NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Find an old ROW or want to know what the name of that one tower along the EL was? Post any historical questions or comments here. Open to any era from around the Ft Wayne area. Interurbans welcome!

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby Hotbox » Tue Nov 08, 2016 7:13 pm

Bob Durnell wrote: IF changes are made to this website, would it be practical to do a forum section on the canal? It all really does tie together.


Seems like a very good idea to me.

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby Hotbox » Tue Nov 08, 2016 7:38 pm

Notch 8 wrote: Is there any good reads out there about the canal ? Something that might have told what it would have been like to make such a trip ?


There are considerable resources at the ACPL. Including a series of notebooks by a man named Thomas Castaldi that give such a detailed view that it can get tedious just sifting through it all. For example an extended recounting of an episode where someone stole a considerable sum of money from a passenger on one of the boats, followed by an indepth examination of every passenger and crew member who could have even remotely been responsible. And many many other experiences

Here are but two of those notebooks:

http://alpl.ent.sirsi.net/client/en_US/ ... %22&te=ILS


http://alpl.ent.sirsi.net/client/en_US/ ... %22&te=ILS

Also, here is a much more concise reference, but unfortunately the only copies available are horded by the genealogy and reference sections, meaning you can't check it out :evil:

http://alpl.ent.sirsi.net/client/en_US/ ... %22&te=ILS

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby cjberndt » Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:17 pm

Mike:

ICC's 1916-1917 valuation maps show FW&J, Valuation Section 240, extending north from Junction. Section 240A extends from Junction to just south of Hugo.

The transportation acts that led to valuation were in large part or entirely for establishing freight rates, so valuation sections were established for each railroad.

By an 1870 agreement, FWC&L and FW&J had jointly built the Junction-Hugo track. In Section 240A south of Junction, FWC&L, later LE&W, owned the right-of-way, but ownership of the track was FWC&L 2/3 and FW&J 1/3; except, however, that FW&J owned the connection to the Wabash in its entirety.

If track north of Junction had been jointly owned it would have been included in Section 240A as jointly-owned track, or in a separate section if owned solely by FWC&L if not jointly owned. However, everything north of Junction was in FW&J's Section 240.

Deeds are tough in this part of Ft. Wayne, in part because Thomas Swinney sued the railroads in each and all events. He was long-dead when some were finally adjudicated. His suits were removed to courts in other counties to ensure fair trials, so you have to research documents in all surrounding counties and beyond.

Immediately north of Junction along Swinney Park the R/W was owned by GR&I with FW&J was a tenant. North of Swinney Park the FW&J R/W is clouded but presumably owned by FW&J.

It's possible that a LE&W predecessor built the track north of Junction, but I haven't found anything that supports that. What did you read that says LE&W built it?

Craig
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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby cjberndt » Wed Nov 09, 2016 7:48 pm

As to the Sanborns, they were created for rate-setting by fire insurance companies. They show those parts of communities that had fire-fighting capability (water pipes and hydrants or ponds in most cases).

The 1890 and 1902 Sanborns show the route of the feeder canal, but 1890 doesn't show those details because the potable water system hadn't been extended that far northwest. The 1902 map shows how far the potable water system had been extended. Maps 97 and 103, near the feeder canal, show water pipes and hydrants.

Craig

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby Hotbox » Wed Nov 09, 2016 7:57 pm

http://alpl.ent.sirsi.net/client/en_US/ ... %22&te=ILS

Personally, I don't know for sure one way or the other, any "source" can potentially be wrong. Which given the discrepancy we are discussing I was interested in your sources.

The reason I was curious is because with the various exchanges involving NYC, NKP, LE&W, and the Van Sweringens, perhaps not all pieces were included as a complete package when parts changed hands? Just wondered if perhaps the line to Junction fit that mold and the NYC might have held onto it (after first acquiring it as part of the line south) when other assets were later passed.

Thanks.

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby cjberndt » Thu Nov 10, 2016 7:55 am

Yes, it's possible that the track from Junction to the Cass St. depot or 4th St. yards was constructed by a LE&W predecessor. We are missing pieces that either confirm or refute that.

The 1870 agreement between GR&I, FWM&C and FWJ&S required that GR&I and FWJ&S build their tracks to Junction for connection to FWM&C. Only the FWJ&S was built, but it could have served both lines, so complied with the agreement (the intersection of GR&I and FW&J at Swinney Park was called Muncie Junction).

All three were to share in the cost of constructing and jointly own the track from Junction to Hugo, but the 1917 valuation map shows joint ownership by FWM&C (2/3) and FW&J (1/3), so that provision of the agreement was not completed, or GR&I relinquished it share sometime later.

GR&I's land north of Junction was to have been divided among the three parties, and that was never done. The agreement didn't say why that provision was included. FW&J's track immediately north of Junction was a tenant on land owned by GR&I.

There are other provisions of the 1870 agreement that were modified. I didn't find an amendment to the agreement, but it wasn't needed if all three simply agreed to exclude GR&I and have FWM&C and FWJ&S complete those parts of the agreement that affected them. We don't know.

I see that the 1885 Sanborn shows the FW&J track to Cass St. as Cincinnati, Louisville & Southern. I couldn't find any history on that name.

Craig

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby Hotbox » Thu Nov 10, 2016 7:53 pm

Notch 8 wrote: Is there any good reads out there about the canal ? Something that might have told what it would have been like to make such a trip ? Guess it wasn't really to hard for the railroads to kill the canals


Your question encouraged me to dig a little, And I found this: https://www.amazon.com/wabash-Trade-Rou ... 70&sr=1-10

Reading through it now, and I cannot recommend it highly enough, Really impressed with it's retelling of how and why it failed, yet succeeded even through failure.

