An Eastern Regional Railroad - 1930's - 1940's
Lehigh & New England Railroad


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The Lehigh and New England Railroad (L&NE) was a connection from northeastern Pennsylvania towards the Poughkeepsie Bridge across the Hudson River. Originally planned as a continuous line east to Boston, plans were later cut back to a section west of the river.(wik) The L&NE ran from Allentown, Pennsylvania to Maybrook, New York passing through North West New Jersey. It crossed the Delaware between Portland, PA and Columbia, NJ. In New Jersey, it interchanged with the Lackawanna in Hainsburg Jct. and with the New York Susquehanna & Western in Sussex Jct. and Swartswood Jct.
The L&NE was a coal hauler but, this regional railroad, handled much more then that. It carried cement, slate, grain and some merchandise traffic. It

L&NE logo
also functioned as something of a bridge line, like her sister, the Lehigh & Hudson River. Finally, it also was at one time a passenger carrier as well, although these operations ended early in the 20th century.(tp) By the early 30's passenger service, formerly operating between Bethlehem Jct. and Bangor, New Jersey had been discontinued. A short section from Hauto to Arlington and Temaqua, Pennsylvania, 4 and 6 miles respectively saw a few motor car runs every day, probably to serve mining commutes and to connect to the Reading, and a train a day between Campbell Hall, via Sussex, to Augusta where the L&HR connected with the Lackawanna. By 1940 the L&NE was all freight (rp).
Due to the decline of mining in Pennsylvania, the LNE was shut down in 1961, and parts in Pennsylvania became part of the Central Railroad of New Jersey until they pulled out of Pennsylvania operations in 1967. In 1976 Conrail took over any remaining operations, which were then split between CSX and Norfolk Southern in 1982 (wik)(rp).
A short historical timeline of the Lehigh & New England Railroad and it' predecessors

