Monday, October 27, 2014

Chicago Passenger Stations

WanderWisdom provides an overview of the stations.

Bill Molony posted
Chicago station lead tracks, taken from the Board of Trade building:
Far left - Dearborn Station
Center - La Salle Street Station, with a New York Central train leaving
Right Center - Grand Central Station and lead tracks
Far Right - Coach yards and lead tracks from Chicago Union Station
Jim Vecchitto what a great picture.. Pre Congress x-way which opened in 53.. Any idea actual date of photo..

Bill Molony posted again
Chicago's downtown stations, photographed from the Board of Trade building.
On the far left is Dearborn Station, served by the AT&SF, the C&O, the GTW, the Erie, the C&EI, the Wabash, the CI&L and the C&WI.
In the center is La Salle Street Station, served by the NYC, the NKP and the CRI&P. An NYC express train can be seen leaving.
To the right of center is Grand Central Station, served by the B&O, the Pere Marquette, the Soo Line and the CGW.
On the far right is the coach yards and leads from the south side of Chicago Union Station, served by the PRR, the CB&Q and the GM&O.

David Daruszka commented on another Bill Molony post
Exposure adjusted.
John Ullrich You can still see the air. Somethings have really changed for the better.
David Church The coal burning years in the city were truly dreadful. Soot on window sills everyday. Air foul much of the time. Folks today have no idea how far we’ve come with clean air and water.
David Daruszka Dearborn survived as an office building. LaSalle Street was sold by the people handling the bankruptcy of the Rock to satisfy creditors. Grand Central was demolished by the CSX because they no longer wanted to pay the property taxes on improved land. The City of Chicago and various planning agencies put forth numerous schemes to consolidate the passenger terminals that never came to fruition. If you are interested in the politics of the downtown railroad terminals I refer you to Fred Ash's excellent book "Chicago Union Station". http://www.iupress.indiana.edu/product_info.php...
Proposed stations to consolidate the railroads on the south side

Lance Erickson posted
From a Pennsylvania RR time table of the 1960's
Bill Molony posted an April 30, 1967 date for this map. The comments include a higher resolution excerpt and a 1957 map.
Bill Edrington Note that the "Michigan Central" used La Salle Street by that time but the "Big Four Route" was still using Central. I wonder how many travelers in 1967 even knew what those railroads were. But then the PRR wasn't going to make it easy for NYC passengers, I guess.

Gaza Duna posted


Chapter 5 of Rail City Chicago USA and Chicago Stations & Trains Photo Archive describe the 6 long-distance passenger stations that used to exist to the west and south of downtown Chicago. For reference, I marked up a satellite image and a 1938 aerial photo according to the convention:
  • Left red rectangle: Chicago & North Western
  • Left yellow rectangle: Union Station
  • Middle yellow rectangle: Grand Central Station
  • Middle red rectangle: La Salle Street Station
  • Right yellow rectangle: Dearborn Station
  • Right red rectangle: Central Station 
MapQuest plus Paint
For the 1938 image, I include just the 4 southern stations so that I can include the service and approach tracks in the image because these yards are long since gone.

IHAP plus Paint
In the following table, the row that spans 3 columns lists the railroads that used the station.

NameOpenedEndingOwner(s)
Dearborn Street1885Closed 1971, Re-purposed in the 1980sChicago & Western Indiana
Santa Fe, Chicago & Eastern Illinois, Chicago, Indianapolis & Louisville (Monon), Erie, Grand Trunk Western, Wabash, Chesapeake & Ohio (initially, moved to Grand Central)
Grand Central1890Demolished 1971, still (2015) a vacant lotBaltimore & Ohio
Chicago Great Western, B&O, Pere Marquette, Wisconsin Central (Soo), C&O (later)
Central1893Demolished 1974Illinois Central
IC; Cincinnati, Chicago & St. Louis (Big Four); Michigan Central (MC and Big Four used this station initially. They changed to La Salle when they became part of the NYC System)
La Salle Street1903just commutersRock Island and New York Central
RI; NYC; New York, Chicago & St. Louis (Nickel Plate Road); Chicago and Eastern Illinois Railroad (joining RI tracks in the Ashburn neighborhood)
Chicago & North Western1911just commutersC&NW
C&NW
Union Station1925commuters and AmtrakCB&Q, Penn, Milwaukee
Chicago and Alton(GM&O), CB&Q, Milwaukee Road, Pennsylvania. After Amtrak was formed in 1971, all long distance passenger trains were moved to this station.