Attributing the failure of the canal to the railroads alone is overly simplistic. The canal was born as just a part of Indiana's Mammoth Internal Improvements Act. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indiana_M ... vement_Act

Which while well intended, became a disaster. It is a textbook example of what can go wrong when men with "energizing and transformative" :mrgreen: ideas are allowed to pursue those dreams with other people's money.

Probably a lesson Ft Wayne should review.

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby Hotbox » Thu Nov 10, 2016 8:12 pm

cjberndt wrote:Maps 97 and 103, near the feeder canal, show water pipes and hydrants.

Craig

Still, it's interesting that map #103 of the 1902 set (presumably a map made by a man with his feet on the ground, in that area) shows no evidence of the rail siding along the feeder, even though the composite image shows exactly that ...even partly in section 103.

As you observed earlier, it seems improbable that such a line would have crossed the NKP main twice as it is shown. Assuming the line in question previously existed, if everything was in fact being drained as the NKP main was being built through the area, there would seem to be little reason to allow such a defunct line to remain in place. My guess is that the line as shown on the 1902 composite is an artifact from an earlier map, included in error . Wish there was someone old enough around that we could ask.

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby cjberndt » Sun Nov 13, 2016 10:07 am

ICC's 1917 valuation report on the FW&J says:

(1) FWJ&S constructed 97.472 miles of track, Jackson to Ft. Wayne, in 1869-70, and this track was transferred to FW&J in 1880. FW&J was leased to LS&MS in perpetuity Sept. 1, 1882, and the lease passed to NYC Dec. 23, 1914. There were no reported additions or reductions in mileage in any of these transactions.

(2) 1.66 mi. of track from "Hugo to Ft. Wayne, Ind." was jointly owned by LE&W and FW&J (measured in Google Earth, 1.66 miles extends from Hugo to Junction, and this is also the mileage on ICC's 1917 valuation map, section 240A, Hugo-Junction).

In The Nickel Plate Story, Rehor says that FWM&C had trackage rights on 1.75 mi. of FWJ&S to the depot, but he doesn't cite his source. 1.75 is just short of the distance from Cass St. depot to Junction, ending between Junction and the FW&J-GR&I diamond.

I hope to get to the library to read ICC's report on LE&W and see what it contains.

Craig

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby Notch 8 » Sun Nov 13, 2016 1:13 pm

Hotbox wrote:
Bob Durnell wrote: IF changes are made to this website, would it be practical to do a forum section on the canal? It all really does tie together.


Seems like a very good idea to me.


I created a new tab under the General Discussion for the Wabash & Erie Canal. If you have questions or suggestions please feel free to message me and I will respond within 24 hours.

Also I did purchase the Wabash Trade Route in hardback !


Thanks for everyone's input. My next goal is to open to allow new people.. not sure how I'm going to go about that part..

Mike

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby Hotbox » Sun Nov 13, 2016 1:25 pm

Your willingness to dig into this is appreciated. I'll be interested in the results.

If I can pick your brain on a related but separate matter? Going back to the time the states west of the Appalachians were originally formed, did the US government at first own all land (not already ceded by treaty) within these new states?

The reason I ask is that in reading this book about the Wabash and Erie canal, scenarios pertaining to the transfer of land are different than I expected.

For one, the state of Indiana had to make an appeal to the USA in several successive sessions of congress for assistance in conjunction with creating the W&E canal. Ultimately, the only federal assistance they received were land grants for the land on which the canal right of way was to be located (and alternating 5 mile long blocks of land to either side, with the Fed retaining the intervening blocks) The book points out this was markedly different than what the states of NY and Pennsylvania had to put up with when building their canals, as the states already owned the land that their internal improvements were to be built.

Secondly, The state of Indiana was authorized by the federal government to transfer lands to the state of Ohio for the land that would be needed for the canal right of way within the boundaries of the state of Ohio. That's no mistake, evidently Indiana had first rights to those lands as part of the "assistance" package as well. Just seems peculiar to me that the state of Ohio would be beholding to the state of Indiana for rights to lands within it's own boundaries. Was this the norm?

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby cjberndt » Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:30 am

Looking west at the collapsing canal aquaduct across the St. Marys River, just south of NKP's wood through-truss bridge, about 1882. It looks like people are clearing snow. The walkway along the right side of the aquaduct where the man is standing was the towpath.

This NKP bridge was later the freight line. The passenger bridge was south (left) of the aquaduct and freight bridge.

Craig
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Ft W St Marys Riv Canal Aquaduct c1882.jpg
St Marys River canal aquaduct & NKP bridge c1882

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby cjberndt » Sun Mar 26, 2017 12:35 pm

In August 1870, about a month before FWJ&S was officially in service in Ft. Wayne, the city council adopted an ordinance granting FWJ&S the right to lay its track in Polk St., which is west of St. Mary's Ave. The RR only used about two blocks of Polk from St. Mary's Ave. to Degroff St., splitting Polk down the center, then the track curved southwest toward Junction.

In Oct. 1870 and again in Apr. 1872, adjoining property owners complained to the council or street committee that FWJ&S had not repaired damage to their properties.

Craig

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Re: NKP History in Ft. Wayne

Postby 4Quad » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:35 am

An artifact remains from the railroad's presence in Polk St. (besides the grassy median): The stamped tin plate with the Franklin Ave. railroad crossing's DOT number is still attached to the streetlight pole on the southeast corner of Polk & Franklin.


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