Pittsburg & Shawmut Timeline:
1860s – “Shawmut” switchback railroad began near Drummond & Shawmut PA.
July 01, 1899 – Several NY and PA railroads merged into the Pittsburg, Shawmut & Northern.
July 21, 1903 – Brookville & Mahoning RR being planned from Brockway to Freeport.
August 1905 – P.S.& N. declares bankruptcy and placed in receivership remaining
that way until 1947.
1905 – Construction begins on B&M.
April 1907 – First section between Brookville & Ramsaytown completed.
October 1907 – Line complete between Brookville & Brockway.
1908 -Line completed between Brookville and Tait.
1910 – Name changed from Brookville & Mahoning to Pittsburg & Shawmut
1911 – Tidal and Oakland Branches began.
1913 – Line completed between Tait and Mahoning.
August 1916 – P&S breaks away from PS&N under lease as Pittsburg & Shawmut Railroad Company.
1917 – P&S now completed from Brockway to Freeport, 88 miles.
1931 – Last steam passenger trains ran, remaining passengers carried by Hoodlebug motor cars.
1936 – Oakland Branch torn out.
1938 – Passenger service ends.
1939 – Construction of Mahoning Dam begins, four mile branch to site built, branch removed in 1941 after construction ended
1941 – Linde Air Plant facility at Kittaning breaks ground. Located about a mile south of the P&S Kittanning station.
1942 – First Linde Air products produced.
1947 – Linde Plant in full operation, plant also receives coal hoppers from P&S for their steam electricity generating boiler.
1947 – P.S. & N. abandoned, last PS&N train April 1, 1947.
1953 – P&S begins taking delivery of nine red and yellow 1200 horsepower EMD model SW9 switchers replacing steam as power. Out on the road the switchers were used in combinations of two, three, and four units and sometimes as many as five in later years after longer trains of 100 ton hoppers were hauled.
1954 – Engine house built at Brockway Yard for the diesels, but not used long. Still standing in 2000’s, but no longer owned by the railroad.
1955 – In the mid 1950s the West Penn Power Plant began operating and receiving coal by the railroad and continued until 2012.
1956 – Linde Plant at Kittanning now has 2.5 miles of tracks in the plant and uses 15000 tons of coal monthly in steam generation.
Early 1970s – The SW9’s being repainted, three nose stripes were painted into a solid panel, some units were simply lettered PITTSBURG & SHAWMUT or PITTSBURG AND SHAWMUT while some remained including RAILROAD.
1973 – First 100 ton coal hoppers placed in service in 300-499 number series lettered as “SHAWMUT” centered on the sides. Some 70 ton hoppers were experimented with for about a year about this time, but didn’t remain.
1974 – Battery operated telephone system replaced by VHF radios. A new time table established trains BVL1, BVX, KGL1, KGL2, etc. as the radio call signs for the trains.
October 1974 – Reading 2102 lettered as D&H 302 ran excursion trains on P&S.
October 1975 – Reading 2102 lettered as D&H 302) again ran excursions.
1975 – P&S adopts the PS&N “SHAWMUT LINE” logo, but in red and white. The original white hexagon logo remained in use as well. The SW9s begin to get painted red, white, and blue in conjunction with the nations Bicentennial. Caboose 196 also got painted those colors. Other cabooses sported flags. The engine names and numbers were either patriotic people or due to the popularity of guns and hunting in the P&S area were those of famous gun manufacturers with the engine numbers the year the company was founded.
1975 – P&S had purchased ex Reading GP7 608 and painted it red, white, and blue as well. It was numbered it 357, and named Dan Wesson. Since the company was only a year old at the time the number 357 (for the famous Smith & Wesson 357) was chosen as the number. This engine was set up to run long hood forward and only had MU cables on the short end so it could only lead or trail last in a consist. The unit was scrapped in February 1986 due to a cylinder rod lock-up that was unable to be repaired.
1975-79 – Linde Air plant closes during mid to late 1970s.
April 1976 P&S begins service to Brockway Glass at Crenshaw and acquired Brockway yard shortly after.
September 1976 – P&S GP7 #357 in service.
February 1977 – P&S 357 leased to Conrail.
1977 – Newly expanded coal processing plant at Dora begins loading.
1980s – Asbury Graphic took over old Linde Air plant at Kittanning getting some rail service.
1981 – Two GP7’s purchased from Conrail, temporarily numbered 101 and 102, became P&S 10 and 11 painted blue with red and white trim. #10 was NYC 5817 then PC and CR 5672 and #11 was C&O 5720 which returned to Canada and was used there by NYC. Both 10 and 11 were leased on and off in last half of 1980s.
