TrainWeb.org Facebook Page
B&O Washington Branch Photo Tour


B&O Washington Branch
Modern day photo tour

Accompanying each photo below are:

Click a photo to see a larger view. Please send your comments and corrections to Steve.


<< Previous (east) | THIS PAGE: Annapolis Junction | Next (branch) >>

In Action
NEW! Jul 2022

In Action
Mile: 17.8 Date: Nov 2019
Ease: A View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

After CSX delivers stone, Vulcan's switcher coughs to life to help unload hoppers, a process detailed via the "tour page" at the link below.

Change for: a rock delivery here


CSX 8414

CSX 8414
Mile: 17.8 Date: Oct 2003
Ease: A View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

The mineral plant's elevator rises behind CSX 8414 while the engine waits for the red signal to clear. The bridge behind the signal is that of MD 32.


Cantilevered Signal

Cantilevered Signal
Mile: 17.8 Date: Oct 2003
Ease: A View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

Zooming from the same spot as the prior photo shows the elderly cantilever signal stand. It was only after surveying most of the route that I grew to appreciate this rusty survivor, the last of its vintage on the Washington Branch.

This is an 8-lamp CPL, an uncommon breed. Most CPLs maxed out at 6 lamps, choosing to go naked at the NW and SE slots. Eight-lampers are installed where there is the occasional need to display what is known as a "Rule 290" Restricted Speed signal, a warning that unsignalled track lay ahead.

During 2013 CSX replaced it with their newer-style signals.

Links: 1983, 1983, 2013


CSX-Y

CSX-Y
Mile: 17.8 Date: Oct 2003
Ease: A View: SE
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

This model SD40-2 unit rests along one side of the triangle of track that began during 1838 with connection here between B&O and Annaoplis & Elk Ridge (A&ER). The result was Annapolis Junction (AJ), the country's first railroad town, that is, a town generated by railroads.

The standard "roster shot" angle is one you won't see very often at this web site. This time it serves to illustrate the CSX-y paint scheme that this unit would wear Henkel's 1930s until retirement around 2012. Henkel's Restaurant had stood where the photog is for this shot.

As in the 1930s phoro at right, the Henkel's building faced the railroad because pre-automobile that's how customers arrived. Even after the automobile and into the 1990s, Henkel's preserved that railroad-facing main entrance, later than any other trackside eatery in the region.

In the 1930's view, that might be a B&O penstock (water for steam engines) at the photo's right edge. A forgotten creek still flows under the tracks there, probably via a partly-original B&O stone culvert, and now emerges Henkel's 1980s menu southeast of the aggregates facility.

Before it closed in 1997, Henkel's was famous for overstuffed sandwiches, and was a favorite of railroad crews. A menu dating to the 1980s appears at right. During 1999 the building was intentionally burned down for fireman training.

Links: Henkel's history, 1983, switcher + Henkels 1992


Map 1865
Image courtesy Johns Hopkins University
NEW! Jul 2022

Map 1865
Mile: 17.8 Date: 1865
Ease: A- View: NNW (up)
Area: B IC2: 393
Map: AA 5 E 10, Ho 20 G 10 Topographic Maps

Before Henkel's did so, a grocery store occupied the building closest to the top of this 1865 map. Trimmed from the bottom of this map is a plan of Rulison USA General Hospital that took the place of Camp Kelsey. Rulison was a surgeon with the 9th New York Cavalry who died in a Civil War battle on August 29th, 1864.

On this map, B&O runs left-right, and the Annapolis and Elk Ridge (A&ER) railroad curves toward the bottom. The track wye where the two railroads connected now hosts Vulcan Materials.

The previously-mentioned forgotten creek flows north to south along the right side, and was deemed suitably fresh and healthful for convalescing injured solidiers to bathe in. Immediately before passing under the railroad, that creek runs under the entrance to a B&O freight house. "Tank" appears to the right of the freight house, likely water for steam locomotives. A fuzzy aerial photo suggests the freight house and water tank were gone by 1952.

