The Railroads Of Pine Plains

Pine Plains was the intersection of three railroads, all of which became part of the Central New England Railway.


USGS map of Pine Plains area about 1900.
There were actually three railroads that connected in Pine Plains, Dutchess County, NY; the ND&C, the P&E and the P&C. In later years all three became part of the CNE and the New Haven. The New Haven did not want these local lines. All they really wanted was the Maybrook Line and the big bridge in Poughkeepsie. All of the lines in Pine Plains were abandoned in the 1920’s and 1930’s. The last of the tracks were removed in 1938 and sold for scrap to Japan.


The New Haven Railroad abandoned all of these lines by the Summer of 1938



PINE PLAINS – Former P&E Ry station looking West with NH RR Class K-1 locomotive #392 (2-6-0) about ready to depart for Ancramdale. Photo taken by former CNE fan Thomas B. Annin in Nov., 1932. This station stopped being used as a passenger station after the P&E was taken over by the CNE in 1907 and all trains went to the CNE (former ND&C line) station after that. It was necessary to make a back-up move from ND&C Jct. to the station when this was done and, of course, the reverse was done for trains headed for Boston Corners and beyond. In the late 1920’s and early 1930’s, this station building was office of the area’s Track Supervisor.

Lee Beaujon collection


P&E station at Pine Plains looking east.
Nimke Vol 3, p 141



This is the aft end of New Haven gas rail bus 9003 at Pine Plains, ready to depart for Poughkeepsie in 1930 (three years after the NH completely absorbed the CNE). Photo is looking west towards ND&C Junction, and the ex-ND&C station at right is long gone, but the freight house is still standing.

J. W. Swanberg collection


West of the Pine Plains engine house, the line curved south to ND&C Junction, as the train at right is doing in this photo (looking north at the junction). Train at left is heading north towards P&E Junction, from whence it can go to either Silvernails or Ancram (see maps). No trace is left of the junction trackage in 2004, but the shanty was saved and moved to a Pine Plains back yard.

J.W. Swanberg collection



Aerial view of West Pine Plains looking south.

Nimke Volume 3, Page 144

This is the connection built by the CNE after the takeover. It connected the P&C RR on the right side with the P&E RR on the upper left side.

Twin Island Lake or Mud pond on the right was a source of winter ice.



PINE PLAINS – P&E Jct. which was located about 1/7th of a mile North of ND&C Jct. Track to left went to the former P&C RR at West Pine Plains and beyond north to Silvernails, Copake, Boston Corners and Millerton via State Line. Line to right was the old P&E Ry line to Boston Corners and Millerton via State Line. This connection between the lines was built after the CNE took over the former P&E Ry in 1907.

Photo taken in May, 1937 about a year before abandonment.

Lee Beaujon collection



1892 pass for the ND&C RR and the Clove Branch RR.

B L Rudberg collection



P&C station at West Pine Plains.
Martin Wheeler – William P. Fahey collection



P&E Junction in West Pine Plains
Martin Wheeler – William P. Fahey collection



Drawing of the “Peddler” at Pine Plains station

by Victor Westman

Lee Beaujon collection

Victor Westman is an engineer retired from the Harlem line and living in Danbury CT. His drawings were intended for a book which Robert Adams was writing about the CNE and ND&C. Unfortunately Adams passed away before the manuscript was completed and the book was never published. Some of these pictures have been used previously in Christmas card illustrations.

During the years of World War I and after, the Central New England Railway considered its main line between Pine Plains and State Line, New York, to be that of the former Poughkeepsie & Eastern via Ancram Lead Mines and Boston Corners due to its lower grades. Next best was the former Rhinebeck & Connecticut route via Silvernails, Copake, and Boston Corners. The heavy grades over Winchell Mountain via the former Newburgh, Dutchess & Connecticut route from Millerton via Shekomeko became the least desirable.

In the 1921 setting depicted here, a wreck or other blockage of the usual routes has caused the detour of a westbound freight via Millerton and over the rugged Winchell summit into the safe haven of the valley floor at pine Plains. The little Class F-4 Brooks-built (2-6-0) Mogul was the heaviest freight engine allowed to use the line. It was one of six such engines built in 1910 numbered 400-405, then renumbered in 1913 as 125-130, and rebuilt with Walschaert valve gear in 1919. Indicative of the era is the high-riding Model A Ford parked behind the station, designed to straddle the rutted, muddy dirt roads of rural America in the early 1920s.



