S. Berliner, III's sbiii.com Long Island Rail Road Page keywords = - - -

Updated:   24 Jul 2012, 20:50  ET
[Page converted 07 Mar 2010;

    original AT&T Worldnet Website begun 30 May 1996.]
Update info on the top on ALL pages for your convenience.

URL:  http://sbiii.com/lirr-etc.html
[was at "home.att.net/~Berliner-Ultrasonics/lirr-etc.html"]

S. Berliner, III
Consultant in Ultrasonic Processing
"changing materials with high-intensity sound"

[consultation is on a fee basis]

Technical and Historical Writer, Oral Historian
Popularizer of Science and Technology
Rail, Auto, Air, Ordnance, and Model Enthusiast
Light-weight Linguist, Lay Minister, and Putative Philosopher

note - The vast bulk of my massive Web presence (over 485 pages) had been hosted by AT&T's WorldNet service since 30 May 1996; they dropped WorldNet effective 31 Mar 2010 and I have been scrambling to transfer everything.  Everything's saved but all the links have to be changed, mostly by hand.  See my sbiii.com Transfer Page for any updates on this tedious process.

S. Berliner, III's


Long Island Rail Road Page


(and related Long Island railroad information)

LIRR Keystone

[this page was separated out from my RAILROAD and LI Railroads pages;
you might wish to see them also.]

NOTE:  Page size is limited by HTML to some 30kB; thus, I've been forced to add an LIRR Continuation Page 2 to fit the LIRR and related information and even another LI Continuation Page for other LI railroads.
You may wish to visit my RR page, as well.

Also, LILS - the Long Island Live Steamers courtesy page has been moved to a separate page.

[A new "bugaboo" has reared its ugly head - complexity of organization -
see COMPLEXITY on my main index page.]

(photo courtesy D. Morrison)
[Thumbnail image - click on the picture for a larger image.]

There are two related topics here on this page:
    (1) The Long Island Rail Road and (2) Long Island railroad information.

There IS a difference!

The Long Island Rail Road is the official name of the oldest Class 1 railroad still operating under its original name and charter (since 1834 - the B&O was older, having been chartered in 1827 and opened to traffic in 1830 but has been subsumed into CSX).  Although there were (and even are) some rolling stock and some official documents with the two words combined, the correct name of the LIRR has the two words separately:

"Long Island Rail Road"!

    More on this on LIRR Cont. Page 1.

There were and are other railroads on Long Island - these also are (or will be) covered on the LI Railroads page.

Click here re ex-railroad personnel records.

LIRR Ping Pong car baggage racks available - click here.

LI vs. LIRR Reporting Marks

Lapeer Industrial RR = LIRR?
Even if the Long Island RR is "LI", that's just not right!
[For background, see the NRHS/LIST page.]

Note: - the three LIRR cabin cars (cabooses) are no longer available..


    (If these links don't work, click "back" and scroll down!

[In order to conserve space, this index has been severely truncated;
for a fully-linked index, see the LIRR INDEX PAGE.]

ALCO-GE-IR BOXCABS, now on a separate page,
    including LIRR boxcabs #401, the world's first production diesel road switcher,
    #402 (first and second), #403, and many others.

Brooklyn Eastern District Terminal Railroad,
    now on its own separate page
    and its successor roads, the New York Cross Harbor Railroad and New York Regional Rail.

On Model RR page 2:
    Degnon Terminal Railroad, plus
    Murrer's Sidings and
    Kearney Sidings
    See also on LIRR page 4 Blissville/Laurel Hill (and Maspeth and Fresh Pond Yards).

The New York & Atlantic Railway, lessor of LIRR freight operations.

The New York Connecting Railroad (the old New Haven line from Oak Point Yard across the Hellgate Bridge and down through Fresh Pond to Bay Ridge) will not be covered on this site; a new book about
    the NYCRR is coming out on or about 22 Sep 2006, sponsored by the LI Sunrise-Trail Chapter, NRHS.  There is a NYCRR Society!  See below.

However, see my Z-Scale Articles page for a detailed writeup on the Hellgate in Z (1:220).

PAGE INDEX (truncated as noted above):

LIRR Index Page.

