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

SITE UPDATED 09/27/23 

Today have been working on some of my N scale P&S switchers and cabooses, so tiny, such a challenge!    Is always an adventure, as the saying goes “wish I knew then what I know now!”   As small a railroad the P&S was, there are so many variables along with such a long history, early 1900’s through the mid 1990’s!   

Thought I’d talk about some of the cabooses this time.  

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But first, here’s an up close & personal look at a southbound crossing the Mahoning Viaduct as the train moves towards the Colwell and Reddco coal loaders.  That’s the 1865 and 1774. 

Here’s caboose 192 at Kittanning coupled to one of the bay window cabooses, a cool aspect of the 192 is the flag in the upper left, the 192 model is one I worked on today adding the flag.  But, not just any flag, thanks to the digital world of today I was able to take a photo of the real 192 then cut and paste it into the model!   

Since yesterday (9/25) I finished my N scale model of the 192, the flag on the model is from a photo of the real 192!  

Cabooses were used on the P&S quite a long time, but like many railroads were eventually dropped.  Originally the “caboose track” at Brookville was railroad south of the engine house, later it was moved to north of it.  Here’s 191 and 193 at “BV” on the north track.  The 191 was the only four window car with the SHAWMUT LINE lettering to have the logo in the upper left.   

Here’s a good example of all the variables, caboose 195 with the hexagon logo on the right, flag on left and P&S RR lettering. 

The 165 did not have a good day today!   


Here is the 191 before SHAWMUT LINE lettering.   Often I don’t get around to site updates as much as I’d like to, usually not for a shortage of info or photos as long as the P&S has been around.  For as long as I’ve done this site I’ve done a daily train report for the Oralndo, FL area where I live.  We have around 50 trains a day Monday to Friday, it’s a lot of railroading to cover!   


Kurt Reisweber was on the scene near Knoxdale when P&S 231 rolled through after some paint freshening up and caught this interesting angle. 

Here, 231’s sister the 232 was in fresh factory paint! 

In the mid 1970’s 231 would become 1775 and named Independence for the upcoming Bicentennial celebration.  Originally it was only intended to paint two or three in red, white, and blue, but everyone loved the idea so all nine of the SW9’s got Bicentennial paint and was given a name.  

July 1994 Gale Simpson of Sligo was trackside on the Red Bank RR to catch this light engine move between Sligo and Rimersburg.   

Getting fresh!  Gosh, thought I’d displayed this before, but didn’t see it in the library.  The Shawmut was well known for it’s switchers and here Gale Simpson found B&P switcher 1515 getting a fresh paint job! 

Above I mentioned “the library,” a cool aspect of this site is, aside from what you see here there is a separate on line library which has close over 500 photos.  Should I loose all my photos the library photos are in a safe place, a cloud so to speak.  Looking in the library finds P&S 233 still in original factory paint and in fairly decent shape! 

After G&W took over the Shawmut, P&S  locomotives went in all directions.  Here we find former P&S GP7  11 on the ten mile long Chestnut Ridge.

Kurt Reisweber sent this one that answered a long time question.  While vacationing at Grandparent’s in Timblin around 1973 I saw this go through town, figuring it was being repainted.  Turns out it was a former P&L.E. switcher then owned by BAR which was at the Shawmut for work and being given a test run.  It was a fairly common thing back then for smaller railroads to call on the Shawmut for repair works in their shop. 

Sam Kanish sent along this former PS&N cab at St. Mary’s.

Sort of goes without saying that the trestles (called viaducts on the P&S) were a big part of the Shawmut’s spectacular scenery, this one is from Brad in later G&W days at the “BV” viaduct from below.

While on that subject, how spectacular is this?  Sam sent us this of a steamer at the Mahoning Viaduct crossing under the Rt 28-66 bridge and over Mahoning Creek Viaduce in the Colwell-Reddco coal loading area.

 Here, a southbounde is smoking it up leaving Brookville Yard with a full compliment of power.  A close look reveals traveling along behind the geep is one of those SP boxcars of specially treated lumber along for the ride. 

Port San Antonio, a G&W operation features former P&S 233!

Don’t think I could ever decide on an absolute favorite P&S photo, but this would surely be considered.  This is at Timblin with a southbound, the white house was my grandmother’s brother’s and Brad’s grandparent’s house AND just out of view on the right was Elmer Shick’s house the long time Timblin Station Agent! 

Wow, the cookie jar doesn’t disappoint! This is the cover of the Spring 1957 SHAWMUT SENTINEL!  Here, a southbounder rumbles over the RT 28-66 Viaduct with a long string of empties in a different view than the steam powered photo above here! 

Back in 2012 Al Crate of “BV” stopped by Brookville yard, not quite the type of view we’re used to there!  

Okay, this is more like it, back in the early 1990’s my friend Vince paid a visit to Brookville, nice catch of a line of P&S and MNL power and in the snow. 

This is even better!   It’s also a photo of transition from the factor paint (three nose stripes) to the solid red nose, and of course, visitors to the Shawmut, which they were always great about!

Since the first photo in this update was of the Shawmut Sentinel from 1957 at the Mahoning 28-66 Viaduct, here’s two from there by David Baer.   First is a southbound with GP7 10, 11, and an SW9, then a Mountain Laurel 13, GP7 10, and a switcher! 

Why stop now, here in another season David caught a northbound working the Colwell coal loader.  



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:



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! 



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.  



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.


Here is a direct link to the Shawmut book.



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)


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!





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!