. 

It just wouldn’t be right not to include Andy Brouse’s awesome riding model 1776!

 

The 234 and companions kick up some snow as they roll through the Putneyville area.   

The 234 became known as John Browning and was renumbered 1891 this time in the snow at Brookville many years after the names had been remove and along with a cut of Mountain Laurel GP10’s. 

Here’s the 235 at Kittanning/Applewold after some touching up, the three nose stripes painted solid and “Railroad” left off the name. 

Sam Colt was the name 235 got when renumbered to 1851 for the nations Bicentennial celebration. 

Next up is 236, first in the original nose stripe paint on the north side of Brookville engine house then on the south side after it was touched up, not only was Railroad left off, the & was replaced with the word and.  I seem to recall they ran out of the “and” signs. 

The 236 later became 1865 “B. Tyler Henry” first crossing the first Mahoning “Crick” trestle, then below at “KG” still with the name. 

Below are the first three from last update, 231, 232, & 233.

Kurt Reisweber caught P&S 231 at Knoxdale in the touched up red and yellow days after the three nose stripes were painted into a solid red panel.   

As the Nation’s Bicentennial approached the Shawmut joined many other railroads in the celebration, here the 231 had become the  1775 and named Independence.  This David Baer photo holds special and personal meaning as it certainly does to Brad, the house above the nose of the 1775 was relatives of both of us!  Here a trio of the Bicentennial units ran south through Timblin.   

Here’s P&S 232 at Brookville also with the solid red nose. 

The 232 was named Oliver Winchester & numbered 1866 during this era.  All nine switchers were given names and numbers for historical people including many about guns.  A few years later the names were removed. 

Next was P&S 233 seen here at the “BV” shop. 

The 233 became 1774 and named Ben Franklin, oh go fly a kite!  David Baer sent us this up close and personal shot of the 1774.

Will continue the numbers game in the near future as more research is needed! 

 

Here’s the north end of Knoxdale tunnel. 

Here’s the south end of Knoxdale, no mistaking this spot for any of the other tunnels with the side retaining walls! 

Next up is East Branch viaduct’s north end.   

 

Coulter tunnel is next both from outside and inside. 

Here’s Sprankle Viaduct from below and above. 

 

Finally is the north end of Mauk tunnel. 

Thanks Corrie!  While sad the Shawmut is no longer, it’s nice to see some memories of the once proud railroad’s landmarks are still around.

 

 

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The P&S was a child of the PS&N (Pittsburg, Shawmut, & Northern) so for much deeper Shawmut history check out the PS&N Historical Society web site at:

http://www.psnrrhs.org  

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Some things you’ll find here:

Brief P&S History, Detailed P&S History, Photos, Milepost info, Locomotive information, Photos, Timeline of Events, Photos, Logo History, Operational Info, Model P&S trains, Photos, P&S videos, links to various items of interest, even more photos, as well as many other things! 

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BRIEF P&S R.R. HISTORY

The P&S was a child of the Pittsburg, Shawmut, and Northern which began in the late 1800’s as a consolidation of several small railroads in western NY and PA.  In the early 1900’s they began building a new section to the south from Brockway towards Freeport to gain access to the Pittsburgh area naming it the Brookville & Mahoning.  The P.S.&N. and P&S both used the older spelling of Pittsburgh without the h.

In 1910 the Brookville & Mahoning’s name was changed to the Pittsburg & Shawmut.  Around the sametime the P&S broke away from the P.S.&N and became a separate company.  The 88 mile P&S from Brockway to Freeport was completed in 1917.  The P.S.&N. was a financial disaster from the beginning and was finally abandoned in 1947, but the P&S continued to 1996.  More early history is in the detailed history section in the link at the top of the site.   Especially during the last half of the 1970’s through the last half of the 1980’s the P&S prospered consideralbly.  The large flood loading operation at Dora-Ringgold resulted in long 100 ton unit coal trains being moved for use at power plants elsewhere. 

However, in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s the P&S expanded by adding the Red Bank & Mountain Laurel Railroads due to business falling off.  Trying to survive they they purchased the former PRR “Low Grade” line running from Lawsonham to Driftwood from Conrail. The ten mile line from Lawsonham to Sligo was named Red Bank, the line from Lawsonham to Driftwood was named Mountain Laurel.  The Red Bank had no equipment lettered for it.

After a few years and further loss of business all three railroads were sold to Genessee & Wyoming as the PSR in April 1996 which also owned Buffalo & Pittsburgh, the former B&O in the area.   A few years later what was left of the P&S was absorbed into the B&P.  A more detailed look at the long history of the P&S, etc.  is in it’s own section at the menu bar at the top of this site.   

In the 2020’s the only remaining P&S/PSR track is on the north end is from Brockway yard to just south of the connection track to the B&P.  From Brookville south along Five Mile Run Rd to south of Rayard to Slimak Rd.  On the south end track remains from Freeport north to north of  Reesedale.  A sad situation.  

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P&S GOODIES!

Pittsburg & Shawmut In Color – Book!

In 2015 Kurt Reisweber and Brad Esposito published a 128 page book on the P&S.  The book contains a good bit of history of the Shawmut and many awesome color photographs from the 1950s on.  The book is available from Morning Sun Books.  Here’s the main Morning Sun web address.

SPECIAL NOTE – I verified that the book is still available at the web site below on 10/07/20.

http://www.morningsunbooks.com

Here is a direct link to the Shawmut book.

https://morningsunbooks.com/products/pittsburg-shawmut-in-color

P&S ART

www.customtrains.org 

If you aren’t aware Andy Fletcher’s custom trains include railroad refrigerator magnets and other goodies can be found at the web site above, be sure to check it out!  His P&S magnets have been at home on my refrigerator for years! 

Kevin Yackmack recently announced he is selling some of his railroad art work and here it is!   Here’s a northbound P&S local approaching Timblin. Prints are $60 each, postage included.  Contact Kevin at: kevin.yackmack@yahoo.com or on Facebook at KEVINSRRART.  (Click on the photo for larger view, use your back button to return to the site)

SHAWMUT GROUPS

Welcome to those who have joined the new Shawmutline group on Groups.io.  The P&S Yahoo group of over 100 members is gone now as Yahoo pulled the plug on their long-time groups service on 12/15.  While it had seen little activity a new P&S group has been started at a new group service called groups.io.  Those of you who have used Yahoo’s groups will be pleased to know groups.io is easier to navigate.

If you’re interested in joining the new Shawmut group, simply go to:  https://groups.io/ or www.groups.io and click on “Sign Up” in the upper right. Your email address will be your log in name, create a password, then do a search for “Shawmutline” – name of the new group.   Here’s hotlinks to the new group service, which is FREE!

https://groups.io

or

http://www.groups.io

FACEBOOK!   

There is also a P&S Facebook group you can join, just do a search for Pittsburg & Shawmut or Shawmut Line there.

Another Facebook group of great interest is – Railroad Photos and Memories, Western NY and PA – there are an amazing amount of railroad photos from all eras and some contributors to this web site are members there, check it out!

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