Change for: A&ER tour at this site


Drawing 1863
Image courtesy Library of Congress
NEW! Jul 2022

Drawing 1863
Mile: 17.9 Date: 1863
Ease: A- View: E
Area: B IC2: 154
Map: AA 5 E 9, Ho 20 G 9 Topographic Maps

Per the 1865 map, on the left is Howard's Hotel and Adams Express. To the right of it in the distance might be the B&O freight house and tank. To the right of the long train is the Annapolis Junction Hotel. The small building on the right closest to the engine is probably B&O's station. I've read the AJ post office remained in this vicinity into the 1970s.

Links: LoC source, Howard's Hotel building 1953


Annapolis Junction
Photo courtesy Kilduffs
NEW! Jul 2022

Annapolis Junction
Mile: 17.9 Date: ~1870
Ease: A View: E
Area: B IC2: 95
Map: AA 5 E 9, Ho 20 G 9 Topographic Maps

I believe this looks east from the railroad side of Howard's Hotel. That means the building at distant right is the Annapolis Junction Hotel. IC2 contains the same photo for which Harwood labels the building off photo left as the future Henkel's. After much study, I believe the Henkel's building was instead ahead on the left and set back from the tracks. B&O's AJ Station is at the photo's right edge.

Link: Kilduff's site


Shadows

Shadows
Mile: 17.9 Date: Sep 2017
Ease: A- View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

This is a similar view to the drawing, as seen from the newer parking deck that occupies the site of Howard's Hotel. The trees at left would have been immediately in front of Henkel's.

The Annapolis Junction Hotel had been at the right edge of this photo where, during the 2010s, Vulcan Materials heaped aggregates into piles that appeared unchanged for years.

Unfortunately, the views here are of the shadowed side of trains.


Articulated

Articulated
Mile: 17.9 Date: Nov 2018
Ease: A- View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

With some luck, you'll see less common autoracks such as these articulated units that go by names such as Bi-Max and AutoMax.


Canadian National
NEW! Jul 2022

Canadian National
Mile: 17.9 Date: Oct 2019
Ease: A- View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

From time to time, a few Canadian Nationals sneak across the border, in this case CN 2465, CN 2513, and CN 2830.


CSX 8900
NEW! Jul 2022

CSX 8900
Mile: 17.9 Date: May 2022
Ease: A- View: SW
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

This is the first of ten model ST70AHs purchased by CSX. At almost one half million pounds, about twice the more common engine weight, this model is intended to be extra heavy to provide more traction to pull heavier consists. A consist (emphasis is on the first syllable) is the set of railcars that make up the train. Apparently, the term is not very common because when I once mentioned it to a former Conrail employee, he had no idea what I was talking about.

Link: "consist" definitions


CSX 1776
NEW! Jul 2022

CSX 1776
Mile: 17.9 Date: Jun 2022
Ease: A- View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

Fittingly, unit 1776, wearing Honoring Our Veterans paint, is passing CSX 1776 AJ's Main Street that long ago had been the primary road through Rulison military hospital.

This blocky camouflage design resembles the display of a 1980s hand-held video game, or of jpg artifacts. Supposedly such "digital patterns" are more difficult to see via night vision equipment, but in-field experience reports otherwise.

Link: camouflage patterns


Controls
NEW! Jul 2022

Controls
Mile: 17.9 Date: Aug 2020
Ease: A- View: S
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

Bring your binoculars if you want a chance to glimpse engine controls, like these of CSX 958, a model ES44AC-H.


CSX 2054
NEW! Jul 2022

CSX 2054
Mile: 17.9 Date: Aug 2021
Ease: A- View: W
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

CSX 2054 Rebuilt "dash 3 geeps" are often assigned local duty. CSX 2054 is a model GP38-3. Trailing is CSX 6503 (GP40-3) that originated as BO 4256 during 1977. Four-axle units like these are useful on sidings not designed for the longer six-axle units.

And, no, two engines are certainly not needed to pull two empty cars, instead they facilitate railcar repositioning on sidings.