On this main LIRR Page:
    Some LIRR Links.
    Steam Locomotive #35 Restoration Committee.
      Restoration of Pennsy Class G5 Long Island Rail Road 4-6-0 #35.
    Steam Locomotive #39 Restoration
        (Railroad Museum of Long Island)
      Restoration of Pennsy Class G5 Long Island Rail Road 4-6-0 #39

On the LI Rail Road Continuation Page 1a
    (formerly on LI railroads page; moved to LIRR Continuation page 1a on 10 Dec 01):

On the LI Rail Road Continuation Page 2:
    Odd Incident at Wreck Lead (on the LIRR)
    LIRR and LI Railroad Miscellany

On the LIRR Continuation Page 3:
    Nassau County Police 2nd Pct. Booth D. (moved to LIRR page 6 on 17 Sep 01)
    Victorian Stations Still Standing on the LIRR
    East Williston Station
    Sea Cliff (Avenue) Station
    Glen Cove (old Nassau) Station
    Glen Street Station

On the LIRR Continuation Page 4:
    Blissville and Laurel Hill Sidings,
        Maspeth Yard, and Fresh Pond Yard and NY&AR/NYCRR Interchange info.
        Blissville Sidings
        Laurel Hill Sidings
    Maspeth Yard
    Fresh Pond Yard
    LIRR MISCELLANY - continued

On the LIRR Continuation Page 5:
    Central RR of LI - moved 17 Dec 00.
    LIRR DE30AC and DM30AC Locomotives
    Victorian LIRR Stations (continued)
        Locust Valley Station
        Glen Street Station (update)

On the LIRR Continuation Page 6:
    Nassau County Police 2nd Pct. Booth D/Locust Tower (cont'd)
    Last Steam Runs (with car and loco numbers!)

On the LIRR Continuation Page 7:
    Oyster Bay Station (moved from LIRR page 5 on 23 Sep 02) See also the Central RR of LI Page, et seq.
    (see the LIRR Index Page).

On the LI Railroads Continuation Page:
    Long Island Railroads
        [with a link to the NYCRR (Hell Gate)]
    Port Washington/Soundview/Manorhaven/Sands Point Railroad Tunnel
        (formerly on the LI railroads page; moved to LIRR Continuation page 1a on 10 Dec 01)
    Cold Spring Harbor RR?
    LIRR BIBLIOGRAPHY (moved to its own page from LIRR page 1a on 01 Mar 02)

On the LI Railroads Bibliography Page:
    LIRR BIBLIOGRAPHY (moved there from this page on 01 Mar 02
        and here from LI Railroads Continuation Page on 10 Dec 01)

On separate pages:

    Long Island Sunrise-Trail Chapter
        (National Railway Historical Society)

    Long Island Rail Road Historical Society.

    Sunrise Trail Division
        (Northeastern Region)
        (National Model Railroad Association)

    Long Island Live Steamers.

    My/Dave Morrison's RAILROAD EAGLES page about the
        Penn Station and Grand Central Terminal eagles.

Some LIRR Links:

(Because this page is overloading, I have moved the full links and details to the LIRR INDEX PAGE.)

Kudos to Bill Russell; Bill has a RR site that is unbelievable; I've never seen all of it, but there are zillions of pages about NY metropolitan area railroading and rail-marine operations (car floats, ferries, pocket terminals, BEDT, NYCH, LIRR and PRR, tugs) etc.  Take a look starting with his RAILINFO page.

One of his newsthreads was about the West Side Freight Line (the elevated trackage rotting away in southwestern Manhattan); it reminded me of a rather bizarre feature of LI railroading (another item, about the WSFL, is on my RR page):

Across Manhattan and the East River, in the old Degnon yard, there is a line into the back of one of the IDNY buildings (I forget which, but think it may have been American Chicle) in which there is (I doubt it's been dismantled, although certainly no longer usable) a freight car elevator that took cars up to the floors on where their cargo was needed or v.v.

NOTE:  There is now The New York Connecting Railroad Society, an all-volunteer organization started in 1993 and recently incorporated to preserve the history of the joint venture between the Pennsylvania Railroad and the New Haven (NYCRR and the Hell Gate Bridge); they publish a newsletter, "The Connecting".

* - Hoorah!  Authorization has been given for a $315 million revitalization of Penn Station by integrating it into the old James A. Farley Post Office Building, immediately to the west of Penn Plaza and spanning the platforms, over the next six years#.  NEWSDAY (05 Mar 98) reports that the "collonaded, neo-classical" Farley building will have a "center hall atrium and grand skylight, an open space echo of the original Penn Station"; the old station was designed on a plan of the ancient Roman baths of Caracalla by McKim, Mead & White, built in 1910, and demolished in 1963 in what has been widely termed "a monumental act of vandalism".  Wonder if anyone will give up their PRR eagles to put them back where they belong?

# - The attacks on the World Trade Center on 11 Sep 01 destroyed the WTC P.O. and severely damaged other local P.O.s, so the USPS held the Farley Building for its own exclusive use for a while; the project is moving forward again.