Bob Lalich commented on a posting:
NYC did not abandon the original MC line between the state line and Kensington after gaining control of the LS&MS and MC. The MC line hosted Detroit passenger trains which terminated at Central Station well into the 1950s. In 1957, Detroit passenger trains were rerouted to the LS&MS line at Porter and used LaSalle St.
Comments on a posting:
Bob Lalich After constructing the SC&S in the late 1880s, most of the Panhandle passenger trains used the SC&S between Bernice Jct and Colehour Jct, then the Ft Wayne line to reach the south end of Union Station. I believe any remaining secondary passenger trains using the original Panhandle line into the north end of Union Station were gone by the 1920s.
David Schnell Bob Lalich Yes. The last Panhandle Route passenger train to use the North Concourse was 1927.


Dearborn Street

Contents moved to Dearborn Station.

Grand Central Station

Contents moved to Grand Central Station.

Central Station

Contents moved to Central Station.

La Salle Street Station

Contents moved to La Salle Street.

Chicago & North Western

Contents moved to Chicago & North Western.

Union Station

Contents moved to Union Station.

Bill Molony posted
Bill's comment:
The seven central Chicago passenger depots - 1892.Baltimore & Ohio - depot #5Chicago & Alton - depot #3Chicago & Atlantic - depot #6Chicago, Burlington & Quincy - depot #3Chicago & Eastern Illinois - depot #6Chicago & Grand Trunk - depot #6Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul - depot #3Chicago & North Western - depot #2Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific - depot #4Chicago, Santa Fe & California - depot #6Chicago, St. Louis & Pittsburgh - depot #3Chicago, St. Paul & Kansas City - depot #7Chicago & Western Indiana - depot #6Illinois Central - depot #1Cleveland,Cincinnati, Chicago & St Louis - depot #1Lake Shore & Michigan Southern - depot #4Louisville, New Albany & Chicago - depot #6Michigan Central - depot #1New York Chicago & St Louis - depot #4Pittsburgh Ft. Wayne & Chicago - depot #3Wabash - depot #6Wisconsin Central - depot #7
In a later posting of the above  map, David Daruszka added the comment:
The map also predates the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893. Central Station does not appear on the map (built to coincide with the Fair) #1 on the map was the original IC station (also known as Central Station). #5 is the B&O depot that was in the Exposition Hall located on the site of today's Art Institute, also built for the Fair.

Bill Molony posted
Ken Molinelli shared Jeff Curran's post.
Chicago Stations 1930. Northwestern and Union Station in the upper left corner, LaSalle at the center, Grand Central to the left of LaSalle and Dearborn to the right of LaSalle. The IC station is out of the picture to the right.
Bill Molony posted
This 1893 Rand, McNally & Company railroad map of Chicago shows seven different downtown passenger stations being served by a total of 22 different railroad companies.
Numerous additional passenger stations were located at various locations in the outlying areas of the city. 
Then, as now, Chicago was the railroad capital of the United States.
Bill Molony posted a light version

Seventh photo posted
Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Depot-demolished 1902
Chad Brown posted a description and photos of several of the depots. Of special interest is this LS&MS Depot because I don't remember hearing about it, let alone seeing a photo of it. Was it a precursor to the La Salle Street Station? LS&MS was absorbed by the NYC and was its main route between Chicago and New York.
Nickel Plate had their own depot until they moved to La Salle on the orthwest corner of Roosevelt Road and Clark Street that is now occupied by a Target Store. [Facebook, Wikipedia] Location "9" on this 1897 Chicago Railroad Map.
1897 Chicago Railroad Map
Marty Gatton shared
1958 Photograph by J. Sherwin Murphy, ICHi-020187
[The station specific notes indexed above have many photos like this of trains at a station. I include this one here because you can see where all three south loop stations were with respect to each other. The "barn" in front of the Lee advertisement is the trainshed of the Dearborn Station. The tallest building would be the Chicago Board of Trade, and that is where the La Salle Station was. The clock tower on the left side was at the northeast corner of the Grand Central Station.]

I found information on the railroad's passenger coach yards.

1910 LaSalle Station approach tracks including freight houses and RI grain elevators

1941 tracks and buildings around LaSalle

A video of WTTW's Geoffrey describing the passenger stations





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