Link: BO 4256


PA Tower

PA Tower
Mile: 18.0 Date: Sep 2014
Ease: A- View: NE
Area: B IC2:
Map: AA 5 E 9, Ho 20 G 10 Topographic Maps

CSX has retained B&O's name for this spot: PA Tower, which was the first tower west of HX in Halethorpe. The code names, often two letters, were also the telegraph call signs of the tower, and usually incorporated letters of a town or nearby geographic feature, in this case Patuxent. PA tower had been located immediately behind the photographer on the southeast side of the tracks, where Brock Bridge Road meets Washington Street.

Links: PA Tower ~1980 (closed), 1953 from PA Tower? former Howard's Hotel at left


Mile Stone 18
Updated Jul 2022

Mile Stone 18
Mile: 18.0 Date: Oct 2003
Ease: A View: NW
Area: B IC2:
Map: AA 5 E 9, Ho 20 G 10 Topographic Maps

Nov 2003 Neglected, forgotten and hiding in weeds 18 rail miles from Baltimore was was original mile stone 18. The opposite side of the marker (right) had the mileage engravings, but was partially obscured by a discarded slab of concrete that was pushing the marker and causing it to lean. This is not a very respectful way to treat a loyal worker who had been on the job since around 1835. Reduced foliage permitted a partial view the following month (right).

This stone milepost was still extant during 2007, but I was unable to refind it seven years later.


CSX 902946
Photo courtesy Dave Hiteshew

CSX 902946
Mile: 18.0 Date: Nov 2007
Ease: A View: SE
Area: B IC2:
Map: AA 5 E 9, Ho 20 G 10 Topographic Maps

During 2007 this caboose was rescued from Caboose Row along Hammonds Ferry Road then given the makeover seen below.


B&O C2946

B&O C2946
Mile: 18.0 Date: Sep 2017
Ease: A View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: AA 5 E 9, Ho 20 G 10 Topographic Maps

B&O cabooses were usually painted red. This one is blue for the Royal Blue train, B&O's celebrated service between New York and Washington. During the early 21st century this refurbished unit had operated as a B&B, and may still do so.

Link: more pics at trainorders.com


Parking Deck

Parking Deck
Mile: 17.9 Date: Sep 2014
Ease: A- View: W
Area: B IC2:
Map: AA 5 E 9, Ho 20 G 9 Topographic Maps

During the 2010s, CSX upgraded the stretch west from Annapolis Junction with new signals, switches, and track.

In the distance, multi-deck parking for commuters is under construction adjacent to the MARC station. Two years later another parking deck would be built on the right. The edge of expanding Fort Meade, that someday might be renamed for Charlie Wilson, is two miles to the east.

Link: Fort Meade info


Autoracks

Autoracks
Mile: 18.1 Date: Sep 2017
Ease: A View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 10, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

Autoracks often jockey back and forth here as they split apart or are trained together at Jessup terminal in lengths of two miles. At right, the restored caboose supervises from the former grounds of Camp Kelsey.

Link: Camp Kelsey 1861


Logos

Logos
Mile: 18.1 Date: Sep 2017
Ease: A View: SE
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 10, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

Rail company logos of differing eras roll by on passing autoracks.


Stencil

Stencil
Mile: 18.1 Date: Sep 2017
Ease: A View: SE
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 10, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

This "Owned by a bank or finance company..." stencil on some autoracks is a requirement of an agreement between railcar lessor and lessee that is spelled out in the dense legal document linked below.

    "(j) As soon as reasonably practicable, place decals, plates and/or such other marks, legends, or decals on the Containers to indicate that such Containers are owned by Owner and that they may be subject to a security interest in favor of one or more financial institutions. Manager may also label the Containers with all of its customary labels, marks and decals and/or to indicate that they are managed by Manager. The cost of placing all such marks, legends or decals on the Containers shall be included in the Per Container Price and Total Invoice Price paid by Owner."


From Deck
Photo courtesy Kirk Nabors

From Deck
Mile: 18.1 Date: Jul 2015
Ease: B+ View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 10, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

Before the newer parking deck got in the way, the older one facilitated a long, clear view.