June 1982 – GP7 #10 in service, set up to run long hood forward, only had 600 gallon fuel tank and was used a lot at Brookville. Work on #11 continued.
May 1985 – GP7 #11 in service.
1980s – The last half of the 1980s saw a downturn in coal business. Conrail began selling off smaller branches that weren’t generating enough profit. Business was also down on the P&S so the company began looking to expand which resulted in eventually purchasing the ex PRR Low Grade Secondary from Conrail.
January 1987 – GP7 10 and 11 leased to Allegneny RR.
September 1988 – GP7 10 and 11 leased to Buffalo & Pittsburgh.
February 1989 – GP7 10 and 11 leased to Rochester & Southern.
July 1989 – P&S begins operating the new paper ten mile “Red Bank Railroad” in conjunction with Shannon Transport, Inc. (a subsidiary of C&K Coal Co.) which was on the Conrail Low Grade Secondary at Lawsonham from milepost 4 thru 6 and the Sligo running track from Lawsonham milepost 0.0 to Silgo milepost 10.5. There were no Red Bank lettered cars or locomotives.
December 31, 1991 – P&S purchased the “Low Grade Secondary” line from Conrail running from Lawsonham to Driftwood naming it the Mountain Laurel Railroad. Six red, black, and silver GP10’s rebuilt by ICG were received and lettered Mountain Laurel numbers 12 thru 17. Both P&S and MNL units were used on all of the lines and consists often contained a mix of units.
1992 – GP7 10 and 11 leased by LEFC during final operations of that line.
1993 – Timetable number 1 adopted for Pittsburg & Shawmut, Red Bank, and Mountain Laurel railroads and would be the last P&S timetable.
December 1995 – Conrail purchased 5.8 miles of CSX Ridge Sub and leased 24.7 miles of CSX Indiana Sub to supply 4 million tons of coal annually to the power plant at Shectola. This included trackage rights over the P&S and BPRR.
April 29, 1996 – Shawmut, Red Bank, and Mountain Laurel purchased by G&W and takes on reporting marks of PSR becoming BPRR Shawmut Sub and Laurel Sub. Final Mountain Laurel train was April 26, 1996. Final Shawmut train April 29, 1996 from Brookville to Mosgrove and back with SW9s 1949, 1891, and 1774.
June 1 1999 – Conrail split between Norfolk Southern (NS) and CSX. NS now interchanged with PSR at Driftwood and Freeport. Shelocta coal trains now are NS trains and continue trackage rightsover PSR and BPRR. Around 2005 work began on a connection track from Saltsburg that eventually ended the Shelocta trains over PSR & BPRR.
June 1999 – last coal train loaded at Dora.
1999 – Conifer Branch removed.
January 20, 2000 – Last PSR train from Brookville to Mahoning with miscellaneous cars for Freeport, power was two GP40s.
2001 – P&S mainline between Rayard and Mahoning out of service due to shut down of Dora coal plant.
2003 – P&S mainline between Brockway and Brookville removed.
2003 – Falls Creek diamond removed – Widnoon Branch removed.
January 1, 2004 – PSR absorbed into Buffalo and Pittsburgh.
June 2004- Last Coal train on Low Grade (Red Bank & Mountain Laurel) from Sligo
Summer 2004 – Dora coal processing plant being dismantled, parts possibly going to Penfield operation on Laurel Sub.
Fall 2004 – Mill Creek Viaduct north of Brookville yard dismantled.
February 2005 – turntable at Brookville removed.
May 17, 2005 – BPRR files with Surface Transportation Board to abandon and salvage the P&S line from Rayard to Mahoning.
July 2005 – 1st BPRR coal train to Homer City (mine at power plant played out, trains begin running through Indiana again).
November 2005 – Removal of tracks began in area from Coulter to Mauk.
December 2005 – Removal continues, south of MP 24 and as far as Timblin, MP 44.
February 2006 – Track now removed as far south as McWilliams.
Winter 2006 – A&K Rail Services finishes removal of P&S mainline from MP 24.0 to MP 56.0 – or south of Rayard to Colwell.
August 2006 – NS Keystone Branch complete, Shelocta coal trains no longer running over PSR & BPRR, trackage rights remain in case of emergency.
2007 – Low Grade between Sligo & Brookville filed for abandonment.
November 2007 – Low Grade being removed from Sligo to Brookville.
February 2008 – Coder Viaduct being removed on Piney Branch.
2012 West Penn Power plant shuts down.