Friday, March 25, 2016

Brisbane Tower: Wabash over EJ&E

After all of these years, you can still see part of the curve of the interchange line in the trees.
1939 Aerial Photo from ILHAP
Bill Molony posted
Brisbane tower was in the northwest quadrant of the WStL&P - EJ&E junction at Brisbane in New Lenox Township of Will County, with the EJ&E passing under the Wabash.
The interchange tracks between these two railroads was in the southeast quadrant.
Both of these railroads built through this location at the same time,in the early 1880's, and, to my knowledge, this junction was always grade separated.
Bill Molony reposted
Jamie Huybers does anybody know or remember when the double main was removed ?
Richard Weber In the mid 80's when USS needed cash flow to help pay for marathon oil.

BRHS posted
BRISBANE was the name of the location in New Lenox Township of Will County where the (east-west) Elgin, Joliet & Eastern tracks passed under the (north-south ) Wabash tracks.
The tower shown here was in the north-west quadrant of the crossing, and the interchange tracks were in the south-east quadrant of the crossing.
Today, the EJ&E is part of the Canadian National system and the Wabash is now a part the Norfolk Southern system.
Brisbane tower and the interchange tracks are long gone, but the two mainline tracks remain in place.
Dave Rodgers I remember working on that tower when I was in the B & B on the J in about 71 or 72. I was told at the time the original cupola was taken off by a derailment.
on Meyer The bldg was in poor condition when I worked there as a Telegrapher/Opr in the
mid 60’s. The stairs shown from the parking lot were a challenge in
the winter.

Richard Fiedler posted
Wabash EJ&E station Brisbane Il probably mid 60's.
Richard Fiedler Only the bridge and a stairway on the east side are the only structures there now. Only one J track too.
Richard Fiedler posted
Another view of Brisbane the crossing and interchange of the Wabash and EJ&E. This was a busy and important interchange. I was too young to explore it before it was torn down but it survived to 1970 or so because we had train orders from there. The building measured 16x26 feet. Photo JT Gregor Collection.

Ron Wesolowski posted
Ron Wesolowski Staggers Act killed interchanges like Brisbane.
Staggers Act was the 1980 law that deregulated railroads. But I don't understand why it would kill these interchanges unless it is the reason that a railroad wants to keep all of its freight on its own tracks for as long as possible.

George Forero posted
I have been admiring all the great photos of the EJ&E here on this site, so I was inspired to scan some of my b&w negatives to share with the group. To start off, here is a photo taken August 7, 1971 at Brisbane.
Richard Fiedler From the broken glass to the missing blades of the train order signal on the N&W (Wabash) it is closed. From what I know it was torn down very soon after the agency was closed. There was a 3-4 track interchange yard up to the right on the N&W grade that attests to the amount of business interchanged here. All is gone now.
Bill Char Lang I was breaking in at the Agency at Brisbane through the winter of 1965 and 1966. Brisbane was operated by the N & W. In May, 1966, almost 50 years ago, I hired out on the J as a tower operator. One Saturday morning in 1966 I arrived Brisbane, we unlocked the door, and, when we walked in the entire wall next to the EJE was gone. A shifted load of lumber took it out.

BRHS posted
A westbound EJ&E freight train passing under the Wabash at Brisbane Tower.
George Forero My photo, taken Aug.7,1971.
Craig Cloud Note Train order signal with TO plate.
Richard Fiedler commented
Meet at Brisbane. Double headed EJ&E mikados under Wabash K-1 mikado 2437 in the late 40's.
Also posted by Carl Venzke
Meet at Brisbane. Double headed EJ&E mikados under Wabash K-1 mikado 2437 in the late 40's. New Lenox Township of Will County, Illinois
John LaRochelle posted
The N&W/Wabash EJ&E Closed depot at Brisbane. 1970.
John LaRochelle posted
N&W/Wabash Train #124 the St. Louis, Decatur, Chicago Blue Bird high balling over the EJ&E at Brisbane 1970.
Stuart B. Slaymaker IIRC, by this time, you had to change trains at Decatur, to get to St. Louis on the N&W. After a time, the GM&O was the only through service between Chicago and St. Louis. ICRR had cut back to Springfield, by 1970.
Kevin Piper posted
EJ&E 669 roars under the old Wabash at New Lenox, IL, with State Line coal on 4-27-89.

Bill Molony posted
An overhead view of Brisbane, with the two EJ&E tracks passing underneath the single Wabash track.

Kevin Piper posted a history of New Lenox that includes Brisbane.
"Moving east of Joliet, we come to the once busy interchange between the Wabash and EJ&E in New Lenox called "Brisbane." The long gone connection was in the southeast quadrant. This interchange disappeared gradually under N&W. Brisbane was at one time a train order station staffed by both railroads. Before 1980, Brisbane's interchange was worked almost daily. Today, the former Wabash line sees mostly Metra trains overhead."

Kevin piper posted four photos of which the last one is new.
Once a very important interchange, Brisbane (New Lenox) is the crossing of EJ&E and the Wabash/N&W/NS Chicago-Decatur line. Brisbane was the first junction east of Joliet, and the second railroad location after Marble Falls (South Joliet) toward Gary, IN. There was also a joint train order operator and tower there, which lasted until the very early '70s. Employees there were six months EJ&E, six months Wabash on a rotating schedule. Today, the interchange tracks are long gone, and the old Wabash line sees mainly Metra commuter trains to nearby Manhattan. These views are looking east.




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