Bob Andersen has put up a major "unofficial" LIRR page at http://www.lirrhistory.com/, with considerable detail.

See Tom Scannello's Old NYC site with his Virtual Tours of abandoned and little used railroad lines in NYC.

Art Huneke, LIRR historian and pictorialist (is there such a word?) extraordinaire has put up a fantastic site on LIRR history at ARRT's ARRchives.

Steve Lynch has a great LIRR site.

See also the Brooklyn Historic Railway Association and
    the legendary LIRR Atlantic Avenue Tunnel.

The Long Island Rail Road is an agency of New York State's Metropolitan Transportation Authority.  It was chartered on 24 April 1834 to run from the Long Island City ferries across from Manhattan to Orient Point, some 120 miles east on the North Fork of Long island where it would connect by ferry with the Old Colony railroad at Stonington, Connecticut, and so on to Boston.

This was a great idea until the New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad bridged all the rivers and bays and inlets along the Connecticut coast ca. 1850 and provided direct rail service from New York City to Beantown.  The LIRR, having ignored all the towns along the Island and been built on the most barren (and inexpensive) land on the Island now had no "raison d'ętre" and had to scurry to build or buy branches to the population centers on Long Island.  The LIRR finally connected directly with Manhattan on the completion in September 1910 of the East River tunnels and Pennsylvania Station.  Eventually, it fell into the hands of the Pennsylvania Railroad (1928-1949), before becoming part of the MTA in 1965.

For information on the wonderful LIRR #322 (the first LIRR electric), #323 (Pennsy #10001, the second), and other early LIRR boxcab electrics, see the Odd Boxcabs page (which covers electric boxcabs).

Vincent F. Seyfried wrote a definitive 7-volume history of the LIRR which is out of print and hard to find - see my LIRR BIBLIOGRAPHY.

Note further that Vince is also (actually, primarily) a historian of Queens and Garden City.

LIRR site "http://www.lirr.net/" is not available; Gary Gross passed away Oct 1999.

John Bull Replica in Hicksville!

Jim Pavone, with a LOT of help, has completed another exact replica of the John Bull locomotive for display in Kennedy Memorial Park in Hicksvile, Long Island, New York.  The original John Bull, fabricated in England by Robert Stephenson for the Camden & Amboy Railroad, the first railroad in New Jersey, was shipped over in pieces in 1831 and, before it was painstakingly reassembled by C&A mechanic Isaac Dripps (who had never before even seen a steam locomotive) was throughly examined in minute detail by Matthias W. Baldwin, a manufacturer of stationary steam engines in Philadelphia.  After making a successful operational model for Franklin Peale's Philadelphia Museum, Baldwin then (1831) made a full-size locomotive for the six-mile, horse-drawn Philadelphia, Germantown & Norristown Railroad; although beset with teething problems, the Old Ironsides, similar to the British "Planet" class, with a slighly-smaller set of wheels on the leading axle, eventually worked out and attained 30mph.  Baldwin's next locomotive was uniquely different, it had only a single driving axle and a bogie front truck having two axles set in a rotating bolster for better guidance on curved track.  Several more such locomotives were built in 1834 and the Long Island's similar Ariel followed in 1835 and its Post Boy in 1836.

No plans, and no really-good drawings, of Ariel or Post Boy exist, so it is appropriate to use a representative Baldwin product for display on Long Island.  Hicksville is a major hub on the LIRR and the actual John Bull, which passed to the Pennsylvania RR with the C&A and then to the Smithsonian Institution in 1884, where it is on permanent static (though operable) display, ran on Long Island during the World's Fair of 1939.  To spare the original, a replica was built by the PRR's Altoona shops in 1939 and ran on Long Island at the Fair in 1940 (it still runs on occasion at the RR Museum of Pennsylvania).

So, let us laud Jim Pavone for his vision and persistence.

Dave Morrison had posted photo documentation on this massive undertakingbut it's gone from the net..   rev (24 Jul 2013)

Anyone desirous of supporting this effort was asked to visit The Hicksville Train Campaign's website, but that's also gone.   rev (24 Jul 2013)

The Sunrise Trail Division of the Northeastern Region of the National Model Railroad Association has its own Web page: http://www.sunrisetraildiv.com/.

Long Island Live Steamers (LILS)

LILS, miniature live steam (and diesel and electric) operators running at mostly 1˝" scale (also some 1" and rare ¾") in Southhaven Park at William Floyd Parkway (Suffolk County Route 46) and Sunrise Highway (U.S. Route 27).

    How to hostle without really tiring -
    (Firing up a cold oil burner - 1:1 scale, that is).