D&C #4 later ND&C #4, NYB&M #11, CNE #213, Scrapped 1906

Roger Liller collection



D&C #6 later ND&C #6, NYB&M #6, CNE #215 Scrapped 1912

Roger Liller collection



ND&C/CNE crossing at South Main Street, Pine Plains NY, looking east.

This street is now Route 82. The house left of center was at one time a saloon. Note the pile of dirt used as a “stopper” for the siding. The tracks at right curve east and south to Shekomeko, Winchells and Millerton. The section to Shekomeko was abandoned in 1935 and the tracks were torn up in 1938. Scrap was sold to Japan.

Martin Wheeler – William P. Fahey collection



ND&C/CNE crossing at South Main Street, Pine Plains, NY looking north.

This road is now Route 82. In the distance you can see the P&E/CNE crossing signs. The store at left also had the Pine Plains telephone switchboard. The house at right was at one time a saloon.

Martin Wheeler – William P. Fahey collection



ND&C/CNE crossing at South Main Street, Pine Plains, NY looking west.

This road is now Route 82, the station is gone, the coal silos in the background are gone and the fire department has been built on this site. Some of the railroad buildings at left are now part of Duel’s Hardware store. In 1938 these tracks were torn up and sold for scrap to Japan.

Martin Wheeler – William P. Fahey collection



ND&C/CNE crossing at South Main Street, Pine Plains NY, looking south.

This street is now Route 82. The right side of this photo is now Duel’s Hardware store. These tracks were abandoned in 1935 and sold for scrap in 1938.

Martin Wheeler – William P. Fahey collection



Pine Plains ND&C station

Operator Hart
Agent Clifford
Conductor Crawford

Martin Wheeler – William P. Fahey collection



Pine Plains NY

Martin Wheeler – William P. Fahey collection



South Main St. Crossing Pine Plains

Nimke Vol 2, p 139



ND&C #8
Later renumbered to CNE #226 then CNE #38
Fran Donovan collection



PINE PLAINS – Interior view of old CNE (former ND&C station location) station circa early to mid-1920’s depicting (l to r) Patrick J. Clifford, Clerk; Henry Hart, Agent and William Owens, local deliveryman. Pat Clifford was the last agent on duty in Pine Plains when the lines through there were abandoned in July, 1938. He became Agent in Canaan some time in the mid-1940’s and remained there until the late 1950’s or early 1960’s.

Lee Beaujon collection



ND&C station at Pine Plains

Roger Liller collection



Delivery service and “taxi” operated by Bill Owens in Pine Plains Nimke Vol 1, p 36



Pine Plains station about 1910. Nimke Vol 3, p 134



Pine Plains turntable and engine house
Roger Liller collection
Note the “armtrong” handles for turning the engines.



PINE PLAINS – Northeasterly view of the former ND&C/CNE enginehouse as shown in 1938 around the time of abandonment of the lines. It was built in 1873 and used at least up until the end of passenger service in Sep., 1933. In the late 1920’s and early 1930’s, this is where the gas rail cars were stored overnight for use on the Copake – Poughkeepsie and the Pine Plains – Beacon trains.

This building is partially in existence today.

Lee Beaujon collection



Pine Plains freight house looking east

Roger Liller collection



Pine Plains freight house looking east

Roger Liller collection



Coal silos at Pine Plains
Photo by the late Ken Shuker
These coal silos did not belong to the railroad but the coal was delivered by rail. Most of the coal sold in the Pine Plains area was stored in this structure. Recently they were in such bad shape that they were a safety risk and were torn down.



Pine Plains yard



Pine Plains
Roger Liller collection






Nimke Vol, 2, p 109
ND&C Junction Pine Plains
Right goes to Pine Plains station, Shekomeko, and Millerton via Winchell Mountain.
Left goes north to Silvernails, Copake, Boston Corners and Millerton



Abandonment in 1938 Nimke Vol 3, p 145


Behind a house on Fairview St in Pine Plains
Still useful in 2003
B.L. Rudberg photo



Ice harvesting at Mud Pond Pine Plains

Nimke Vol 2, p 14

The railroads sold and used the stored ice through the summer months before refrigeration.



Bordens at Pine Plains

Nimke Vol 3, p 142

More about milk trains



Last Passenger run to Pine Plains 9 September 1933.
Nimke Vol 2, p 125


Removing the tracks in 1938.

Scrap was sold to Japan.

Nimke Vol 3, p 140


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