|Although the Rahway Valley
Railroad was built to serve, and was more intertwined with, the
Baltusrol Golf Club in Springfield, NJ, but there was in fact another golf
course in the RVRR's territory. Just a stone's throw from the Kenilworth
Yards was, and
still is, Galloping Hill Golf Course.
Located in what was planned to be the New
Orange Industrial Association's
"Lake Wewanna," the Galloping Hill Golf Course opened for
business in 1928. The course, still in operation today, is managed by
the Union County Parks Department. Opened years after the RVRR
discontinued regular passenger service, there was never the opportunity to
take the train to Galloping Hill, however the RVRR and the golf course did
have little bit of a relationship after all.
The Clark family , managers of the RVRR for over fifty years,
were avid dog lovers. Apparently some of their dogs would find their
way to the Galloping Hill Golf Course, near where the dogs were kept at
Station . "The progenitor of all the dogs that hung around the
Rahway Valley must have been the dirty black-and-white stray
that showed up at Kenilworth in the early 1940ís. Lady
belonged to nobody, begged lunch from the train crew, hunted
rabbits, presented the railroad with two litters of pups, and
had a habit of running onto the greens of a nearby golf course
and stealing balls. The police finally traced her to the
Rahway Valley, and took her away at the end of a rope. The
next day she was back." ("Short Line Man" William S.
Young. Railroading Magazine. April
The Rahway Valley Railroad's main track, between the Route 22
grade crossing and
the Kenilworth Yards, ran alongside the golf course. The tracks in this
area were constructed in a small cut and located high above the golf
course. The golf course itself is located in a sort-of low level "bowl,"
which is probably why "Lake Wewanna" was proposed to be located here.
Nevertheless, the golfers must've enjoyed seeing the RVRR steamers going
by despite getting soot on their clean golf clothes!
The tracks located along the course apparently had a bit of a
grade to them. This area was referred to by William S. Young as the
"Tin Kettle Hill Grade" (the actual Tin Kettle Hill was
removed 1903-1906 by the PRR for use as a fill). In talking about a track
velocipede that George Clark had purchased, Young mentions the grade,
"He made a trip or two between the Unionbury station and
Kenilworth, about 2 miles, but decided that pumping up the
grade over Tinkettle Hill was too arduous, even for him."
("Short Line Man" William S. Young. Railroading Magazine.