View Full Version : April Fool's Tidbits

04-01-2005, 05:40 PM
On this date in 1976, Conrail was formed by the merger of the Reading, Lehigh Valley, Central of New Jersey, Penn Central, Erie-Lackawanna, and Lehigh and Hudson River. Conrail was set up by the USRA under the Regional Rail Reorganization act of 1973. After several years of losing money, Conrail started to turn a profit in 1981, and in 1987 the federal government sold the railroad in what was at the time the largest stock offering in the nation's history. After the 1999 merger with NS and CSX, Conrail became a switching/terminal railroad, known as "Shared Assets".

The fact that CR was created from 6 bankrupt railroads and started operations on April 1, 1976 makes me wonder if the government intended it as some sort of a joke. However the following is not a joke: Also on this date in 1980, the Rock Island formally ceased all operations.

04-02-2005, 12:09 AM
Not sure if the government intentionally chose 4/1 as a "joke" on purpose, but I can tell you this though, L. Stanley Crane had the last laugh.

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04-02-2005, 08:01 AM
Conrail was one of the last great American buisness success story (even if it WAS the goverment) Start with a gaggle of bankrupt and struggling companies, add a rock solid leader like Crane, and end in two of the major class one railroads fighting in the streets over it.

04-03-2005, 07:27 PM
Well, being an older fart, I am one, having grown up along the EL, felt like CR was "the end." Now I look back at all the shots I took 20 years ago nowand get the same nostalgic rush... go figure.


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