(formerly Friends of Locomotive #35, Inc. and
Locomotive 35 Restoration Committee before that)


Friends of Locomotive #35, Inc. is now operating as the Oyster Bay Railroad Museum, with a provisional charter under the New York State Department of Education section 223, which took effect July 26th, 2006.

35 key


Builder's Photo of #16
LIRR Engine #35 when on Display in Eisenhower Park
photo courtesy of Steam Loco #35 Restoration Committee

One of the two remaining Long Island Rail Road (Pennsy) Class G5 4-6-0 steam locomotives; being restored for operation.  It was purpose-built for the LIRR at the PRR Juniata Shops at a cost of $32,202 and delivered to the LIRR on 10 October 1928 for high-acceleration commuter service.  G5's had 68" drivers, 24" x 28" cylinders, and 55 square feet of grate area; weighing in at 235,000 pounds, they were rated at 41,330 pounds of tractive effort.  It was one of the last two steam locomotives in revenue service on the LIRR, was retired in the mid-50's to display at Salisbury (later Eisenhower) Park, just southeast of the intersection of Stewart and Merrick Avenues opposite the old Meadowbrook Club and Meadowbrook Station, then moved to Mitchel Field, and was the last LIRR steam engine to run, hauling a fan trip on 16 October 1955.  It pulled a huge Class 110-P-82a Kiesel tender with PRR standard Kiesel trucks (both standard on LI G5's), holding 33,800 pounds (16.9 tons) of coal and 12,730 gallons of water.  The only other surviving LIRR G5, #39, is also being restored (see below).  Another G5, PRR #5741, with a standard G5 Class 76-P-82a tender (they had an unusually low tank and unique Dolphin trucks), is preserved at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, Strasburg, Pennsylvania. #5741 was leased to the LIRR at one time; thus all three surviving G5 engines ran on the Long Island Rail Road!

The locomotive is being rebuilt from the ground up by a group of dedicated volunteers and you are invited to come help.  Watch the OBRM site for news of the next work schedule.  Right now, the disassembled engine and tender are up behind a security fence in Oyster Bay, near the turntable at the western end of the yard.  The old worksite at the western end of the hangar row at Mitchel Field, right next to the Cradle of Aviation Museum, in close proximity to the Nassau Coliseum and Nassau Community College, was supposed to have been bulldozed out of existence instantly after our move on 02 Aug 01 to make a new parking lot for the Cradle of Aviation Museum.

The locomotive and tender were moved, police escort and all, on 02 Aug 2001 to the village of Oyster Bay, where the old station will be converted into a railroad museum and the old turntable put back into service.  If you are on Long Island or in the area and have never seen with your own eyes a Pennsy engine with its boiler off its frame or a PRR Kiesel tender body separated from its frame, now is the time to visit #35, where just that happened preparatory to moving the engine and tender; of course, you could look at the engine's boiler also, with its cab on the ground, the smokebox front back on temporarily with a fake keystone (antitheft), and the tubes out.

Two restored LIRR hacks (cabeese? wood #12 and N22 #C-50) are on site and another, N5 #2) and two P72 coaches (#2935 and #2956), BM-60 Baggage-Mail cum B-60 Baggage Car #7738, two GE 25-ton switchers (#397 and #398), and other equipment should follow when the yard is ready.

#35 also bought the ALCo FA cab and observation car end from the LIRR's 1964 World's Fair exhibit (neither were from LIRR equipment) that were languishing at the old Camp Tanglewood on the northeast corner of Peninsula Boulevard and Ocean Avenue (Tanglewood Lane, more precisely), right on the Lynbrook/Rockville Center border.  The obs. end was so badly deteriorated that it could not be saved (except for its railings and hardware) but the cab is nearly restored.

Monkeys at Oyster Bay Turntable
Photo by SB,III - 13 May 99
(WOW! - It's a bad copy of a sharp photo - I have to redo it.)

My two favorite monkeys clowning on the turntable on 13 May 99.

The old #35 site had a good side view of the turntable but it's gone now; here's a current view of the turntable stripped down and repainted and a representation of how it will look:.

OBRMTurntable OBRMTurntable
Photos courtesy of OBRM - all rights reserved

BEDT #16

Photo of BEDT #16
BEDT Engine #16 - photo courtesy of Steam Loco #35 Restoration Committee


Old Brooklyn Eastern District Terminal RR 1923 Porter 0-4-0T #16, that sat for so long vandalized outside in the Kent Avenue Yard, is now out at the RRMLI in Riverhead!.  See the BEDT page!

