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of Freeland, Pa.
Delaware Susquehanna & Schuylkill Railroad
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Somewhat lesser known is the railroad headquartered in Drifton that ran from 1891 to 1905 and was eventually consolidated into the Lehigh Valley.
Charlie Gallagher, who has contributed these railroad pages, has personal ties to the D. S. & S. : "My personal project has been collecting information on the Delaware, Susquehanna & Schuylkill Railroad. My father told me that his grandfather was an engineer for the D. S. & S. in Drifton. When I first started looking into the D. S. & S. there was very little information available in one place. This is an ongoing project that is far from complete."
Here is my Great Grandfather Patrick Gallagher with:
D. S. & S. #16 https://familysearch.org/photos/images/18192026?p=2201835
D. S. & S. # 29 https://familysearch.org/photos/images/13106905?p=2201835 https://familysearch.org/photos/artifacts/42444884?p=2201835 Patrick was employed by the D. S. & S. from 1893, first as a brakeman, then fireman and eventually engineer.
The Delaware Susquehanna & Schuylkill Railroad Company.
Profits in anthracite mining depended upon securing favorable shipping rates from the railroads. But because railroads also mined coal on their own lands, railroad owners generally charged inflated shipping fees to independent mining operations.
Eckley Coxe combatted the power of the railroads by arguing successfully that their pricing practices violated the rules of the Interstate Commerce Commission and he got into the railroad business creating the Delaware, Susquehanna & Schuylkill Railroad in 1891, a move that ultimately assured his position as the largest independent anthracite producer in Pennsylvania.
The Delaware, Susquehanna and Schuylkill Railroad Company was incorporated April 14, 1890, under the general laws of the State of Pennsylvania, for the purpose of constructing, operating, and maintaining a railroad from Stockton Junction to Sheppton, Pa., with several branch lines. The date of organization of the Delaware, Susquehanna and Schuylkill was April 17, 1890.
The railroad was headquartered in Drifton, PA.
Brief History of Construction:
The owned mileage of the Delaware, Susquehanna and Schuylkill was acquired by purchase and construction as follows:
Acquired by purchase from Coxe Brothers & Company 1890:
Deringer Collery – Fern Glen - Gowen branch mileage: 1.10
Drifton No. 2, Collery - Eckley branch mileage: 2.60
Total Mileage: 3.70
Acquired by construction:
Stockton Junction - Sheppton mileage, 1891-1892: 18.54
Gum Run - Long Run mileage, 1891-1892: 8.03
Sheppton - Beaver Meadows Collery mileage, after 1891: 1.13
Sheppton - Harwood Collery mileage, after 1891: 0.77
Total Mileage: 28.47
Main Line mileage inventoried as of date of valuation: 32.17
Yard track and sidings mileage: 16.477
The company also owned 3.857 mi. of narrow gauge which it leased to Coxe Brothers & Company, not included in the total.
Eventually through construction or trackage rights on other railroads, the line extended from Eckley in the east to Gowen in the west, Drifton in the north to Roan (between Beaver Meadows and Audenried) to the south.
Interchanges with other Railroads:
It interchanged with the Lehigh Valley at Stockton Junction, Drifton, Long Run Junction, Tomhicken Junction and Oneida Junction.
It interchanged with the Pennsylvania Railroad at Gum Run Junction.
It interchanged with the Reading Railroad at Roan Junction.
The D. S. & S. had equipment in two different gauges. The stock in the early years consisted of 4' gauge equipment. Later the company relied on standard gauge equipment. A photo gallery page contains images of some of the standard gauge D. S. & S. locomotives.
The Northeast Railfan website has a railroad map from 1914 showing the local routes.
The D. S. & S. also had trackage rights over the Lehigh Valley to Perth Amboy, N.J., a total of 124.91 miles. This allowed the railroad to ship directly to port.
By June 30, 1905 the railroad had 23 locomotives, 3 passenger cars, 8 flat cars, and 1,367 coal cars.
In 1905, the Lehigh Valley purchased the railroad and the Coxe coal lands for $19,000,000 in four percent bonds.
[CT: I asked Charlie if they really had that many coal cars. He replied: "Yes, that many coal cars. Just remember they were loaded and stored in a yard to assemble a train. Some were always in transit and some were at the receiving yard. As mentioned, the D. S. & S. had trackage rights over the Lehigh Valley to Perth Amboy, N.J. They were loaded at Drifton, Eckley, Sheppton, Deringer, Tomhicken, and all the Coxe breakers. In addition, these cars could have been attached to Lehigh Valley trains or those operated by other railroads."]
Rail Timetables from the Freeland Tribune, March 18, 1903.
THE DELAWARE, SUSQUEHANNA AND SCHUYLKILL RAILROAD from Drifton. Time table in effect May 19,1901.
Trains leave Drifton for Jeddo. Eckley, Hazle Brook, Stockton, Beaver Meadow Road, Roan and Hazleton Junction at 6:00 AM, daily except Sunday; and 7:07 AM, 2:38 PM, Sunday.
Trains leave Drifton for Harwood, Cranberry, Tomhicken and Deringer at 8:00 AM, daily except Sunday; and 7:07 AM, 2:38 PM, Sunday.
Trains leave Drifton for Oneida Junction, Harwood Road, Humboldt Road, Oneida and Sheppton at 6:00 AM, daily except Sunday; and 7:07 AM, 2:38 PM, Sunday.
Trains leave Hazleton Junction for Harwood, Cranberry, Tomhicken and Deringer at 6:36 AM, daily except Sunday; and 8:53 AM, 4:22 PM, Sunday.
Trains leave Hazleton Junction for Oneida Junction, Harwood Road, Humboldt Road, Oneida and Sheppton at 6:32,11:10 AM, 4:41 PM, daily except Sunday; and 7:37 AM, 3:11 PM, Sunday.
Trains leave Deringer for Tomhicken, Cranberry, Harwood, Hazleton Junction and Roan at 8:00 PM, daily except Sunday; and 9:37AM, 5:07 PM, Sunday.
Trains leave Sheppton for Oneida, Humboldt Road, Harwood Road, Oneida Junction, Hazleton Junction and Roan at 7:11 AM, 12:40, 5:26 PM, daily except Sunday; and 8:11 AM, 3:44 PM, Sunday.
Trains leave Sheppton for Beaver Meadow Road, Stockton. Hazle Brook, Eckley, Jeddo and Drifton at 5:20 PM, daily, except Sunday; and 8:11 AM, 3:44 PM, Sunday.
Trains leave Hazleton Junction for Beaver Meadow Road, Stockton, Hazle Brook, Eckley, Jeddo and Drifton at 6:49 PM, daily, except Sunday; and 10:10 AM, 6:40 PM, Sunday.
Train leaving Drifton at 8:00 AM makes connection at Deringer with P. R. R. trains for Wilkes Barre, Sunbury, Harrisburg and points west.
All trains connect at Hazleton Junction with electric cars for Hazleton, Jeanesville, Audenrled and other points on the Traction Company’s lines.
LUTHER SMITH, Superintendent.