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Original siding down to GLF June 2003 -- Rails return to Branchville, NJ…

To the left is a photo taken by Victor Lushear of Branchville. It was taken sometime after the cessation of service to Branchville in July of 1966, before the rails were pulled. This view of Lackawanna's Sussex Branch looks east, toward Lafayette, Newton, and Port Morris. Note the siding leading downgrade to the GLF building on the left. In the 50's there would be one or two boxcars spotted here with feed, grain, and other farming-related products for the GLF.

Now, 37 years later, track will soon be restored to this location.

(Best viewed in maximized window, minimum screen resolution of 600x800.)

140 feet of track - spiked and ready to go
This property is now the home of Montague Tool & Supply, the largest and most complete contractors equipment showroom in the Tri-State area. Owners Tom Meyer and wife Sue Stark are installing 140 feet of rail behind their store, which will soon be the home of at least one piece of rail equipment.

As you can see, the rail has been delivered, and the bed for the ballast has been excavated.

Bed excavation for ballast

132-lb rail from Atlantic Track & Turnout Co
The 132-lb rail, stamped "BETH STEELTON", came from Atlantic Track & Turnout Co.
Last section of track is lowered into place
On Wednesday, June 25th -- the individual sections of track were lifted into place, aligned, and bolted together. Total length of the static display track is about 140 feet.

As this was taking place, the 1905-vintage Detroit & Mackinaw baggage car was beginning its journey, via flatbed, from Greenfield Village, at the Henry Ford Museum in Detroit.

Last section of track is lowered into place

On Friday, June 27th -- the 100-foot rig completed its journey and is seen on Broad Street in Branchville, ½ mile from its destination.

Rig with baggage car on Broad Street

The rig jockeys the car into position on the old r-o-w
At 5:45 PM, the 53-foot car is jockeyed into place on the old DL&W r-o-w.

The 4-wheel trucks followed on a separate flatbed and were offloaded to the siding.

4-wheel coach trucks placed on siding

Cranes rated at 150 tons and 120 tons arrive

Tuesday, July 1st -- was the day of the lift. At 8 AM, two huge 5-axle cranes arrived.

Cranes move into position for the pick

The car is picked off the flatbed at 9:25 AM
At 09:25, the car was picked from the flatbed. I don't have a weight figure on the baggage car, but these two cranes certainly had no trouble with the lift. One was rated at 150 tons, while the other was 120 tons.

Car is swung over to track

The car is lowered onto one truck at a time
The 53-foot car was lowered onto one truck at a time.

This entire operation was carried off without a hitch by the crew at Industrial Process & Equipment, Inc. When the time comes to move your caboose from the railhead to your backyard, give John a call at (973) 702-0330, or email him at ipestearns@netscape.net.

Call for you next caboose move

Detroit & Mackinaw baggage car at its new home
The car will be accessible from the store and be used for additional product displays. There's room left on the track for one more car, and the owners are already contemplating what that might be.

The interior is in excellent condition -- just a couple of roof panels need some attention. The car is located alongside the DL&W Sussex Branch Rail Trail, at its terminus in Branchville, NJ.

Interior shot of the 1905 D&M baggage car