South Mountain and Boston and successors: 1873-1882
1868-1871 - Planning for Poughkeepsie crossing of Hudson River proceeds.
1871-2 - Poughkeepsie Bridge Company was chartered.
1872-3 - Andrew Carnegie and Pennsylvania Railroad interests plan and finance the start of a line from Harrisburg to Poughkeepsie and beyond Poughkeepsie east toward Boston via various lines known as the South Mountain and Boston Railroad.
1873-4 - Panic of 1873 and death of J. Edgar Thompson, of the Pennsy, stops work on SM&B.
1879 - The Pennsylvania, Poughkeepsie and New England Railroad, was incorporated on May 6 to follow the SM&B route from Harrisburg to the South Mountain and Boston connection at Portland, but this rr was short lived.
1880 - SM&B New Jersey Division renamed the Pennsylvania and New England Railroad, and that company's Pennsylvania Division was incorporated on May 5, 1880.
1880 - The property of the PP&NE was sold to the P&NE (PA Division) on October 13. This does not seem to have improved the fortunes of this segment of the line.
1881 - A third company, the Delaware and Slatington Railroad, was incorporated on September 9, to run from the P&NE (NJ Division) at Portland to Slatington on the Lehigh River.
1882 - The P&NE (NJ Division) merged with the Delaware and Slatington on June 22 to form the Pennsylvania, Slatington and New England Railroad.
Pennsylvania construction: 1880-1891
c 1880 - The P&NE (PA Division) built one and one-sixth mile of track to the east of Wind Gap.
1881 - P&NE foreclosed on July 25, and reorganized as the Susquehanna and Delaware River Railroad on August 23, 1881.
1886-88 - S&DR foreclosed and reorganized on July 13, as the Harrisburg and New England Railroad. This company was supposedly reorganized as the Harrisburg and Eastern Railroad on November 26, 1886, but it was unclear who actually owned it, and the Harrisburg and New England continued to function as a paper corporation, supposedly buying the charter rights of the South Mountain Railroad at a sheriff's sale on November 30, 1888.
1887 - The Harrisburg and Eastern underwent a final reorganization on May 31, to become the Harrisburg and Delaware River Railroad.
1891 - The piece of track laid by the original company was acquired by the Wind Gap and Delaware Railroad jointly from the Harrisburg and New England and its supposed successor, the Harrisburg and Delaware River, on July 31.
Pennsylvania, Slatington and New England Railroad: 1882-1887
1882 - The Pennsylvania, Slatington and New England was formed June 22 as a consolidation of the Pennsylvania and New England Railroad (NJ Division) and Delaware and Slatington Railroad, to build from Slatington, Pennsylvania to Pine Island, New York.
1882 - In December John L. Blair, who controlled the nearby Bangor and Portland Railway, acquired control of the PS&NE, in order to give the B&P direct access to New England and other points.
1883 - Construction was carried out through 1883, with grading finished in Pennsylvania and about 12 miles west from Sussex, New Jersey. The bridge over the Delaware River at Portland was built, and rails were laid for about half of the length in Pennsylvania. In early 1883 a dispute erupted with the Wind Gap and Delaware Railroad over the tracks between Pen Argyl and Bangor, which the PS&NE wanted to use. Later that year the company went bankrupt and construction stopped.
Pennsylvania, Poughkeepsie and Boston Railroad: 1887-1895
1887 - The Pennsylvania, Slatington and New England Railroad was sold at foreclosure to William W. Gibbs, president of the Poughkeepsie Bridge Company, on July 12, and was reorganized as the Pennsylvania, Poughkeepsie and Boston Railroad.
1887-94 - Construction was begun, but the company again went bankrupt, and was sold at foreclosure December 14, 1894.
1889 - Other companies were chartered to build the line over the Poughkeepsie Bridge and the Central New England and Western Railroad was completed.
1892 - The CNE&W part was combined with the PS&NE by the Philadelphia and Reading Railway,
1893 - The two parts were split. The eastern section later became part of the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad, and the western section stayed independent to the end.
1889 - The Campbell Hall Connecting Railroad was chartered April 3, to obtain the right to operate the section in New York. It was originally planned to extend beyond Pine Island to Campbell Hall, the west end of the existing Poughkeepsie Bridge line.
1892 - The Philadelphia and Reading Railway gained control of the Central New England and Western Railroad in early 1892, and the PP&B soon after, giving it a route from Reading via the Schuylkill and Lehigh Railroad to Slatington, and then to New England along its new acquisitions.
1893 - The Reading's bankruptcy ended this control, and led to the PP&B's bankruptcy.
Lehigh and New England Railroad: 1895-1961
1895 - The Lehigh and New England Railroad was organized April 2, as the successor to the PP&B. The route was completed from Slatington to Pine Island, but between Swartswood and Hainesburg Junction it used trackage rights over the New York, Susquehanna and Western Railway.
1897, the L&NE completed the tracks through New Jersey to the interchange at Campbell Hall was completed to allow connections to the Erie.
1904 - The Lehigh Coal and Navigation Company (LC&N) gained control of the L&NE on May 9, 1904.
1905 - The Lehigh and Lackawanna Railroad and its leased Wind Gap and Delaware Railroad were operated by the Central Railroad of New Jersey until February 1 when the two companies were merged into the L&NE.
c 1905 - The L&NE acquired the Northampton Railroad. This gave the L&NE a branch to Bethlehem, with a branch off that one to Martins Creek.
1905 - Part of the main line between Benders Junction (the crossing of the original L&NE and the L&L) and Pen Argyl was abandoned with the new route using the L&L and WG&D.
1911 - A tunnel (4058'44N 7446'1W) was built under the fill for the DL&W Railroad's New Jersey Cut-Off in case the L&NE ever decided to complete its own line.
c 1911 - The planned route from Pine Island to Campbell Hall was cancelled, and trackage rights were obtained over the Erie Railroad's Goshen and Deckertown Railroad and Montgomery and Erie Railroad.
1912 - A yard at Maybrook, New York opened with L&NE trains terminating there via a section of the Central New England Railway.
1912 - On July 24 a new extension opened, splitting from the main line at Danielsville, Pennsylvania and running west to Tamaqua to directly serve the LC&N.
1913 - On December 14 the L&NE acquired the Panther Creek Railroad, running east from Tamaqua to Summit Hill, and with a connection to the Central Railroad of New Jersey's Hauto Tunnel>
1914 - The branch from Crane Junction on the Lehigh and Lackawanna Railroad (the Bethlehem Branch) southwest to Catasauqua opened on April 1, 1914.
1914 - The short connection from Lehigh Gap to Palmerton opened providing a connection to the Chestnut Ridge Railway.
1915 - Access to Nesquehoning obtained.
1926 - On June 4 the Reading Company leased the L&NE, but other railroads objected, and the ICC rejected the lease, preferring a lease by the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad (which was never done).
1931 - Passenger train operations limited and being discontinued rapidly.
1931-35 - The branch to Slatington from Danielsville, originally part of the main line, was abandoned between 1931 and 1935.
1940 - L&NE is freight only.
1949 - L&NE completely dieselized; one of first railroads to accomplish this. The L&NE invested in Alco power and had a fleet of Alco FA units and RS2s.
1961 -.Operations ended on October 31 due to the decline of mining in northeastern Pennsylvania.
Lehigh and New England Railway: 1961-
1961 - The Lehigh and New England Railway was chartered by the Central Railroad of New Jersey to take over some of the lines in Pennsylvania. Included in that sale was the main line east from Tamaqua, the old Lehigh and Lackawanna Railroad and Northampton Railroad from Bethlehem to Martins Creek, and the branch from Bethlehem west to Allentown. A short section from Pen Argyl to Wind Gap was taken over by the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad, connecting to the DL&W's Bangor and Portland Railway at Pen Argyl.
Most of the L&NE fleet of Alcos went to the Louisville & Nashville. Some of the switchers went to Liberia for a construction project. Portions of the L&NE were operated by the Jersey Central, until they pulled out of Pennsylvania in 1967.
1976 - And, a few short segments are still in use by NS/CSX today.

L&NEmap
Lehigh & New England Railway - 1931


Our Sources
Private Collection of Richard R. Parks(rp)
Wikipedia the free Encyclopedia [web](wik)
Official Guides- 1943 & 1950
http://members.tripod.com/njrails/20th_Century/Lehigh_NewEngland/Lehigh_NewEngland.htm(tp)
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Web Page Written and Maintained by Richard Parks
Copyright Richard Parks, April 29, 2009, revised June 17, 2011