Link: 1996


Old Ties

Old Ties
Mile: 18.1 Date: Oct 2003
Ease: A- View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: AA 5 E 9, Ho 20 G 10 Topographic Maps

Old crossties are being loaded onto, ironically, trucks for disposal.

A D sign on a post all its own is not common, usually they share their placement with signals.


CSX 788
NEW! Jul 2022

CSX 788
Mile: 18.1 Date: Jun 2018
Ease: A- View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

For a brief period during June, the north side of a train gets a bit of midday sunlight. CSX 3370 trails.


MARC 86
NEW! Jul 2022

MARC 86
Mile: 18.0 Date: Oct 2018
Ease: A- View: SW
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 9, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

While barely a few months old, one of MARC's Charger units leads four bi-level commuter cars east out of Savage Station.


Savage Station

Savage Station
Mile: 18.1 Date: Sep 2000
Ease: A- View: NE
Area: B IC2:
Map: AA 5 D 9, Ho 20 G 10 Topographic Maps

A few boxcars rest along what had been Furman Lumber's siding at distant center.

The Annapolis Junction name had almost been squeezed out of existence as Jessup intruded from the northeast and Savage from the southwest before in 2013 the developer of the land on the left changed the project name from Savage to Annapolis Junction. Eventually this MARC commuter rail stop will probably be renamed too. This spot is much closer to what had been B&O's Annopolis Junction Station than Savage Station.

Link: AnnapolisJunction.com


Departing Station

Departing Station
Mile: 18.1 Date: Jun 2004
Ease: A- View: E
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 10, AA 5 E 9 Topographic Maps

MARC 57 has just discharged evening commuters, and now it has a green light to continue toward Baltimore. This 8-lamp CPL is no longer extant.


CSX 825
NEW! Jul 2022

CSX 825
Mile: 18.2 Date: Mar 2021
Ease: A- View: W
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 G 10, AA 5 D 10 Topographic Maps

As seen from Savage Station, CSX 825 takes a break from jockeying Jessup autoracks.


Looking West
Updated Jul 2022

Looking West
Mile: 18.2 Date: Jan 2003
Ease: A View: W
Area: B IC2:
Map: AA 5 D 10, Ho 20 F 10 Topographic Maps

On a dreary winter day, this is the general view of westbounds shortly after they depart Savage Station. Brock Bridge Road parallels the tracks. Since photo time, CSX has removed the trackside utility poles.

A map from around 1900 shows a road split off here to the left, headed south, crossed the Patuxent River and connected into what is now the Russett Community accessed via MD 198. Long before Russett, a different community was planned on the right side of this photo.

Annapolis Junction, with rail service by B&O and A&ER, offered commuting possibilities, and with Civil War hostilities ended, the planning map at right United Cities 1866 for United Cities was drawn by surveyor Simon Martenet in 1866. I surmise United Cities sought to replicate the success of Lutherville, Maryland, which was likely the first planned commuter community in the country. During the 1850s it was developed along the Northern Central Railway.

The map depicts the west side of Annapolis Junction where cottage sites are measured in acres, roods, and perches. One rood is equal to one quarter of an acre (~1012 square meters). A rectangle that is one furlong (or 10 chains, or 40 rods) in length and one rod in width is one rood in area, as is any space comprising 40 perches (a perch being one square rod).

Something went awry because United never came to fruition; instead Junction Business Park took up residence some 100 years later with the same footprint as depicted by the 1866 map. The awkward name and, railfan preferences aside, siting of larger lots on lower-elevation land closest the railroad may have been factors in the failure. That marked Front Street is roughly where Dorsey Run Road is found now.

Links: LoC source map, 1985


Spur

Spur
Mile: 18.7 Date: Oct 2003
Ease: C View: W
Area: B IC2:
Map: Ho 20 F 10, AA 5 C 9 Topographic Maps

About a half mile west of Savage Sration, the Washington Corridor Industrial Park spur/branch serves the area around the Little Patuxent Water Treatment Plant. It is the subject of the next tour page.



<< Previous (east) | THIS PAGE: Annapolis Junction | Next (branch) >>

Or, return to main page

Copyright Notice