Thursday, August 30, 2018

Pennsy Cummings Branch

Dennis DeBruler posted four photos with the comment:
A Joe Usselman photo, used with permission.
Joe's comment: "A crappy shot of the BRC while standing on the former PRR Cummings branch in Chicago in 2010."
Bob Lalich commented: "The ex-PRR Cummings Branch was abandoned in the early 70s I believe, and the bridge over the BRC was removed to provide better clearance. It branched off the Ft Wayne line just west of Rock Island Jct, passed over the BRC to South Works, Rock Island and BRC to 100th St tracks on its own bridges, then paralleled the BRC down to 105th St."
Additional comments are on the photos.
The train in the background on the left is on the BRC-NS/Pennsy connector. It is one of the few tracks left in the Rock Island Junction. The bridges from left (north) to right are a B&OCT remnant of a Strauss trunnion bascule, 2 NYC abandoned lift bridges, a hole where a PRR lift bridge used to be, the NS/PRR lift bridge, and the Skyway.

This abandoned overpass over 95th street is a remnant of the branch. The trees verify that it has been abandoned for a long time.,-87.5479789,113m/data=!3m1!1e3
This 1938 aerial photo caught a train on the branch so it is easy to follow the route of the branch.
The dark diagonal line at the top center of this 1938 aerial photo is the Cummings branch. It connected with railroads that served Wisconsin Steel that was south of 106th. This photo excerpt shows just part of the Wisconsin Steel complex. I didn't find any other businesses west of the PRR branch. So when Wisconsin Steel went bankrupt, the purpose of this branch disappeared.


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