Grand Trunk Western is the US portion of a route from the port of Portland, Maine to rail connections in Chicago through southern Ontario and Quebec that served Toronto and Montreal. In 1859, the Canadian portion, Grand Trunk Railway (GTR), was completed. Originally, GTR used the Michigan Central Railroad line from Detroit to Chicago to access the Chicago connections. But when W. H. Vanderbilt took over control of the MC in 1878, GTW put together its own route across Michigan and Indiana by using railroads it had been buying in the 1870s with an eye towards being cut off by Vanderbilt. In 1880, the Canadian interests consolidated four railroads as the Chicago & Lake Huron Railroad which ran between Port Huron and Valparasio, IN, where it connected to the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne and Chicago Railroad to gain access to Chicago. To avoid dependency on the PFW&C, it became one of the five owners of the C&WI to gain access to Dearborn Station and the Chicago & State Line completed 47 miles from Valparasio to Elsdon Chicago on February 8, 1880. [American-Rails] The Chicago & State Line also built the Elsdon Yard.
To close the gap between Elsdon and the C&WI tracks that were about three miles east, on June 11, 1880, GTW formed the Grand Trunk Junction Railway and leased the route that GTJR opened August 29, 1881. [Wikipedia] The GTJR ran parallel to the Chicago and Indiana State Line Railway (C&ISL) that that was incorporated on July 13, 1880. So the two railroads probably shared the work of getting permits, buying land, and building an embankment. Each railroad probably built and maintained the 19 overpasses needed to cross the Back of the Yards residential neighborhood.
The CN line is the same one that passes through Wellsboro, Griffith and Blue Island. In 2013 CSX obtained operating control of this line between Elsdon, about three miles north of here, and Munster, Indiana by way of an easement negotiated with CN. Consequently, although CN trains on this segment have diminished, CSX trains have been added, giving about the same amount of traffic as before. However, it is nowhere near the number of trains seen on the Belt. Most of the CSX and CN trains from the south use a connection in the southwest quadrant to reach Clearing, and CSX intermodal trains also use it to access the Bedford Park intermodal terminal adjacent to Clearing.
http://www.dhke.com/CRJ/routes.htmlThe EJ&E connects with GTW at Griffith
|Late 1960s photo posted by Joey Kelly and Drew Guild|
Griffith Historical Society
GTW in Danville?