It's too late to keep the Expressway information car from the torch!  It was in awful shape, almost totally gone, but I hated to see it scrapped (29 May 2009).

Vince Fitzgerald, of Long Island Motor Parkway fame and with a massive site on the Hempstead Plains, has added a page on #35's Mitchel site.

Steam Locomotive #39 Restoration

[Railroad Museum of Long Island]

The other of the two remaining Long Island Rail Road (Pennsy) Class G5 4-6-0 steam locomotives; being restored for operation at Riverhead (see description of #35, above), where they also have Jaws, the only surviving LIRR wedge plow (Steamtown has the rotary*), and a double-decker car, etc.  The Railroad Museum of Long Island also has a museum facility in Greenport, with the only other restorable turntable left on Long Island.

#35 and #39 drew the very last LIRR revenue steam trains in regular service (on 08 Oct 55) and #39 drew the last LIRR steam excursion later that month (16 Oct 55).  This and more about last steam runs on LI and the LIRR has been moved to Last Steam Runs, lined and indexed, and amplified, including loco and car numbers!

* - That rotary is just languishing at Steamtown; let's get together and get it back here!  Thanks to Andy Toppan (who shows it on his List of Rotary Snowplows, here she is in all her tattered (and tilted) glory:

LIRR #193 at Steamtown
Photo Cropped from original courtesy of Andrew Toppan - by permission

On my Vest Pocket Railroads You Can Model section on MRR Continuation Page 2, after the Degnon Terminal Railroad, and Murrer's (3rd Street) Sidings and Kearney Sidings writeups, I refer to Blissville and Laurel Hill.  This is because they are not compact yards or terminals but rather separate sidings strung out along the Main on either side of Laurel Hill Boulevard (the former Penny Bridge Station) just east of Greenpoint Avenue in Long Island City.  Maspeth and Fresh Pond yards are such.

I give them some small coverage and show track maps on the LIRR Continuation Page 4, at the direct links noted above.

All of these, and especially Fresh Pond, are eminently modelable in their own rights but are of limited personal interest to me and so must be covered in greater depth by someone else.

See my Long Island Rail Road Bibliography for a book about the LIRR by Dave Morrison (daverail@optonline.net), LIRR Branch Line Manager - Port Jefferson and Montauk Branches, and the reigning expert on the Penn Station (and Grand Central) eagles; Dave is also the author of a book of LIRR steam locomotive photos (see the LIRR Bibliography - with a special offer for readers of my RR pages).

At the Greenberg show at Stony Brook, Long Island (NY) on 15 Mar 1998, who should I find talking to the John Scala noted in the LIRR bibliography and elsewhere on my site but John ScalaBoth 6' 4", not related, both named John Joseph Scala, both born the same year (only some 3 months or so apart), and both very active in railroading!  Author John is a Director of the Long Island-Sunrise Trail Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society (linked above) (and runs "The Weekend Chief Publishing Co." in Mineola) and the other John Scala is a Director of the Long Island Live Steamers, also linked above.  I belong to both organizations and never realized the John Scalas were different people (I'd never noticed Steamer John's nametag before)!

If you enjoy history, especially that of Long Island, visit the Oyster Bay Historical Society site.

Also re NY City railroad history, see my/Dave Morrison's RAILROAD EAGLES page for the latest on, and his books about, the Pennsylvania Station and Grand Central Terminal eagles.

WARNING!  Historians should note that the right-of-way of William K. Vanderbilt's Long Island Motor Parkway and that of Alexander T. Stewart's Central Railroad of Long Island, now the LIRR's Central Branch, paralleled each other in several areas and should NOT be casually confused.  The LIMP RoW is the one under the LIPA (ex-LILCO) lines in central and eastern Nassau County and far western Suffolk County, at least as far east as the Maxess Road area.

Speaking of the LIRR and the Motor Parkway, see the reminiscence about both on the Motor Parkway page by the late LI aviation pioneer, George Dade.

Continued on my Long Island Rail Road Continuation Page 2.

[this page was separated out from my RAILROAD and LI Railroads pages;
you might wish to see them also.]


  What happens to all this when I DIE or (heaven forfend!) lose interest?  See LEGACY.


See Copyright Notice on primary home page.

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Contact S. Berliner, III

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of this series of LIRR pages.

To tour the Long Island railroads pages in sequence, the arrows take you from this first LIRR page to the LIRR index and to LIRR continuation pages 1a, 2, et seq., then to the other LI railroads page, the Boibliography, and lastly to the LIRR Historical Society page.  Follow the links to the various yard maps and other related pages and sites.

© Copyright S. Berliner, III - 1999, 2001, 2002, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013  - all rights reserved.

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