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Down to the Interchange!

Down to the Interchange!

A Short Run to the Lehigh Valley in Roselle Park

By Jeff Jargosch (c) 2014

All photos taken by Charles Roselius, courtesy of Don Oberding


#13 crosses the Boulevard with a Norfolk and Western boxcar, maybe a carload of copper wire from Volco. Freshly fueled and ready for a day’s work, #13 finds itself facing toward Roselle Park. This is not normal practice as usually the engines faced west towards Summit. This move was possibly done to gain clearance for maintenance in the engine house or just the result of an unusual move at the wye. Frank Froat didn’t favor change, so surely at first opportunity the engine was turned. All photos taken by Charles Roselius, collection of Don Oberding

Thanks to Don Oberding for sharing a collection of photographs taken in the fall of 1947, we get a close up view of some local operations. Photographer Charles Roselius shot these trackside images with an old “Brownie” camera. Roselius lived on Long Island and had come West with a friend to shoot these pictures in New Jersey.


We get a view of the local switching at Roselle Park , a Nickel Plate hopper, possibly of coke, and an interesting flat car of three new road rollers. The rollers are going to Smith Tractor, just over Route 22 in Union. The owner of Smith was a friend of George Clark’s. When checking waybills trackside he was known to chalk obscenities on the crates and equipment as it passed through Kenilworth as a gag.


The engine, #13, has backed down, accompanied by caboose #102 behind the tender. It also appears a car load of poles, for E.A. Allen, is in the consist. Allen handled poles for utilities and construction pilings.


The brakeman checks the couplings and air hoses and gives the go ahead. Frank Froat, the engineer, eases out the throttle and the train rolls around the curve toward Webster Ave. We catch the train later approaching the Meisel Ave . crossing having just cleared the Truss bridge over the Rahway River. Summit is just a short way ahead. Thanks for the outing Don.


At Roselle Park, #13 backs down to the interchange track with the LV. These shots were taken from Locust Street looking east.

Having picked up the hopper and the car of road rollers, #13 backs past Suburban Insulating & Heating Corp. The house in the background still stands.

The crew now has the cars from the team track and makes ready to go. The freight house was the property of the Lehigh Valley.

Rolling easily toward the road crossing ahead we can see a car loaded with poles and a Great Northern boxcar. Webster Ave. lives ahead. The house, seen on the right, on Laurel Ave. still stands.


With a good head of steam up, #13 blasts over the truss bridge with her whistle blowing for Meisel Ave. She'll be climbing the grade to Summit before you know it.



Head Back to the Station!