Early Local Station - An "Open Sesame": (Pine Plains and the Railroads)
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Vol. 4: Pine Plains and the Railroads

Bicentennial Publication

By: Lyndon A. Haight

§9 Early Local Station - An "Open Sesame"

Each of the railroads provided passenger service which changed surprisingly little until the '20s. In 1874, the Dutchess & Columbia was running three northbound and three southbound trains daily except Sunday. Its timetable lists two trains out of Newburgh, with the passengers ferried across the river to the Dutchess Junction. One northbound train left there at 5:35 A.M. and a second at 9:20 A.M. A wayfreight left at 6:45 A.M. The early train terminated at Pine Plains. The second passenger train and the freight terminated at Millerton. Running in the opposite direction were a passenger and a milk train out of Millerton and a wayfreight originating at Pine Plains. The freight and milk trains ran on a slower schedule, taking roughly twice the time of the passenger train which covered the 58 miles in about two and one-half hours.

In 1904, not many years before absorption into the CNE system, two first-class and two second-class trains operated each way, two of them originating and terminating at Millerton and two at Pine Plains. During the summer of 1889, from June 22 until September 14, the ND&C ran a special train

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N.D.&C. Engine No. 4 at Pine Plains, with passenger cars. Bill Owens' stage at far end. (V04-32.GIF)
on Saturday between Dutchess Junction and Pine Plains, and a Monday morning special back to Dutchess Junction to connect with trains on the Hudson Division of the New York Central. This accommodated passengers who wanted to spend the weekend in Dutchess County. How long these specials ran I do not know, but in 1910 there was still a morning train out of Pine Plains in advance of the regular scheduled run.

The Pine Plains Herald, on July 2, 1869, reported from the Poughkeepsie Eagle a description of the first train on the Western Division of the Boston, Hartford & Erie Railroad. I have stated earlier that before construction was completed the Dutchess and Columbia Railroad had been leased to the BH&E.

Quoting in part from the Herald article:

"The business of this road (the Western Division of the BH&E), formerly called the Dutchess & Columbia Railroad, was officially inaugurated yesterday by the starting of passenger and freight trains. The following is the correct timetable:

Leave AM PM
Hopewell Junction 6:10 1:30
Fishkill Landing 10:10 6:10
Fishkill Landing 7:10 3:20
Hopewell Junction 11:55 7:10

"All trains connect with the Hudson River Railroad at Fishkill Landing depot.

"The 10:10 A.M. train on Monday consisted of a locomotive, baggage car and a new passenger car. The latter is of the same length as a Hudson River railroad car, the outside being painted a chocolate color, nicely striped and gilded. Running along the upper edge of the car are the letters BH&ERR. Inside, comfortable backs to the seats are noticeable. The roof is of the Monitor pattern and the ceiling is padded and covered with fancy colored patent paper. Bronzed package racks, patent side and French mirrors are also visible.

"The car will compare favorably with the Hudson River road. Sunday afternoon this train left Fishkill Landing at 4 P.M. with fifty-five paying passengers on board. A large number also passed over the road yesterday."

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Scene at Fishkill Landing (now Beacon) showing N.Y. and N.E. Freight yards and car ferry "Hart" plying between Newburgh and Fishkill Landing. About 1892 (V04-33.GIF)

The Poughkeepsie and Eastern provided passenger service between Poughkeepsie and Boston Corners and, for a time, to Millerton. In 1874 the P&E scheduled a passenger train and a mixed train out of Poughkeepsie, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. There were two west out of Millerton, one A.M. and one P.M., as well as a Sunday train each way. By 1897 the P&E had six dailies out of Poughkeepsie, three of which went through to Boston Corners. The others, summer trains, terminated at Upton Lake Park, Stissing and Stanfordville. In 1904, the same line was running two first-class trains and one second-class train on weekdays each way with one Sunday train making a round trip.

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The Little Nine Partners Historical Society
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Fri Jul 11 2014 at 11:12:49am
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