Sunday, September 6, 2015

Milwaukee's Chicago, Terre Haute & Southeastern Railway

1920 Map posted by Bill Molony on Facebook
from the Blackhawk Railway Historical Society
Bill Molony's Facebook comments:
The Chicago, Terre Haute & Southeastern Railway Company of Illinois was Incorporated on November 30, 1910. The principal purpose of the CTH&SE was to bring southern Indiana coal to the Chicago area. The CTH&SE was leased on June 15, 1921 to the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul & Pacific Railroad for 999 years. The lease, however, lasted for only 27 years; The Milwaukee Road completely absorbed the CTH&SE in 1948.The Milwaukee's former CTH&SE line between Chicago Heights and Terre Haute was abandoned in 1979. This original CTH&SE map is dated 1920.

(Trainwatcher's Guide spelled this "Chicago, Terre Haute & South Eastern" with an abbreviation of CT&SE.)

The November, 1910, incorporation took over the properties of the Southern Indiana and the Chicago Southern, which were in the hands of receivers and sold to the new company under foreclosure. (AbandonedRails) But I can't find any information on these two predecessor lines. In OldMilwaukeeRoad (search for Terre) we learn that the Milwaukee Road had trouble getting coal from distant mines during World War I. That is why President Byram leased the CTH&SE --- to ensure reliable access to coal fields. Note that the 1920 map also shows the coal fields that this railroad accessed.

This railroad is the first major omission I have encountered in my 1928 Railroad Atlas. It does not have the route from Chicago Heights to Terre Haute. It does have the route from Terre Haute to Westport. But not any of the branches off that route. Also note that the railroad went through Bedford, IN. I assume this railroad also served some of the limestone/dolostone quarries in the area.

Milwaukee Road Map from Wikipedia
The thick red lines show what was still operated by the Canadian Pacific when they took control of the SOO in 1990, which had bought parts of the Milwaukee Road in 1985. Note CP included the part of CTH&SE that was not abandoned in 1979. The 26-mile eastern segment from Seymour to Westport had already been abandoned in 1961 (AbandonedRails)

CP Interactive Map
But when I accessed CP's interactive map in September, 2015, that part no longer appears on the map. In Bridge Hunters, I learned that CP sold it to Indian Rail Road (INRD) in 2006. According to a comment by Brian Gray in Abandoned Rails, the segment from Bedford west to Crane Naval Depot was gone by 2012. A comment by Renfe Mikado indicates "The line from Walz (Danville, Illinois) north to Hooper Illinois (a grain elevator east of Beaverville, Illinois) is still in operation as part of the Kankakee Beaverville and Southern. North of Hooper it is entirely gone all the way up to Thornton. From Danville south, it is entirely gone all the way through what was Hulman Street Yard in Terre Haute."

Update: Bill Molony has posted a detailed map of the Chicago area and an overview of the Illinois and Indiana routes of the Milwaukee Road.

Randy Allard posted
Milwaukee Road caboose bringing up the rear of a southern Indiana bound freight crossing 165th street in Hammond, Indiana.
[This would be after they abandoned their own route and used NYC's "
Egyptian Line" to get to Danville, IL.]

Comments concerning when Milwaukee used the Egyptian Line to Danville. The answer seems to be 1979-89. One of the comments explains the INRD purchase from CP:
Chris Thompson The Milwaukee is in service from Fayette (terre haute) to Crane, IN, a distance of 70.1 miles. Everything from Crane to Bedford was removed by Indiana Rail Road in summer of 2010.
The old yard, diamond crossing, station, 1973-built direct connection to the L&N (ex-Monon) is all still in place in Bedford, but inactive and in some places, impassible, as the local scrapyard covered the track to expand their facility. This scrapyard was the last remaining customer in the area.
After CP sold the Latta sub to INRD in 2006, there was some legacy traffic, but most of that dried up by late 2008. There is still freight from the CP that reaches Louisville, brokered by Consolidated Grain & Barge Co. and it routes CP-Chicago-INRD-Indianapolis-LIRC-Louisville to reach its destination.
The old yard, diamond crossing, station, 1973-built direct connection to the L&N (ex-Monon) is all still in place in Bedford, but inactive and in some places, impassible, as the local scrapyard covered the track to expand their facility. This scrapyard was the last remaining customer in the area. After CP sold the Latta sub to INRD in 2006, there was some legacy traffic, but most of that dried up by late 2008. There is still freight from the CP that reaches Louisville, brokered by Consolidated Grain & Barge Co. and it routes CP-Chicago-INRD-Indianapolis-LIRC-Louisville to reach its destination.
INRD got trackage rights over CSX/C&EI from Terre Haute to Chicago.




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