Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Blue Island Junction Before Cal Sag

A satellite link is in a description of the current Blue Island configuration.

Tc Iskender Pinar posted two photos with the comment: "Blue Island's iconic double diamond on December 5, 1911 - before the digging of the Cal Sag Channel created the need for 5 bridges at this location. The bridges that are currently in place were constructed in the 1960s to span the widened Cal Sag Channel."
Tom Winkle The Sag was originally a "single track" canal; to save money, the original dig was only wide enough to accommodate a boat and six barges, with widely spaced out areas along it's length for meets and overtakes, wet "turnouts", if you will. IIRC, widening the whole canal started in the late forties or early fifties.
Tom Winkle The view from below... Iowa Interstate waiting to get into the yard.  https://flic.kr/p/98eFbn
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The Cal-Sag was dug between 1911-22 (Wikipedia)
MWRD posted
Dennis DeBruler Slip-form concrete construction was developed to build uniform vertical structures such as grain silos. It looks like MWRD turned slip-form construction 90 degrees to construct horizontal structures.
Workers help to position movable concrete forms during construction of the Calumet-Sag Channel on September 8, 1915, viewed to the west from an area between La Grange Road and Illinois Route 83.
Joseph Obrien Just to think the fact that the Cal Sag canal would be widened again in the 50s.
Scott Griffith posted two photos with the comment: "Nov 1920     Something i didn't know." Since this was posted in a B&OCT group, "our" would mean the B&OCT railroad.
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David Daruszka commented on Scott's posting
Stone Creek at the top, Little Calumet at the bottom in this map.
IHB32
Bob Lalich: Old GT crossing in Blue Island looking NW. The switches are the B&OCT-IHB junction. The tower can be seen in the next photo, IHB 33.

IHB33
Flickr from John W. Barriger III IHB Album

Norman Rexford Flickr  CC BY-NC-SA

Looking southeast from B&O RR over Stony Creek (5-23-1917)


The B&O once ran at grade across Vermont Street. Here it crosses Stony Creek. View of the rear of the Blue Island Gas Plant, since demolished. Stony Creek ran to the north of the plant.



Norman Rexford Flickr  CC BY-NC-SA

Before the Cal-Sag Channel (12-4-1913)
nclint2012  This picture appears to be looking north at what is now Broadway. The crossing diamond on the left is the Indiana Harbor belt crossing the Grand Trunk Western. The track on the right is the BO railroad coming from Barr Yard. If you look at any of the current railroad pictures from Blue Island junction, very little has changes except for the addition of the bridges of the current Cal Sag Channel.
David Daruszka posted
Blue Island Junction prior to construction of the Cal-Sag Canal, view looking north. B&OCT is the single track on the right.
The tracks in the foreground belong to the IHB. The tracks to the left are the Grand Trunk.
Bob Lalich clarified. I knew the stretch on the west side of Chicagoland was a joint effort, but I had lost track of the corporate predecessors.
I know this is nit-picky but the tracks in the foreground to the left of the switches are owned by B&OCT and operated jointly with the IHB. The IHB in turn owns the tracks from McCook to Franklin Park. This arrangement was created by predecessor roads Chicago & Calumet Terminal and Chicago Hammond & Western to avoid unnecessary duplication.
Ray Morriss answered my question about B&OCT timetable directions: "all east to west in the timetable."
Norman Rexford Flickr  CC BY-NC-SA

Before the Cal Sag Channel (12-4-1913)


Photo illustrates just how rural the southland was beyond Blue Island's borders. Truly an important hub and remarkable city in its heyday, Blue Island remains a fascinating community.

nclint2012  This is the same area as the previous picture only now looking south. The Indiana Harbor and the B&O are heading south east to Barr Yard and the Harbor Yard, with the Grand Trunk now heading to the right to their yard just off 139th street.


1898 RR Map
Paul Petraitis posted
[Note date of 1905.]
In 1938 the junction had a much more rational design because there was a flyover north of the channel.
1938 Aerial Photo from ILHAP



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